Hangeul – Korea’s Official Alphabet

Hangeul Day (한글날) is coming next week, let us introduce you about “Hangeul” and 36 Korean Language Institutes in Korea

Hangeul (한글), Korea’s official alphabet, was first invented by King Sejong during the Joseon Dynasty. Originally called Hunminjeongeum (훈민정음), the language was conceived in 1443, and further promulgated by the King in 1446. At the time of its inception, the language consisted of 17 consonants and 11 vowels however, since then, 3 of the originally established consonants and 1 vowel have fallen into disuse bringing the total number of characters to 24. Syllables are formed by the selective combination of vowels and consonants to create words.

The official name for the Korean language was changed to ‘Hangeul’ in 1910. Hunminjeongeum Proclamation Day was called ‘Gagya Proclamation Day’ up until 1926, and it wasn’t until 1928 that it was changed to its current title, ‘Hangeul Proclamation Day’.


The chart below represents the 24 Hangeul characters together with their romanized equivalents. ‘The Hunminjeongeum,’ a historical document which provides instructions to educate people on the use of Hangeul, is registered with UNESCO. UNESCO awards a ‘King Sejong Literacy Prize,’ every year in memory of the inventor of Hangeul.


Hangeul written in syllabic units made up of two, three, or four letters.

Korean Language Institutes in Korea


  1. Seoul Dongguk University Institute of International Language

website: interlang.dongguk.edu (Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese)

2. Duksung International Language Center

website: dilc.duksung.ac.kr  (Korean, English)

3. Ewha Language Center

website: elc.ewha.ac.kr (Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese)

4. Hanyang University International Language Institute

website: hyili.hanyang.ac.kr (Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese)

5. Hongik Korean Language Institute

website: huniv.hongik.ac.kr (Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese)

6. HUFS Center for Korean Language and Culture

website: korean.ac.kr (Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese)

7. KMU Institute of International Education

website: iie.kookmin.ac.kr (Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese)

8. Konkuk University Language Institute

website: kfli.konkuk.ac.kr (Korean, Chinese)

9. Korea University Korean Language Center

website: klcc.korea.ac.kr (Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese)

10. Kyung Hee University Institute of International Education

website: eng.iie.ac.kr (Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese)

11. Gangnam-University of California Riverside International Education Center

website: gnucr.org (Korean, English)

12. SNU Korean Language Education Center

website: language.snu.ac.kr (Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese)

13. Sogang University Korean Language Education Center

website: klec.sogang.ac.kr (Korean, English)

14. Sookmyung Women’s University LinguaExpress

website: lingua.sookmyung.ac.kr (Korean, English)

15. SKKU Sungkyun Language Institute

website: koreansli.skku.edu (Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese)

16. Myongji University Korean Language Institute

website: abroad.mju.ac.kr (Korean, English, Chinese)

17. University of Seoul Institute of International Cooperation and Education

website: kiice.uos.ac.kr (Korean, English)

18. Yonsei University Korean Language

website: Institute yskli.com (Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese)

19. Sejong University Center for International Education

website: ili.sejong.ac.kr (Korean, English, Chinese)

20. Sangmyung University International Language and Culture Education Center

website: cklc.smu.ac.kr (Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese)


21. Incheon University Korean Language Institute

website: inu.ac.kr (Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese, Mongolian, Russian, Burmese)

22. Inha University INHA Language Training Center

website: ltc.inha.ac.kr (Korean, English, Chinese)


23. Ajou University Language Institute

website: ali.ajou.ac.kr (Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese)

24. Chung-Ang University Korean Language Program

website: korean.cau.ac.kr (Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese)


25. CNBU Office of International Service

website: cia.chungbuk.ac.kr (Korean, English, Chinese)

26. Dankook University Korean Language Education Center (Cheonan)

website: klec.dankook.ac.kr (Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese, Mongolian)


27. CNU Language Education Center

website: dream.cnu.ac.kr (Korean, English, Chinese)

28. Hannam University Center for Korean Study

website: hankls.hnu.kr (Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese)


29. Chonbuk National University Center for Language Education

website: lec.chonbuk.ac.kr (Korean, English, Chinese)

30. Mokpo National University Institute of International Exchange and Education

website: iiee.mokpo.ac.kr (Korean, English, Chinese)


31. Chonnam National University Language Education Center (Gwangju/Yeosu)

website: language.jnu.ac.kr (Korean, English, Chinese)


32. Changwon National University the Korean Language Institution

website: eng.changwon.ac.kr (Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese)

33. Gyeongsang National University Office of International and External Cooperation

website: english.gnu.ac.kr (Korean, English, Chinese)


34. Pukyong National University International Student Services

website: korean.pknu.ac.kr (Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese)

35. Pusan National University International Language Institute

website: ili.pusan.ac.kr (Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese)


36. Kyungpook National University Korean Language Institute

website: gp.knu.ac.kr (Korean, English, Chinese)


* This information was last updated in August 2015, and therefore information may differ from what is presented here. We advise you to check details from the official websites to confirm.

<Last updated on August 25, 2015>

Source: http://english.visitkorea.or.kr/


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