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KGSP 장학금에 대한 생각.

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June 11, 2015 | 07:55am
Mood: concerned

I've been bad at updating recently... in both English and Korean. Oops.

Our last vacation just finished. I did a few day trips (Gokseong for the rose festival and rail-bike with Kay, Nick, and Gwanyu; Daejeon with Bong) and spent a few days in Seoul. The semester started yesterday and I'm feeling relatively okay with the class. Of course, last semester went quite well (I received the second highest scores in the class: Vocab/Grammar-98, Speaking-100, Listening-93, Reading-91, Writing-91, Total-93) but, you know, scores aren't everything.

More importantly is the fact that in 3 months I will have started graduate school.

It's interesting; I wasn't sure what I was expecting from this language year, but I thought my Korean skills would be much higher. I started with a TOPIK level 3, and I've increased to a 4. That's it. I don't know if there's something wrong with the program, or if the textbooks are ineffective, or if my own study skills just aren't working. My Korean skills have quite obviously improved on an overall level, but I am still not at the level I thought I would be at this point. Furthermore, I don't feel prepared for graduate school in the slightest.

I don't know what to do. Obviously what I'm doing isn't helping enough, or at least not fast enough. Yes, I can read books in Korean. But my comprehension level simply isn't high enough to actually analyze them, let alone have a comprehension level of over 40%. My writing skills are equally as problematic - yes, I can write in Korean, but not even close to the level I am capable of writing in English. I am concerned. I am planning on reading more Korean books - as much as possible. I'm also planning on writing more essays this semester - roughly 20, to be precise, if my teacher doesn't get sick of me. But there's this sense of too little, too late.

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Comments {2}


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from: annaserene
date: June 11, 2015 12:31am (UTC)

I would say it's definitely not your study skills - they're impressive! You seem to devote a lot of time too. I envy your commitment and drive.

I see why you're worried but I dare say it's ok, where you're at. Some things take time, and while being able to write as well in Korean as in English is a good goal, it is also an incredibly high standard you're setting yourself to. It's not the end of the world that you're not there yet. You'll get by. I've read more than a few essays in English by international students from China, most of whom were already juniors or seniors, and they were quite far from perfect. There were even some international students in the U.S. I've met who I could hardly hold a conversation with in English, yet somehow they had already completed a few years of college in English. While it is a huge challenge, doing coursework in a foreign language you're not perfect in or are uncomfortable with is possible.
Don't beat yourself up too much. You seem to be doing great

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from: aodh
date: June 11, 2015 08:27am (UTC)

Thanks for the kind words. You're right... I just wanted this graduate school experience to go as well as possible. I wanted the hard thing to be analyzing books and finding the motivation to write papers, not simply understanding the Korean and figuring out how to express my thoughts in Korean.

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