Student Language Assistants Program

Emily Hur

jeongin

My name is Jeongin Hur and I am currently studying Master of Banking and Finance at Monash University. I have majored in Korean studies for my bachelors and was part of the translation project ‘Interviews with North Korean Defectors’.

My original decision to study Korean Studies stemmed from my deep connection to my Korean heritage. During my time at Monash, I have completed numerous Korean Units ranging from Language, History, Culture and even a hands-on Internship! At Monash University, Korean Studies not only offers academic units but also offers tremendous amount of opportunities and support. I have built great connections through the wide range of seminars and programs offered within the course.

As one of the opportunities, I got to work with various Korean Associate Professors from Korean Units: ATS1171, ATS1172 and ATS2174 as a Teaching Assistant. In 2021, semester 1 and 2, I worked remotely from home to provide online Zoom sessions for Korean Studies students. I did 1~2 hours of consultation sessions per week to support students with extra speaking, writing and grammar practices. I assisted the students to solidify their learning from tutorials and lectures by answering any questions they had and practiced Korean dialogues with them. It was a great way to apply my Korean Studies major knowledge into real life teaching environment. I had great support from Professor Andy and Lucien, and I was able to refer to weekly learning materials available on LMS– grammar, vocabulary, to the dialogue situations.

Through my journey, I learnt how to engage with students, and became very knowledgeable about the unit contents. I have gained invaluable experience and aptitude for the real work force.

I would like to thank AKS for such an amazing opportunity and Professor Andy for endless support throughout my journey with Korean Studies!

Taehee Kim (Ben)

My name is Taehee Kim (Ben), I am in my third and final year of studying Bachelor of Science majoring in Environmental Science. I was born in Busan, South Korea and have lived in Australia between 2005 - 2006 and from 2011 onwards. I enjoy making creative content on my website and volunteering when I have time.

In the role of the Korean Language Assistant, I assisted students in Intermediate and Advanced levels of the Korean Language units by hosting help sessions. Through the weeks, I would familiarise myself with the weeks' relevant class material in preparation for the help sessions. The help sessions mostly ran once a week but sometimes twice in one week. At the help sessions, students who had questions, wanted to practice speaking and writing were assisted mostly one at a time to allow for personalised teaching. During assessment periods in the semester, students and I went over material in the upcoming assessments' format to optimise the student's preparation under similar circumstances.

This experience led me to a newfound interest in teaching Korean. I thoroughly enjoyed the feeling of fulfilment from teaching my native language to others while learning the process of organising classes and content to deliver it in my own way. I was very lucky to have had the opportunity to work with teaching staff to give value back to those around me. From this experience, I plan on seeking opportunities in teaching Korean and upskilling my knowledge on Korea by engaging in meaningful opportunities.

Lauren O'Loughlin

Lauren O'Loughlin

My name is Lauren O’Loughlin, and I have just graduated from Monash University with my Bachelor of Arts, double majoring in Korean studies and Japanese studies. In my spare time I typically enjoy consuming international content such as anime and Korean dramas, studying various languages, and am an avid reader of novels and Korean webtoons.

Throughout both semesters of 2021, I have been hosting a weekly one-hour drop-in session via Zoom as a Korean Language Assistant for the students at Introductory level. Students were able to drop-in to the sessions at their leisure for whatever assistance they required, including answering their questions about the class content, providing useful language-learning tips and resources, and most frequently to practice for their speaking and read-aloud tests. I also relayed common inquiries and feedback to the Unit Coordinator so they could be addressed in class for students who may have had similar questions.

I’m incredibly grateful for the opportunity to be a Korean Language Assistant and it has helped me cultivate many valuable skills, including leadership and responsibility. It also allowed me to appreciate and reflect on how far I have come in my own Korean studies journey, having reached the level where I am now able to assist others in their Korean study the same way the Language Assistants helped me when I was a first-year student.

As someone who also started studying Korean at Monash all the way from Introductory level myself, I feel lucky to be able to advise students from a very personal and relatable perspective. Getting to know the students and seeing them progress with Korean was an absolute pleasure, and it has been extremely rewarding to be able to offer them another layer of support particularly in these unprecedented times, not just as a staff member but also as an upperclassman and fellow student.

Now that I have graduated, I will be living in Korea for six months starting this November and studying at Yonsei University’s Korean Language Institute to further cultivate my Korean language and cultural skills. I then intend to return to Monash University in pursuit of a Master’s of Interpreting and Translation and hope to dedicate my life and career thereafter to working as a professional translator with the Korean language, wherever that may take me.

Eva Richards

Eva Richards

My name is Eva Richards, I’m a third-year Korean studies student, and this is my second year working as a teaching assistant for the Korean Studies program.

This semester I’ve been working on a few different tasks to assist with the running of the Introductory and Intermediate level Korean language units.

Every week, I have prepared study worksheets for the intermediate students to use when reviewing the grammar and vocabulary they learned in class. In doing this, I have also improved my own understanding of Korean vocabulary and grammar immensely – since I self-taught a lot of those grammar forms, preparing materials to practise correctly conjugating verbs (for example) allowed me to make sure I also grasped the specifics of the rules of language.  I hope that, through the materials I prepared, students could improve their ability to use vocabulary terms in a variety of conversational modes.

I also had the opportunity to prepare questions for the midterm exams for Korean Introductory 2. Doing this was amazing practise in formulating assessment material, and once the students sat the exams, I wrote up explanation sheets going in-depth on how to solve the most difficult questions. Since I want to continue studying and working in Korean Studies for a long time, I think being able to get practise and guidance from the educator’s perspective (as opposed to just being the student myself) has been a real boon for both my Korean language ability and my future career. Giving feedback is an important skill that I feel like I improved a lot on through participating in this program this semester.

Since this is my last semester of my degree, I need to look forward towards graduate studies. Because of my work this semester I feel much more confident about continuing my studies, as well as for the potential of a future working in Korean Studies related positions.

This program is supported by the Core University Program for Korean Studies through the Ministry of Education of the Republic of Korea and Korean Studies Promotion Service of the Academy of Korean Studies (AKS-2017-OLU-2250002).