Review of: Koreanclass101
Use: In addition to podcast lessons for learning to speak Korean, Koreanclass101 also has some useful resources for studying what you learn.
Engaging podcasts help you learn words in context. But you'll have to practice speaking on your own
Free content and monthly plans at $4 to $47 per month
Each podcast is around 15 minutes long.
Ease of Use
Digital immersion without the tedious work
Podcasts are sorted by level of difficulty and subject.
- Over 1,200 podcast lessons
- Free content and affordable price
- Lessons are fun and interesting
- Built in flashcard system
I Don't Like
- No speaking required
- Limited community features
Summary: If you are just starting out on your Korean learning journey, or if you're mid-way on the road to fluency, Koreanclass101 is a valuable language learning tool.
Advanced students of Korean may not get as much out of it. Still, at an affordable price ($4-$47 a month) and with 1,600 audio and video lessons Koreanclass101 is a noteworthy option for any Korean language learner.
Their podcast based lessons are a great way to get exposed to new words and grammar while strengthening your listening and pronunciation skills. Their lessons are arranged by different difficult tracks so that you can work through them as a bonafide Korean course. You can also skip around the content if you like.
The site is also available on your phone through the Koreanclass101 app, allowing you to practice Korean wherever life takes you.
The site also a free account which has a small amount of content you can check out. There’s also a free 7 day all access trial too. You don’t need your credit card for either, which is nice.
Subscription plans starting at $4 per month (Free plan available too)
Is Koreanclass101 right for you?
Koreanclass101 is best used by beginner and intermediate learners of the Korean languages. There is some advanced content on the site as well, but if you’re more proficient in Korean then this probably isn’t the best site for you.
The site is a safe bet for anyone who wants to practice listening to and understanding native Korean speakers. Every podcast episode is structured around a spoken conversation between two native Korean speakers.
With their slow playback feature you can become more familiar with the sounds and nuances of spoken Korean.
The lessons are also a great way to learn new words and grammar. For the most part the episodes keep things interesting without getting too dry or technical.
Also the site has a mobile app which makes it an ideal way to study Korean anywhere you can bring your phone. The app is available for Iphone, Ipad, and Android.
Koreanclass101 is predominantly an audio based approach to learning Korean. The site’s lesson are arranged as podcasts and can run from 10 to 20 minutes long.
The focal point of each episode is a Korean dialogue that will typically illustrate a specific grammar rule, cultural topic,or relevant Korean phrase.
More often than not the podcast episodes are focused on a lifelike situation. It might be of a husband talking to his wife, someone running into someone on the street, or maybe two friends chatting at a restaurant.
Even though the conversations are scripted the mock circumstances that surround them keeps the material you learn applicable to real life. You’re not likely to learn any useless Korean.
Episodes feel natural and interesting
Each episode also includes two hosts. In addition to explaining what’s going in the Korean conversation they also interject a good amount of personality into the podcast.
They’ll share cultural facts, stories, and sometimes jokes. This helps the podcast feel like well….an actual podcast. It’s a nice touch that separates Koreanclass101 from other audio courses.
Tools & Resources
Koreanclass101 supplies some bonus study tools in addition to their podcast episodes. The most useful are the flashcards, slow playback, and lesson transcriptions.
If you’ve ever used Anki or memrise then Koreanclass101’s flashcard system will seem a bit familiar. It’s built around a spaced repetition format so that you review the words and cards you’re mostly likely to forget.
A standout feature of the flashcards on Koreanclass101 is that it’s easy build up a deck quickly. You simply pick any word for an episode and add it to the deck. Building out review deck on other flashcard apps isn’t always so simple.
Ever listen to native Korean speakers and feel like they’re talking at 100 mph? Ever wish you play back what they say and slow it down so that you can better understand it?
Koreanclass101’s playback feature allows you to do just that. You can select any word from a lesson and listen to at a normal or slow speed. This will help you pick out the sounds and nuances of spoken Korean.
Koreanclass101 also gives full transcriptions of their lessons. This is ideal for reading along with the conversations or creating your own review materials.
If you’re looking to use Koreanclass101 you have three options: The basic level, premium level, and the premium plus level.
The basic level pretty much only offers the podcast episodes and little else. You can purchase a single month subscription for $10 (or 24 months at $4 per month).
The premium level has the podcasts and unlocks the tools and resources of Koreanclass101, the best one probably being the lesson transcripts. A single month at the premium level will cost $25 (down to $10 a month for 24 months).
Premium plus includes the perk of having professional help and counsel from a Korean teacher. This level costs $47 for a single month (down to $22.88 per month for 24 months).
Which subscription is better?
Most likely you’ll be fine with the basic level. The podcast alone can improve your Korean. The premium option is a good choice if you think you’ll use the tools & resources they provide.
The premium plus feels a bit too expensive to be honest. The site is a little vague as what the personal instruction will be. If you’re dead set on having a real Korean teacher then get the basic plan and book a session or two with a tutor on Italki.
The limits of Koreanclass101
You don’t actually need to speak Korean
Koreanclass101 is a pretty good learning tool, but no audio course can overcome the need to practice the Korean language in real life.
You might listen to Korean podcasts all day but eventually you’re going to have to put the headphones down and talk to someone.
Best way to use Koreanclass101
Study & review
At its heart Koreanclass101 is a study help. It’s not a course so don’t use it as one. Working through a lesson or two per day will improve your Korean, especially if you use the site along with a course or class.
Don’t forget the flashcard feature. It’s a great way to keep new Korean words fresh in your mind.
Listening & pronunciation
Take full advantage of the transcriptions and slow playback options to help you with the sounds of the Korean language.
It’s a good idea to take each word from an episode and play it back, trying to listen to everything syllable by syllable. This kind of exercise will stretch your listening abilities.
Learn on the move
The mobile app lets you use the little gaps in your day (anytime spent waiting or getting somewhere) by practicing your Korean.
It might not seem like a lot but an extra 5 minutes here and 10 minutes there will really start to add up and help you learn a little quicker.
Alternatives to Koreanclass101
5+ minutes a day
Duolingo is the best known language app, and for good reason. It's proven to be an affective way to learn basic grammar and vocabulary in a game like setting.
As of September 2017 the beta version of Duolingo Korean was released for IOS and Android. While they're still working out some of the kinks it's a great program to help get you started. It's also free to use so definitely check it out!
Starts at $15 per month
5+ minutes a day
Fluentu is a site that helps you learn a language through native videos. Use in-site flashcards, captions, and games to learn new words in context while watching Korean TV shows, movies, commercials, and more. It's a great way to push your listening skills and Korean vocabulary.
20+ minutes a day
Rocket Korean is built around recorded audio in the form of dialogues. The dialogues have English explanations and usually teach the language in "chunks" or phrases versus individual words (this is great for conversational Korean).
Rocket Korean is more structured and comprehensive than Koreanclass101. It is well balanced and provides plenty of content on reading and writing in Korean, in addition to pronunciation and conversational vocabulary.
Koreanclass101 is an awesome way to practice and learn Korean. As a whole the lessons are pretty interesting and offer an excellent and convenient way to learn grammar, new words, and workout your pronunciation.
Just remember that Koreanclass101 doesn’t have everything you’ll need to become fluent in Korean. You will need to speak with native speakers and follow along with a more structured class or course.
Koreanclass101 is also affordable, and with a free 1 week trial (no payment info needed), it’s easy to test out the site out and see for yourself if it’s right for you.