Korean Language Schools in South Korea

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Korean Language Courses in South Korea

Korean Language Schools in South Korea

Guide to language schools in South Korea

Korean is spoken by more than 75 million people and the number of students learning Korean is rapidly growing! The popularity of Korean pop culture and entertainment has driven many people from around the world to start learning the language. From language courses at a top-rated university to cultural immersion programs, there are many different ways you can learn Korean while in South Korea!

Explore top-rated Korean language programs and learn about the most popular universities in South Korea for international students.

Popular Korean language schools

If you are looking for a language school in South Korea, consider applying to universities that offer Korean language programs. Here are some of the best universities for international students to learn Korean:

Seoul National University

Seoul National University, known as the Harvard of South Korea, is a prestigious institution ranked 29th globally for its academic programs. With an impressive faculty, 97% of whom hold doctoral degrees from renowned universities worldwide, SNU attracts top talent from Korea and beyond. It offers a 10-week Korean Language & Culture Program (KLCP) that covers all levels of proficiency and aspects of Korean culture. You can also apply for a student visa and housing through the program.

Yonsei University

Yonsei University is another top-ranked university in Korea and the world. It has a Korean Language Institute (KLI) that offers various programs for different purposes and durations, such as regular, short-term, evening, special, and customized courses. In addition to your classroom study, you can also enjoy cultural activities and field trips through the KLI including visiting historical sites, museums, traditional villages, and cultural performances where you will learn about Korean cuisine, art, music, and festivals. These activities will help you to better understand Korean culture and society, as well as practice your language skills with native speakers.

Korea University

Korea University has a Korean Language Center (KLC) that offers comprehensive and systematic courses for beginners to advanced learners. You can also participate in cultural events and exchange programs through the KLC. Students unsure about undertaking language study abroad can rest easy: Korea University's Korean language program fosters a supportive environment for both domestic and international students, offering counseling in English and academic support for students with disabilities.

Sogang University

Sogang University is a top destination for students eager to enhance their Korean language proficiency. Their renowned Korean Language Education Center (KLEC) focuses on developing communicative skills and cultural understanding. You can choose from various programs such as regular, intensive, summer, winter, evening, and special courses.

Kyung Hee University

Kyung Hee University is renowned for its manicured and artsy campus, often praised as one of the most beautiful in South Korea, featuring museums, fountains, and outdoor art installations. The university provides a self-contained community with on-campus amenities like a bank and gym, dining halls, and dormitories available to international language learners, ensuring convenience for students. It has an Institute of International Education (IIE) that offers high-quality Korean language courses for foreigners. You can also join cultural experiences and volunteer activities through the IIE.

How to apply for Korean language programs

While requirements may vary depending on the school, program, and location these are generally the steps you’ll need to follow to study at a language school in South Korea.

  1. Research programs and schools: Before you apply to a language school in South Korea, you should do some research on the different options available. You should consider factors such as the location, duration, schedule, curriculum, cost, accreditation, facilities, teachers, reviews, etc. of each school.
  2. Direct enrollment vs program vs through your university: Direct enrollment may be cheaper and more flexible but may require more paperwork and responsibility. Another option is to study through a program provider that may offer more support and services but may charge higher fees. Lastly, your home university may have partnerships or exchange agreements with certain schools but may have limited options or availability.
  3. Prepare your application materials: Once you have chosen your preferred language school and program in South Korea, you should prepare your application materials such as your transcript, letters of recommendation, and/or personal statement (if required). You should also check the application deadlines and procedures of each school or program. Some schools may require you to take a language placement test or do an interview before admission.
  4. Apply for a visa: Depending on your nationality and the length of your stay, you may need to apply for a visa to study at a language school in South Korea. The most common visa types for language students are the D-4 visa (general training visa) or the C-3 visa (short-term general visa). You should check the visa requirements and application process of the Korean embassy or consulate in your country. You may need to submit documents such as your passport, admission letter, bank statement showing sufficient funds, and a health certificate.
  5. Start budgeting & exploring scholarships: Studying at a language school in South Korea can be expensive, so you should start budgeting and exploring scholarships as soon as possible. You should consider the costs of tuition, accommodation, transportation, food, books, insurance, and visa costs.
  6. Prepare for your adventure overseas! Now for the fun stuff: book your flight tickets, pack your luggage, and research the culture and customs of South Korea. You should also keep in touch with your language school or program provider and follow their instructions and guidelines.

Cost and funding

The cost of a Korean language school in Korea depends on several factors, such as the type of course, the duration, the location, and the accommodation you choose. Scholarships can help reduce your overall costs.

Average costs of tuition

On average, private language academies can be as low as $500 and as high as $4,000 for the same amount of time. A three-month Korean language course at a university costs $1300-$1400.

Cost of Living

The cost of living in South Korea depends on your lifestyle and location. Seoul is the most expensive city in the country, followed by Busan and Daegu. You can save money by sharing a flat with other students or staying in a dormitory or guesthouse.

Here are some of the monthly costs you can expect:

Rent for a one-bedroom apartment: $400-$900 USD
Food: $350-$550 USD, depending on how much you cook or eat out
Transportation: $38-$60 USD
Entertainment and excursions: $50/week, based on your own spending habits

Source: Numbeo

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Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is the hardest school to get into in Korea?

    The hardest school to get into in Korea is generally considered to be Seoul National University (SNU), which is ranked as the best university in Korea and one of the top universities in Asia.

  • What is the best Korean language school in Korea?

    Some of the most popular and reputable Korean language schools in Korea are Seoul National University, Yonsei University, Korea University, and EF Education First. These schools offer high-quality instruction, modern facilities, and diverse programs for students of all levels and backgrounds.

  • Can I go to Korea just to learn Korean?

    Yes, you can go to Korea just to learn Korean, as long as you have a valid visa. Depending on your nationality and the length of your stay, you may need to apply for a tourist visa or a student visa to enter Korea.

  • Is it hard for Americans to learn Korean?

    The difficulty of learning Korean for Americans depends on several factors, such as your motivation, your learning style, and your exposure to the language. However, with enough practice and dedication, you can overcome these challenges and enjoy learning Korean.

  • How many years will it take to learn Korean?

    According to the Foreign Service Institute (FSI), it takes about 2,200 hours of study to reach professional fluency in Korean. However, this is just an estimate and your actual progress might vary depending on various factors.

  • How much does it cost to learn Korean in Korea?

    The cost of learning Korean in Korea varies based on course type, duration, and location, with university courses averaging around $1,500 USD per semester and private schools charging approximately $800 USD per month. Living expenses should also be considered, depending on accommodation and personal spending choices.

  • Can you study in Korea without knowing Korean?

    Yes. Although directly enrolling at a university will be difficult for those without a foundation of the Korean language, there are many language schools that take all levels of Korean speakers. Many Korean classes at language schools are designed for beginners in mind!

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