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Teuida App Review — Learn Korean with a K-Pop Star

Quick Review

Summary

Teuida is a Korean learning app that’s available for iOS and Android, with instructions in English or Vietnamese. The app takes a unique approach to language teaching by simulating conversations, including some featuring K-Pop star Nancy from Momoland. Users of the app have the opportunity to get lots of speaking practice and feedback on pronunciation through voice recognition technology.

Quality

The design is superb, and it’s easy to use, but the voice recognition isn’t perfect.

Thoroughness

It offers lots of speaking practice as advertised, but it’s lacking detailed pronunciation training.

Value

There aren’t a lot of similar alternatives, but there are definitely more efficient ways to get real speaking practice.

Languages

Korean for speakers of Vietnamese and English.

Price

The first lesson of every chapter on Teuida is free; a subscription is required for access to the full app. You can use the coupon code ‘ALR003‘ to get the 3-month subscription for $18.99.

1 Month $9.99
3 Months $20.99
12 Months $59.99

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Is Nancy your Momoland bias? Or maybe you’re more of a JooE fan? If this makes sense to you, there’s a Korean language app that could be right up your alley.

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If you’re lost, it’s okay — I was too. Read on to discover a whole new world of language learning.

 

An Honest Review of Teuida App With Image of Korean Architecture.

What is Teuida?

First off, Teuida is a romanization of the Korean 트이다, which means open or openhearted.

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It’s also the name of a language-learning app that does things a little bit differently. Taking cues from linguist Stephen Krashen, the program favors comprehensible input over learning grammar rules and the alphabet.

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There’s also an emphasis on active engagement with the language, something users will experience almost immediately after opening the app.

The tradeoff, naturally, is that the app doesn’t provide any instruction in Hangul and that there isn’t an emphasis on grammar rules or explanations, though you will find some.

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One of the biggest draws for K-Pop fans out there is that Nancy from Momoland is a brand ambassador for Teuida. She seems to excel at the role because she’s wildly popular and because she’s fluent in both English and Korean.

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Nancy teaches users some basic Korean and stars in a POV-style conversation simulation, but more on this later.

An Overview of the Teuida Layout

The app’s design is certainly an area in which it shines. The interface is slick, menu navigation is smooth, and the overall experience has a premium feeling to it.

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Teuida Level 1

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The course is broken up into levels, units, and lessons, all of which we’ll look at in detail.

 

Visit teuida

You can use the coupon code ‘ALR003‘ to get the 3-month subscription for $18.99.

Levels

There are currently five different levels of material available within the Teuida app. Each level is centered around a general theme and consists of between six and ten units, each covering a specific language objective that’s related to the theme..

Teuida Levels

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Since levels are the largest category, they take quite a bit of time to work through. Five may not seem like a lot of material, but each contains a fair amount of material.

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There are several levels that are currently in development, and new units are released weekly.

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If you’d rather not work through the material chronologically, it’s also possible to browse lessons by subject matter and skip around as you please.

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Choose Your Interest

Units

The units that make up the levels each focus on an objective-based language item. These objectives are all things that would likely be almost immediately useful to a beginning learner of Korean, which is great.

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Level 1 Units

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Okay, “Expressing love to your K-Pop bias” might not be at the top of everyone’s list of Korean priorities, but most of the units have titles like, “Introducing yourself” or, “Thanking and apologizing.”

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Each of these units culminates in a simulated conversation scenario where you’ll have to use the language you’ve learned. I’ll go into detail about the conversation experience later on, but let’s look at the lessons that make up a unit first.

 

Visit teuida

You can use the coupon code ‘ALR003‘ to get the 3-month subscription for $18.99.

Lessons

As I’ve mentioned, each unit contains lessons to prepare you for a speaking exercise.

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Lesson Menu

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There are typically around four lessons in each unit, and they each teach a specific phrase that you’ll need to use in the unit’s speaking exercise.

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Lesson Example

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You might consider this the real “meat” of the resource, as it’s where the learning and instruction happen. Teachers help you practice pronunciation with extensive listen-and-repeat drilling and provide explanations in the way of literal translations and relevant contextual or cultural information.

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In my opinion, these extra bits of information and literal translations are crucial in making Teuida more than just a fancy, interactive phrasebook. The literal translations are helpful in giving you a feeling for proper sentence construction, and the cultural notes highlight the specific scenarios in which you’d use the phrases you’re learning.

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The lessons are where you’ll first encounter the app’s voice recognition technology, which is where you’ll get feedback on your pronunciation and how you’ll complete short quiz questions.

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Visit teuida

You can use the coupon code ‘ALR003‘ to get the 3-month subscription for $18.99.

AI Pronunciation Feedback

This feature is at the center of Teuida’s mechanics. After all, the app’s tagline is “Don’t just study Korean. Speak it!”

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It’s an intuitive feature to use: speak into your phone when prompted and receive an evaluation.

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You’ll see the language you’re supposed to say written in Hangul alongside a romanization of the word or phrase. This seems helpful when you’re a beginner, but I found myself relying heavily on the romanization, ignoring the Hangul and struggling to recall what I’d just said without looking at the romanization.

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Pronunciation feedback comes in the form of a letter grade and a color-coding system supposedly based on performance.

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As with all voice recognition systems I’ve tried, this one isn’t perfect. I almost always either received an A+ or got the “Good try!” message and was prompted to try again. There were several times in which, try as I might, I couldn’t seem to produce acceptable pronunciation, only to suddenly receive an A+, totally unsure of what I had changed.

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I don’t think this feature is without value — I just think users should probably temper expectations. There does seem to be some accurate evaluation of pronunciation going on, but without detailed, actionable feedback, it’s hard to use it to improve.

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Another element that I think detracts from the quality of pronunciation practice here is that there isn’t any explicit pronunciation instruction, only listening and repeating.

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For someone that isn’t accustomed to making or listening to Korean sounds, it can be difficult to know what to do with your mouth or even what you’re hearing. The romanization of Korean is helpful, but you’d be missing the mark by quite a bit if you read it as you would English.

Conversation Scenarios

Alright, now the fun part. In my opinion, the most engaging activity in Teuida, by far, is the conversation practice. It’s somewhat like a virtual reality experience, where you’re placed in a scenario and need to hold up your end of the conversation.

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Conversation Practice with Nancy    Conversation Practice with Friend

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The videos are high quality, and the POV perspective makes for an interesting experience. The camera even nods to your conversation partner and looks around like you might do in such a situation.

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Overall, I was impressed with the conversation experience. Even if it felt bizarre at times, I was fully engaged.

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One thing to note is that your conversation partner will say a bunch of stuff that you haven’t learned in lessons. You can, of course, follow along with English translations, but I’m not sure how much learning potential there is here.

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You can toggle the subtitles for English and Korean on and off, as well as the Hangul and romanization for the speaking prompts. I enjoyed trying to complete the exercises first without subtitles, trying to infer what was being said, and then with subtitles, checking my understanding.

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After completing a conversation exercise, you’ll receive a sort of report card describing your performance.

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Conversation Report Card

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This report card doesn’t seem to be saved anywhere, but it’s kind of nice to see how you did. If you’re unable to produce a satisfactory phrase within a couple of tries, you’ll receive an F!

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I like the conversation practice a lot, but I wish the conversations were shorter and used even more basic language. It would also be nice to have the option to listen to conversations at a slower speed.

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As it is, I think that hearing so much Korean that hasn’t been covered in the lessons has the potential to overwhelm the beginning learner, but it’s far from a guarantee.

Pricing

The Teuida app is free to download, but you’ll need to purchase a subscription for access to any material beyond the first chapter of every level.

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Teuida Pricing

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It’s hard to imagine using this app for 12 months, as there just isn’t that much material available. Even if a new unit is released every week, I would be hard-pressed to justify purchasing a year-long subscription (although I don’t think $5/month is outrageous).

Visit teuida

You can use the coupon code ‘ALR003‘ to get the 3-month subscription for $18.99.

Alternatives

Teuida takes such an interesting approach to providing language practice that I don’t think it has much, if any, direct competition.

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For those who are mainly drawn to Teuida by Nancy and an interest in K-Pop, consider Margarita’s Learn Korean with K-Pop playlist on YouTube. She takes popular K-Pop songs and breaks down the lyrics in English with a focus on learning the language. It’s free.

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For learners interested in resources that take a slightly more traditional approach or offer more thorough practice in certain areas, read on.

Pimsleur — Thorough Structure with an Aural/Verbal Focus

If Teuida is appealing for it’s aural/verbal focus, it may be worth considering Pimsleur. The platform doesn’t offer snazzy videos like Teuida, and there’s no AI pronunciation feedback, but there’s lots of listening and speaking practice, and the instruction is more clearly structured. Pimsleur has been around for quite a few years, and its audio courses have a solid reputation. Read our full review of Pimsleur here.

Speechling — Pronunciation Feedback from Humans

Speechling could make an excellent alternative to Teuida for learners who are serious about improving their pronunciation and want to get more detailed feedback than is available with Teuida.

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This resource allows users to record themselves speaking Korean in order to receive feedback from a real person. It’s free to use for a limited number of recordings each month, and a subscription unlocks unlimited recordings. Here’s our review of Speechling.

italki — Lessons with Real Tutors

As nifty as Teuida’s simulated conversation practice is, I don’t consider it anywhere near a substitute for speaking with a real person. italki is an online directory of language tutors, with over 200 teaching Korean. Tutors set their own prices and schedules, so you should be able to find one that works for you.

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You should also be able to find an appropriate tutor regardless of your level of Korean. There are certainly tutors that are happy to walk beginners through the first stages of learning the language. italki also has a cool, free language exchange feature, as well as one that makes it possible to give and receive feedback on writing. We wrote a full review of italki here.

Tandem and HelloTalk — Language Exchange

If you’re not into video lessons but still want to talk to real people, Tandem and HelloTalk are both great language exchange apps with a lot of value.

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Both apps facilitate convenient language exchange with other learners and make communication easy with built-in language tools. They offer basic functionality for free, but unlimited translations require a subscription. The difference between the apps is largely aesthetic, and both host large communities of language learners. We looked at the apps side-by-side in this comparison review.

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TenguGO (Apple) and Hangul (Android) — Learn to Read Hangul

Unless you want to rely on romanization forever (you don’t!), you’ll need to learn how to read Hangul at some point. Since Teuida doesn’t take the time to teach it, you’ll need to look elsewhere.

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Fortunately, Hangul is pretty straightforward, and there are plenty of ways to learn it. TenguGO and Hangul are two apps that teach the alphabet through flashcards, quizzes, lessons, and even some practice reading material.

90-Day Korean — A More Traditional Approach

Finally, if you’re someone that appreciates instruction that’s detailed and full of explanations, you might enjoy 90-Day Korean. It’s a comprehensive course that’s divided into 90-day modules and should take a year to complete.

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Highlights of the course are exceptionally thorough instruction and a logical, progressive course structure. There’s also the option to pay a higher price for access to a personal Korean tutor to help you along the way. Here’s our full review of 90-Day Korean.

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We’ve also compiled lists of the best podcasts for learning Korean, the best online courses, and the best apps.

Final Thoughts

I really do like a learning app that captures my attention and is exciting to use, and Teuida accomplishes these things. It offers a novel experience without feeling like a gimmick, which can be a hard thing to pull off.

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Novelty aside, my favorite things about the app are that it presents a bunch of super useful language right away in an engaging manner and gets you speaking immediately.

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What keeps me from wholeheartedly recommending every Korean learner pay for a subscription is that it doesn’t offer explicit instruction for pronunciation (it relies on examples) or reading and that it might be overwhelming for a beginning learner.

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Fortunately, the introductory material (and a conversation with Nancy!) is free to try out, and I think Teuida is certainly worth a try.

 

Visit teuida

You can use the coupon code ‘ALR003‘ to get the 3-month subscription for $18.99.

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