Why study in Korea

  • Compared with English speaking countries (like the UK and the USA) or Japan, Korea has lower tuition fees, living costs and also well-prepared scholarship programs for international students.
  • The Korean government has provided scholarships to 6,556 international students from 148 nations since 1967, and supports approximately 2,000 students annually. Applicants can also search other financial support programs offered through specific universities, foundations and companies.
  • Korea has been recognized globally for its excellence in education. , Korea is ranks at the top of OECD countries for scholastic achievement and educational competitiveness.
  • Korea leads the world in advanced Science and Technology
  • The Korean Wave, which began from Korean dramas and K-POP, has now spread Korean language and culture widely throughout the world. The Korean wave has become part of the global culture shared by people throughout the world.
  • With Korea noted as one of the safest countries in the world to study in, the number of international students continues to increase every year. In particular, postgraduate students have risen steadily over the past 5 years. Many Korean universities support scholarship programs for graduate degrees and assist in finding job opportunities in Korean companies and academic positions at universities after graduation.
  • International students enrolled in regular degree courses or language course can apply for permission
       to participate in additional part-time activities and work.
    - Annual job fair for international students held each year by government
    - Online employment support system, including online resume postings and information about job opportunities
  • Korea has successfully managed to make the transition from a recipient of services to a donor country.
    Despite economic poverty in the 1960s, Korea has achieved an incredible record of growth to become a major economic powerhouse today (Ranked 11th in the world by nominal GDP in 2015, IMF)


Education in Korea

The Korean education is a single-track system, which operates on 6-3-3-4 basis, with six years of elementary school, three years of middle school, three years of high school, and four years at the undergraduate university level. There are nine years of compulsory education, including the six years of elementary school and three years of middle school. One academic year has two semesters, the first semester is from March to August and the second from September to February. There are two vacations, in summer from July to August and in winter from December to February.

Higher education institutions in Korea are largely divided into junior colleges (2~3 year program), universities (4-year program) and graduate schools. In recent years, with the development of information and communication technologies, cyber universities that deliver education in the format of e-learning are also growing. Graduate-level programs (master's and doctoral degree programs) are generally provided at 4-year universities. But recently, separate 'graduate schools' are also being established to exclusively offer graduate programs with no affiliations to universities. By establishment type, Korean universities are divided into national universities, which are established and operated by the central government, public universities that are established by local governments and private universities which are founded by private non-profit educational foundations.

To promote quality assurance, the Ministry of Education imposes certain requirements for higher education institutions with regard to faculty composition, curriculum, facilities, degree conferment, etc. Therefore, all private universities, which take up the largest share of higher education institutions in Korea, are regular educational institutions which have fulfilled the ministry's established requirements and have acquired official accreditation.

The Ministry of Education and Korean universities have been actively promoting ‘Study in Korea’ with a view toward increasing international competitiveness, international exchanges and cooperation. As of April 2016, there are roughly 104,000 international students studying in Korea, among which 63,000 students are in degree programs.


Visa Requirements

All international students require a D-2 Visa, which is issued to students in regular or research programs at colleges, universities, graduate schools, or research institutes. Once a student has been admitted to a qualified Korean school, they can apply for a visa from the Korean Embassy or Consulate in their home country. The application requires the student’s passport, a letter from the student’s school confirming admission, a certificate from the student’s most recent school of graduation or enrollment, and verification that the student has the equivalent of $10,000 (US) or more in an account.

Health Insurance

International students are required to have health insurance purchased in person from the National Health Insurance Corporation. The insurance costs about $40 (US) per month and is effective from the date on the student’s alien registration certificate.


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