Which Is The Best Korean Textbook for Self-Study?

Looking for the best Korean textbook for self-study? I’m here to help!

With the increasing popularity of Korean Drama and K-pop, almost everybody has shifted to everything Korean, and that includes learning the language itself.

Can you imagine singing the lyrics of BTS’ popular song, Dynamite, or Monster of EXO? Well, if you’re one of the ARMY’s or the EXO-L’s, isn’t it great to sing their songs while at the same time knowing what each word means?

Perhaps, you’re tired of shifting your focus to reading the subtitles when watching your all-new favorite K-Drama and you can’t simply wait for the day when you’ll simply listen to the main characters’ dialogues without struggling to understand what they mean.

Or, probably, you have plans of visiting South Korea as a tourist or as a student, cause why not?

There’s no limit to where and when you can actually use the language, so learning its rules and ultimately speaking the language is truly worthy of all efforts.

Here, you can find the best Korean textbook for self-study proven to be effective in helping aspirant speakers of the Korean language. I, myself, as a Korean language learner, find these resources very helpful in learning the language by myself. So, if you are trying to learn Korean by yourself, check these out!

5 Best Korean Textbook for Self Study

#1. Let’s Speak Korean

lets speak korean

Let’s Speak Korean promises of helping you speak the language quickly and easily. With their emphasis on common Korean expressions, there’s no doubt you’ll learn the language in no time.  Their simple rule is for you to listen, repeat, and learn! Simple as that.

The book contains a whopping 1,400 expressions used in daily conversations covering 21 topics for different situations.

Another great thing about Let’s Speak Korean is they have a webpage where you can download or stream audio files for you to listen to and practice. Their dialogues are dedicatedly recorded by native Korean speakers emphasizing how each syllable or expression is said or pronounced.

Although their focus is for you to master common Korean expressions, they also teach you how to pronounce the Korean alphabet and familiarize how sentences are structured in Korean.

So, just listen, repeat, and learn, and by the time you finish going through the book, you would have learned so much, and be ready to communicate in Korean!


  • With emphasis on spoken language
  • With vast examples of Korean expressions
  • Focuses on pronunciation

#2. Korean From Zero!

korean from zero

Korean From Zero!, as its name suggests, aims to help those who aspire to learn the language without any idea at all.

It focuses on helping the learner master the writing system first with lessons presented nicely and slowly, and a library of practices.

The book’s contents are all up-to-date and are simplified, making it the ideal book for all beginners out there.


  • With over 600 new words and expressions
  • With exemplified lessons for Hangeul
  • Includes extensive grammar lessons
  • With detailed discussion on adjectives and verbs
  • With bilingual glossaries with Hangeul and English

#3. Korean Made Simple

best korean textbook for self study

Korean Made Simple makes one of the best books for beginners regardless of age.

If you’re the type of learner who simply doesn’t want to objectively learn the language, but also learns the history behind it, then this book is for you.

Korean Made Simple aims to teach you to learn the language while delving into the culture and history of the language. Learners are presented with over a thousand vocabulary and phrases and in-depth lessons along with plenty of examples.

The book also comes with free and downloadable audio files to help you aid in pronunciation.


  • With emphasis on Korean culture and history
  • With over 1,000 vocabulary and phrases
  • Comes with free and downloadable audio files

#4. Korean Picture Dictionary

best korean textbook for self study

If you’re up for a fun way of learning the language, then this book is for you.

Korean Picture Dictionary presents over 1,500 Korean words and phrases with hundreds of colored photographs, making learning the language easy and interactive.

The words are also grouped into several themes and topics helping you learn the language systematically.


  • Comes with hundreds of colored photographs
  • With 40 different topics
  • With example sentences showing how the words are used
  • Has audio recordings by native Korean speakers of all the vocabulary and sentences
  • With an index to allow you to quickly look up words

#5. Let’s Study Korean

best korean textbook for self study

If you want to learn the language in-depth, with the goal of mastering its grammar rules, spelling, vocabulary, and comprehension, then this book is for you.

Let’s Study Korean aims to help you learn the language in a structured manner for a more meaningful learning experience.

Lessons progress from easy to a more challenging one, with a series of questions to support all skills in learning including reading, writing, and comprehension.

The ultimate goal of the book is to help you avoid making mistakes, expand your vocabulary, and develop a deeper understanding of the language.


  • Focuses on grammar, spelling, vocabulary, and reading comprehension
  • With structured lessons in an ascending-level
  • With over 600 questions

#6. Talk To Me In Korean

best korean textbook for self study

Talk to Me in Korean is perhaps the most loved Korean learning book out there. Their lessons are presented in an easy-to-understand manner, where lessons are supported with explanations and examples.

Each lesson is also presented in its most simplified way so that learners won’t feel the burden of learning a new language.

What’s great about TTMIK is that their books are mostly offered for free on their website, making it an ideal book for those who are interested in learning the language but are budget-constrained.

With that in mind, you can take advantage of their free lessons, and just buy their workbook to complete your experience of learning the language.


  • Comes with free and downloadable lessons
  • With simplified but complete lessons
  • With supplementary audio lessons
  • Budget-friendly

For other reviews, make sure to check out my blog!