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Lesson Transcript

Minkyong: 안녕하세요. 민경입니다.
Keith: 안녕하세요. Hey, Keith here. Welcome to KoreanClass101.com’s Korean Pronunciation Series, Part Two. Now, this pronunciation series has been designed to help you understand the fundamentals and characteristics of the sounds in Korean, so that you can understand and speak Korean better. And, before we get started I want to thank Edd, a Koreanclas101.com listener and the host of Indonesian Survival Phrases. He helped us a lot with the formation of this lesson. So, thanks a lot, Edd.
Minkyong: 감사합니다.
Keith: All right. So, let’s get straight to it. What do we go over in our first pronunciation lesson?
Minkyong: Lesson #1 of this pronunciation series introduce some sounds that seem similar, but they are actually pronounced differently.
Keith: And, this lesson will cover the sounds that a lot of non-Korean people find hard to distinguish from one another. Being able to distinguish and correctly pronounce these sounds is a very important part in speaking and understanding natural Korean.
Minkyong: Today’s lesson will be very useful, too.

Lesson focus

Keith: That’s right. And, since this lesson focuses on pronunciation, it’s advised to listen to the audio track of this lesson while you’re reading the lesson notes PDF or after you’ve already read them. All right. So, let’s get started. As you may or may not know, Korean has three different types of stop consonants.
Minkyong: Ok, hold on. What’s the stop consonant?
Keith: That’s when you stop the air coming out of your mouth or nose.
Minkyong: Ok, please continue.
Keith: So, in Korean, in terms of stops, they can generally be categorized as unaspirated stops, aspirated stops and tense stops which are symbolized by the 쌍 or double consonants.
Minkyong: To be perfectly honest, I have no idea what you’re talking about.
Keith: Ok. Well, basically, the aspirated sounds are when you breathe out air, when you’re saying a word. The unaspirated sounds are when there’s no breath coming out of your mouth. And the tense sounds are, well, they’re tense for a lack of a better word. They’re tense in the back of your throat.
Minkyong: Kind of like when you’re choking?
Keith: Well, not exactly. It’s like you’re stopping the breath in the back of your mouth, kind of like in the back of your throat. It’s like when you’re making the “ng” sound in English. It’s not exactly the same but similar. So, try making the “ng” sound right now. “Going.”
Minkyong: “Going.”
Keith: Do you notice? The back of your mouth, it’s kind of tense.
Minkyong: Oh, yes, yes. I understand.
Keith: All right. So, there we go. Before we get into our examples, I’d like everyone to take a piece of paper and listen to this audio file at the same time. And, when we’re practicing if you’re holding the piece of paper in front of your mouth, you can find out if you’re using aspirated or non-aspirated sounds. If it’s aspirated, the paper will move. Do you get what I’m saying? The aspirated, because of breath, comes out of your mouth, right?
Minkyong: Oh, ok, ok.
Keith: And, if it’s not aspirated, the paper won’t move or it will barely move just a little bit. And this was a tip from our listener, Edd. So, once again, thanks, Edd.
Minkyong: And I think the lesson notes PDF might be a nice piece of paper to use.
Keith: You like that, right?
Minkyong: Yes.
Keith: And, remember, you can stop by KoreanClass101.com and pick up the lesson notes PDF for this lesson for more in-depth and enhanced learning.
Minkyong: Oh my God. Ok. So, let’s look at ㄱ first.
Keith: All right. And, this consonant is similar to the English “g” or “k.” One of the three similar consonants that we’re going to look at in Korean, there’s two more consonants that are similar in Korean.
Minkyong: ㄱ, ㅋ, ㄲ.
Keith: All right. The first one is?
Minkyong: ㄱ.
Keith: And this one is non-aspirated, no breath. The second one is?
Minkyong: ㅋ.
Keith: This one’s aspirated, with the breath. And the last one?
Minkyong: ㄲ.
Keith: Is tensed. It’s stopping the air in the back of your tongue. Ok. So, let’s practice with that piece of paper. Ready?
Minkyong: Yes.
Keith: Ok. 민경, let’s give them an example.
Minkyong: 굴, 쿨, 꿀.
Keith: All right. And, the first one is?
Minkyong: 굴.
Keith: And this one should be non-aspirated, so the paper shouldn’t move when it’s right in front of your mouth. 민경, do you want to give it a try?
Minkyong: Ok. 굴. Oh, it didn’t move.
Keith: Ok. And next? What are we going over next?
Minkyong: 쿨.
Keith: And this one is the aspirated one. Test it out.
Minkyong: 쿨. It moves a little bit.
Keith: A little bit, yes, but it also depends on how you’re holding the paper, too, right? Like, if you’re holding it really by the edge.
Minkyong: Ok.
Keith: Your grip is so strong.
Minkyong: Ok.
Keith: All right. What’s our last one?
Minkyong: 꿀.
Keith: And this one is the tense one. Mingan, do you feel the tenseness in the back of your throat?
Minkyong: Yes, I do, I do. 꿀. But, it’s only when I first, I just say it. 꿀꿀꿀 꿀. This is fun.
Keith: All right. And, please remember to stop by KoreanClass101.com because we’ll have a review track with many examples for you to practice your Korean with. Right now, we’re only going over one example for each set. But, in the review track, we’ll be going over three examples for each set. So, if you want to perfect your Korean pronunciation, please remember to stop by and pick up the review track.
Minkyong: All right. Let’s have a practice sentence.
Keith: And, for those are you listening, try to figure out which ones we’re using. Aspirated, non-aspirated or tense, on your own, try to figure that out. All right. And, 민경, the moment of truth. You’ve been practicing this, actually.
Minkyong: This is so hard to say, but I’ll try, I’ll try. 키를 끼우세요. 끼를 키우세요.
Keith: All right. We won’t give you the answer, but you can find the answer in this lesson notes PDF. Let’s move on to our next set. What are we taking a look at?
Minkyong: Let’s take a look at ㄷ, ㅌ, ㄸ.
Keith: And, for those of you that may not know, what is that last one?
Minkyong: ㄸ.
Keith: Yes, that’s the double consonant. The one with two ㄷs. All right. And, this is similar to, all three of these are somewhat similar, not really, to the English “d” or “t” as we went over in our last lesson, but kind of in between both of those English letters. And that’s why we’re taking a look at them.
Minkyong: Yes, you can see the differences in 달, 탈, 딸.
Keith: All right. The first one we have?
Minkyong: 달.
Keith: And, as we covered in our first pronunciation series lesson, when you make this sound, the tongue goes between the upper and lower teeth, like the “th” is pronounced in English. All right. So, what’s our next example?
Minkyong: 탈.
Keith: And the position of your tongue should be the same when you’re making the sound for this one, between the upper and lower teeth. But, with this one, your paper should move.
Minkyong: So, that means is aspirated.
Keith: There you go. You’re catching on, you got it. All right. And, finally, what do we have? What’s the tensed one?
Minkyong: 딸 and 딸기.
Keith: And, again, the back of your mouth should be a little tense when you start to say this. Ok. Let’s have a sample sentence. And, once again listeners, try to listen in to find out which ones we’re using.
Minkyong: 토요일에도 딸하고 달을 봤어요.
Keith: Thank you.
Minkyong: Ok. Let’s move on to our next one.
Keith: Sure. How about we take a look at ㅈ, ㅊ, ㅉ? Actually, Mingan, can you say this for us?
Minkyong: ㅈ, ㅊ, ㅉ.
Keith: All right. And now, for an example?
Minkyong: 자, 차, 짜.
Keith: First, what do we have?
Minkyong: 자 as in 자전거.
Keith: And this one is the non-aspirated one. So, your paper shouldn’t move.
Minkyong: Next we have 차 as in 차가워. And this one, the paper shouldn’t move.
Keith: That’s right. It’s aspirated. Kind of like the “ch” in English. Ok. And our last example, what do we have?
Minkyong: 짜 as in 짜장면.
Keith: One of my favorite foods. And, this one, of course, is the tense one which should make your muscles constraint in the back of your mouth. All right. And, how about a sample sentence?
Minkyong: 가짜 기자, 진짜 기차.
Keith: oh, you did a good job.
Minkyong: Yes.
Keith: All right. I hope our listeners were able to get that. All right. Next, what are we taking a look at?
Minkyong: ㅂ, ㅍ, ㅃ.
Keith: And these are all similar to the “b” and “p” in English. Now, before we get started on these three, these three are actually all aspirated, but we can just generalize these three and put them into the same categories that we did with everything else we went over so far: aspirated, non-aspirated and tense. Now, you’ll see what I’m talking about within examples. So, 민경, can you help us out?
Minkyong: 발, 팔, 빨.
Keith: And, some of you may have noticed, those are aspirated. The paper should move when it’s in front of your mouth. All right. What do we have first?
Minkyong: 발.
Keith: Now, we’re going to categorize this as the non-aspirated, but really it’s aspirated meaning there’s a breath coming out to your mouth. Folks, at home give it a shot with a piece of paper. And, while you’re doing that, we’ll move on to our next example.
Minkyong: 팔 but it’s more aspirated than 발.
Keith: Yes, it’s called hyper-aspirated, which just means there’s a lot of air coming out to your mouth. And, Edd, actually he gave us a really, really useful tip. He let us know that the next audible clue is in the following vowel. Usually, we can tell which one it is to see if it’s aspirated or non-aspirated, but since all of these are aspirated, the next clue that we can find out is that the vowel after the aspirated consonant should have a higher starting pitch than the vowel after the regular consonant, the non-aspirated. Mingan, did you know that?
Minkyong: 바파, 바파, 바파.
Keith: The vowel with 파 is higher than 바.
Minkyong: 바파. Oh my God. 놀랐어 지금. 파. 진짜. It goes up. Yes, even if you change the orders, it’s like still same. 파 is the higher and 바 is the lower, right? 파바.
Keith: Yes, this is natural for you.
Minkyong: Yes.
Keith: But, that’s the clue, that’s a really nice tip that Edd gave us. When we’re specifically talking about ㅂ, ㅍ and ㅃ, that’s the clue that you can tell the difference between ㅂ and ㅍ. All right. So, let’s move on to our tense ㅃ, the double ㅂ.
Minkyong: 빨 as in 빨래.
Keith: And, the back of your throat should once again be tensing up. Please, don’t choke though. All right. What do we have for our sample sentence?
Minkyong: 빨래해서 팔하고 발이 아파요.
Keith: And this has all three: ㅂ, ㅍ and ㅃ. So, it’s a good sentence to practice with. All right. So, let’s move on to our final set. What do we have?
Minkyong: We have ㅅ and ㅆ.
Keith: Only two of them?
Minkyong: Yes, we only have a pair.
Keith: And, that’s because there’s no unaspirated version. But, we do have a tense version. So, let’s take a look at the examples first.
Minkyong: 사다. 싸다.
Keith: All right. And, the first one we’re going to look at?
Minkyong: 사다.
Keith: This one is the aspirated version, of course, and for those of you at home, please remember to check with that piece of paper in front of your mouth. All right. And now, let’s look at the next one, the tense one.
Minkyong: 싸다.
Keith: Once again, the tense version, and the interesting thing with this is that this one has no aspiration. This should be pronounced with some tension in the area where the vocal cords are, but the paper shouldn’t be moving much at all. 민경, do you want to try it out?
Minkyong: Yes, of course. 사다, 싸다, 사다. Oh, ok, ok. It moved when I said 사다.
Keith: Yes, but when you’re saying the tense one 싸다, it shouldn’t move much.
Minkyong: It didn’t move at all.
Keith: Well, that’s because you have perfect Korean pronunciation.
Minkyong: Oh, thank you.
Keith: All right. So, let’s have a sample sentence really quick.
Minkyong: 쌀이 싸서 많이 샀어요.


Keith: I like that. All right. Well, that’s going to do it for this lesson.
Minkyong: I learned a lot from this lesson. You know, every since I started this job, I learned a lot of Korean.
Keith: So, your Korean wasn’t so great before?
Minkyong: It was great, but now is better.
Keith: We have a super Korean 민경 over here. She’s Korean master. Ok, well, remember, folks. Pronunciation is practice, practice, practice. These lessons are designed to help, but you really have to work hard to perfect your pronunciation.
Minkyong: So, remember to stop by KoreanClass101.com and pick up the review track.
Keith: Yes, our review track will have tons of examples for you to practice from. And, they’re a really great way to practice your pronunciation as you’re listening to this audio file. So, that’s going to do it. Everyone, 화이팅!
Minkyong: 화이팅! 다음에 뵐게요.
Keith: Bye.