Korean language classes began this semester. The course is a new addition to the Department of Language and Literature.
Dr. Harland Rall, assistant professor of Language and Literature, is the language coordinator for Dialektos.
“Dialektos is a name we gave to the language program for non-traditional languages on campus,” Rall said. “It patterns after programs in other places where there’s a supervising professor who contracts the syllabus, mid-term and final for us, and then a native speaker tutors the students for us.”
Rall explained that several students had accompanied Dr. Kilnam Cha to his home country of South Korea on a mission trip.
“Some of the students came back wanting to study Korean, so we were able to make some plans and get it into the schedule last spring,” he said.
The class is held in a repurposed office in Chambers Hall. Each class, or language pod, consists of five students or less and an international student as their “conversation partner”.
“Dialektos allows us to have a language without hiring a professor on campus,” said Rall. “We use a lot of similar teaching techniques in our regular classes, but we don’t have those language professors here.”
For the Korean course, a professor in New York was contracted to provide the syllabus, curriculum and finals. Junior Kinesiology/Sport and Recreation Management Monica Bae, of Suwon, South Korea, serves as the conversation partner.
Kelsy Kotara, a junior international studies major from Ft. Worth, said she enjoys the way the course is set up.
“You’re working with a fellow student, so you can talk comfortably,” she said. “But you can ask them questions and they’ll know the answers because they’re fluent in that language. You learn a lot more in the small time you have.”
The Korean class is expected to be offered for four semesters. If four or five students new students apply in the fall, a first-year beginner’s program will be created.
Students are also welcome to pursue any other language with Dialektos.
“This particular program is given some flexibility because of the administration’s support,” said Rall. “We can offer just about any language. If we have a native speaker on campus we can find a professor who will work with us. It depends on student demand and the international students.”