IOE - Faculty of Education and Society


IOE Confucius Institute for Schools

Supporting the teaching and learning of Mandarin Chinese and the mainstreaming of Chinese teaching across schools in England, alongside other languages.

IOE Confucius Institute for Schools (IOE CI) supports schools in starting and developing the teaching and learning of Mandarin Chinese.

About us


IOE CI is focused on the development of Chinese language teaching in schools in England.

Schools across the country are increasingly offering Mandarin Chinese, broadening language options for students. The IOE CI supports schools in starting and developing the teaching and learning of Mandarin Chinese. 

As well as a team of specialists in London, the IOE CI has a network of IOE Confucius Classrooms and teachers across England, schools which have both Chinese firmly embedded in their own curriculum and which give advice, support and taster classes to other schools in their region looking to start offering Chinese. 

The IOE CI is a bilateral project with Peking University.

  • To work to secure a major expansion in the teaching and learning of Mandarin Chinese throughout the English school system.
  • Enabling Chinese to be taught in secondary schools, alongside other languages – predominantly French, Spanish and German. 
  • Training local teachers of Chinese, this encompasses developing teaching materials for use in English schools (in collaboration with Pearson) and working to ensure appropriate GCSE and A-level Chinese examinations.
  • To enable Chinese and English schools to have constructive and successful school partnerships and for teachers and learners in the school systems in both countries to learn from each other.
Our staff

Director & Pro-Vice-Provost for East Asia

Katharine Carruthers
k.carruthers@ucl.ac.uk, +44 (0) 20 7612 6663

IOE Confucius Institute Team

Matthew Schofield, General Manager
m.schofield@ucl.ac.uk, +44 (0) 20 7612 6692

Xiaoming Zhu, National Coordinator
x.zhu@ucl.ac.uk, +44 (0) 20 7612 6558

Philippa Vallely, Teacher Training Coordinator
p.vallely@ucl.ac.uk, +44 (0) 20 7911 5587

Wei Jin, Mandarin Excellence Programme Coordinator

Victor Wu, Teacher Training and Professional Development Coordinator

Yasmin Lambert, Mandarin Excellence Programme Project Manager
y.lambert@ucl.ac.uk, +44 (0) 20 7331 5190

Naomi Li, Project Officer
naomi.li@ucl.ac.uk, +44 (0) 20 7612 6697

Kate Wilson
k.wilson@ucl.ac.uk, Project Officer

Find more about our researchers, publications, activities, groups and themes: UCL Research Portal, IRIS

    Main activities

    • Supporting the mainstreaming of Chinese teaching across schools in England, acting as a central point for queries and advice, by phone and through its e-forum and organising an annual conference for teachers of Chinese.
    • Developing and promoting teaching materials suitable for use in English schools.
    • Training local teachers of Chinese.
    • Training teachers sent from China to support development work in schools new to Chinese.
    • Advancing research on the learning of Chinese as a foreign language at school level, providing a secure basis for future thinking and developments in the field.
    • Supporting the development of appropriate accreditation - both with English Examination Boards and using YCT/HSK proficiency tests.
    • Working with Chinese and English partner schools on bilateral programmes at teacher and student level.
    • Organising annual student language learning visits to China to enhance language acquisition. 
    • Leading the Mandarin Excellence Programme (MEP) in partnership with the British Council and on behalf of the Department for Education.

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