My summer vacation is over, but I found this list in my draft folder, and decided to share it with you. I’ve been working on this list over the summer as a collection of useful expressions to learn and use when writing in Korean. They are not particularly advanced, but they are standard expressions, safe for using in Korean essays and other written assignments. I’ve encountered these expressions in some form in various sample essays in TOPIK preparation books like TOPIK 쓰기 Intermediate and Test Guide To The New TOPIK:

If I have to … I would choose … V-(으)라면 N-을\를 꼽고 싶다

In my opinion/From my point of view 내가 보기에는…

An most importantly/above all 그리고 무엇보다…

After doing (completed) V-고 나서 while doing (interrupted) V-고 다가

There are some/no/many cases where A/V-(으)ㄴ/는 경우가 있다/없다/많다

Due to … there are some/many times where I can’t A/V-(으)ㄴ/는 탓에 -지 못할 때가 있다/많다

In order to do … I’m thinking about… V-기 위해 V-(으)로 생각이다

This is because, when you cannot do …, it isn’t… V-(으)ㄹ 수 없다면 N이/가 아니기 때문이다

I believe the thing called … is … N(이)란 N(이)라고 생각한다

Make an effort to V-(으)려고 노력하다

Everytime I … I think of … V-(으)ㄹ 때마다 N이/가 떠우르다

To research/analyze/worry/think whether A/V-(으)ㄴ지 / A/V-는지 여구하다/분석하다/고민하다/생각하다

If I ever get the chance I would like to… 기회가 된다면 V-고 싶다

In order to… I am … /I am planning to… N을/를 위해서 V-고 있다/ V(으)ㄹ 계획이다

N is famous for …N은/는 V-(으)로 유명하다

This list is in no way exhaustive, but it can be helpful in making your writing flow and sound more natural. In general I find it wise to stick to expressions and grammar you know, and then throw in a few pieces of your awesome vocabulary. Big words never hurt as long as you use them right. Obviously, structure is also important. Usually the writing questions require no less than three questions answered in the essay. Therefore you should always make sure that they are all included in the right order. Happy writing!

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