Have you been using Google Translate to figure out if you said something correctly? Or have you been getting lazy and just typing out everything in English, checking it a couple times by translating it back and forth with Google, and then sending off a message to your language partner? Bad idea. Not an awful idea, because Google Translate is definitely helpful. But it’s also dangerous, because it throws a word back at you and you really don’t know if that word means what it’s supposed to mean in the context that you put it in. I’m speaking from experience.
Naver’s online dictionary is awesome. Yes, go ahead and use Google Translate to check things if you must (guilty, I use it sometimes, too) but don’t get dependent on it. There are lots of other online resources that work much, much better. Naver Dictionary is a prime example.
I love Naver Dictionary, henceforth titled as Endic (English Dictionary, which is the version I use because hey, English is my native language…although you wouldn’t think it if you actually heard me trying to talk coherently in real life – learning Japanese, Korean, and Spanish has severely messed with my ability to do the words flowing nicely together thing) for many reasons. Here are some of them.
- You can type in either a Korean or English word and get tons of results
- Words/meanings? Synonyms? Antonyms? Idioms? All of these pop up when you type in just a single word
- Contextual examples. That’s right. They have specific references to actual news sources on the web or elsewhere with the context of the word explained, highlighted, with neon signs blinking around it and a giant Pororo dancing on top of it (well no but you get the idea)
- Many of the results have audio – go ahead and listen to what you’re reading
- Teaching yourself Korean and have hardly any vocabulary to flaunt? You can view Korean word lists for 7th through 12th graders by clicking on them on the right side bar or by searching specifically a grade’s curriculum
- Search by importance of words, by a specific subject/field (ie philosophy, literature, history, religion…)
- After you search, it usually comes up with similar words that you might want to check out
- You can make a Naver account and save words that you look up automatically to as many different vocabulary lists as you want
- You can also view a history of the words you’ve looked up in case you tend to forget the word you just learned (now that’s annoying)
Endic is pretty fantastic. But it is a little tricky to navigate at first, so give it some time. You’ll love it once you do.