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Non-Uni Korean Class

Learn more about the community and how they are learning Korean and about Korean. Do a little listener-to-listener chit chat. Keep it civil, and everything else goes.
citromarissa
New in Town
Posts: 7
Joined: May 26th, 2009 6:00 pm

Non-Uni Korean Class

Postby citromarissa » June 24th, 2009 10:39 am

Hello All,

My name's Marissa. I am from NY and currently live and work in Pusan, Korea as an ESL Teacher.

I am creating this thread to let you know about Korean classes that aren't affiliated with any universities here in Korea.-Or at least my current experience with mine.

I have been taking Korean courses at a small institute for about 9 months now. My teacher speaks English fluently and is extremely friendly. She focuses more on teaching us structures, culture, and yes, some vocab too.The class size is fairly small, but it's a good setting to have. Learning Korean at this institute has been very effective. But it also helps to do some of your own studying. It's always best, to approach something in as many ways as possible.

Please post if you have any questions, or wanna talk about your experience under this topic. :)

P.S. the name of the institute I go to is KLIFF. It's two locations here in Busan.
Here's the link: http://www.kliff.co.kr/
~매리사

erich
Established Presence
Posts: 73
Joined: September 22nd, 2008 1:17 am

Postby erich » June 24th, 2009 1:40 pm

My experience of a 학원 was not very good, though as much as I've heard, universities are not better in that point: the teaching was not adapted to westerners without any knowledge of CJK.

As you say Marissa, everything focused on learning structures, not vocabulary. However, you had to know the words too. So I got into these situations where

- we had listening comprehension and I was trying to understand the written questions while the tape was playing. Needless to say: when I had a rough grasp of the questions, the tape was already finished...

- new words had been introduced in the previous class in this way: "by the way, this word means x"; a few days later it re-appeared as if it was obvious that everybody knew it.

- the vocabulary lists were huge (like 50 words per day) which is not humanly possible to assimilate without excercising the words and learning them with connections to already known stuff.

Needless to say, Japanese people in the class did well because they could connect many words to their mother tongue -- which I could not except 아르바이트 and 호프... So I really got frustrated of this experience...

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citromarissa
New in Town
Posts: 7
Joined: May 26th, 2009 6:00 pm

Postby citromarissa » June 24th, 2009 1:54 pm

- new words had been introduced in the previous class in this way: "by the way, this word means x"; a few days later it re-appeared as if it was obvious that everybody knew it.


yeah that tends to happen to me too, but again I find that it's best to approach the topic in many different ways.

- we had listening comprehension and I was trying to understand the written questions while the tape was playing. Needless to say: when I had a rough grasp of the questions, the tape was already finished...


my teacher tends to do listening comp on her own-without any tapes, which works well in that it's a voice that we're used to hearing, but sometimes I do wish I heard others.

All in all, I am sorry that your hagwon experience was frustrating. Tho I must say it is not unheard of. Many of my friends that go to my 학원 have recently left an institute like the one you described. I guess in a lot of ways that it just depends on the institute that you decide to try out, or also what's available. But also that a multi-faceted approach is always best.

At least you're still studying it here, right? That's pretty cool! 화팅!
~매리사

javiskefka
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Location: Norman, Oklahoma
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Postby javiskefka » June 24th, 2009 5:29 pm

I had a pretty good experience at a non-uni program in Seoul. It's called Ganada, and it's located in Hongdae. I took an intermediate class and part of an advanced class there (didn't have time to complete it). They didn't assign as unreasonable a load of vocabulary words for us to learn as the place Erich went to seems to have. I wouldn't say it was more than ten a day at the most. The place has its own textbooks, complete with audio cds, but we didn't use the cds at all. Their method of testing listening comprehension was like an interview. The professor would ask leading questions that could be answered most directly with the grammatical structures or vocabulary we had learned in class, but you were free to ramble if you wanted.

The teaching staff was younger and seemed less experienced than the teachers I had learned under at Yonsei, but they were professional and engaging. I didn't take any lower level classes there, so I can't vouch for those, but I'd recommend this institute to someone interested in getting intensive Korean instruction while saving money.

erich
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Joined: September 22nd, 2008 1:17 am

Postby erich » June 25th, 2009 2:23 am

javiskefka wrote:... It's called Ganada, and it's located in Hongdae. ... They didn't assign as unreasonable a load of vocabulary words for us to learn as the place Erich went to seems to have.


Well, well... it happens that I actually was at Ganada too where I took Elementary 2. The new words were split in 2 parts: the words from the book (around 20) and the ones from the additional material. The teacher was young and not very good at English and the book is an old-fashioned method with old-fashioned contents. The language lab was a really horrible experience as I wrote before. Looks like you either had a better teacher or they changed their concept a little bit.

Marissa, yes kc101 is really light years better than my hagwon experience. Thanks to Keith and co I bought an MP3 player in order to listen to the podcasts on a daily basis on my way to work. Anyway, thanks for your heads up and I hope I will start improving slowly. I think my listening comprehension already improved a bit since then ;)


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