PhD in South Korea



South Korea is gaining popularity among overseas students these days, and for good reason! Students from all over the world can pursue their Master’s, Bachelors and PhD in South Korea. Plus, for most people, living and studying in South Korea is relatively inexpensive. As a result, going to South Korea would provide spectacular scenery, intriguing friends, and excellent value.


Why Study in South Korea?

  • For 33 subjects, Korea University is currently ranked among the finest in the world.
  • In South Korea, education is highly valued and many students from across the world come there to study. The PhD length in south Korea is 3 years and academic year starts from March to February.
  • Many south Korean universities features among the 100 in the world.


Top Universities in South Korea

  • Seoul National University
  • Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST)
  • Sungkyunkwan University
  • Pohang University of Science and Technology (Postech)
  • Korea University
  • Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology
  • Yonsei University
  • Kyung Hee University
  • Sejong University
  • Hanyang University


Specific Reasons to Study in South Korea

  • South Korea is a world leader in information and communication technology (ICT).
  • The educational system is outstanding.
  • Tuition is reasonably priced.
  • There are numerous scholarships available.
  • Discover the fascinating culture and history of South Korea.


Popular Fields of PhD Study in South Korea

Top fields to study PhD in South Korea are:

  • Physical Therapy
  • Educational Leadership and Administration, General
  • Chemistry, General
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Electrical, Electronics and Communications Engineering
  • Psychology, General
  • Education, General
  • Physics, General


Program Duration and Cost of Education

Duration: 3 Years

Cost: ₩2,700,000 ($2,320) – ₩4,250,000 ($3,650) per semester


Scholarships and Funding

To appropriately qualified international students, several colleges will grant a full or partial fee waiver (usually between 30% and 100% of tuition costs). As you might assume, these are frequently provided on a competitive basis, so check with your institution to see what kind of assistance is available and what the application process is like.

In addition to scholarships offered by particular colleges, the South Korean government has established overarching initiatives to encourage and support international students.


Eligibility Criteria for PhD Degrees

The requirements for admission to a PhD program in South Korea will vary depending on the school. In most cases, a Master’s degree (or its equivalent) in a relevant area is required, however, a solid undergraduate degree may be adequate.

As a general guideline, you’ll need to provide the following information:

  • A completed copy of your institution’s application form
  • A personal introduction and outline of your study plan
  • A letter of recommendation, typically provided by a member of faculty at the institution where your undergraduate or Master’s degree was awarded
  • Documentation of your existing academic record at university (if you have not yet graduated from an undergraduate or Masters program you may provide a letter confirming your expected graduation)
  • Proof of your nationality (a photocopy of your passport will usually suffice)
  • Proof of proficiency in English and/or Korean (if required by your course)


Intake & Application Deadlines

Postgraduate programs at South Korean institutions can begin in either the spring or fall semesters of the academic year in South Korea:

  • You must apply between September and November to be considered for a program starting in March.
  • The application season for courses starting in September runs from May through June.


Student Visa Terms

If you wish to study for a PhD in South Korea, you’ll need to apply for a student visa in South Korea at the Korean embassy or consulate in your home country.

You should apply for a Visa for Regular Educational Program as an international PhD student (D-2). You’ll need the following documents to complete your application:

  • A valid passport
  • A completed visa application form (this is provided by your local Korean embassy or consulate)
  • A passport-size photo
  • A letter of admission from your prospective university
  • Certified copies of your academic record
  • Proof that you have financial resources of at least USD $10,000

There is also a $60 application cost for single-entry visas and a $90 application charge for multiple-entry visas.

Work in South Korea after PhD

If you want to pursue a profession in South Korea after graduation, your PhD will be especially useful. There are already a substantial number of foreign academics working in South Korea’s higher education system, and there is some evidence that a domestic PhD may help with promotion and progress at its universities.

To begin, you must first convert your D-2 student visa to a D-10 Job Seeker visa. You can begin the process of obtaining a professional visa in South Korea once you’ve found a job.

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