> About AATK

About AATK

History and Mission

President’s Message

Officers and Board Members


History and Mission

The American Association of Teachers of Korean was founded in 1994 for all levels of teachers of the Korean language, culture, and literature in the United States of America. Its mission is to enhance and promote an interest in the teaching and learning of the Korean language, culture and literature; to carry out research in second language acquisition, applied linguistics, language pedagogy, as well as in the teaching of culture and literature, and to provide a forum for presenting research findings.

The activities of the American Association of Teachers of Korean, which is commonly referred to as “AATK,” include but are not limited to the following:

(a) Host annual workshops for professional development and conferences for the exchange of ideas, information, experience, and research results and findings,
(b) Encourage the development and demonstration of instructional materials, teaching methods, and curricula,
(c) Publish a journal, proceedings, and newsletters,
(d) Voice the Association’s concerns related to Korean language education in the United States, and
(e) Raise funds to carry out the Association’s activities.

President’s Message

A message from Dr. Joowon Suh

Dear Members of AATK,

Warmest greetings to everyone! Hope you all had a wonderful academic year and are getting ready for the summer!

I would first like to express my deepest gratitude to the AATK Executive Board and general members for allowing me an opportunity to serve as the 9th President of the AATK. It is truly a great honor and privilege! On behalf of the new Officers (2018-2021), I am sincerely thankful for this great opportunity to serve for such dynamic and energetic membership at this juncture of our expanding academic and professional field.

Let us continue to celebrate and appreciate the constant and consistent growth in both student enrollments and teaching positions in higher education in North America. According to the most recent report on foreign language enrollment in US higher education published by the Modern Language Association (https://www.mla.org/content/download/83540/2197676/2016-Enrollments-Short-Report.pdf), Korean student enrollments show the highest increase of 95% from 2006 to 2016, whereas almost all the other foreign languages experienced decreases. According to the report, it is Korean, with a 53,500% increase, that has the highest percentage change among the all language course enrollments for the 58-year span between 1958 and 2016. In addition to such explosive increased enrollments, the number of the teaching positions advertised on the AATK website marked almost 70 over the past two-year period. Indeed, we have collectively grown as a field!

Noting such remarkable growth of the field of Korean language education, I welcome everyone to the 24th AATK Annual Meeting at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities. Following the great success at the University of Toronto last year, the first-ever AATK meeting held in Canada, outside the US, this year thus far, more than 160 people have registered to participate in the 2019 meeting. I have no doubt that we will continue our meaningful intellectual exchanges and accomplish another success in our annual professional and academic gathering this year.

I am particularly excited about this year’s conference theme, “Diverging Korean Language Across Boundaries: Aspirations, Challenges, and Implications,” as we first recognize and appreciate the diversity of Korean languages, including dialects, 북한어, 연변어, 고려어as well as emerging localized, hybridized, and/or generational variety of Korean. The conference aims to critically engage with issues of global vs. local, and peripheries vs. center found in Korean language education, which can, directly or indirectly, impact our research and teaching practices. I strongly believe that this year’s theme not only deals with intellectually crucial aspects of the Korean language that all Korean language educators should actively engage in but also opens up and extends timely conversations related to two Koreas. In order to highlight these rather daring and challenging sociolinguistic and sociocultural issues, we have invited Dr. Jeongbok Lee, Professor of Department of Korean Language and Literature at Daegu University, as the keynote speaker. His talk is titled “언어 정책 및 교육 관점에서 본 한국어의 변이와 변화.” Dr. Ross King, Professor of Korean and Head of Department in the Department of Asian Studies at the University of British Columbia, gives us plenary address, titled “Another ‘Failed Collateral Language’? The Beginnings of ‘Soviet’ Korean in the Russian Far East, 1922-1937.” For the first time this year, one of the plenary addresses is organized in the form of a plenary panel moderated by Dr. Young-mee Yu Cho at Rutgers University. The panel, entitled as “South and North Korean Languages in the Era of Coexistence 공존의 시대, 한국어와 북한어(조선어),” includes four presentations: “북한 언어 정책의 역사와 방향” (Sanghyeok Lee, Hansung University); “북한어의 규범과 남북 언어의 차이” (Tae-rin Cho, Yonsei University); “미국내 한국어 교육 과정에 북한어(조선어)를 어떻게 포함시킬 것인가” (Hangtae Cho, Univ. of Minnesota); and “미국방외국어대학에서의 북한어(조선어) 교육” (Loraine Kang, DLI). Despite this year’s seemingly unique and possibly complex theme, a total of 69 abstracts and proposals out of 115 submissions were accepted, recording the acceptance rate at 60%. In recent years, the acceptance rates to the annual meetings have remained competitive at 50-60%, thanks to active participation and engagement of all continuing and new members and participants of the AATK.

This year’s workshops and conferences owe greatly to Dr. Hangtae Cho, the Local Chair, and Dr. Bumyong Choi, the Program Chair, who have put incredible amount work and energy into making this meeting succeed. Particularly, Dr. Choi has executed impossible double duties as the Program Chair and the AATK Treasurer, who oversees never-ending details of planning, budgeting, and managing all financial aspects of the organization. Please join us in thanking them for their invaluable services to the AATK. Dr. Mee-Jeong Park, the AATK Executive Secretary, and Dr. Kyung-Eun Yoon, the AATK Webmaster & Newsletter Editor, also deserve our special appreciations for their due diligence and commitment to maintain all aspects of conference planning and organizational business of the AATK. I also would like to thank the Executive Board, particularly the three departing members, Dr. Angela Lee-Smith, Dr. Byung-Joon Lim, and Dr.

Chanyoung Park, for their dedicated services for the organization and its membership. On behalf of all AATK members, I want to express my sincere gratitude to the Korea Foundation for its generous funds, which have made our annual meetings financially possible and stable over the years. I specially thank Director Hyeon Seon Choi for her genuine interest in and continuous support for the future of the AATK. I also want to thank the University of Minnesota for the generous financial support. Without Dr. Hangtae Cho’s effort to secure the funds, this year’s meeting would not have been possible. Our very special thanks go to Professor Emeritus Ho-min Sohn at the Korean Language Education & Research Center (KLEAR) for the generous contribution to the AATK. Since 2015, the KLEAR funds have arrived with the most heartfelt and encouraging letter written by Professor Sohn himself.

Starting with the new leadership, fund-raising efforts have enhanced for the past year with a couple of new sponsorships. Hanyang University in Seoul, Korea has pledged a generous sponsorship for our annual meetings to encourage more active and fruitful relationships between the AATK and the researchers in Korea. The Korean Language Foundation (미주 한국어재단), stationed in New York, has also started to provide financial support for our annual meetings in order to encourage more active interaction and collaboration between the AATK and K-12 Korean language educators. With all these new sponsorships, we expect to develop even more varied and beneficial programs for our annual meetings in the future. Such fund-raising endeavors will continue not only to secure our financial stability but also better accommodate rapidly growing and diversifying membership of the organization. I sincerely thank all our grantors, sponsors, and supporters.

Following the achievements in previous years, the three main AATK projects and activities have continued their successes: the Korean Language in America, the Korean Honor Society, and the Korean Special Interest Group at the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages. The Korean Language in America, the official journal of the AATK, continues to flourish under the editorship of Dr. Hae-Young Kim. Since our last meeting in 2018, two volumes, 22.1 and 22.2, were published to include several informative, substantial, and stimulating research articles, forum pieces, and book reviews. The KLA is truly the intellectual core of the AATK. I strongly encourage all members to strive for more submissions to the future KLA volumes. The Korean Honor Society program continues to grow at high schools in various regions in the U.S. thanks to the selfless work of Dr. Meejeong Kim and Dr. Byung-jin Lim. The AATK representation at the ACTFL and collaboration with the ACTFL-KSIG in the field of foreign language education has become strengthened with the general support of the Korea Foundation. I thank the KSIG officers and encourage many more AATK members to actively participate in the 2019 ACTFL World Language Convention & Expo in Washington D.C. on November 22 through 24. Please refer to more detailed reports of these projects and activities in this newsletter.

The new AATK leadership, with the approval from the Executive Board last November, has launched a long-overdue project to completely overhaul and newly design the AATK website. Constructed almost a decade ago, the current AATK website is clearly functional but surely outdated to accommodate new technology and user profiles. Over the last nine months or so, the AATK Officers, led by Dr. Kyung-Eun Yoon, reviewed our needs, updated contents, and collected market information to locate a company for this project. We are now at the contract stage with a company in Korea, aiming to complete the project by the end of this year.

Lastly, I want to extend my congratulations to the Canadian Association of Teachers of Korean (CATK) for their successful inaugural conference in Toronto on March 15th and 16th. With a great honor, I was invited to give the keynote address and very happy to meet many Canadian teachers, researchers, and professionals there. The officers of the CATK are as follows (https://catk.ca):

· President: Mihyun Jeon (York University)
· Executive Secretary: Kyoungrok Ko (University of Toronto)
· Treasurer: Yujeong Choi (University of Toronto)
· Newsletter Editor/Web Master: Ahrong Lee (York University)

The AATK has matured as a bona fide organization that represents Korean language educators in North America. Boosted by recent developments in the field, we should now envision to adjust ourselves in order to grow further, both quantitatively and qualitatively, to embrace diversifying group of members, to better position the Korean language education within the field of foreign language education, and to prepare ourselves for the future of the field. I urge you to join in these endeavors and to continue your interest in and support for the AATK.

Enjoy the 2019 AATK Annual Meeting at the University of Minnesota and hope to see you back next year in New York City for our 25th Anniversary Meeting!

Best wishes,

Joowon Suh

President’s Message



Joowon Suh, Ed.D.

. Director, Korean Language Program
· Senior Lecturer
· Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures
· Columbia University
· 407 Kent Hall
· 1140 Amsterdam Ave. MC 3907
· New York, NY 10027


Executive Secretary

Executive Secretary

Mee-Jeong Park, Ph.D.

· Associate Professor & Department Chair
· East Asian Languages and Literatures
· University of Hawaii at Manoa
· Moore Hall 353, Honolulu, HI 96822

(808) 956-2052



Bumyong Choi, Ph.D

· Senior Lecturer / Director of Korean Studies
· Dept. of Russian and East Asian Languages and Cultures
· Emory University
· 532 Kilgo Cir. Atlanta GA 30322

(404) 727-6428

Newsletter Editor & Webmaster

Newsletter Editor & Webmaster

Kyung-Eun Yoon, Ph.D.

· Coordinator and Senior Lecturer of Korean
· Dept. of Modern Languages, Linguistics, & Intercultural Communication
· University of Maryland, Baltimore County
· Baltimore, MD 21250

(410) 455-2807

Past Presidents

1st President: 1994-1997

Dr. Ho-min Sohn

· Professor
· Department of East Asian Languages and Literatures
· Moore Hall 382,1890 East-West Rd.
· Honolulu, HI 96822

(808) 956-8020 [O] | 956-9515 [F]

2nd President: 1997-2000

Dr. Yoo-Sang Rhee

· Professor & Chair Emeritus
· Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center (DLIFLC)
· 4120 River Bluff Run Way
· Suwanee, GA 30024


3rd President: 2000-2003

Dr. Joe Jungno Ree

· Professor Emeritus
· Department of Modern Languages and Linguistics
· Florida State University
· 225 Ruffed Grouse Way
· Duluth, GA 30097


4th President: 2003-2006

Dr. Hye-Sook Wang

· Associate Professor
· East Asian Studies, Box 1850
· Brown University
· Providence, RI 02912

(401) 863-3869 [O] | 863-2659 [F]

5th President: 2006-2009

Dr. Young-mee Yu Cho

· Associate Professor
· Department of Asian Languages and Cultures
· 330 Scott Hall CAC
· Rutgers University
· New Brunswick, NJ 08901

(732) 932-5603 [O] | (732) 932-7926 [F]

6th President: 2009-2012

Dr. Hyo Sang Lee

· Associate Professor
· Department of East Asian Languages & Cultures
· Goodbody Hall 229
· Indiana University
· Bloomington, IN 47405

(812) 855-8721 [O]

7th President: 2012-2015

Dr. Hae-Young Kim

· Professor of the Practice
· Duke University Dept of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies
· Box 90414
· Durham, NC 27708

(919) 660-4364 [O] | 681-7871 [F]

8th President: 2015-2018

Dr. Sahie Kang

· Professor and Director
· The School of Korean
· Middlebury College
· Middlebury, Vermont 05753

(802) 443-5215 | (510) 430-3387 (Mills)
skang@middlebury.edu | sahiekang@yahoo.com

Members of the Executive Board
(3-year term)


Insung Ko, Ph.D.

· Teaching Assistant Professor in Korean Language
· Dept. of East Asian Languages & Literatures
· The George Washington University
· 801 22nd Street, NW
· Rome Hall 461
· Washington, DC 20052

(202) 994-6723

Mina Lee, Ph.D

· Professor and Dean
· Asian School II (Korean)
· Undergraduate Education, DLIFLC
· Presidio of Monterey, CA

(831) 242-5246

Ms. Meejeong Song

· Senior Lecturer/Coordinator Korean Language Program
· Department of Asian Studies
· Cornell University
· 388A Rockefeller Hall
· Ithaca, NY 14853



Dr. Ihnhee Kim

· Associate Professor of Instruction
· Department of Asian Languages and Cultures
· Northwestern University
· 1880 Campus Drive, Evanston, IL 60201


Ms. Eunice Lee

· Education Specialist
· California Pacific Charter School
· Excel Academy
· 1200 Quail Street #175
· Newport Beach, CA 92660


Byung-jin Lim, Ph.D.

· Associate Professor of Korean
· Department of Asian Languages and Cultures
· University of Wisconsin-Madison
· 1214 Van Hise
· 1220 Linden Drive
· Madison, WI 53706

byungjin.lim@wisc.edu | http://alc.wisc.edu


Hee Ju, Ph.D

· Lecturer of Department of Asian Languages and Cultures
· University of California, Los Angeles
· 290 Royce Hall
· Box 951540
· Los Angeles, CA 90095-1540

(310) 206-8235

Mijeong Mimi Kim, Ed.D

· Teaching Professor / Coordinator Korean Language Program
· East Asian Languages and Cultures Campus Box 1111
· Washington University in St. Louis
· 1 Brookings Dr. St. Louis, MO 63130

(314) 935-4450

Sang-Seok Yoon, Ph.D.

· Lecturer/Coordinator of the Korean Program/Director of the Iowa City King Sejong Institute
· Asian & Slavic Languages and Literatures
· University of Iowa

(319) 353-2204
sang-seok-yoon@uiowa.edu | https://www.facebook.com/UIKoreanprogram

KLA editorial board


Dr. Hae-Young Kim

· Professor of the Practice and Chair
· Asian and Middle Eastern Studies
· Duke University
· Box 90414
· Durham, NC 27708

(919) 660-4364 [O] | (919)681-7871 [F]

Graduate Student Representative
Ph.D. student

Ph.D. student

HwanHee Kim

· East Asian Languages and Literatures
· University of Hawaii at Manoa
· Moore Hall 366, Honolulu, HI 96822

(808) 956-9522

Korean Special Interest Group at ACTFL

Chair [2017-2019]

Hee-Sun Kim, Ph.D.

· Coordinator and Lecturer
· Korean Language Program
· Knight Building, Rm 314
· Stanford, CA 94305

(650) 723-3820
heesun at stanford.edu

Past Chairs [2009-2012]

Hee-Sun Kim, Ph.D.

· Director, Center for Korean Studies
· Project Director, Academy of Korean Studies Grant
· State University of New York at Binghamton, USA

Past Chairs [2012-2015]

Dr. Sahie Kang

· Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center
· Monterey, CA


Past Chairs [2015-2017]

Dr. Namhee Lee

· Associate Professor
· Modern Languages & Literatures
· King Hall D 1054 A3032

(323) 343-4244


Past Officers


Presidents Officers
1994-1997 Ho-min Sohn Executive Secretary Robert Ramsey
Treasurer Yoo S. Rhee
Webmaster/Newsletter Editor David McCann
1997-2000 Yoo-Sang Rhee Executive Secretary Joe J. Ree
Treasurer Sung-Ock Sohn
Webmaster/Newsletter Editor Sahie Kang
2000-2003 Joe Jungno Ree Executive Secretary Young-mee Yu Cho
Treasurer Hye-Sook Wang
Webmaster/Newsletter Editor SHyo-Sang Lee
2003-2006 Hye-Sook Wang Executive Secretary Byoung-Joon Lim
Treasurer Andrew Byun
Webmaster/Newsletter Editor Eun Joo Kim
2006-2009 Young-mee Yu Cho Executive Secretary Hyo-Sang Lee
Treasurer Hae-Young Kim
Webmaster/Newsletter Editor Susan Strauss
2009-2012 Hyo-Sang Lee Executive Secretary Hae-Young Kim
Treasurer Joowon Suh
Webmaster/Newsletter Editor Kijoo Ko
2012-2015 Hae-Young Kim Executive Secretary Joowon Suh
Treasurer Angela Lee-Smith
Webmaster/Newsletter Editor Bumyong Choi
2015-2018 Sahie Kang Executive Secretary Joowon Suh
Treasurer Mina Lee
Webmaster/Newsletter Editor Andrew S. Byon
2018-2021 Joowon Suh Executive Secretary Mee-Jeong Park
Treasurer Bumyong Choi
Webmaster/Newsletter Editor Kyung-Eun Yoon


Period 1 2 3
1994-1996 Chin H. Kim Nam-Kil Kim Sek Yen Kim Cho
Young-Key Kim-Renaud John H. Koo Joe J. Rhee
1994-1997 Young-Jin Choi Han-Kon Kim Oak Sook Kim
Hyunjoo Kwon Kyung-Nyunk. Richards Carol Schulz
1995-1998 Kyung Soo Choi Sahie Kang
1996-1999 Lenore Kim Blank Gwee-Sook Kim Chan Park
Mark Petereson Hye-Sook Wang
1997-2000 Young-mee Yu Cho Chin H. Kim Hesun Kim
Young-Hee Kim Hyo-Sang Lee Hyangsoon Yi
1998-2001 Clare You
1999-2002 An-Mi Cho Soon Ja Choi
2000-2003 Hye-Won Choi Sunny Jung Craig Merrill
2002-2005 Gwee-Sook Kim San-Il Lee Sungdai Cho
2003-2006 Sahie Kang Hae-Young Kim
2004-2007 Kijoo Ko
2005-2008 Hangtae Cho Hyo Sang Lee Mark Peterson
2006-2009 Andrew Byon Byoung-Joon Lim Mijeong Mimi Kim
2007-2010 Hee-Sun Kim
2008-2011 Ok-Sook Park Ooyoung Pyun Jiyoung Daniel (GS)
2009-2012 Jong Oh Eun Ebru Turker Sunmi Choi (K-12)
2010-2013 Mee-Jeong Park Hyun-Jung Ahn (GS)
2011-2014 Hangtae Cho Hi-Sun Kim
2012-2015 Haewon Cho Mina Lee Eunjung Kim (K-12)
2013-2016 Minju Kim Kyungrok Ko Dongmin Kim (GS)
2014-2017 Mary Shin Kim Mihyun Kim Kyungeun Yoon
2015-2018 Bumyong Choi Jeeyoung Ahn Ha Hyunjoo Kwon (K-12)
2016-2019 Byung-Joon Lim Chanyoung Park Angela Lee-Smith
Jaesu Choi (GS Representative: recommended/ approved/ appointed)
2017-2020 Hee Ju Mijeong Kim Sang-Seok Yoon
2018-2021 Ihnhee Kim Byung-jin Lim Eunice Lee (K-12)

Newsletters before 2010

Past Conference Themes

Themes of AATK Workshops and Conferences (2001-2019)

AATK Year Location Annual Meeting Theme
25 2020 Columbia U Redefining the Field: Envisioning Future Directions for Korean Language Educators
24 2019 U of Minnesota Diverging Korean Language Across Boundaries: Aspirations, Challenges, and Implications
23 2018 U of Toronto Innovation and accountability in Korean language assessment and program evaluation
22 2017 USC Promoting global competence for diverse learners in the 21st Century: Implementing world-readiness standards in language curriculum, instruction, and assessment
21 2016 Emory Virtual possibilities: Integrating technology in language learning and teaching
20 2015 Monterey Building strong language programs: The next 20 years
19 2014 Boston Korean language teaching through film and literature: Creating connections
18 2013 Michigan State Empowering Korean heritage language learners: New challenges in HL pedagogy and research
17 2012 Stanford Exploring the new wave in Korean teaching and learning
16 2011 Yale A fresh look at Korean learners: Adapting to changes and new trends
15 2010 Washington U Reconceptualizing Korean teaching: Blueprints for program development from K to 16 and beyond
Workshop Conference
14 2009 Seattle Exploring Innovative Instructional Design Curriculum Development – Linking Theory and Practice
13 2008 Binghamton The Big Picture of the Korean Language Curriculum Genre and Cultural Literacy in Korean Language Programs
12 2007 Chicago Testing & Assessment: Developing, Evaluating, and Adapting Placement & Proficiency Tests Placing Korean Curricula in Higher Education
11 2006 Princeton/Rutgers Embarking on the Second Decade: Creating Engaging Input for Korean Language Teaching
10 2005 BYU The Year of Languages and AATK; Aiming Toward High-Level Competence
9 2004 Duke Addressing psycholinguistic and sociolinguistic dimensions in pedagogy Bridging language and culture
8 2003 Berkeley Current Trends and Technology in Foreign Language Teaching Creating New Ideas That Move Us
7 2002 Orlando Old Standbys and New Trends in FL Teaching: Demonstration of Specific Approaches Meeting New Challenges: How Can Korean Be Better Taught?
6 2001 Hawaii Building on Our Strengths
5 2000 UCLA
4 1999 Ohio State At the Threshold of the Year 2000
* 1998 Brown
3 1997 Tempe, AZ
2 1996 Los Angeles
1 1995 Monterey
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American Association of Teachers of Korean, AATK
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