Literacy in North Korea is measured by a child's ability to write down the name of their 'Dear Leader.' They claim 99% literacy
The Korean alphabet is also known as hangul in South Korea and chosongul in North Korea. It is the native alphabet of the Korean language. It was created in 1443, and is now the official written language of both South Korea and North Korea.
It differs greatly from the written Latin alphabet insofar as hangul letters are grouped into blocks and each block forms a syllable, whereas letters of the Latin alphabet are written sequentially. Each block in hangul consists of two to five letters and includes at least one vowel and one consonant.
The blocks are arranged horizontally from left to right, or horizontally from top to bottom. The number of mathematical possible syllables (or 'blocks') in the language is 11,172 although Korean phonotactics allow for far less. All hangul letters follow the rules of Chinese calligraphy.
Although both North and South Korea claim 99% literacy, studies show that the older generation in South Korea are not completely literate in hangul. It is really almost impossible to truly measure literacy in North Korea, as literacy in that country is defined by the ability to write the name of their Dear Leader, so the success of hangul in its entirety has not been completely measured.