안녕하세요. Hello, hello! Long time no see! 오랜만이네요.
I bought a Korean textbook recently.
새롭게 바뀐 TOPIK 토픽 쓰기 (중고급)
고경민 공저 | 박이정 출판사
(Preparation book for writing section of the Renewed TOPIK – intermediate & advanced level)
I will blog about my review of the book in case you’re interested in buying the book.
So, my first impression:
-It looks like a workbook. Oh no. I hate workbooks.
-No translation anywhere and it looks difficult. Can I really use it?
It’s very likely that you’ll have similar reaction when you see the book for the first time. 😛
After using it for a while, I think this book is more for advanced learners. Even though this is a preparation book for the writing section of intermediate and advanced level of TOPIK. As for myself, I wouldn’t even have tried to open it if I were still learning my intermediate level. There are too many words I’m unfamiliar with, I can’t proceed reading it very smoothly and, for the time being, I feel like putting it aside, reading some other Korean books that are more entertaining, and come back to this book later. 😛
Now let me tell you about the book…
First, you need to know there are 3 types of questions of TOPIK writing section:
type 1: complete 2 sentences in a paragraph with short phrases,
type 2: write 1 short essay,
and, type 3: write 1 long essay.
In each chapter, you’ll find:
-4 problems of type 1 (with model answers in the appendix),
-some preliminary questions for discussions and one conversation script of 3 people about the topic, to give you background knowledge and teach you how to think in order to write answers for short and long essays, and
-1 question each for type 2 and type 3/short and long essays (with model answers in the appendix).
-Oh, and one short explanation about one grammar rule, maybe as a bonus.
-Empty 원고지 won-go-ji to practice (which I’ll never use, I’ll just write in my notebook).
-A check list for points (Questions like: is your writing well organized and in coherent with the given theme? 0-1 point if low, 2-3 points if average, etc.).
What’s good about this book:
-If you want to read model answers for the writing section of TOPIK, this book has plenty of them, divided into 12 topics/chapters. For this only, I’m satisfied and I think I got what I paid for.
-In the appendix, you can read TOPIK essays written by Korean language learners (who are better learners than you bwahaha) and learn about mistakes that learners often make when writing essays and teachers’ advise on writing.
-Hopefully you’ll learn a lot of new vocabulary as you read it. 😛
What’s bad about this book:
-The organization of this book is a little weird because it starts with open-ended essay questions, and not about TOPIK itself, and they don’t tell you how the questions are relevant to TOPIK (you have to figure it out by yourself!).
I’m confused why they put the general explanation about the writing section and how to tackle TOPIK in the appendix on the last pages, not the beginning of the book.
So I advise you to be familiar first with the writing section of the real TOPIK before you start reading this book. And you’d better start by reading the appendix pages about strategies to sit for TOPIK.
-The book is meant both for independent learning & classroom use, and that’s why there are some questions for discussions in the classroom that don’t have model answers. (Not a fan. 😛 )
-The book does not explicitly teach you about how to make sentences or useful connector words or useful expressions to use in essays. You have to figure it out on your own from the sample answers.
-This book doesn’t explain about all the rules and technicalities on how to write on a wongoji. Find another book for that.
And maybe don’t buy it if you’re not 100% serious about taking TOPIK II. It’s not that useful to cultivate Korean writing skill for other purposes.
그럼 안녕. 잘 가요. 안녕히 가세요. 살펴 가세요. Bye! ###