SOAS University of London

Department of the Languages and Cultures of Japan and Korea

Introduction to Mixed Script Korean (PG)

Module Code:
Unit value:
Taught in:
Full Year

Objectives and learning outcomes of the module

At the end of the course, a student should be able to demonstrate . . .

  1. knowledge and understanding of basic Chinese characters used in Korean texts
  2. knowledge and understanding of Korean vocabulary based on basic Chinese characters
  3. knowledge and understanding of Korean texts with Chinese characters
  4. the ability to understand and read Chinese characters used in Korean texts and academic materials
  5. the ability to recognise and write basic Chinese characters correctly
  6. the ability to learn Korean autonomously through independent language-based activities (specific learning outcome for PG students)


A total of 22 weeks teaching with 3 hours classroom contact per week.  10 research seminars to be taken within SOAS. Attendance to be proven by signature from chair and to be submitted to the Associate Dean for Masters by the last day of term 2.

Scope and syllabus

The course provides students with approximately 350~400 Chinese characters used in Korean script, including the understanding and recognise Korean vocabulary based on Chinese characters. It allows students to understand Korean articles mixed with Chinese characters and to be able to read and write Korean vocabulary in Chinese characters.
The course covers complex points of word and sentence structure as well as textual relations in Korean reading and writing. Lexical knowledge and reading competence is established through reading and discussing a variety of Korean texts dealing with different topics.  This provides students with a basis to approach research topics relating to Korean script mixed with Chinese characters and the history, society and culture associated with Korea.

A series of special PG lectures with associated seminars structured around the six themes Structure, Texts, Identity, Society, Translation and Transformation (provided for PG students studying different languages) introduces students to general questions of the role of language in language-based scholarship and research and provides them with the critical and methodological skills to relate their language acquisition to the thematic aspects of the studies

Method of assessment

One three-hour written paper taken in May/June (60%); a language learning portfolio to be submitted on day 1, term 3 (30%); regular assignments (10%).

Suggested reading

The course will be based on

  • Korean Reader for Chinese Characters. (Klear Textbooks Series).  University of Hawaii Press.
  • Also additional materials which will be made available throughout  the course.

Additional References

  • The Chinese Language: Fact and Fantasy.  John DeFrancis. University of Hawaii Press.
    Chinese characters : a radical approach : learn 2,300 Chinese characters through their 214 radicals, James  Whitlock. Ilchokak
  • Pictorial Sino-Korean characters : fun with Hancha : [hungmi Hancha haksup].  Jacob Chang-ui.  Hollym.
  • A guide to Korean characters : reading and writing Hangul and Hanja . B. K. Grant. Hollym International Corp,.
  • Korean  with Chinese characters . Richard Rucci B. Seoul International Tourist Pub, Co.
    Basic  Chinese-Korean character dictionary . Hyogmyon  Kwon.  Harrassowitz.


Important notice regarding changes to programmes and modules