I'm new here to China and am looking for a place to begin learning Chinese online. Does anyone have any suggestions? Price matters to me, but I'm looking more for suggestions from experience with a quality learning school/institute/company/etc. Thanks in advance for any help!
If you want to speak Chinese, I recommend doing it online. Private tutors seemed nice at first, but my motivation to continually meet and study on their schedule waned after a couple of weeks. I tried online courses from Surf Chinese and study on my own schedule from home now. Learning online has allowed me to continue studying with less of the stress and strain of commuting to meet up. I suggest you try a few different ways and then choose the best way that suits you. Good luck to you!
Chinese Learn Online has free podcasts available for download via iTunes.
chinesepod.com/ Not overly cheap, but very, very good.
I also used Surf Chinese and would recommend them. The lessons are on Skype with a live teacher, feels the same as a face-to-face meeting.
www.livemocha.com is pretty good. You can learn pinyin and/or characters as well as conversation.The first few lessons are free. You can chat with others, make recordings of your pronunciation and people will assess the recordings for you, and it's low stress. If you continue, there's a low monthly charge.
QUOTE: "I'm new here to China and am looking for a place to begin learning Chinese online."
If you are currently in China, especially in Kunming, I why not hire a live tutor face to face? Maybe do something on-line as a supplement.
I am a full-time Chinese tutor and have been teaching Chinese as a second language online for about two years.
If you are still looking for someone, please feel free to contact me for more information.