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SOAS Language Centre

Certificate and Diploma in Communicative Korean

Start of programme: Monday 6th October 2014

This is a one-year programme with three syllabus units taught over three terms.

Mode of Attendance: Full-time


The Diploma in Communicative Korean programme at SOAS Language Centre in London is designed to prepare students with no previous knowledge of Korean to live and work in a Korean-speaking environment.

Complete beginners all apply directly for entry to Unit 1/Term 1. Non-beginners should contact the Programme Convener, Ms Jaehee Cho, to arrange an assessment interview.

Tel: +44 (0)20 7898 4275
Email: j.cho@soas.ac.uk

A place in Term 2 can be reserved following satisfactory assessment. Because of minimum attendance and coursework requirements, there is no direct entry to Unit 3/Term 3.

Students who successfully complete Unit 1 may progress to Unit 2. Students who successfully complete Units/Terms 1 and 2 are awarded the Certificate in Communicative Korean and may progress to Term 3. Students who successfully complete Units/Terms 2 and 3 are awarded the Diploma in Communicative Korean. 'Successful completion' means that the student has met the attendance requirements for the term, has submitted satisfactory course work and passed the end-of-unit oral and written exams.

A student awarded the Certificate will be able to communicate effectively in Korean in a limited range of situations and be able to read and write basic Korean with ease. S/he will have a good command of the language used in survival situations, social conversations, everyday transactions, discussions of current affairs and in various job-related contexts.

A student awarded the Diploma will be able to communicate effectively in Korean in a wide range of social and professional situations and be able to read and write Korean of considerable complexity, ranging across a wide variety of topics. S/he will have an assured command of the grammar and vocabulary of the language and be able to participate confidently in conversations that cover more sophisticated topics and/or involve mixed registers.

How do these awards compare with other standards?

Approximate equivalents with other recognised standards of language proficiency are given below for general guidance only.

AwardLanguage LevelCEFR CategoryCEFR BandTOPIK
CertificateIntermediateThresholdB1Level 3
DiplomaUpper-IntermediateVantageB2Level 4


Classes run Monday to Friday for 15 hours per week with most classes being held from 10.00 to 13.00. In addition to the classroom contact hours and scheduled online sessions, some small group or individual tutorials will be available by appointment. The programme is very demanding and students will be expected to spend at least 15 hours of study outside class every week.

The programme is based on the communicative approach to teaching Korean and develops the skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing in a balanced way. Students will also learn to activate grammatical patterns and acquire a wide range of vocabulary which they can use to express their meanings accurately and appropriately. The programme is continually adapted to students’ learning needs and so the pattern of learning activities varies from session to session.


In addition to audio-visual materials and a variety of original materials supplied by the teachers, the course is based on a number of core textbooks such as:

Core Unit Materials:
The National Institute of the Korean Language (2013). Sejong Korean 1-8. Seoul: Hawoo

Supplementary Materials:
Cho, J. & Oh, M. (2010) Korean Listening Skills. Seoul: Darakwon

On-line materials for Sejong Korean course books can be found at www.sejonghakdang.org

The required materials may be obtained from the Language Centre.

Other Learning Opportunities

Students will have the opportunity to attend relevant seminars and lectures available in the School and those organised by the Centre of Korean Studies and the Korean Cultural Centre in London


Students are assessed through a combination of termly written and oral examinations and continuous assessment. Students have to achieve 40% to pass. The overall term/unit grade will derive from continuous assessment (30%) and end-of-term/unit examination (70%). Continuous assessment will include marked homework and class tests, covering all 4 skills (listening, speaking, reading, writing), as well as usage and use of grammar and vocabulary in context. The end-of- term/unit and the end-of-programme (Unit 3) exams will assess all components of the programme syllabus.

Student Evaluation

Our students are very positive about the quality of the learning experience at the Language Centre. This is what Gloria, a former student, had to say about her language diploma course:

Gloria studies Japanaese at SOAS Language Centre



“What I was looking for was a challenge, and the diploma at SOAS is definitely that. The course is the only one that I know is full time and focuses only on language.
This is great as each week you can see your progress improving and it doesn't stop at just that. Not only am I improving in my language ability, my confidence is also benefiting from its intensity.
It's a unique course with so much help and support packed into it.”


Term Dates for 2014 - 2015
  • Term 1: Monday 6th October 2014 - Friday 19 December 2014
  • Term 2: Monday 5 January 2015 - Friday 27 March 2015
  • Term 3: Monday 13 April 2015 - Friday 17 July 2015


Certificate: £7,140.00 *

The course can be paid in two termly instalments as follows:

  • Term 1: £3,570.00
  • Term 2: £3,570.00

Diploma: £10,995.00 *

The course can be paid in three termly instalments as follows: Term 1: £3,570.00

  • Term 1: £3,570.00
  • Term 2: £3,570.00
  • Term 3: £3,855.00

*We offer a 5% discount to those who pay the full course fee at the start of the first term.

Just Announced! 5 Scholarships of £3,000 each!

Thanks to the support of the King Sejong Institute, we can offer Earlybird scholarships of £3,000 to the first 5 students who register for the Diploma programme – to be deducted from the fee for the full 1-year course. Don’t miss this wonderful opportunity!

Applying for the course

To apply for a Language Centre Certificate/Diploma programme you can download our application and payment forms or contact us for the forms. Please read the terms and conditions before filling in the forms. Completed application forms, accompanied by the course fee, made payable to SOAS, should be returned to SOAS Language Centre.

Closing date for applications: 26th September 2014.

Overseas students are advised to apply early to allow time to obtain a study visa.

The Language Centre contact for this programme is Ms Jaehee Cho.
Tel: +44 (0)20 7898 4275
Email: j.cho@soas.ac.uk