How to Study in South Korea for International Students

In recent years, South Korea has been a popular destination for studies. Apart from its thriving entertainment industry, South Korea is highly acknowledged for its outstanding quality of research and education. Some of the universities in the country have a consistent position in global rankings, proving their exceptional performance in the field. As you study here, you'll have the opportunity to experience their fascinating culture as you earn your degree.

Currently, 106,900 international students are studying in universities and colleges in South Korea. This number accounts for 5.9% of the whole student population. You can be one of those students if you choose to study in South Korea for a bachelor’s, master’s, or doctorate degree in your preferred academic program.

When it comes to the choices that are available, South Korea currently has 183 universities, from which 52 universities are a part of the public sector and 131 universities are private institutions.

Suppose you’re not just looking for any school but a well-performing school. In that case, the top universities in South Korea you should definitely check out are Seoul National University, Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, and Yonsei University.

Being able to study in South Korea as an international student starts with planning ahead of time, as the process of researching your institution, filling out forms, and completing your paperwork can take a vast amount of time. In this article, you will find out the application process to study in South Korea, along with information on tuition, language requirements, and visa applications. So, let’s dig in!

1. Cost of Studying in South Korea

When choosing a university, you also need to consider the tuition fees and your budget. Before applying to a university in South Korea, it’s best to have a general knowledge of the tuition fees there. The annual tuition fees for international undergraduate students range from 1,633,000 KRW to 26,751,000 KRW, while for master’s degree studies, the yearly tuition fees are between 1,610,000 KRW and 29,175,600 KRW.

Cost of Studying in Public Universities in South Korea

To give you an idea of how much it costs to study in South Korea, here are the tuition fees in these public and private universities:

Institution Bachelor’s International Tuition Fee Master’s International Tuition Fee
Korea National University of Arts 4,800,000 KRW 4,800,000 KRW
Inje University 6,502,000 KRW - 9,003,000 KRW 9,503,000 KRW - 11,760,000 KRW
Gimcheon University 14,370,000 KRW - 16,110,000 KRW
Daegu Arts University 18,730,000 KRW
Chinju National University of Education 6,670,000 KRW
Gwangju National University of Education 7,440,000 KRW 5,130,000 KRW
Chuncheon National University of Education 3,200,000 KRW 3,650,000 KRW
Daegu National University of Education 9,010,000 KRW 9,700,000 KRW
Jeonju National University of Education 6,116,000 KRW 6,172,000 KRW
Korea National Sport University 7,633,000 KRW 11,195,000 KRW
Mokpo National Maritime University 2,364,000 KRW 1,662,000 KRW
Catholic University of Daegu 6,858,000 KRW - 10,199,000 KRW 7,108,000 KRW - 10,962,000 KRW
Cheongju National University of Education 3,263,000 KRW - 4,130,000 KRW 3,843,000 KRW - 4,827,000 KRW
Seoul National University of Education 6,377,600 KRW 8,161,600 KRW - 8,671,700 KRW
Gongju National University of Education 8,008,000 KRW 7,937,000 KRW
Hankyong National University 5,014,200 KRW 6,267,300 KRW
Gyeongsang National University 1,633,000 KRW - 2,208,000 KRW 2,080,000 KRW - 2,828,000 KRW
Gangneung-Wonju National University 4,158,400 KRW - 9,577,500 KRW 4,788,500 KRW - 10,080,900 KRW
Baekseok University 15,018,400 KRW 12,353,500 KRW
Chungnam National University 3,615,000 KRW - 5,158,000 KRW 4,175,000 KRW - 6,116,000 KRW
Gyeongin National University of Education 7,000,000 KRW 12,000,000 KRW
Hanbat National University 4,368,000 KRW - 4,882,000 KRW 4,190,000 KRW - 5,588,000 KRW
Korea National University of Education 3,200,000 KRW - 4,348,000 KRW 4,448,000 KRW - 6,225,000 KRW
Mokpo National University 3,322,000 KRW - 4,244,000 KRW 4,012,000 KRW - 5,964,000 KRW
Kumoh National University of Technology 3,622,000 KRW - 4,042,000 KRW 4,310,000 KRW - 4,734,000 KRW
University of Science and Technology Korea 5,000,000 KRW
Sunchon National University 3,564,000 KRW - 4,836,000 KRW 4,006,000 KRW - 5,490,000 KRW
Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology 6,628,500 KRW - 7,864,100 KRW 9,907,900 KRW
University of Seoul 4,774,400 KRW - 6,578,300 KRW 6,239,100 KRW - 8,785,600 KRW
Incheon National University 5,114,000 KRW - 6,434,000 KRW 6,280,000 KRW - 8,298,000 KRW
Changwon National University 3,371,000 KRW - 4,329,000 KRW 3,850,000 KRW - 5,022,000 KRW
Andong National University 3,945,500 KRW - 5,609,200 KRW 4,258,300 KRW - 6,054,900 KRW
Pukyong National University 3,406,000 KRW - 4,747,000 KRW 3,810,000 KRW - 4,873,000 KRW
Dongguk University 6,938,000 KRW - 9,136,000 KRW 9,708,000 KRW - 12,822,000 KRW
Kyungpook National University 5,012,100 KRW - 7,809,700 KRW 5,201,700 KRW - 6,694,500 KRW
Pusan National University 4,052,500 KRW - 6,264,000 KRW 4,754,000 KRW - 7,436,000 KRW
Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology 6,866,000 KRW 19,118,000 KRW - 25,200,000 KRW
Chonnam National University 3,674,000 KRW - 4,872,000 KRW 4,530,000 KRW - 6,930,000 KRW
Seoul National University of Science and Technology 4,725,900 KRW - 6,725,900 KRW 6,560,000 KRW - 7,974,000 KRW
Kongju National University 3,640,000 KRW - 4,418,000 KRW 4,820,000 KRW - 6,338,000 KRW
Kangwon National University 2,942,000 KRW - 4,620,000 KRW 2,261,000 KRW - 3,139,000 KRW
Korea Maritime and Ocean University 3,584,000 KRW - 4,496,000 KRW 4,099,000 KRW - 5,181,000 KRW
Jeonbuk National University 3,983,000 KRW - 5,341,000 KRW 5,169,000 KRW - 7,627,000 KRW
Chungbuk National University 3,812,000 KRW - 5,066,000 KRW 4,754,000 KRW - 7,098,000 KRW
Jeju National University 3,716,000 KRW - 4,952,000 KRW 4,546,000 KRW - 6,082,000 KRW
Seoul National University 4,884,000 KRW - 10,076,000 KRW 6,556,000 KRW - 12,262,000 KRW

Cost of Studying in Private Universities in South Korea

Institution Bachelor’s International Tuition Fee Master’s International Tuition Fee
Seowon University 7,420,000 KRW - 9,360,000 KRW 6,880,000 KRW
Youngnam Theological University and Seminary 14,210,000 KRW 17,380,000 KRW
Hanlyo University 8,427,000 KRW - 10,538,000 KRW 6,876,000 KRW - 7,255,000 KRW
Kosin University 12,187,000 KRW - 15,622,100 KRW 8,921,000 KRW - 10,131,000 KRW
CHA University 16,088,000 KRW - 26,751,000 KRW 16,757,000 KRW - 15,860,000 KRW
Halla University 11,760,000 KRW - 15,370,000 KRW 18,150,000 KRW
Seoul Christian University 7,600,000 KRW - 9,510,000 KRW 10,380,000 KRW
U1 University 3,140,000 KRW - 3,940,000 KRW
Pyeongtaek University 10,230,000 KRW - 12,790,000 KRW 10,740,000 KRW
Daeshin University 9,090,000 KRW - 10,810,000 KRW 8,040,000 KRW - 10,620,000 KRW
Jeju International University 5,472,000 KRW - 5,976,000 KRW
Chodang University 11,740,000 KRW - 14,250,000 KRW 13,470,000 KRW
Calvin University 7,680,000 KRW 12,560,000 KRW
Mokpo Catholic University 13,170,000 KRW - 15,200,000 KRW
Kyungwoon University 9,110,000 KRW - 12,660,000 KRW 8,610,000 KRW - 11,140,000 KRW
Seoul Jangsin University 7,810,000 KRW - 11,194,000 KRW
Far East University, Korea 10,150,000 KRW - 12,710,000 KRW 10,660,000 KRW - 12,790,000 KRW
Luther University 15,950,000 KRW 18,000,000 KRW
Kwangshin University 16,220,000 KRW - 21,290,000 KRW 13,180,000 KRW
Jungwon University 6,238,000 KRW - 8,700,000 KRW
Suwon Catholic University 7,610,000 KRW 8,250,000 KRW
Hyupsung University 15,380,000 KRW - 18,460,000 KRW
Kkottongnae University 16,690,000 KRW - 19,670,000 KRW
Catholic University of Busan 6,320,000 KRW - 8,087,000 KRW 6,523,000 KRW - 9,028,000 KRW
Tongmyong University 5,635,200 KRW - 7,738,000 KRW 5,096,000 KRW - 6,868,000 KRW
Gyeongju University 8,501,800 KRW - 11,823,500 KRW 9,761,900 KRW - 12,548,800 KRW
Presbyterian University and Theological Seminary 21,888,300 KRW 25,844,900 KRW
Namseoul University 7,440,000 KRW - 9,660,000 KRW
University of Suwon 6,188,000 KRW 7,776,000 KRW - 12,200,000 KRW
Korean Bible University 11,583,400 KRW - 14,857,600 KRW 14,157,400 KRW
Chungwoon University 5,000,000 KRW - 8,266,000 KRW 5,452,000 KRW - 5,920,000 KRW
Howon University 8,256,600 KRW - 10,755,500 KRW
Hanshin University 7,673,000 KRW - 9,207,000 KRW 8,696,000 KRW - 10,230,000 KRW
Uiduk University 7,836,200 KRW - 10,622,400 KRW 6,882,800 KRW - 9,355,500 KRW
Geumgang University 7,388,100 KRW 8,151,700 KRW
Korea Nazarene University 4,711,000 KRW - 5,985,000 KRW 10,216,700 KRW - 13,986,600 KRW
Chongshin University 14,522,500 KRW - 19,363,400 KRW 11,716,500 KRW - 16,296,000 KRW
Catholic Kwandong University 6,246,600 KRW - 12,619,400 KRW 9,226,200 KRW - 15,011,100 KRW
Dongshin University 5,402,000 KRW - 7,170,000 KRW 6,374,000 KRW - 8,034,000 KRW
Dongyang University 9,870,000 KRW - 14,370,000 KRW 9,870,000 KRW - 14,370,000 KRW
Hannam University 6,590,000 KRW - 8,621,000 KRW 7,610,000 KRW - 10,140,000 KRW
Kaya University 6,950,500 KRW - 8,251,700 KRW
Kyungdong University 12,515,300 KRW
Incheon Catholic University 8,701,100 KRW - 13,090,700 KRW 9,161,700 KRW - 19,028,200 KRW
Busan Women’s College 5,887,700 KRW - 6,469,200 KRW
Kangnam University 7,635,600 KRW - 10,001,000 KRW 10,735,300 KRW
Seoul Theological University 6,747,000 KRW - 8,714,200 KRW 8,152,100 KRW
Hansei University 10,280,000 KRW - 13,164,000 KRW 10,419,000 KRW - 15,664,000 KRW
Jeonju University 6,100,000 KRW - 7,960,000 KRW 7,194,000 KRW - 9,936,000 KRW
Dongduk Women’s University 15,414,000 KRW - 20,552,000 KRW 15,414,000 KRW - 20,552,000 KRW
Daejin University 6,146,000 KRW - 8,118,000 KRW 8,498,000 KRW - 11,540,000 KRW
University of Ulsan 7,104,000 KRW - 12,180,000 KRW 9,130,000 KRW - 1,598,000 KRW
Seokyeong University 10,010,000 KRW - 13,930,000 KRW
Dong Eui University 5,518,000 KRW - 7,528,000 KRW 10,320,000 KRW - 13,200,000 KRW
Yong In University 8,640,000 KRW - 8,800,000 KRW 12,810,000 KRW - 13,380,000 KRW
Duksung Womens University 7,673,000 KRW - 12,788,200 KRW 10,230,600 KRW - 14,323,000 KRW
Sahmyook University 8,302,800 KRW - 10,429,100 KRW 10,697,800 KRW - 14,340,700 KRW
Hoseo University 7,024,000 KRW - 8,900,000 KRW 6,100,000 KRW - 10,380,000 KRW
Korea Baptist Theological University 15,090,000 KRW - 20,370,000 KRW 1,610,000 KRW - 10,858,000 KRW
Gangseo University 13,420,000 KRW 16,017,000 KRW
Korea Aerospace University 6,856,000 KRW - 8,890,000 KRW 9,294,000 KRW - 12,028,000 KRW
Silla University 4,848,400 KRW - 7,784,000 KRW 5,658,000 KRW - 9,694,000 KRW
Sun Moon University 9,119,900 KRW - 10,913,800 KRW 5,816,000 KRW - 9,334,000 KRW
Sangji University 7,621,000 KRW - 10,026,000 KRW 10,569,100 KRW - 15,026,800 KRW
Busan University of Foreign Studies 6,503,400 KRW - 8,829,600 KRW 9,674,900 KRW - 12,538,700 KRW
Semyung University 6,012,000 KRW - 7,568,000 KRW 5,180,000 KRW - 11,560,000 KRW
Korea University of Technology and Education 3,842,000 KRW - 5,499,000 KRW 5,783,000 KRW - 6,353,000 KRW
Hanseo University 8,261,000 KRW - 11,382,000 KRW 8,696,000 KRW - 11,075,000 KRW
Konyang University 8,543,000 KRW - 9,259,000 KRW 10,834,000 KRW
Cheongju University 6,526,000 KRW - 8,260,000 KRW 7,686,000 KRW - 9,654,000 KRW
Mokwon University 6,400,000 KRW - 8,050,000 KRW 5,992,000 KRW - 9,468,000 KRW
Hansung University 6,858,600 KRW - 9,314,900 KRW 8,672,300 KRW - 11,077,800 KRW
Nambu University 11,920,000 KRW 9,350,000 KRW - 11,470,000 KRW
Hongik University 8,892,000 KRW - 11,036,000 KRW 10,476,000 KRW - 14,032,000 KRW
Kyungsung University 5,791,500 KRW - 7,985,000 KRW 8,015,800 KRW - 10,621,900 KRW
Kyungnam University 5,668,800 KRW - 7,962,800 KRW 4,112,000 KRW - 5,398,000 KRW
Hallym University 8,466,000 KRW 8,916,000 KRW - 12,002,000 KRW
Soonchunhyang University 6,712,000 KRW - 10,040,000 KRW 8,507,400 KRW - 13,921,200 KRW
Korea Polytechnic University 8,531,500 KRW - 9,768,000 KRW 4,257,600 KRW - 5,484,800 KRW
Gwangju University 5,500,000 KRW - 7,162,000 KRW 4,273,700 KRW - 5,242,400 KRW
Sangmyung University 8,187,700 KRW - 12,120,800 KRW 4,170,000 KRW - 5,840,000 KRW
Pohang University of Science and Technology 7,159,200 KRW 12,270,700 KRW
Kwangwoon University 6,488,000 KRW - 8,532,000 KRW 9,868,000 KRW - 13,362,000 KRW
Woosuk University 7,657,900 KRW - 11,857,400 KRW 9,224,500 KRW - 16,142,900 KRW
Sungshin Women’s University 7,522,000 KRW - 10,692,000 KRW 8,288,000 KRW - 11,544,000 KRW
Pai Chai University 6,440,000 KRW - 8,048,000 KRW 11,394,400 KRW - 12,261,200 KRW
Daegu University 5,764,000 KRW - 8,518,000 KRW 7,042,000 KRW - 10,270,000 KRW
Konkuk University 8,510,000 KRW - 11,164,000 KRW 10,114,000 KRW - 14,156,000 KRW
Chung-Ang University 8,434,000 KRW - 11,368,000 KRW 11,624,000 KRW - 15,826,000 KRW
Kyonggi University 6,444,000 KRW - 8,326,000 KRW 9,458,000 KRW - 11,940,000 KRW
Chosun University 5,728,000 KRW - 7,678,000 KRW 7,268,000 KRW - 10,170,000 KRW
Yonsei University 7,924,000 KRW - 15,848,000 KRW 9,708,000 KRW - 14,958,000 KRW
Hanyang University 8,688,000 KRW - 12,870,000 KRW 16,610,000 KRW - 23,313,900 KRW
Wonkwang University 6,310,000 KRW - 8,610,000 KRW 8,010,000 KRW - 14,550,000 KRW
Dongseo University 5,548,000 KRW - 6,654,000 KRW 10,140,000 KRW - 13,230,000 KRW
Kyung Hee University 9,673,800 KRW - 13,186,400 KRW 10,743,400 KRW - 14,526,400 KRW
Ewha Womans University 8,140,700 KRW - 11,347,600 KRW 12,055,300 KRW - 14,876,700 KRW
Sungkyunkwan University 11,648,000 KRW - 18,322,000 KRW
Kookmin University 8,202,000 KRW - 9,824,000 KRW 11,294,000 KRW - 13,322,000 KRW
Hankuk University of Foreign Studies 7,694,000 KRW - 9,658,000 KRW 10,162,000 KRW - 11,842,000 KRW
Inha University 6,996,000 KRW - 9,536,000 KRW 4,982,800 KRW - 10,528,900 KRW
Ajou University 7,592,400 KRW - 9,796,600 KRW 10,008,000 KRW - 12,730,800 KRW
Yeungnam University 5,826,000 KRW - 9,028,100 KRW
Dankook University 15,939,800 KRW - 24,846,200 KRW 22,113,900 KRW - 29,175,600 KRW
Handong Global University 6,038,000 KRW - 7,748,000 KRW 8,148,000 KRW - 11,292,000 KRW
Dong-A University 6,394,000 KRW - 8,950,000 KRW 8,184,000 KRW - 10,742,000 KRW
Keimyung University 6,190,000 KRW - 9,110,000 KRW 7,582,000 KRW - 10,912,000 KRW
Sejong University 8,310,000 KRW - 11,544,000 KRW 11,026,000 KRW - 14,452,000 KRW
Woosong University 8,218,000 KRW - 12,901,000 KRW 8,474,000 KRW - 9,414,000 KRW
Korea University 8,600,000 KRW - 11,000,000 KRW 9,928,000 KRW - 15,810,000 KRW
Catholic University of Korea 8,538,000 KRW - 11,945,000 KRW 9,284,000 KRW - 12,610,000 KRW
Soongsil University 7,923,800 KRW
Myongji University 7,444,000 KRW - 10,880,000 KRW 9,372,000 KRW - 12,288,000 KRW
Sogang University 8,330,000 KRW - 10,884,000 KRW 9,624,000 KRW - 26,808,000 KRW
Gachon University 7,218,000 KRW - 9,910,000 KRW 9,016,000 KRW - 12,050,000 KRW

If you’re looking for the most affordable universities in South Korea, check out the Cheap Universities in South Korea!

Besides tuition fees, you also need to consider other expenses like books, accommodation, and living expenses.

2. Requirements to Study in South Korea for International Students

Once you have an idea of how much tuition fees are to study in South Korea, it’s time to consider preparing the paperwork to apply to those universities. Academic institutions have varying admission requirements, but the ones you should always prepare in advance are your academic records, such as a transcript of records or diploma from a previous academic level, and travel documents, such as your passport and visa.

Some institutions that offer master’s programs might also ask for a statement of purpose, a curriculum vitae or résumé, and letters of recommendation. There are also degree programs where you need to take an admissions test before you can apply. Besides these, universities might also require you to submit proof of language proficiency.

In South Korea, English and Korean are the languages of instruction. If you’re looking to study in any of the academic institutions here, you might need to prove language proficiency by taking standardized tests, such as TOEFL, IELTS, and Duolingo for English. Depending on the institution and the language of instruction for your program, you might also have to prove your language proficiency by submitting TOPIK for Korean.

To give you an idea, here are some universities in South Korea and their required minimum scores for each program level.

Ajou University

Bachelor’s degree

Master’s degree

Andong National University

Bachelor’s degree

Master’s degree

Baekseok University

Bachelor’s degree

Typically, you can find information about language requirements on the admissions requirements page of the university. You can also check out if the university has a dedicated language requirements page for international students.

Application Procedure to Study in South Korea

The specific admission process may vary depending on the university. The good news is that most institutions in South Korea have online applications available on their websites, like Seoul National University and Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology. To help you with this, we also compiled the official websites and admission pages of some of the top institutions in South Korea.

Seoul National University

Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology

Yonsei University

Make sure to gather all the information you need for the admission process. As you apply to these institutions, expect that they may ask for additional requirements depending on your nationality, degree, or program. So, it’s best to keep your lines active.

After completing your academic and language requirements, it’s time to apply!

The admission process in South Korea differs from one university to another, so it’s best to contact your chosen school beforehand. Please note that the admission process for international students may take some time, so be sure to know the application dates and apply early.

The application process may take weeks or months, depending on your timing, nationality, degree, and other factors. To make the most of your application, make sure to completely follow the admission steps and submit the necessary requirements to ensure that you’ll be accepted to your chosen university in South Korea.

The key to being admitted to your chosen school will depend on your punctuality and the quality of your application. So make sure to complete the requirements beforehand and follow the steps in applying. After this, you’ll wait for a week or a month for the results.

4. Visa Application for International Students in South Korea

Now that you’re accepted into your chosen institution, it’s time to apply for a student visa in South Korea. A student visa is an essential document for studying abroad. It’s an important government document that you need to present before going to South Korea as an international student.

In this section, let’s briefly discuss the requirements needed and how you can apply for a student visa in South Korea. If you’re going to stay here for your studies, you will need to obtain a D-visa .

To start your student visa application in South Korea, you will need to present the following:

  1. Valid passport
  2. Passport size photo
  3. Application form
  4. Certificate of Admission from the university
  5. Proof of payment of application fee
  6. ID card
  7. Invitation Letter from the Ministry of National Defense
  8. Proof of financing
  9. Previous school records

Kindly take note that these requirements may vary depending on your nationality. So, please expect that may ask for additional requirements. Moreover, you will be required to pay a student visa application fee. The visa application fee in South Korea is 40 USD or 60 USD for Single Entry, 70 USD for Double Entry, 90 USD for Multiple Entry.

After preparing your requirements and application fees, it’s time to apply for a student visa! The first steps in getting your student visa are:

  1. Check the details from your Korean embassy or consulate of the necessary visa requirements prepared
  2. Complete the application form in the visa portal
  3. Pay for the application fee
  4. Submit your application
  5. Wait for the results after the confirmation invitation, and reception & review of the visa application
  6. After the results are confirmed, you will receive a visa issuance which you will use to apply for a visa at the Korean embassy in your place.

For more information regarding the specific steps in applying for a student visa, visit or contact the nearest embassy or consulate in your home country. They are the ones responsible for processing your student visa application.

That’s it! After getting your student visa, you can now officially study in South Korea. Make sure to book a flight early, before your classes start, so that you’ll have ample time to explore and familiarize yourself in your new place!