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How long does IT take to learn Korean?


Learning a new language can be a challenging but rewarding experience. As one of the most spoken languages in the world, Korean has gained popularity among language learners. However, many people wonder how long it takes to learn Korean. This article will explore the factors that influence the time it takes to learn Korean and provide insights into the learning process.

The Korean Language

Before diving into the learning process, it’s essential to understand the basics of the Korean language. Korean is a language that has its own unique alphabet called Hangul, which consists of 24 letters that represent sounds. The language also has grammar rules that differ from English, making it necessary to learn sentence structures, verb conjugations, and honorifics.

The Learning Environment

The environment in which you learn Korean can have a significant impact on how long it takes to become proficient. If you are studying in Korea, you will have more opportunities to practice speaking and listening to the language. However, if you are learning online or through a textbook, you may need to put in more effort to find opportunities to practice.

Prior Language Knowledge

If you already know another language, particularly one with similarities to Korean, such as Mandarin Chinese or Japanese, you may find it easier to learn Korean than someone who only speaks English. Understanding grammar rules and having experience with different writing systems can help speed up the learning process.

Learning Method

The method you choose to learn Korean can also affect how long it takes to become proficient. Some people prefer traditional classroom settings, while others prefer self-study using textbooks or online resources. Language exchange programs or hiring a tutor can also be effective ways to learn.

Time Dedication

How much time you dedicate to studying Korean can make a big difference in how fast you learn. If you study for only an hour a week, it will take much longer to become proficient than if you dedicate several hours a day to learning. Consistency is key, and it’s important to set realistic goals and stick to a regular study schedule.


Motivation plays a significant role in language learning. If you are passionate about learning Korean, you are more likely to put in the effort required to become proficient. On the other hand, if you lack motivation or have little interest in the language, it may take longer to learn.

Learning Resources

The availability and quality of learning resources can also impact how long it takes to learn Korean. Some textbooks or online courses may be more effective than others, and having access to native speakers or language exchange programs can help improve speaking and listening skills.

Individual Learning Style

Everyone has a unique learning style, and what works for one person may not work for another. Some people learn best by listening and speaking, while others prefer visual aids such as videos or flashcards. Understanding your learning style can help you choose the most effective method for learning Korean.

Proficiency Level

The level of proficiency you want to achieve also affects how long it takes to learn Korean. If you only want to learn enough to have basic conversations, it will likely take less time than if you want to become fluent and proficient in reading and writing.

Cultural Understanding

Language is closely tied to culture, and understanding the cultural context of the language can help improve comprehension and fluency. Learning about Korean culture, customs, and traditions can also make the learning process more enjoyable and meaningful.

Practice Makes Perfect

Ultimately, the key to becoming proficient in Korean is practice. The more opportunities you have to speak, listen, read, and write in Korean, the faster you will learn. It’s important to embrace mistakes and not be afraid to practice with native speakers or language exchange partners.


Learning Korean can take anywhere from a few months to several years, depending on various factors such as the learning environment, prior language knowledge, motivation, and dedication. However, with the right resources, mindset, and practice, anyone can become proficient in Korean. Whether you want to learn for personal or professional reasons, taking the time to learn a new language is a valuable investment in yourself.

How long does it take to learn basic Korean?

If you study Korean for 7-10 hours per week, it will take you approximately 90 days or three months to learn enough to have a short 3-minute conversation. With consistent studying at this pace for one year, you can become fluent enough to hold a conversation in Korean.

Can you learn Korean in 6 months?

Learning Korean can be enjoyable and relatively fast. If you dedicate 1-2 hours a day to studying, you could start using basic Korean in just a few months and be able to engage in simple conversations in six months.

Which is harder Korean or Japanese?

When comparing Korean and Japanese languages, both are equally difficult. The writing systems used in Korean can be tough to learn, while the Japanese alphabet is complex to comprehend, with 40 alphabets making sentence creation and understanding easier due to the simplicity of its writing system. This was stated on September 26, 2022.

Is Duolingo effective for Korean?

Duolingo offers game-like lessons that allow you to learn Korean in just five minutes a day. Whether you’re a beginner looking to learn the basics or wanting to improve your reading, writing, and speaking skills, Duolingo is a scientifically proven language learning tool.

What is the hardest language to learn?

Mandarin Chinese is often considered the most difficult language to learn, according to various sources. The Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center lists it in Category IV, which is the group of languages ranked as the hardest for English speakers to learn.

Is Korean easy or hard?

According to the FSI, Korean is classified as a Category V language, which means it is one of the most difficult languages to learn. It is estimated that it requires 2200 hours of study to become fluent in Korean or 88 weeks of rigorous study.

Challenges of Learning Korean

While learning Korean can be an exciting and rewarding experience, it can also be challenging. The language has a complex grammar system and pronunciation that can be difficult to master, especially for English speakers. The writing system, Hangul, may also take some time to learn, as it is different from the Latin alphabet used in English. Additionally, Korean vocabulary may be unfamiliar to English speakers, which can make it harder to remember words.

The Benefits of Learning Korean

Despite these challenges, there are numerous benefits to learning Korean. Korea is a popular tourist destination, and knowing the language can enhance your travel experience by allowing you to communicate with locals and better understand the culture. In addition, Korea is home to many successful companies such as Samsung, Hyundai, and LG, which may provide job opportunities for those who speak Korean. Knowing Korean can also open up opportunities for studying abroad or pursuing higher education in Korea.

The Future of Korean Language Learning

As technology advances and globalization continues, the demand for learning Korean is expected to increase. Online language learning platforms and mobile apps offer convenient ways for people to learn at their own pace and on their own schedule. Social media platforms and language exchange programs also provide opportunities for learners to connect with native speakers and practice their skills. With the right resources and dedication, anyone can learn Korean and reap the rewards of being multilingual in today’s globalized world.

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