The Korean Wave has once again taken the world by storm, with A-list ensembles such as the Korean boyband, BTS, and media such as the Palm D’or recipient Parasite (2019) film clinching international acclaim.
Apart from the fantastic storytelling, there was another reason why Parasite was so widely talked about. Sharon Choi, Director Bong’s interpreter, became a sensational personality overnight with her interpretation, “Once you overcome the one-inch tall barrier of subtitles, you will be introduced to so many more amazing films.” This statement alone not only opens the possibilities for foreign films that were hindered by language barriers, but it also introduces the significant role of subtitles.
Subtitles are, in fact, a fantastic tool to supplement your regular studying. To help you out, here is a brief guideline on how subtitles can help you in your learning and how to incorporate them.
Increase Reading Speed And Listening
Making sense of your foreign language material is challenging enough but add in the need to read and listen simultaneously, and it gets infinitely more complex. This is due to the fast rate in which the sound units will connect.
Compared to your Korean language course, the media will not slow down the speaking pace for you and instead, will play at the same rate as any typical conversation. It takes a while getting used to, but with practice, you’d be able to improve your reading speed and listening comprehension.
Expand Your Vocabulary Bank
Like with any other learning materials, consuming filmed entertainment introduces you to words and phrases you’ve never heard before. Furthermore, you’d also gain knowledge on how to use these phrases in the right contexts.
Adding Visual Imagery And Emotional Nuances
Another advantage of studying foreign languages with media is the visual imagery and narratives that will aid listening comprehension and vocabulary recall. It’s much easier to recall new words and meanings when you can tap into your visual and emotional memory.
There are several ways you can approach this learning method. The different subtitling options pose various benefits. Read on to find out what they are.
Watching Korean Media With English Subtitles
This approach is the most utilised amongst students as it allows you to understand the media regardless of your Korean proficiency level. It enables you to form associations between Korean words and their meanings. You’d also be able to familiarise yourself with Korean pronunciation, which you can later emulate as practice.
However, do note that it’s easy to fall into the convenience of learning through a familiar language. A study showed that using native-language subtitles slows down the progress of your listening comprehension. Thus, be sure to use this approach sparingly.
Watching Korean Media With Korean Subtitles
This is arguably the best subtitling option as it offers an array of benefits. A study found that watching foreign media with their native-language subtitles improves not only your speech, but also your listening comprehension. Having a visual aid, even if it’s just a writing script, allows you to break up dialogues to identify words easily. Furthermore, it will enable you to associate a word with their spelling!
Watching English Media With Korean Subtitles
This approach is undoubtedly the most lax method out of the three options. Not only can you comprehend the context easily, but you can also get a bit of reading practice. However, do note that this takes a tad bit more concentration on your part, as it’s easy to subconsciously ignore the subtitles as you dive into the media.
Subtitles are an unconventional approach to learn a new language. It helps to break a media you enjoy into chunks to study Korean and it’ll be definitely easier to register new words and meanings when there are visual and emotional associations. When you feel comfortable enough, you can start weaning off the subtitles and consume Korean entertainment without any aid!
Do note that subtitles are learning aids that support your current formal learning. If you’re looking for a reputable Korean language school, consider enrolling into the very best, Sejong Korean Language School! The lessons taught by passionate native Korean teachers are systematic, structured and engaging! Equipped with a teaching methodology curated to suit Singaporean learners, Sejong Korean Language School is the right place to learn the Korean language.