SOAS University of London

Japan & Korea Section, Department of East Asian Languages & Culture

Readings in Modern Korean Society (Postgraduate)

Module Code:

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 higher intermediate Korean grammar
  2. knowledge and understanding of a wide range of Korean vocabulary
  3. knowledge and understanding of the appropriateness of a wide range of Korean structures and expressions in a given context
  4. the ability to understand passages in written Korean of medium to increased length on everyday and some specialised topics
  5. the ability to produce passages in written Korean of medium length on everyday and some specialised topics.
  6. the ability to read/translate/summarize/extract information/draw
    inferences from Korean texts drawn from a range of sources
  7. knowledge and understanding of the role of language in general, and Korean in particular, in language-based scholarship and research (specific learning outcome for PG students)


This course is taught over 22 weeks with 2 hours of classroom contact per week. Additionally, 6 hours in lectures and 6 hours in seminars/tutorials over the 22 week period.

Scope and syllabus

The course provides teaching and learning of higher intermediate level Korean language with emphasis on practical written and spoken Korean. The course covers complex points of word and sentence structure as well as textual relations in Korean writing and discourse. Communicative practice and structural knowledge are established through reading and discussing a variety of Korean texts dealing with different topics and of different length and complexity.

The course provides students with higher intermediate knowledge of Korean and practice in extensive reading. Resources will include near authentic to authentic materials dealing with current issues in the Korean society. It allows students to interact with Korean speakers in Korean and to use original Korean sources within the level covered in the course. This provides students with a basis to approach research topics relating to Korean language and the societies and cultures 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 examination paper taken in May/June (50%); one 3,000 word essay to be submitted on the Friday of week 1, term 3 (30%); four 800-1000 word essays in Korean due on day 1, week 1, term 2 and 3 (20%).

Suggested reading

1) The course will be based on
  • Extracts from near authentic  to authentic materials and additional materials which will be made available throughout the course.
2) Additional Korean  References
  • Korean Learning Resources
  • Hanguk Hangugin.  S. Park.  Beautiful Korean School .
  • Hanguk Munwha Ilkki. Y. Min. Beautiful Korean School.
  • Oeguginul wihan Malhagi. Unversity of Hanyang.
  • Tahak Hangugo 1. Ewha Language Center. Ewha Womans University
  • Tahak Hangugo 2. Ewha Language Center. Ewha Womans University
  • Korean Newspapers


Important notice regarding changes to programmes and modules