90 Day Korean
90 Day Korean’s Inner Circle is an excellent course that is split up into four 90-day modules. They do an exceptionally good job of simplifying the materials and explaining things in a straightforward way. Plus, you’ll get access to a personal coach to ask any questions you may have and get feedback on assignments from. I came away very impressed when I tried the course myself. Read the full review.
If you’re looking for something like Duolingo but better, try out LingoDeer. The Korean course teaches grammar and vocabulary up to TOPIK 1. Beginners can benefit massively from various exercise types, natural recordings, detailed and clear grammar notes, built-in reviews, and offline mode. Read our review of Lingodeer.
Talk to Me in Korean
A one-stop solution for all things Korean – over 1000 lessons, organized in eight levels, numerous video courses and podcasts, over 25 reference and workbooks… No matter your current level and learning style, you’ll surely find what you need. Plenty of material is free, including some podcasts and accompanying ebooks, and a popular Youtube channel. Review.
The Pimsleur method is somewhat different than others and works well for some people. You learn to speak the language by listening, imitating (syllable by syllable) and answering questions. The lessons are 30 minutes long, require full concentration, and you speak throughout. The phrases you’ll learn are neutral and appropriate in any situation, and the grammatical constructions are limited to those that you’ll most likely to use. You can attain good pronunciation, sufficient vocabulary, and high self-confidence as you speak. The Korean 1-2 courses cover the beginner’s and intermediate levels, and each contains 30 lessons. Read our full review of Pimsleur.
It is great to have a native speaker to practice Korean with you from the first day. If you don’t have someone already, you can find one – a tutor, teacher, or a language exchange partner – on Italki. Chatting with a conversation exchange partner won’t cost you money. Lessons from professional teachers will, but you’ll spend significantly less than you thought you would. Also, if you are a native speaker of a language other than English, you can find someone who speaks your language too. Read our full review of italki.
Memrise courses are fairly fun. Most of them are generated by users, and the quality varies, but when you pick one, learning the lessons is like playing a game. The concept of the app will make you memorize words, phrases, spelling, and pronunciation. You can choose from hundreds of courses or create your own. Best of all, Memrise is completely free to use. Read our full review.
Tandem is a language exchange app created to connect learners from around the world. You can teach someone the language you speak and they’ll help you learn the language you’d like to learn. It comes with lots of useful features to make connecting with other users easy and facilitate language practice. Read our full review of Tandem.
FSI language courses were developed by Foreign Service Institute – U. S. Department of State using the FAST methodology (Familiarization & Short-Term Training). The FSI Basic Korean covers the essentials comprehensively, and includes textbooks and audio recordings. Korean Headstart Course is more concise and includes self-evaluation tests. These materials are considerably old and a bit old-fashioned, without any interactive solutions or flashcards – you might even need a teacher to guide through – but they are very thorough and entirely free.
A comprehensive Korean language-learning pack from Innovative Languages, which includes everything a beginner (or intermediate-level learner) needs: audio and video lessons, flashcards, and downloadable PDF lessons. You’ll find tons of helpful content and while the platform isn’t perfect, they offer lots of useful materials at a reasonable price. Review.
Viki is an Asian drama streaming service, so you’ll be able to find tons of Korean dramas to watch. They’ve also added an exciting Viki Learn feature which sounds like a great addition for Korean learners. You can click on their dual-subtitles as you watch to see a pop-up definition of the word and save those words. Additionally, there are listening, fill in the blank, and vocabulary quizzes based on the K-Dramas. Finally, their video dictionary lets you look up a word in English or Korean and watch clips that contain that word.
The creators of LingQ promise you’ll never need a boring textbook again. The natural process of learning through context is more pleasant and surprisingly more effective than memorizing grammar rules. You can pick the content you find most interesting – and the choice is large – and read and listen to the subjects that interest you. They may try to do too much, from language exchanges to avatars and coins, but the reading section, which is LingQ’s main feature, can be a really useful tool. Read the full review of LingQ.
There’s one level of Rocket Korean, suitable only for beginner students. Consisting of interactive audio lessons, language and culture lessons, writing lessons, and survival kit lessons, it appears to be a well-round and comprehensive course. Unfortunately, I came away from my time trying it pretty disappointed. I wouldn’t recommend paying for it. Read the full review of Rocket Korean.
One of the most popular free language sources, Duolingo offers fun, bite-sized lessons of Korean. 5 minutes a day is supposed to be enough to develop solid reading, writing, and speaking skills. It is easy to use and it feels like you’re playing a game. Unlocking new levels and earning virtual coins keeps you motivated and, if we are to believe to the authors, 34 hours of Duolingo are equally valuable as one semester in the university.
Glossika is another course that promises to teach you Korean without memorizing the rules. The keyword here is internalization – you internalize grammar rules and adopt the patterns of speech, by repeating the most commonly used sentences in the Korean language. However, not everyone would be thrilled with the study material – it consists of isolated sentences, without any context or story – but many say it works for them. We’ve found it to be overpriced for what is offered. Read our full review of Glossika.
At the moment, there are over twenty different Udemy courses of the Korean language available. The quality varies, the price not that much – most of these courses are offered at the discount price of $11.99. It is hard to tell whether all of them are worth paying, but there is something for everyone. All levels are covered, and some of the courses have quizzes included.
This app is quite different from the “canon” language learning resources. It is a compilation of videos in Korean (among other languages), supplemented by the interactive captions, so you can have a pleasant time watching interesting stuff and learning on the way as if you had someone to explain everything to you in real time. Unfortunately, I felt the price was a bit high for what it offered. Read our full review.
A fancy language learning software and app that nearly everyone has heard of. It may also be known as one of the most overpriced apps that offers considerably less than many free ones. You can start with a trial version and actually learn several nice phrases in Korean, but the lessons that follow – which you’d have to pay for – won’t help you move much. However, if you’re struggling with concentration issues and love to learn in tiny steps with lots of (often unnecessary) repetition, you may wish to try it. Read our Rosetta Stone review.
Probably the best language exchange platform – a mobile app that allows you to connect with native speakers of the Korean language, chat with them, and help them acquire a command of your native language in return. It supports text, voice, and video; contains tools for pronunciation, translation, and corrections; is free and easy to use.
Live Lingua is an online language school. The tutors are native speakers from Korea who are required to speak a second language and hold university degrees. The lessons start at $29/hour (the price depends on the certificate you’re after and the number of lessons you purchase at once), but the first one is free. You can also use what they claim to be the internet’s largest collection of free public domain language learning materials. Read the full review of Live Lingua.
A popular program that enables you to learn many things using flashcards and spaced repetition, and is especially convenient for language learning. You can use an existing deck, created by some of the users – and there are over hundred shared decks for Korean – or create your own. Anki is an open-source app that works on most of the operating systems, and enables you to sync your decks across devices.
Clozemaster is a great way to practice vocabulary, sentence structures, and reading by completing tons of fill in the blank exercises. You can fill in the blank by either typing the answer or choose from a multiple choice option. You’ll score points as you go. While there is a pro plan, the free version offers a ton of value. You can learn Korean from English, French, or Arabic.
This app aims to enable you to learn Korean from any of the 33 languages that they support. The learning starts with listening to a conversation, memorizing core words, and using them to generate other phrases and sentences. At the end of a lesson, you are supposed to be able to reconstruct the conversation. Unfortunately, we weren’t very impressed. Read our review of Mondly.
The Living Language Korean comes as the Complete Edition and contains three Books (beginners, intermediate, and advanced level), nine CDs, and free online learning resources: games, flashcards, and interactive quizzes. The Platinum Edition also includes live e-tutoring. There is also the Essential Edition coursebook available for beginners.
If you love Assimil, you’ll get dissapointed to hear that their standard course of Korean is only in French. However, they have recently published a handy Korean phrasebook for the speakers of English. The book contains 21 lessons for beginners and mp3 audio sample, so you’d need to buy entire audio content separately.
The Mosalingua app is essentially a way to memorize basic vocabulary and phrases. It focuses on the most important, “the 20% that you’ll use 80% of the time,” and relies on advanced learning, association, and memorization techniques. There are additional features on the web version, and while a subscription does cost money, there’s a free 15-day trial available.
If you aren’t sure how to pronounce a certain word or phrase in Korean – from greetings, apologies and flirting (Do you have a boyfriend? – 남자 친구 있어요?) to whichever expression you may find in the book you’re reading – you can type it down in Forvo, and hear it pronounced by a native speaker.
One of the most trusted and accurate online dictionaries of Korean. It relies on the content (words and example sentences) from the Oxford Advanced Learner’s English-Korean Dictionary, Collins’s COBUILD Advanced Dictionary and Thesaurus, NEUNGYULE, Dong-A Prime, and others. It is free to use, and you can also install the convenient Naver Toolbar.
Modern Korean Grammar: A Practical Guide
A comprehensive, innovative, and practical reference guide for intermediate and advanced learners of Korean. It covers both traditional grammatical categories and practical language functions including all those situations that are vital for communication. There is an accompanying workbook available too as a separate item on Amazon.
A Frequency Dictionary of Korean (Routledge)
A community-driven Q&A site for teachers and learners of many languages, including Korean. Anybody can join and discuss the delicacies of the language and individual expressions. You can ask questions, offer the solutions for someone else’s dilemmas, and vote for the responses that you find the best. The most helpful entries are voted up and appear close to the top of the thread. It is free, but it is not for beginners; you’ll need some command of Korean to participate in the conversation.
Conversation Countdown (Fluent in 3 months)
For those who are not very self-disciplined and are only efficient under pressure, “Fluent in 3 months” offers a crash-course that aims to help you develop a ‘mission-mentality’ and strategize your learning. The 7 lessons consist of bare essentials and shortcuts, but the fact that you have a scheduled conversation with a native Korean speaker in a week creates a sense of emergency and keeps you super-motivated.
Audible is Amazon’s audiobook service and also an excellent resource for learning Korean. Although there isn’t a great selection of audiobooks in Korean, you’ll find several courses from popular language learning resources such as Pimsleur and Innovative Language (Korean Class 101). Best of all, you can get a 30-day free trial which includes two free audiobooks!
A 5-minutes-a-day app that helps you memorize words (mostly nouns) with the help of simple visual illustrations. Includes games and exercises that cover vocabulary (matching word and image), spelling and translation. It feels effortless but it is efficient and you do learn those words, but without any context or grammatical construction.
While most language learning apps focus on flashcards and memorization, this one utilizes a different approach. It lets you learn the language naturally by simultaneously reading and listening to various stories in Korean and your native language (as long as you speak one of the 13 languages they cover at the moment). This way, you learn words within a context and internalize grammar rules at the same time.
Readlang Web Reader is an extension for Google Chrome that enables you to read online content in over 40 languages. Korean is still in a beta phase, but it is perfectly usable. Just click any word or phrase and you’ll have it translated and saved in the flashcard library. The free version is limited to 10 phrases a day, while the number of individual words you can translate remains unrestricted.
Lingbe is a language exchange platform that’s a bit different than the others. With Lingbe, you don’t need to find someone to talk with, you simply click the call button and they will connect you with a native speaker of the language you’re learning. That can help get rid of some people’s anxieties and time wasted finding someone to talk with. After the conversation, if both people click the like button, you’ll be added to each other’s friend list and you can chat with them anytime.
Speaky is a social language-learning app for those looking to engage with others while learning their target language. The app contains a large database of users with which you can chat, share photos, leave voice messages and even have voice calls. There is a paid version that allows you more than five automatic translations when chatting with someone, but for the most part the app is free. There definitely are other resources out there that do more or less the same thing, so if you’ve used other social language apps then you probably have a good idea as to what to expect with Speaky. If you aren’t a total beginner and want some practice with real-life individuals then Speaky may be something to look into. Read the full review.
Verbling is a good platform for finding tutors online and you can book lessons directly from the teacher. You can see how many lessons each teacher has given, their rating on the site, and a short video introduction of their experience. However, prices are higher and the number of teachers lower compared to italki. Read our review of Verbling.
Dictionarist – Popup Dictionary
This browser extension for Chrome makes it much easier to look up the meaning of words in Korean (and other languages) while reading online. A tool like this can make reading challenging content much more manageable.
Flowlingo helps you to immerse yourself in a language via tv shows, music, books, blogs, and more. You can highlight sections of text and get translations. It is still quite new and has a lot of potential for improvement. Korean is only available in the free mobile app.
Preply is a global platform that allows you to find a Korean tutor from the country of your liking. You can find a number of qualified teachers and pick one according to your needs (business/conversational/intensive Korean, lessons for beginners or children) and budget. They use Skype, which allows you do speak, write and share materials with your tutor, just like you would do in a classroom.
A database of materials such as vocabulary and grammar reference, native-Korean pronunciation audios, and tools, which include a dictionary with audio, translation helper, audio flashcards, and a romanization tool. Monthly subscription is $4.95.
Korean for Beginners
A popular Korean language learning guide that aims to demystify the language – mostly the Korean script (Hangul) and the grammar – and help you internalize the logic behind it, which is, according to the authors and many reviewers, surprisingly simple. This is not a standalone resource and, despite the subtitle (Mastering Conversational Korean) and the downloadable audio, it isn’t comprehensive enough to enable you to really master conversational skills, but it is a solid introduction for any beginner.
Korean from Zero
A comprehensive guide through the Korean language for beginners. Includes detailed, easily compherensible explanation of the grammar rules and forms, and over 600 essential words and phrases. Hangul (Korean characters) is used rather than a romanized script, and you’ll earn to use it too.
Coursera / Yonsei University
This well-known platform currently hosts two Korean courses. First Step Korean and Learn to Speak Korean 1 are developed by Yonsei University, cover all aspects of the language, and include quizzes and role-plays. The latter is more comprehensive, focused on conversation practice necessary for daily interactions, available in languages other than English, and it requires a basic knowledge of Hangul. While most of the course materials are free, you’ll have to pay if you want a certificate.
Korean Made Simple / GO Billy
Three books covering Hangul, the Korean vocabulary and grammar, culture and history (and everything in between) in three levels (beginners to advanced) and the blog by a long-time language learner with a BA in Korean. Uses plain English to explain often confusing concepts in the Korean grammar. The books are around $20 each on Amazon, and there is plenty of material free on the website.
Learn Hangul in One Hour
Quick mnemonic course designed to help you learn how to read and write Hangul, pronounce Korean accurately, and keep it all in your long-term memory. Includes full diagrams (stroke-by-stroke) on how to write each letter.
Let’s Study Korean
Complete work book for upper-intermediate and advanced learners of Korean, who aim to take their language skills to the next level, avoid common mistakes, and develop a deeper understanding of the language. Covers spelling, grammar, vocabulary, and reading comprehension. It is written in Korean and it is not useful for beginners.
How to Study Korean
Nearly 150 lessons and tests are free online, and you can buy additional materials, such as workbooks, printable lessons, audio packages, and conjugation tables.
Korean Wiki Project
An unfinished wiki-style website with some cool free materials, including vocabulary (body parts, subway announcements, internet slang), grammar, and tools (Hangeul assistant).
Another convenient compilation of essentials in Korean. Helpful if you’re visiting Korea, but insufficient for those who wish to gain comprehensive knowledge of the Korean language and grammar. Popular phrases are accompanied with variations, as there is always more than one way to say something. This site can help you practice pronunciation, but it is not interactive and requires you to go back and forth until you lose your patience and go to another site.
Another free app from the Duolingo team, for those who love bite-sized lessons, spaced repetition and gamification. You can pick from the endless list of Korean flashcard decks, or create your own. The app is fun, easy to use, and available on all platforms.
Bravolol / Learn Korean Phrases
A phrasebook app for iOS and Android that helps you to pronounce and memorize the most common words and phrases in Korean. Includes clear audio and you don’t need internet connection to practice the language.
Another free app for beginners that can help you build an essential vocabulary base. All entries are followed by audio recordings and work in offline mode. Lots of ads though.
Free ebooks from the King Sejong Institute. The collection includes eight workbooks (accompanied by textbooks) for different levels, and several specialized workbooks for reading/writing/listening/speaking Korean. You need to register to access those free materials.
A Q&A app created by the Lang-8 team. You can ask questions to native speakers of Korean, and answer those made by the learners of your language. Available on iOS and Android. Read our full review of HiNative.
Free courses created by the Defense Language Institute (U.S. Department of Defense). The courses are thorough and intensive. The materials consist of heavy books (the basic course has over 1000 pages), corresponding textbooks and audio files. As long as you ignore the military-related content and you’re not afraid of large books, you’ll find those courses immensely useful.
Weekly Korean (Margarita Korean)
Margarita is a passionate fellow learner of Korean, and on her Youtube channel she “sings, dances, eats and breathes Korea.” In Weekly Korean series she explains Korean tenses, pronunciation, and various grammar curiosities. There are also other interesting playlists on her channel, such as K-POP Breakdown, where she explains some popular lyrics, and a few others – all related to Korean pop culture.
This popular YouTube channel specializes in Korean language lessons and contains over a hundred of them. All lessons are short and succinct, and most of them are presented by animated characters. The videos that cover differents aspects of language (basics, reading practice, conversational Korean, etc.) are grouped in playlists, so you’ll easily find what you need.
Pathway to Spoken Korean
National East Asian Languages Resource Center at the Ohio State University provides a great free collection of lessons and exercises for absolute beginners. The materials (text, audio, and illustrations) are free online, and you can buy a print with audio CD. The lessons cover the Korean sound system, characters (Hangul), and a range of expressions you can use in various real-life situations.
KBS World Radio / Let’s Learn Korean
A free online Korean language learning program (text and audio) for beginners and intermediate level learners. It covers all aspects of language and contains many cultural references, crucial for those who are visiting Korea for the first time. The program is available in several languages, such as English, French, German, Spanish, Russian, Chinese, Japanese, Vietnamese, Indonesian, and Arabic.
Click Korean / Korean Language Education Center
Free Korean language course for beginners, developed by the Korean Language Education Center. The material is organised in 20 units. Each unit comprises six specialized sections, which cover separate aspects of language and culture, exercises, and tests. You’d need Adobe Flash player to access the lessons.
OptiLingo uses a process called Guided Immersion to teach the most common words and phrases in the language you’re learning and place them in the context of everyday activities. It also incorporates Spaced Repetition Systems so that you can retain information more efficiently. They focus a lot on listening and speaking to help you develop an ear for the language.
If you’re a language student struggling with Korean verb conjugation, this little tool can save your precious time. You just need to enter a verb in the infinitive, and you’ll get the complete inflection of that verb (verb conjugations in Korean depend upon the verb tense, mood, aspect, and the relation between the speaker and the listeners). Verbix works on Windows and online, and is entirely free.
This free resource is designed to help you learn the essential vocabulary, phrases, and grammar. The emphasis is on most frequently used words and phrases in everyday communication. The website contains text, audio, and flashcards, and you can take quizzes when you’re done learning.
Created by a learner of Korean, this website contains 24 comics episodes that can be viewed with English subtitles and cultural notes. It is a painless and fun way to learn a couple of phrases, mostly related to school, dating, getting drunk (in a cute way).
Sogang Korean Program
Free courses for novices and intermediate learners of Korean developed by the Korean Language Education Center and Sogang University. The courses are designed to help you develop your reading and listening comprehension skills, and internalize vocabulary and grammar. The lessons consist of text, pictures, audio, worksheets and quizzes.
Bab.la is a dictionary – and a lot more than a dictionary. It translates words within the context rather than isolated. Bab.la is a powerful tool which you can use to, for example, write an impressive cover letter in the language of your liking (in this case, Korean) and prepare for the interview by finding the right sentences in your native language and defining the language pair (e.g., English-Korean). It is free to use, and you can download thematic mini-phrasebooks from any page.
Future Learn / Introduction to Korean
A six-week course (three lessons a week) developed by the Hanyang University, which you can enroll for free – or upgrade to get unlimited access and certificate of achievements. An integrated, natural approach will help you learn basic vocabulary, spelling, and grammar; improve your communication skills, and get a notion of Korean culture. Visit their website to find out the start date and check out some sample lessons.
Spotify is more than just a music-streaming service. It offers over 200 hours of free language lessons, including quite a few Korean lessons. In addition to these audio lessons, there is other content available, such as language-learning playlists created by users, podcasts, audiobooks, Disney movies, and more.
A small course that focuses on reading and writing Hangul, as well as correct pronunciation of Korean characters. Only five lessons are available at the time.
Quick Korean – The Cyber University of Korea
The Cyber University of Korea provides a free online course of Korean, which started as “e-learning campaign for multicultural families” and now it is available to language learners all around the globe. The learning program consists of language lessons in four levels and a series on Korean culture, which you can also watch on Youtube. Lesson plans and downloadable learning materials are available on their website.
The language learning software and online course used by many public institutions in the US. The creators have developed the so-called “Declarative Method” (focus on long-term memory) and “Declarative Acceleration” technique to make the newly acquired knowledge stick. However, we found it to be bad value for the cost. Review.
500 Basic Korean Verbs
A fairly comprehensive Korean verb usage guide. Contains 500 most frequently used verbs, their pronunciation, the meaning in English, 48 Korean tenses, speech levels, and moods. The Korean text is written in both Hangul and romanized script. You can download the 1000 audio examples that correspond to those found in the book, and help you practice the usage of the verbs.
These lessons are only available for the learners in the USA, Canada, UK & Ireland, Australia & NZ, Brazil, Germany, and Spain. The approach is highly personalized. After you’ve taken their free language proficiency test and completed a trial skype lesson, you’d get a qualified native teacher to develop a curriculum based on your needs and work with you in one-on-one sessions. There are also some specialized courses available, such as Korean for business, healthcare, family relationships, real estate, relocation, and more.
Cudoo is not a course that we recommend. The quality is very low and the price is quite high. The material is not very engaging, contains no language explanations other than translations, and doesn’t give you a lot of opportunities to practice. One of the only good things about Cudoo, other than the fact it contains native speaker audio, is that it offers a wide variety of languages including rare languages that can be difficult to find other resources for. Fortunately, a language like Korean has many options available so there’s no reason for you to need to use Cudoo. We wouldn’t even recommend it if it were free. Read the full review of Cudoo.
Talking to Koreans
Free yet comprehensive textbooks backed by audio files and other supporting materials – My Korean 1 & 2, Korean Through Active Listening 1 & 2, and the first 17 pages of Strategies for Communicating in Korean. PDFs and audio materials are free, and the paperbacks are available on Amazon.
Tatoeba is a different kind of dictionary – an impressive database of translated sentences, created and maintained by the user community (which you can join). Enter the word, and you’ll get in translated in numerous contexts and sentences.
RhinoSpike helps you get Korean language audio on demand. It is a language-learning exchange network and great tool for listening/speaking practice. If there is any piece of text that you’d like to have read aloud and recorded, just submit a request, and a native Korean speaker will provide an MP3 file. In return, you’d be expected to help those who are learning your native language. You can also listen to some of the 1243 existing recordings in Korean to get a feel of how it works.
Korean Learning for Correct Pronunciation
A resource that focuses on reading/speaking accurately. You’ll learn how to read Hangul characters and how to compose syllabic units. The content is divided into sections that cover Elementary Korean, Vowels, Consonants, Sound Change and Intonation.
BBC Language Guides
BBC offers excellent resources for most languages of the world. Although Korean is not as thoroughly covered as European languages and Chinese, the Language Guides section offers a great starting point: 10 Korean language facts in Korean (mp3, transcripts, and the English translation), 20 essencial phrases, “quick fix,” and learning tips.
This convenient Korean language conjugator is very useful for intermediate learners who appreciate having all the proper verb conjugations, as well as correct pronunciation, at their fingertips. It is not recommended for beginners, as it doesn’t contain translations to English. The app is available on the web, Android, and iOS.
A renowned publisher of KFL (Korean as a foreign language) textbooks. A series of textbooks and workbooks called “Integrated Korean” for all levels are available on Amazon, and you can download additional material (audio and slides) from their website.
Motivate Korean and SpongeMind
Unlike many resources, this one doesn’t promise to teach you Korean quickly and easily. Jeremy has put in some serious time and effort in learning Korean, and now he offers guidance for serious learners. In Motivate Korean, he explains cultural differences, expressions with vague/implicit meanings, and the Korean pronunciation. In addition to popular Youtube lessons and the free podcast called SpongeMind (90 tracks so far), you can book a 1 on 1 session with Jeremy.
17 Minute Languages
More than half of the reviews on Trustpilot rate 17 Minute Languages as ‘Bad’ and unfortunately we don’t disagree. The courses are full of bad translations which makes it difficult to trust other aspects of the courses. There are also no explanations to anything and the exercises themselves aren’t at all engaging. One good thing about the courses however are that they use audio from native-speakers which isn’t that impressive for a language like Korean, but can be for less-common languages. As far as learning Korean is concerned we definitely recommend taking a look at other resources as there isn’t really any reason to use this one. Review.
This provider offers several apps for learning Korean. With an average score of 4,5 stars from nearly 8000 users who reviewed it, the free app “TenguGo Hangul” is a great option for any beginner. It contains nicely organized lessons on the history and structure of the Hangul, pronunciation audios, flashcards, and quizzes (with audio). This app is available on Android, iOS, and Amazon Apps. Other apps, such as Korean Vocabulary and Korean 1 are equally loved by its users, and cost under $1,50 on Android.
Two popular free apps developed by Hansol Education Corp. with the help from King Sejong Institute Foundation. PopPopping Korean is designed to help you read Hangul by creating rhythmical combinations of onset consonants, vowels, and coda consonants. The image-sound associative learning of pronunciation is fostered by animations. The other app, PopPopping Korean–Conversation, is based on role-playing, and it helps you go through forty different situation and conversation patterns.
Traveler’s Korean is another language learning TV series provided by Arirang TV. It has significantly fewer episodes than “Let’s Speak Korean”, but they are also more succinct and the vocabulary is selected according to the needs of those who are about to visit Korea for the first time. Two seasons, each comprising 25 episodes, are available on Youtube.
One of the most popular translation apps, available for iOS and Android. The free version allows you to translate text from and into more than 100 languages, including Korean. Other features include transliteration, sharing, and audio in male and female voices. Pro features include offline mode, verb conjugations, voice-to-voice conversations, website translation, and lens – you can use your camera to translate signs, menus, and more. The last two functionalities are available only on iOS.
Sweet and Tasty Korean
The popular Youtube channel of charismatic Mina Oh with over 850K subscribers. The language lessons cover everything from the pronunciation of common words and phrases to asking a Korean out to a date. In addition to entertaining Korean lessons, you’ll find information on all things Korea, from local food and travel vlogs to Kpop parodies. New videos are added weekly for years.
Book2 (50 Languages / Goethe Verlag)
100 free lessons for beginners and intermediate learners of Korean. The course includes text (free on the website, but if you’d prefer a physical book, you can buy it on Amazon), and audio files spoken by native speakers. The free mobile app contains 30 lessons, tests and games. The paid version contains the same volume of content, but it is add-free. The goal of the course is to learn the basics quickly, and use them in typical situations. You don’t need to know English (as long as you speak one of the 50 world’s most popular languages); it is possible to learn Korean using your native language.
This app uses associative remembering techniques and animation to help you learn 650 essencial sentences comprised of 1200 words. In addition to listening and speaking, it includes Hangul writing practice, and you can learn to draw the Korean characters by either drag and drop feature or by drawing on your screen. This developer also offers an app called SEEMILE TOPIK, which you can use to prepare for standardized Korean ability examination. Available on desktop, Android, and iOS.
Jenny’s Korean (SEEMILE Korean)
A free youtube course provided by the creators of SEEMILE Korean app. It contains 20 lessons, designed to help you internalize the essentials in a month. Great starting point for beginners, especially if you prefer to hear a teacher explaining the language rather than using an app.
Another platform that enables you to speak Korean with native speakers on Skype. There are teachers from all over the world available. They use a standardized framework of references to describe your progress – the European one. As for the learning process, you choose a tutor according to their profile, feedback from other learners, price, location, and availability; book a lesson (a part of the fee should be paid in advance) and there you go.
Korean English Dictionary & Translator (Bravolol)
A free dictionary app with pronunciation guides, thorough explanations, and example sentences. Other features include related search suggestions, sentence analyzer, favorites, and flashcards. Available on iOS and Android. Works offline.
Learn Korean Offline (ufostudio)
This is a free phrasebook app that works completely offline. It contains over 1000 most frequently used phrases, organized in 18 categories, which include general conversation, time and date, directions & places, eating out, family, and more. All entries are followed by native pronunciation.
NAVER Korean Dictionary & Papago Translate
NAVER Corp. offers several useful apps for learning Korean. The dictionary app provides instant results, while sample sentences help you learn words in context. Papago Translate is a newer and more popular app that translates between 11 languages, and has voice recognition and conversation mode included to help you communicate with people in real time. If you’re an advanced user, you can watch a variety of videos without translation using the NAVER TV app.
Easy Korean (Easy Languages)
This YouTube channel takes you to the streets of Seoul and other places in Korea, enabling you to listen to a variety of native Korean voices. The episodes have a form of street interviews with random passers-by, yet the questions are not random. Each episode has a topic, which makes it easier for you to find what you’re interested in on their channel. There are no grammar lessons in these videos, and the speech you’ll hear is not always grammatically perfect, but you’ll get a feel of the language as it is spoken in everyday life. The videos contain subtitles in both Korean and English.
WingsApp offers two versions of Learn Korean – Grammar (free and pro). Both of them contain over 200 grammar lessons, which you learn in context. At the same time, it covers over 5000 phrases organized in 60 categories. Meanings of words and grammar concepts are explained by numerous example sentences. The Pro version is ad-free and works offline.
GreenLife Apps – Korean English Translator
This translator app offers sentence correction and voice recognition. You can use it to translate emails and sms messages as you receive them (the free version lets you do this 50 times). Your translation history is saved for your reference.
A free dictionary and, more importantly, a community forum where you can find and interact with people like you, doing the same as you do – studying Korean and pondering over the ways to express themselves using that language.
Learn Korean Phrasebook (Codegent)
A convenient phrasebook app that helps you learn essential Korean words and phrases and includes audio recordings made by native speakers. The free version contains over 400 frequently used words, phrases, and sentences, while the pro version offers more than 900 entries. Available on iOS and Android.
Korean-English Translator (Klays-Development)
Another free translator app that enables instant translations of words and entire sentences. It includes a list of favorite words and phrases, and supports voice input. Available on Android.
Let’s Speak Korean (Arirang)
Arirang Radio/TV is a Korean television network that broadcasts news, educational shows, cultural programs, and documentaries in English. Their educational series “Let’s Speak Korean” has been aired for years, and there are several seasons with hundreds of episodes available on their site and Youtube. The episodes are 10 minutes long and designed to teach you the language and culture of Korea.
Prof. Yoon’s Korean Language Class
If you’d like a teacher to help you through the Korean textbooks such as Integrated Korean (KLEAR) or Sejong Korean, there is one who has explained each and every lesson and uploaded it to Youtube. His channel has around 300 short video lessons which will help you progress from total beginner to a solid intermediate level.
Pit-A-Pat Korean (KBCWORLD TV)
KBSWORLD TV has an abundance of video content, mostly TV dramas, available on Youtube, and all of them come with English subtitles. To make it even easier for you to learn the language by watching K-dramas, they created Pit-A-Pat Korean. The lighthearted episodes are fragmented, and there is a host who explains the meaning of stories, highlights important words and phrases, and provides cultural perspective.
A vulgar phrasebook of Korean, more fun than useful, that will present you the common slang of Korean, from casual street-talk, funny ways to ask someone to go to bed with you, to serious insults. Use it with caution, especially because it seems that this book contains phrases and idioms that are not in use anymore. There is a workbook available as a separate item.
Colloquial Korean (Routledge Colloquial Languages)
Routledge’s Colloquial Korean is a complete course for beginners and it contains the up-to-date textbook, accompanied by audio files which you can download for free. Colloquial Korean helps you learn Korean as it is written and spoken today. The explanations are both meticulous and easy to understand. The goal is to grow your skills and speak Korean confidently in various situations.
College Korean and (Online) Intermediate College Korean
Two textbooks/courses from University of California Press. College Korean offers a thorough introduction to Korean originally created for American students. The second book (intermediate) is equally comprehensive, and it is accompanied by a web-based online courseware called Online Intermediate College Korean. The site offers text, audio, grammar patterns, vocabulary drills, various exercises, and even homework assignments. On top of that, from their site you can download a free software for Korean typing practice.
Korean Language Adventure / Imagine Your Korea
The Korea Tourism Organization provides free online resources for learning Korean. You can learn Hangul and many useful phrases directly on their website. Korean Language Adventure is their most interesting mini-course. It comprises 30 units designed to take you to a virtual journey to the most popular tourist destinations in Seoul and beyond. In addition to reading and conversation sections, each unit also has an activity section. Registration is required to use those resources, and you’d need to run Flash.
Get Started in Korean and Complete Korean (Teach Yourself)
The Teach Yourself Language edition contains two courses on Korean. This Absolute Beginner Course of Korean consists of the book and MP3 CDs, which cover the basic grammar and vocabulary and help develop listening, reading, writing, speaking and pronunciation skills. Teach Yourself also offers Complete Korean course (beginner to intermediate), which can help you learn Korean script, develop a cultural awareness, and take the four core language skills to a solid intermediate level.
These free online lessons are designed as a basic introduction to Korean. They cover the Korean alphabet, vocabulary (adjectives, nouns, numbers, verbs, phrases), grammar (plural, gender), and 500 most widely used words. Unfortunately, audio is not available for Korean.
Polly Lingual offers online courses for beginners and intermediate learners, and one aimed especially at travelers. The lessons cover all aspects of the language, including cultural references, and contain audio recordings. You can also hire a teacher (a “Polly Ambassador”) to help you with the lessons, or ask a relevant question and get a video answer for free.
My Language Exchange
A platform that hosts language exchange practice. You can find exchange partners and practice online in voice chat rooms, using tools such as an online dictionary, pre-made lesson plans, and a notepad. Voice chat rooms are designed and work best for intermediate and advanced level learners, while the beginners can engage in text chat (using a tool called Chat Companion) or find a penpal.
The basic vocabulary of the Korean language in images and sound. When you touch an object, word, or phrase, it is pronounced aloud. It contains the entries on numbers, body parts, clothing, food, animals, and family.
A free online community-created grammar book and course (beginners to advanced). The Korean wikibook contains essencial phrases in the dialogue section, and it is worth checking out, but it contains no audio files whatsoever.
Learn Korean LP
An old blog-site carefully maintained by a committed individual who really cares about the subject. Learn Korean LP hosts a substantial number of Korean lessons prepared by Luke Park. You’ll find many great explanations of Korean grammar and special expressions, as well as a list of popular Korean songs accompanied with translations and explanations of key words, phrases and grammar points.
This resource offers free lessons for beginners (integrative Korean lessons, vocabulary, phrases, and grammar) that consist of text and audio recordings, and a chance to contact the course creator and book some one-on-one lessons.
A comprehensive collection of online dictionaries, including Korean-English dictionaries, thesaurus, slang dictionaries, and more. A multilingual keyboard is incorporated. The English version of the site does not contain all the pages of the original one.
A free resource for beginners in Korean, which allows you to practice basic vocabulary, spelling, and grammar through online (flash) games.
A free collection of videos and transcripts covering everyday situations and conversations in Korean. The material is developed by the staff of the Five College Center for the Study of World Languages (FCCSWL) with the help of student native speakers from the Five College Consortium.
The Freelang dictionary is a free online dictionary and a platform which enables you to have some (short, non-commercial) content translated for free by a volunteer, or to find a professional to translate whatever material you may have. The dictionary supports only romanized Korean, and not Korean script.
Popular Korean online translator, dictionary, and spellchecker. It is designed for Koreans and navigation is in Korean, so a beginner probably wouldn’t find it much useful.
Free multilingual text to speech solution that works on PC, Android, iOS, and online as the Chrome extension. Talkify instantly recognizes supported languages (including Korean), and reads any webpage or PDF (beta). You can even save audio as MP3.
Korean Flash Cards Kit
200 two-sided flash cards featuring 1000 most commonly used Korean words and phrases in Hangul and romanized script. Great for consolidating your knowledge and memorizing the words, but might be too overwhelming for absolute beginners (without any previous knowledge of Hangul). Audio recordings and booklet included.
A community-driven Q&A site for teachers and learners of many languages, including Korean. Anybody can join and discuss the delicacies of the language and individual expressions. You can ask questions, offer the solutions for someone else’s dilemmas, and vote for the responses that you find the best. The most helpful entries are voted up and appear close to the top of the thread. It is free, but it is not for beginners; you’ll need some command of Korean to participate in the conversation.
Learn with Oliver
Online dictionary accompanied by vocabulary-building flashcards in five levels (from total beginner to very advanced) and sentence practice. It also has some dialogues and jokes written in Korean (Hangul and romanized script), English, and recorded in Korean.
Imperfect as it is, Google Translate is a powerful and immensely useful tool – as long as we use it properly and don’t expect to get 100% correct and complete translations from it. The outcome is always a work in progress. A considerable portion of actual work is finished instantly, but you still need to do your part. You can use it to translate words, documents, and entire websites. The translation is editable with a lot of ready-made alternatives for any word or phrase. The extension for Google Chrome enables you to translate and navigate through the interface of sites that are entirely in Korean. You can use the Korean characters (Hangul) thanks to the virtual keyboard.
Korean For Dummies
If you’ve read some of the books from “For Dummies” series, you already know what to expect – an easy-to-follow guide through the basics and some interesting phrases and idioms that will help you have a small talk and won’t leave you helpless on the street. There is also the popular top-tens section, which includes ten quick ways to pick up Korean swiftly, ten popular slang expressions, and ten expressions that can make you sound fluent.
A fun, free app for iOS that enables you to practice your Korean (among others) vocabulary and spelling by solving crosswords puzzles. The game is addictive and lets you learn hundreds of words, but it requires at least basic knowledge and it is not suitable for absolute beginners.
Korean-English Learners’ Dictionary (National Institute of Korean Language)
A simple online dictionary from the most authoritative institution in regard to the Korean language. Enter a word in Korean and you’ll get the English translation, definition, a list of idioms and proverbs containing that word/expression, and even more usage examples in both Korean and English.