I am curious as to how reliable HSK tests downloaded from the internet are. I've downloaded them from the sites listed in this post. And have also use the android app here.

I can pass the HSK 1 & 2 tests on both the app and pdf. I certainly did not understand all the written or spoken text and maybe made lucky educated guesses on a maximum of 3-4 questions.

Is the difficulty level of these tests and the scores given accurate? I know that one may not be able to answer this definitively here, but can anyone who has relevant knowledge/experience comment?

I apologize if this question is inappropriate for the forum here, feel free to close it or otherwise suggest another forum. 谢谢!

2 Answers 2


I have done HSK3 and am preparing for HSK4. I used some HSK3 practice tests to see whether I was ready for that test. When the practice tests are identified as past test papers, they should be a good rough guide to your readiness for the real test. I treat them only as a rough indicator because there are no exact descriptions of what you need to know for HSK tests (except for character lists, which are only marginally helpful).

You can also find HSK preparation books. The practice tests in those books are sometimes somewhat harder than the real HSK test.

  • Thanks! This is just the kind of information I was seeking. I'll give it a few more days to see if any other replies, otherwise will accept this answer.
    – jdods
    Commented Oct 12, 2016 at 12:20

I just wanted to post an answer rather than edit my question, I hope this is ok. I think this information might be helpful to introductory students who browse this forum and are interested in taking the lower level HSK's.

It's been just over 3 years, but I did take the HSK 3 test and passed. I did very well on the listening and reading portions but not so well on the writing portion. This is different from what I expected -- I expected to do poorly on the listening but good on the other two parts.

The software for entering the characters was very difficult to use. However, I don't know if that varies according to location, and maybe it changes from time to time. It would have been very nice if it was available for download to practice with ahead of time. I expected to get a perfect score on the writing part since I knew how to handwrite with correct stroke order more than 700 characters at the time of the test. I was also very skilled at using several computer keyboard pinyin systems (I was very proficient with Android's).

Overall, I found the difficulty of the test to be very similar to the practice exams that I had found online. It may have been just slightly more difficult, but was very comparable. I would recommend being able to complete online HSK materials with high scores before going in to the actual official exam at the same level.

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