The Korean Language Program at Yale was started by Prof. Samuel E. Martin (1924-2009) and Dr. Seungja Kim Choi in the fall of 1990. The history, however, dates back to 1947 when Korean classes along with Japanese and Chinese were provided to U.S. Army officers at the Institute of Far Eastern Languages.
Today, an increasing number of Yale students study Korean, recognizing Korea’s geopolitical importance and economic growth, as well as the sweeping popularity of the Korean Wave. Currently, the program has three faculty members- Seunjga Choi, Angela Lee-Smith, and Hyunsung Lim, and offers first through fourth-year courses:
The non-heritage track offers three levels: K110/K120 (L1/L2), K130/K140 (L3/L4), and K150/151 (L5) while the heritage track begins at L3 level: K132 (L3) /K142(L4), followed by K152. Advanced Korean Courses K150, K151, and K152 focus on developing advanced language and intercultural competences through interdisciplinary content-based topics and projects- literature, history, media, religion, contemporary culture, socioeconomic matters, etc. The fourth-year course, Advanced Korean III (K154) is designed for understanding of the core topics that underlie Korean society, culture, and history.
If you wish to accelerate or further study Korean, you can take one summer or a year in Korea through Light Fellowship programs, or/and take the FIELDS program, which provides the opportunity to pursue advanced-level language study within the context of your academic area of focus.
The curriculum integrates interactive, innovative and excellent instruction in classes with a variety of authentic materials for students to transform into “informed and capable interlocutors with educated native speakers” in Korean, and be able to reflect on the world and themselves through the lens of Korean language and culture (Modern Language Association, 2007).