[Korean Textbook Review] Ewha Korean 4 이화 한국어 4

People who read Hangukdrama will know that I swear by the Yonsei Textbooks. Now I might have a new favorite. I receive quite a few requests on textbook reviews, and one of the recurring ones was for the Ewha series. Gillian kindly loaned me her Level 4 books, so I’ll be reviewing the textbook this time and saving the workbook for the next post!

First impressions? Compact. Compared to the larger A4 size, super thick and heavy Yonsei textbook, the less than A4 size Ewha books come across as super light and compact. Definitely much more suitable to carry it around and hopefully that translates to spending more time on the books! Flipping through the book in the middle of the school canteen, I was struck by how comprehensive it seems. Well organized, logical flow, good graphics, good quality. And genuinely interesting. I’m a sucker for good paper and good design. That’s half the battle won.

After sitting down and poring over the book in detail back home, I can now say that I’m a convert. :D Please go buy the books noooooooow. If you don’t have time to spare, scroll down for a summary. #asusual

The Ehwa book has 6 levels in total. Level 4 is actually pretty decent and I think I’ll have things to learn from it too. It’s definitely muchhhh more challenging and wayyy more interesting than KU Level 4. If you are trying to gauge your level and which book to buy, here’s the grammar points covered in the book. Often, we hesitate to jump to another series because we won’t know which level is suitable for us. Hence this will be the only clear photo in the post. ^^;

Disclaimer: pictures are only used to illustrate the awesomeness of the book and to give you a general idea of what to expect.

A good textbook has a good content page and I’m instantly wowed by how well organized the Ewha books are. The book emphasizes on all 4 skills and is neatly divided into:

준비합시다 – 말해봅시다 – 토의해 봅시다 – 들어봅시다 – 읽어 봅시다 – 써 봅시다 – 관용표현 – 문화

Unlike many other textbooks, it’s interesting that Ewha chooses to start every chapter with the grammar points instead of a dialogue or opening. I love how the explanations and exercises are in one page.

To let you get an idea of how long the passages are in this level, here’s a photo.

I like how they actually have a section for culture at the end of each section and in this chapter, they actually introduced a Korean poem! The visuals in this book are really good and it makes the whole book a lot more engaging.

One of my favorite sections has to be the proverbs. I love how the book introduces them via a game of matching and then providing some simple exercises.

Another section which I loveeeeed was a section introducing you the set phrases needed for discussion. For example in English we have ‘In my opinion…’, ‘From my experiences..’ etc and certain set phrases we tend to use while expressing our opinions etc. And these phrases, although very commonly used, are seldom introduced in textbooks.

And to answer a recurring question, yes there are answers at the back of the book. Not to all the exercises though. Just some. But good enough.

What I love about the book

  • absolutely beautiful cover design and visuals – for the whole book
  • lightweight and compact
  • good quality paper (pet peeve)
  • well organized structure
  • suitable for both classroom learning and self learners
  • challenging and stimulating content
  • nice, readable font
  • exercises that I’ll actually do – I hate stupid exercises that ask me to write like an email to some random weird person about a random situation. Who would do it? -.-
  • good number of example sentences
What can be improved
  • dialogues are too short
  • more reading practices
Basically I love the book. And hence I highly recommend you to buy the series. I myself will probably get the level 6 book, and if money falls from the sky, I’ll get the level 5 one too. :D Level 1 -3 consists of two books each and in levels 1 and 2 apparently the instructions and explanations are given in English, Japanese or Chinese. Makes sense.
ISBN: 978-89-7300-939-8
Cost: 26,000won inclusive of a CD
If you are interested, check out my review for the Yonsei Textbook, Yonsei Reading book and also other reviews here.

 

Hangukdrama

English. Mandarin Chinese. Korean. Japanese. 언어와 함께 살고 있는 여자.

34 Comments

    • not for the level 4! (when you are at that level, i dun think u need translations) i believe there is an English version of the books for the lower levels. I wrote about that in the review

  1. hmm since im in korea now.. is walking into 이대 the only way for me to buy this book or i can buy it at kyobo?

    • mmm i think kyobo will have the books! not too sure though, you might want to call them up to ask or check the kyobo site!

  2. Thank you for this review! I have been wanting to buy Korean textbooks since I started self studying. Are the books available online? Do you know where I can buy it?

    Thanks for the help Shanna! ^^

  3. Hi there, really happy to see this! i using the yonsei TB now but wouldnt mind having another university TB. I am currently using Yonsei TB book u, which level will it be in Ewha if i am to buy the book online?

    • erm book u? i think yonsei level and ewha level are pretty much on par. so if you are level 3 in yonsei now you can try buying level 4 ewha :D

      • Thank for the reply! opp typo..so sorry about it. I am using yonsei book 3 now.Okie i shall try to get my hand on book 3 ewha tb! seem like i have lot of books to get on gmarket!

    • hehe! my friend told me that today too XD but if each level 2 books, then in the end more ex hahahhahaha

  4. @kevin I reckon you can get them at Kyobo. I saw them at YP Books @ Myeongdong the other day.

    I’m not a big fan of textbooks, but Shanna is very persuasive. Hrm. Looks like I should stop by Ewha tomorrow…

    • hahaha! I have quite a few people telling me that they have bought or will be buying/ordering the ewha books today. XD Didn’t know I’m so persuasive ^^;; Let me know what you think of the books if you get them! Which level will you be looking at?

  5. I’m glad they have until level 6! I love SNU and Yonsei textbooks but after reading your review I’m itching to get myself Ehwa textbooks! I also asked my friend about them since she studied in Ehwa and she said they’re quite good.

    • hehe im soooooo tempted to get level 6. i’ll probably order some others too. OMG.

  6. Shanna, do you like the Ehwa books BETTER than the Yonsei books? I know I’m putting you on the spot—sorry about that! It’s just that where I live, I can only get ahold of Korean textbooks by ordering from the internet. I have been using Yonsei, but I’m really tempted to try an Ehwa book now. Yes, your reviews really do carry a lot of weight!!!

    • Mmm I think both are good, but if you are self studying, I think Ewha books have an advantage because it’s more self study friendly ^^ it’s a little harder to self study from yonsei books and you need more self discipline

  7. I just ordered 이화 한국어 4 thru Gmarket! Actually I’ve been looking around for textbooks to continue on my Korean learning as I just completed Active Korean 4 (the highest level in the series) by Seoul National University. So your review came at the correct time, & I’m so happy to find another good series of textbooks for me to continue on my Korean learning journey. Thanks Shanna for your blog post, keep it up ^^

    • haha I’m happy to hear that!! :D hope you will like the book too~! I can’t wait for my copy to arrive too! XD

  8. I’m surprised that the Ewha books are entirely in Korean starting at level 3. I’m using level 3 books from Yonsei and I have to confess that I like having some English explanations. I wonder if the Ewha books move faster through the material than the Yonsei books.

    • mmm you bought level 3? haha i thought that they still have english explanations for until level 3, depending on the version of the book you bought. hehe i’m wondering the same thing too, so i’m going to do a comparative review between level 6 ewha and yonsei XD

        • The Korean version is fully in Korean because when you reach that level you (may) do not need an English translation. I say “may” because it might still be a bit complicated, that’s why an English version is offered. Of course at level 4 it is fully in Korean as you must be at a high enough level to understand it. I personally would buy the Korean version of level 3 if I thought I was good enough with technical vocabulary.

  9. I can’t wait to buy 1-1 and 1-2. ^^ I bought Integrated Korean and hated it. I can’t wait to buy ewha textbooks!:D I actually love exercises like write an e-mail. I don’t actually send one but I write a sample one on my computer and then handwrite one.
    Thanks so much for the review! You made up my mind on which text book to buy so I don’t waste my money.

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