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How the Korean Language Differs From the English Language

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Korean and English have been popular languages since time immemorial, and they have continued to attract a large pool of learners worldwide. Therefore, we cannot ignore the status that the two languages hold in the society and their significance in most people’s lives. Both languages hold very distinct features from each other, making it difficult for both Koreans and English speakers to learn. These are the differences between the two languages and their unique features.

Origin
English is an Indo-European language that shares a common origin with French and Spanish. As a result, it is easier for the Spanish speakers to learn English language and vice versa. However, there is confusion on the origins of the Korean with most people considering it as an Altaic language, sharing a common origin with Japanese. Other people will argue that Korean is a language of unique origins. Furthermore, English and Korean do not share any etymologies.

Word Order and Grammar
Both English and Korean use objects, verbs, and subjects while constructing sentences but the word sequence in sentences differs. English sentences use the subject-verb-object (SVO) word order whereas the subject-object-verb (SOV) rule is followed for Korean. Most Koreans struggle with English lessons as they have to learn the SVO word order, as opposed to their familiar SOV order. Additionally, there are no adjectives and prepositions in Korean. Koreans will use postpositions and particles instead of the common prepositions in the English language

Alphabets
You will first learn 24 alphabetical letters upon joining a korean language school in singapore. The letters comprise of 14 consonants and ten vowels, which are easy to master within the first two hours of Korean classes. English, on the other hand, comprises of 26 alphabets, with 21 consonants and five vowels. All the letters in English are only read horizontally from left to right, while the Korean alphabets can be read either vertically or horizontally from top to bottom then left to right.

Phonology
Koreans and English speakers use stress intonation in their spoken language, but the two languages have a distinct way of doing it. Koreans tend to stress every syllable while talking. English language, on the other hand, uses a stress-timed language with the tone changing depending on the syllables stressed in a word.

Honorifics
English is a simple language to speak, as it uniformly uses every verb or pronoun throughout the conversation without paying attention to the person you are addressing. However, this is different with the Korean language since the pronunciation of different words relies heavily on the age and social status of the person you are conversing with. Koreans are strict on social norms and politeness, so a mistake while addressing the elderly may be viewed as disrespectful. Therefore, you have to learn the speech levels first before you can comfortably speak in the Korean language.

English and Korean languages are different in various ways, but that does not mean that one is tougher or easier than the other. English natives taking a Korean language class in Singapore will always find it hard to master all the rules of the Korean language and vice versa. However, with extensive study and continuous practice, you can master English or Korean language in a few months.

 

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