Chinese Students Thoughts on Korean Courses?

The ‘Understanding of Economics’ (Economics 101) is one of the classes for Business major students in Hanyang University. The main purpose of this class is learning the basic of economics. Students who are not familiar with economics can study what it is and how to think like economists.

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This class is not an essential class for Business major students, but it is very helpful to understand a lot of phenomenon around us. This class is run by Professor Seo Chang Jin, who has a lot of knowledge about economics and has a great skill in teaching students. He asks about a social phenomenon to us so that we can think about how and why it happens. He does not just give us an answer about it, yet gives us time to think about it and to find the answer ourselves. Through this class, students can increase economic analysis ability and it is good to understand the society. This class is useful for our lives, so a lot of students love to take his class, and it is always popular. Because of these reasons, there are not only Korean students but some Chinese students take this class too. Even though this class is progressed in Korean, but Chinese students have a lot of passion in this class and they take this class very carefully.

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So I met one of them and interviewed her. Her name is Lee Ha Yeon, who came from Jilin, China. She used to go to Jilin University, which is one of the best universities in China. Her major was English literature and she was in the sophomore year. But she lost her interest in her major and wanted to study another subject. Her Korean ability was good and her parents have been living in Korea for some years, so she chose to come to Korea. She said that it is not hard to understand the class because she used Korean for many years, but stated that the other Chinese students in that class may have a bit of a problem understanding class materials. So, I asked the other Chinese students if they can understand the class. As Ha Yeon said, they could not know what the professor was talking about at all.

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Upon perceiving such situation, I went over to the Chinese International Students Union to meet the Chinese student representative, Mao Likun. She is in her senior year now, and she has been living in Korea for many years. She entered Hanyang University Business School via an essay test in China. When she came to school at the first time, she did not know Korean at all just like the other students. She could not understand the classes and could not even read menus at restaurants. As a solution, she took time off and went to Hanyang University International Language Institute (한양대학교 국제어학원) to learn Korean. After she took classes and learned Korean, she passed the TOPIK test and continued her studies at HUBS. Even though her Korean was much better,  it was still hard to follow the pace of the lectures at first, so she had to ask to Korean students after the classes were over. But she eventually adapted to the circumstances, and right now, she can understand almost every lecture in Korean. She suggests foreign students, especially inbound Chinese students or even exchange students willing to take Korean lectures, to learn Korean before they enter school to reduce the possibility that they will not encounter any problems understanding the lectures.

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Many foreign students have a hard time to adapt to the environment in Korea. This goes particularly for the Korean language, in which students are not familiar with and the Korean classes which are constituted mostly by team projects, an obstacle for the foreign and Chinese students in all. Many foreign students are doing well in Hanyang University, but if there are more events, dinner parties, or even forums so these inbound students may communicate with Korean students, they will fare much better pursuing their studies at Hanyang and in Korea.


Article by Junhyung from Korea, a Freshman in Business Administration

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