Korea is quickly becoming one of the most popular study abroad destinations for foreign students. This is not shocking given that Korea’s education system is excellent, the costs are more than reasonable, and universities and the government have several scholarships and awards to assist international students. Korean schools are becoming increasingly common as the country is regarded as highly safe and inexpensive. Student satisfaction is also very high, owing to low costs, excellent schooling, a wide range of cultural experiences, and, of course, the delicious Korean cuisine.

The Korean government, on the other hand, is heavily involved in education promotion and is continuously working to improve foreign relations. One of the reasons Korea has so many scholarships is because of this. Since 1967, the Korean government has given scholarships to 6,556 foreign students from 148 countries, and about 2,000 students are supported each year. In this article, we will be looking at Korean Government scholarships for international students.

Korean Government Scholarship Awards

Global Korea scholarship is available to foreign students studying at Korean universities. Undergraduate and postgraduate students at designated institutions are eligible for the award. It is important to note that switching between universities is not permitted. There are of course some requirements that foreign students have to meet.

Depending on the budget, this Korean Government scholarship is intended for 220 undergraduate and over 1,000 postgraduate students. This government scholarship covers tuition in full, as well as additional financial aids such as medical expenses, language classes, academic assistance, and much more. Keep in mind that students are also paid a monthly stipend, research support, and completion grant, and even airfare.

Considering that the prices of tuition and overall living costs in Korea are low, any kind of financial help can be very beneficial for international students, as they can comfortably live in the country while studying. Korean government scholarship is a fully funded scholarship that covers tuition fees and living expenses.

Check Also: Available Programs for International Students

Eligibility Criteria for Korean Government Scholarships

To be able to qualify for Government Scholarships in Korea, students must meet certain criteria. To begin with, the language is a requirement, as it is in many Korean institutions, so all students who are awarded this scholarship must attend Korean language courses for one year, with the exception of students who have a TOPIK score higher than level 5. The Korean language is important even if there are English-taught classes available, considering that the student will need the language skills in everyday life. All Korean schools have pretty strict rules when it comes to proficiency in the Korean language.

Furthermore, to be eligible for the Korean Government scholarship, both the student and his or her parents must be non-Korean nationals. Also, the pupil must be physically and mentally fit before the application. Undergraduate students must be under the age of 25, and postgraduate students must be under the age of 40, and depending on the course, the participant must have evidence of prior education. When it comes to undergraduate students they have to provide proof of finished or soon to be finished elementary, middle, high school courses by the date of arrival. For postgraduate studies, there has to be a previous Bachelor’s or Master’s degree acquired.

Graduates who have already completed school in Korea are not able to apply unless their average GPA is above 90% and their TOPIK score is 5 or higher. As mentioned above, Korean language proficiency can be crucial for the success of any international student. Also, Koreans value education very much and expect excellent academic achievements from students, so one requirement to be considered for the scholarship in the first place is that GPA from previous education has to be over 80%.

Please see the official website for complete information.

Recommended Reading: Best Scholarships in Korea for International Students

How to apply to Korean Government Scholarships

The National Institute for International Education (NIIED) is in charge of inviting local universities and the Korean Embassy in foreign countries to provide a list of prospective students. So in the first election process of Korean Government scholarships, the Embassy or the university is making a list of potential students and contacting them personally with the offer. If you re interested in applying, check the Undergraduate Scholarship Application and Graduate Scholarship Application Page for more details.

The students are then expected to collect all of the documentation required for the examination. The records include an entry form, documentation of prior schooling, citizenship certificates for the candidate and parents, and certificates of language proficiency (Korean and English), and more.  Additional documents and interviews depend on the course chosen, and the university at hand. Sometimes even letters of recommendation and introduction are requested.

The submission is then returned to the Korean Embassy or the domestic university, where the first selection happens. After this, the second round of Korean Government scholarships begins, and all the papers and students are sent to NIIED for further review. The final decision is on them, but keep in mind that additional documentation, as well as potential interviews, may occur.

Competition at Korean universities is strong and there are many applicants each year, so it’s advised to learn all about the necessary steps along with some preparatory Korean language courses, to improve your chances of enrolling.

To summarize, there are many explanations why Korea is quickly becoming the top destination for foreign students. This beautiful country has a plethora of cultures, a high-quality school system, reasonable costs, and an overall pleasant way of life. People are polite and friendly, and universities are working closely with the government to ensure all students are treated equally.

Furthermore, there are several grants and prizes available to foreign applicants, with the Korean Government scholarships one of them. With tuition and other expenses paid, health care is given, and a monthly stipend provided, students can relax and devote their time to their studies. With low acceptance rates and high-quality education, it is better to arrive prepared and remain vigilant during the schooling process.


I hope that this article on the Korean Government Scholarships for international students was helpful! If you’re interested in studying abroad make sure to check out the Available Programs for International Students!

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  1. Anonymous - Reply

    how to check courses that will by gks scholarship

    • Hyun Lee - Reply

      Hello, you can check your countries’ Korean embassy website for courses eligible for Global Korea Scholarships!

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