Korean Proficiency & Placement

Proficiency Exams measure your ability in a language and are used to satisfy or waive language requirements. Placement Exams and interviews determine which language class is appropriate for your background and ability.

See also general information on Proficiency and Placement Exams.


Please see below; the tests for proficiency are the same as for placement. Make sure that you indicate which purpose your test will serve.


If you've had no exposure to Korean and are looking to enroll in Korean 101, then you should fill out this Catalyst survey to get an add code. The instructor will contact you within a week with placement information.  

If you've had prior exposure to Korean (i.e. spoken Korean at home or taken a prior class) then you will need to take a placement test.

The Office of Educational Assessment (440 Schmitz Hall, (206) 543-1171) administers the placement tests for the Korean program (KR100A and KR200A).

KR100A consists of a listening section followed by a written section (vocabulary, grammar, and reading).

  • If you do not know how to read Korean at all, do not take the test. Contact koreanlg@uw.edu for further guidelines.
  • If you receive a score of 44 or lower you should fill out the Catalyst survey to be placed into Korean 101.
  • If you receive a score of 45 to 65, you are eligible to take Korean 135 (Elementary Korean for Heritage Learners). Taking KOREAN 135 will satisfy the General Language Requirement for graduation.
  • If you receive a score of 66 to 90, you are exempted from the General Language Requirement for graduation. However, if you wish to take Korean classes at the UW, (unless you have taken 135) you must take the KR200a test (see below). For information on KR200a, contact Dr. Soohee Kim at soohee@uw.edu.

There is no re-test policy or waiting period. You may retake KR100A at anytime.

KR200A is for students to take Korean courses at or above the 200 level. It is a written examination. Contact Dr. SooHee Kim at soohee@uw.edu for information on the examination.

  • If you receive a score of 0 to 29, you are eligible to take KOREAN 211, the second-year Korean heritage course after an oral interview. To arrange an interview, contact soohee@uw.edu.
  • If you receive a score of 30 to 50, you must also take an oral interview to determine placement. Contact Eunyoung Won (woney@uw.edu) or Heekyoung Cho (hchohcho@uw.edu) to request an interview.
  • Note from the instructor: In order to take KOREAN 211 (Heritage 2nd-year level) 1) you must first take the placement test, AND 2) have an interview with the instructor -- you MUST bring your test results with you to the interview.
  • To sign up for an interview for KOREAN 211 (Heritage), contact soohee@uw.edu.
  • To sign up for an interview for KOREAN 311, contact woney@uw.edu.