Hello TELD members, this is 세호. With the upcoming graduation, today I am glad to have this chance to leave some of my thoughts on my past few years’ studying experience in Korea.
Before I joined the TELD community, I learned the Korean language in SNU LEI, which is definitely one of the most unforgettable experiences of my life.
1) Making friends with different culture
During that time, I made a lot of friends from all over the world. For example, a Youtuber from the U.S, a language master who can speak 7 languages from Algeria, a k-pop fan from Japan, a makeup artist from Chile who works for famous k-pop stars, etc.
In class, we learned Korean together, and off class, we learned from each other by sharing our experiences from different countries. Thanks to them, I got to know that there is a “gap year” system in Canada, so high school graduates can find out what they really want before choosing the major by working in the field. And I was shocked when a Netherlands friend told me that they do not think highly about college degrees in Europe, instead, they prefer skills training, which is different from Asian countries.
2) Learning a language in a practical way
Not like the way I learned English in China, the LEI teachers made the class more attractive and practical by introducing a lot of learning activities such as role-play, debating, discussion, presenting, etc. And we even got the chance to pay a visit to some museums and learn the history and culture of Korea.
Maybe some people will argue that learning a language by themselves is more effective and less cost, I do think the time I spent in SNU LEI is worthwhile because I learned a lot from my friends which the book can not teach me.
It is an honor that I can study for a master’s in SNU and join the TELD community. Doing a master’s is never easy work especially for foreign students. And here I would like to share some advice based on my two years’ learning experience.
1) Check the file “서울대 교육공학전공 요람” as soon as possible
This file contains vital information such as the course opening time, course recommendation, graduation requirements, etc. It is mentioned in the file that for students who didn't major in education, three more undergraduate courses should be taken, which I didn’t know until the end of the first semester when I happen to read this file. So, I suggest future students read this file as soon as possible.
2) The importance of social community
The social community is important for learning because new ideas can be generated in the process of communication. And like other teachers mentioned social networking is necessary when doing research, where you need to find experts and participating learners sometimes. In my research, I found that contacting experts is not as easy as I thought it would be. I solved this problem by sending lots of emails to the authors of the relevant papers I read (Note: only a small percentage of replies, so send as many as possible).
(Tips: For future Chinese students, there is a WeChat group contains many SNU ET students)
3) Be tolerant of those with different views
I used to believe there is always an absolute right or wrong, so the answer to a question can be fixed. However, during the last two years’ study, I found the answers can be quite different from different perspectives.
Constructivism told us everyone constructs their own knowledge when learning new things based on their schema. So, it is normal to have different points of view towards the same thing among different people. Particularly, students in our major have diverse backgrounds. Thus, being tolerant of those with different views is very important during the learning process.
Two years is a long and short time period, I appreciate having those awesome peer TELD learners’ (김명신, 김혜은, 이수원, and 이한솔) accompany and Professor Cho’s guidance. And I will never forget these incredible two years.
Hope the corona disappears in 2022 and we all can breathe fresh air soon!