If you are currently thinking about studying in Korea, then you came to the right place. The following article is going to help you understand the steps you need to take in order to apply for a graduate program in Korea and successfully get in. There are many people who came here as graduate students, and now they live in Korea working in some of the biggest companies in Seoul or Busan. Studying in Korea has ups and downs, but I strongly believe it’s worth giving a try. Are you ready to find out more about this topic?
Decide on a Major and University
First of all, you must carefully think about your future plans. What do you want to do in 5 years? Or maybe 10 years? What major would you like to study? Moreover, what kind of skills do you plan to acquire? Write down some of your strengths and aspirations to help you decide what you want to study.
Secondly, do some research in order to decide which university is the most suitable for you. There are plenty of Korean universities that offer graduate programs and courses in English for foreign students. For more information related to Korean universities, you can visit the following websites. Some of the most popular universities among foreigners are:
Busan University of Foreign Studies(Busan)
How to Apply for a Graduate School
Depending on the university, they may ask you to fill in an online application first, before sending the original documents to Korea. You will need to create an account on their official website under your name and follow all the necessary steps to confirm your identity.
Once you visit the website, you will be able to see details related to majors, courses, credits, scholarships, and dorm facilities. Most of the time, international students are allowed to stay in a dorm or a guesthouse provided by the university. Usually, Korean universities require the following documents:
- Application form and color photos
- Undergraduate diploma and transcript
- Study plan(designated form)
- Self-introduction letter
- Letter(s) of recommendations from professors or supervisors
- Financial certifications such as bank statements/letter of sponsorship/scholarship certificate
- Copy of passport
- Certificate of language proficiency(TOEFL, IELTS, TOEIC, TOPIK etc.)
- Additional documents such as awards, certifications, or work experience
Many universities will ask you for a phone or Skype interview, which usually lasts a few minutes. Others will just review your documents and send you an admission letter. Depending on your major and university, the procedure can vary. After you get accepted, you will need to prepare to obtain the right type of visa(D2).
Scholarships in Korea
Many universities offer scholarships to students with excellent scholastic abilities. In order to be able to get a scholarship, you’ll usually need to maintain a high GPA (for example 4.0/4.5), a language certificate with a high score(TOPIK 4 or 5), or win a competition.
In addition, you can choose to apply to a graduate program via the KGSP program, that will 100% support your studies in Korea. What is KGSP? It’s an official program created and run by the Korean government, meant to attract foreign talents to Korea. The program is designed to help international students pursue their academic goals in various fields at Korean Universities and to strengthen relations between Korea and the participating countries.
Life as a graduate student in Korea
I have a few friends who studied in Korea as KGSP scholars and they were really satisfied with the program. I’m going to share their opinions with you below:
I wanted so much to study in Korea. It was one of my dreams since I was in high school. At first, I didn’t even know that such a program existed. I found out about it from a friend. So, I told myself I should give it a try no matter what. I felt really anxious because there were so many documents to prepare. Study plan, transcripts, certification, everything. I couldn’t sleep for 2 weeks. When I got my admission letter, I felt that all my efforts have been recognized. I did my language year in Busan, and my graduate program at Donngguk University. I would do it again.
I’m doing my Ph.D. in Korea these days. I managed to apply for university via embassy track 2 years ago and got accepted. To be honest, I am really happy I don’t need to worry about money while studying. I can just concentrate on my research and projects. Since I already had TOPIK 5 when applying, there was no need for me to do the language year. It was hard at first, but I got used to this lifestyle. I cannot imagine myself living in another country.
What do you think? Would you apply for a graduate program in Korea? Or maybe you already completed one and you can share your experience. We would love to hear from you. For more content related to Korean culture and lifestyle, don’t forget to subscribe to Koreabyme. Also, if you want to send me a message, don’t hesitate to drop me a DM on Instagram. All the best!
If you do decide to attend university in South Korea on a scholarship, there are a few things you need to be aware of. Click Here to learn about the university scholarship trap.