Become a master at learning Chinese characters!

Just scroll down to see a sample lesson!

"The course is amazing! I was a HSK3 level reader, but could barely write. Using your course has not only helped me to learn to write, but has boosted my reading comprehension. I guessed the meaning and sound of 症 today, having never seen the character before. --Robin O'Connor (France)

In this 90-day online video course, you'll learn how Chinese characters actually work and by the end of this course, you'll be a master at learning Chinese characters!!

Covers Traditional and Simplified!

You'll get access to 1-2 videos per week, plus supporting PDF materials covering 25 characters specifically chosen to reinforce that week's topic.

You'll get new videos every week for 3 months, but you can go at your own pace—you get lifetime access the content!

Course begins immediately—you'll get access instructions via email within 24 hours from purchasing!

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One time purchase; not a subscription!

Revealing the logic of the Chinese writing system

Chinese characters are composed of functional components—components which express sound and meaning

We'll teach you how these components work and how to use them to recall characters more effectively

You'll also learn how to use this knowledge to learn new characters more efficiently in the future

What our customers are saying:

"The course is amazing! I was a HSK3 level reader, but could barely write. Using your course has not only helped me to learn to write, but has boosted my reading comprehension. I guessed the meaning and sound of 症 today, having never seen the character before.

Robin O'Connor (France)

"I'm enjoying the course. I have found several cases where I entered the wrong character while typing, and I analyzed the components to figure out why it was the wrong character and what the right one should be."


Beirne Konarski (USA)

"I bought this. It has helped me recognise and even pronounce characters I have never seen before thanks to my recognition of patterns from the explanations."

Soroush Torkian (Canada)

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One time purchase; not a subscription!

"Changes the way we learn Chinese"
-Dr. David Moser

A 90-day online video course with supplemental material to teach you how to learn Chinese characters.

We've been teaching a course at ICLP—one of the world's most prestigious Chinese language schools—for years. Now we're making it available to the public for the first time as an online course!

You'll get lifetime access to over a dozen video lessons about Chinese characters (simplified and traditional) and how to learn them, plus you'll learn:

  • ◆ 300 characters, specially curated to teach you how characters actually work
  • ◆ all about functional components in characters
  • ◆ how to learn new characters more efficiently
  • ◆ how to recall characters you've learned more reliably
  • ◆ tips for learning vocabulary


  • Curriculum
  2. Unit I: Intro and Foundations
  3. Week 0: Intro to the course/what to expect
  4. Week 1: Rules of Memory
    Week 2: Three Attributes of Writing/Three Functions
  5. Week 3: Deep Structure, Surface Structure, and Stroke Order
  6. (sample video below!)
  8. Unit II: Functional component types

Week 4: Form Components
Week 5: Meaning Components
Week 6: Sound Components
Week 7: Sound series (characters with the same sound component)
Week 8: Empty Components
Week 9: All about character meanings

  1. Unit III: Learning new characters and recalling learned characters
    Week 10: The "IME Method"
  2. Week 11: Spaced Repetition
  3. Week 12: The Pipelining Strategy
    Week 13: The Minimalist Strategy

This course is aimed at all levels and does not require you to own or use any of our other products—it's entirely self-contained! But we will provide you with a discount code in case you do wish to purchase any of our products.


Sample Lesson: The Deep Structure of Chinese Characters


"Every so often a really good resource comes along. It's The Outlier Dictionary of Chinese Characters."

-Prof. Victor Mair
University of Pennsylvania

"I feel like I have a virtual 1-on-1 Chinese teacher, giving me a better sense of how the writing system functions."

-Dr. David Moser
Yenching Academy, Peking University

"They have put a lot of thought into how foreigners learn Chinese, and they’ve come up with a better way to learn characters."

-John Pasden
AllSet Learning & Mandarin Companion


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One time purchase; not a subscription!




Can I go at my own pace? Will I be able to access the course once it's finished?

Yes! We'll keep the videos available online, and the PDFs are yours to keep, of course. We may later move the course to another platform, but we'll let you know beforehand and we'll make sure you're able access it on the new platform.

Is this course for beginners, intermediates, or advanced learners?

It's for anyone! The point of the course isn't to learn the 300 characters we'll be covering. The point of the course is to teach you how to be an effective, independent learner of Chinese characters using functional components. So it may be a bit more intensive if you're a beginner, because you'll probably be encountering many or most of these characters for the first time. If you already know the characters that the course covers, it will be a bit less intensive and you'll be able to focus on learning how characters actually work.

What does a 90 day class actually mean?

We'll upload a video lesson every week, along with the supplemental PDF materials which correspond with the video. We'll email you each week when the new lesson is available.

You can definitely go at a slower pace if you'd like—the materials will still be there for you.

How much time will it require per week?

That will depend on your level and how deeply you want to dive in. It will probably be more useful for me to describe what kind of material the course will have, and then you can probably estimate how much time you want to devote to it per week.

The video lessons will likely all be 5-15 minutes long. There will also be PDF materials covering the same or similar material, often in a bit more depth than the video. And there will be 25 characters per week to learn.

That's actually quite a bit of material, but remember, you can go at a slower pace if you'd like! Or you could decide to just look over the characters rather than memorizing them the first time through, and then come back to memorizing them later. It's up to you! You get lifetime access to the course, so you can always come back to it again later to dive in deeper!

Will I need anything (apps, etc.) in order to take the course?

The course is as self-contained as possible. However, we strongly recommend having a dictionary (on mobile, we recommend Pleco; MDBG is a great web-based dictionary) and a flash card system (Anki for desktop is free; the Pleco flash card module is also great) available.

That being said, the characters we cover during the course will all have entries in our dictionary. If you don't already have the dictionary, you'll be able to get it at a discount if you enroll in the course. It's absolutely not a requirement for the course though!