If you study abroad in South Korea, you will find a country caught up in a whirlwind of innovation- nowhere is this more evident than in the attitude of the South Koreans themselves. The South Korean people are full of an indomitable energy that saturates their cities and their towns. Seoul, South Korea’s most modern city, is a bustling metropolis filled with spirited people and ideas. There is no end to the activities Seoul offers to students and locals alike.
Further south, the port town of Busan is captivating in its wide array of beaches and fish markets. Students who travel to the city of Daegu can escape the bustle of Seoul and enjoy the countryside pace there. Although few travelers explore the countryside in South Korea, those who are willing to partake in the journey will find themselves walking among serene temples and majestic mountains.
Those who study abroad in South Korea will discover an adventure filled with endless opportunity. South Korea’s vibrant diversity and rich tradition make it an ideal setting for students wishing to develop their own sense of self. The country offers a plethora of celebrated universities, and those who study abroad in South Korea will be able to expand their knowledge in a variety of different fields. South Korea’s infectious optimism will inspire students to promote greater change even after their stay is done. South Korea is an adventure waiting to happen for any student willing to take the plunge! Check out these exciting programs and begin your journey.
Looking for high school programs in South Korea?
Photo Credit: Ellie Taylor
How to Choose a Program
Knowing about the language, housing, and academic options in Korea with help you make a more informed decision when it come to choosing a program.
1) Language: The language barrier is not as wide as one might think. Given Seoul’s position as an international hub of commerce, English is not a scarcely spoken language. English is prevalent in most South Korean junior high and high school courses, making interactions with ones fellow classmates easier in South Korean universities. To aid with immersion, you might consider coupling your study abroad program with a part-time Korean language program, though!
2) Housing: In such a bursting capital, it’s important that you have a comfortable and inviting space to which you can come back. Programs offer living arrangements that range from apartments to dormitories to home-stays. Some programs will expect you to find your own housing, so you'll need to plan your accommodations ahead of time.
3) Academic Life: South Korea’s education system is sometimes depicted as very stringent, rigid, and cutthroat. However, education in South Korea is similar to that in the United States: undergrad spans 4 years and the school year is divided into two semesters. The first goes from early March to mid-July while the second begins in late August and finishes in mid-February. The aim of attending South Korean universities is more to receive rather than explore knowledge. Lectures are more common than discussions. However for all the hard work one would do, graduates from universities in South Korea are some of the most employable in the world.
City or college town?
There aren't many South Korean cities that cater to large student populations. However, Seoul is a a great hub of education thinking and discussion.
Seoul: Seoul has evolved from a ruined city following the 1950 North Korean invasion to a model of modern infrastructure and economic growth. The city is at the forefront of technological innovation and with a population of 10 million, Seoul is constantly bursting with activity that particularly caters to students. In fact, unbeknownst to many, Seoul is one of the only cities that boasts WiFi in all its subway lines. Finishing a homework assignment has never been easier.
Scholarships: South Korea
Although the South Korean won (KRW) is inexpensive relative to Western currencies, airfare to South Korea is by no means cheap. Not only that, spicy Korean street food is so good that you will need to arm yourself with as much pocket change as possible.
- CIEE offers financial aid awards of $1000-$4000.
- The Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) grants fully-funded scholarships to students who plan to engage in intensive language courses while at Korean university.
- As a non-profit, the various USAC study abroad scholarship opportunities aim for students to gain international experience -- without breaking the bank.
- More Study Abroad Grants and Scholarships