Korean Grammar Bank


Today we’ll learn how to express two parallel states or actions happening at the same time.

This is called simultaneous actions.


When expressing doing something at the same time as something else in Korean, the verb is conjugated with 으면서 if the infinitive of the verb ends with a consonant, and with 면서 if the infinitive ends with a vowel.


Verb + (으)면서

그는 서점에서 일을 하면서 대학에 다닌다.He works at the bookstore while he goes to college.To work
Infinitive: 일을 하다
Conjugation: 일을 하면서
누나는 점심을 먹으면서 신문을 읽는다.My sister eats her lunch while reading a newspaper.To eat
Infinitive: 먹다
Conjugation: 먹으면서.
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그녀는 음악을 들으면서 체육관에서 운동을 한다.She listens to music while working out at the gym.To listen to music
Infinitive: 음악을 듣다
Conjugation: 음악을 들으면서
선생님은 교실을 걸으면서 시험감독을 한다.The teacher walks around the classroom while proctoring the exam.To walk
Infinitive: 걷다
Conjugation: 걸으면서
나는 영화를 보면서 저녁을 먹는다.I watch a movie while eating my dinner.To watch
Infinitive: 보다
Conjugation: 보면서
나는 기차를 타면서 풍경 감상하는 것을 좋아한다.I enjoy watching the scenery while taking a train.To take a train
Infinitive: 기차를 타다


When expressing doing something together at the same time as something else in Korean at a very specific moment in time, the verb is conjugated with 는 도중에. It is commonly used in the past tense.


Verb + 는 도중에

내가 점심을 먹는 도중에 그녀가 전화를 했다.She called me when I was eating lunch.To eat
Infinitive: 먹다
Conjugation: 먹는 도중에
누나는 유럽을 여행하는 도중에 친구를 만났다.My sister met her friend when she was traveling in Europe.To travel
Infinitive: 여행하다. Conjugation: 여행하는 도중에
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그녀는 체육관에서 운동을 하는도중에그뉴스를 보았다.She saw the news when was working out at the gym.To work out
Infinitive: 운동을 하다. Conjugation: 운동을 하는 도중에.
선생님은 말하는 도중에 학생이 조는것을 보았다.The teacher saw a student falling asleep while she was talking.To talk
Infinitive: 말하다.
Conjugation: 말하는 도중에.
나는책을읽는도중에잠에 들었다.I fall asleep while I was reading a book.To read
Infinitive: 읽다.
Conjugation: 읽는 도중에.
나는 학교에 가는 도중에 그녀를 보았다.I saw her when I was heading to school.To head to school
Infinitive: 학교에 가다. Conjugation: 학교에 가는 도중에.

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What are simultaneous actions?

When two states or actions occur simultaneously in grammar, they are referred to as “simultaneous actions” or “concurrent actions.”

This indicates that multiple actions or states are happening at the same time.

How to express simultaneous states in Korean?

To express simultaneous states in Korean you can use the sentence structure: Verb + (으)면서 as well as the sentence structure Verb + 는 도중에.

Any examples of simultaneous actions?

그는 서점에서 일을 하면서 대학에 다닌다. He works at the bookstore while he goes to college.

내가 점심을 먹는 도중에 그녀가 전화를 했다. She called me when I was eating lunch.

How to express hope in Korean?

Some sentence structures to express hope in Korean:

Verb + 기를 바라다 and Verb + 는 것을 바라다

Another sentence structure would be

Subject + Object+ Verb + ᄊ으면 좋겠다

ᄊ으면 implies a conditional wish or hope (“if”).

Learn more about how to express hope in Korean here.

Where to find more lessons like this?

You can visit our Korean Grammar Bank for more lessons on levels A1, A2 and B1.

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