What is the TOPIK exam? The TOPIK exam is the official Korean language exam. It is internationally recognised and can be used to demonstrate your proficiency.
The exam is broken into two levels:
TOPIK 1 – beginner (Levels 1 – 2)
TOPIK 2 – intermediate and advanced (Levels 4 – 6)
TOPIK 1 tests your reading and listening skills and TOPIK 2 tests reading, listening and writing. There are many TOPIK textbooks that can help you to prepare for the exam if it something you wish to take. Below we have included some frequently asked questions regarding the TOPIK exam to give you a better idea of how it works and what you can expect.
IS TOPIK Exam Necessary
Whether or not this exam is necessary will depend on your individual needs. You can study Korean without taking the TOPIK. You can also live in Korea and work in some jobs there without having taken the exam.
However, for studying and some jobs in Korea a demonstration of your Korean proficiency will be necessary meaning that you may need to take the exam. It can also be useful if you’re studying Korean and want a goal to work towards. By signing up for the exam you’re more likely to learn the necessary vocabulary and grammar structures to meet that requirement which will improve your Korean at the same time. Exam sitting can be an incredibly useful way to improve language skills.
How Can I Pass TOPIK Exam?
There are several things you can do to pass the TOPIK exam. Firstly choose a level that is just above the current level you’re at so you can work towards your exam and it is appropriate for your language ability.
Next use a TOPIK textbook to work your way through the appropriate material for the exam you intend to take. In addition to this you should be doing past exams to practise and so that you know what to expect when the day of your exam rolls around. It’s important you do these exams under timed conditions so you have the same time you would in the actual exam.
Finally it can really help to immerse yourself fully in Korean in the lead up to an exam. Try to read in Korean, watch TV and movies, listen to music, keep a Korean diary and even speak Korean as much as possible even though the test doesn’t include an oral component.
Can I Skip TOPIK 1?
Yes you can skip TOPIK 1 and go straight to 2. You don’t have to take the beginner levels before moving onto the more advanced ones. Instead you can book in for whichever level you feel ready to take. We would recommend trying out some practise papers before you do this to see which level would be most realistic for you. Practise papers can be a great way to assess your current level and to give you a good idea of what you need to work on to achieve a pass in your desired exam.
Is TOPIK Hard?
Whether or not you find the TOPIK hard will depend on your level and how much preparation you have done for the exam. Some may find it much more difficult than others and some will find the tests fairly easy. Having said that students have reported there being a big jump between levels, with the jump from level 4 (intermediate) to level 5 (advanced) being greater for them than the jump between level 3 and 4 (both intermediate).
You should expect to find the exam quite difficult and to prepare adequately in order to pass. For this reason it can be incredibly beneficial to do past papers to practise for the TOPIK, not only does this give you a good indication of what level you’re at but it also helps you to be aware of what you’ll encounter on the test and how long you’ll need to complete each section. We can’t recommend this enough in your test preparation.
Is TOPIK A Written Test
Only TOPIK 2 includes a written test. If you are taking TOPIK 1 which is appropriate for beginners you will be tested on your listening and reading skills but if you are taking TOPIK 2 you will be tested on those two skills in addition to writing. Speaking proficiency is not included in the TOPIK exam.
Do I Have To Go To Korean To Sit The TOPIK?
No you can sit the TOPIK exam in your own country. However, if you want to take the test abroad you may also do this. Many people like to go to Korea to study for the exam and immerse themselves in the language then take the test while there. Whichever you choose is fine and will depend on your individual needs at the time and where you’re located. Taking the test abroad can be fun but taking it in your own country is perfectly fine too and incredibly common.
Hopefully we have helped to answer what is the TOPIK exam for you. If you have any further question regarding the exam or learning Korean in general then please let us know in the comments beneath and we’d be happy to answer them for you.
Article: What Is The TOPIK Exam
Suggested Articles: Why Take The TOPIK