How to study Korean?

1 April, 2011

This is a question that I get quite often. I usually answer it the standard way: you can try getting some beginner books (like the integrated korean series), use some good online sites ( or the sogang site), watch more dramas and as long as you have the interest in it, you should be fine.

This was from my personal experience and I thought that it will be sufficient answer. But now, I’m faced with a similar question of my own. How to study Japanese? I heeded my own advice above but I’m still.. stuck. I started with just a little interest in Korean too. I started learning learn Korean before really falling in love with all the dramas/kpop etc. Back to Japanese, I realised I have problems remember all that complicated conjugations.

I don’t really know where to start, and I don’t know how to structure my own studying.

I’m rethinking about my advice to others.

back to books.

    1. I’m sorry as I cannot help you with your question, but it seems by the time I start learning Japanese, I’ll be able to take your advice for sure on how to start ! ㅋㅋㅋ

    1. Oh gosh, Japanese conjugation is a nightmare for me. Remembering which ones are う-verbs and る-verbs and how to get their て-forms and how to deal with い- and な-adjectives… it can be really frustrating!!

      For me, since I’m kind of learning Korean and Japanese at the same time and because I’m kind of at a beginning level for both, I find it interesting to compare the two as I learn new structures. For example, I remember -고 싶다 was one of the first grammar points I learned in Korean so I looked up how to say “to want to do something” in Japanese. I found out that it wasn’t that simple in Japanese – I learned all about たい (1st person) and たがっている (3rd person) and tried to write sentences in both Japanese and Korean. I find the differences between Japanese and Korean grammar fascinating so I guess that’s what motivates me to study Japanese.

      1. i think i’m relying too much on korean to study japanese. mm i need to start seeing japanese as a new language on its own

    1. For me, I think learning to differentiate the 3 groups of verbs helps. Strangely for me, I found learning to conjugate the different verbs extremely fun when I was learning it cos no other languages that I know conjugate their verbs like that.

      I agree with Archana. I find learning Japanese and Korean side by side helpful. It helps me in realizing the differences.

      I’m really not sure how to advise you cos I always think that what works for one might not work for the other. However, do let me know if you have any problems, I’ll try my best to help! ^^

    1. ya, i too agree with’s true tt all of us have a unique learning style~~
      thou i’m still not gd with Jap yet, but what spurs me to pick up the language is because of Oguri Shun~~! n kudos to him, I started to develop an interest in Jap fashion, which leads me to buying Jap fashion mags on a regular basis, which further leads me to reading manga (albeit in English) after I found out tt my fave model, Tanaka Miho (Oguri Shun’s ex gf btw), fancies reading manga n now I’m into Anime~~
      C’mon Shannon, if TOP can speak Jap well, so can you~~!! Ganbatte~~!!

        1. Heee~~~
          Opps..정말 미안해요, Shanna~~!!
          I even spelled ur name wrongly, in my excitement of talking abt Jap and Big Bang~~!!
          Heee…i really hope u do well in Jap~~!!

    1. Hi Shanna! I’m your coursemate Jeanette. I studied Japanese before, and am now starting Korean as a beginner. Personally I find Korean to be harder than Japanese, so it’s interesting that you think otherwise. The pronunciation rules are especially difficult, so thanks for your post about sound changes! Anyway, I think that when learning languages, the resources you use are very important. Some textbooks explain and organise the material much better than others. I was rather confused when I started Korean and got stuck for a while, but I finally managed to borrow a copy of Integrated Korean and it’s super helpful. So if you’re stuck, maybe it’s your textbook’s fault? You should try to find those that teach Jap through manga, because the example sentences and glosses are helpful (wish they had those for Korean). がんばって!

      1. Hello!! woah u found my blog xD
        Mmm korean pronunciation does seem to be more difficult compared to Japanese, there are alot of sound changes involved. The japanese conjugation is much more complicated though. I agree about the textbook point, i’m still trying to find something that suits me! HMJ lessons are killing my interest in the language though oops.

        1. Haha yep lessons tend to have that effect on me too sigh ^^ But at least Japanese does have significantly less irregularity! Anyway, would you mind if my group used your blog as part of a set of texts for corpus linguistics? All we will do is check the frequency of British vs American spellings (:

        1. mmmm I’d like to help but sorry! ): I’d like to leave my blog ‘private’ as of now. Hope you will understand! ^^

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