Guide to applying to a korean university (Yonsei University)

by - August 20, 2014


Ever since i announced that i'll be studying in Korea, i received many texts/messages from friends asking me how to apply for a korean university.

Honestly, i did all these myself without help and like i mentioned in my previous post here, it was tedious. You'll get to see why.

Basically this is not really a guide but more like what i have gone through applying for Yonsei Uni. I applied for their Korean Language Institute (KLI) which makes everything much easier since it's all in English.

(pic souce: google)

1. Decide on which university you plan to apply. 

You might consider Yonsei University, Ewha University, Sogang University, Kyunghee University, etc. Here is a complete list of universities offering Korean Language: click

I was juggling between Ehwa and Yonsei at first, but i could rarely find more info about the other universities aside from Yonsei so yeah, i picked Yonsei.

2. Visit their website

This is where you get all the information; from the courses, schedule, fees, requirements, etc. As for KLI, i found everything i needed on the webpage. Simple and fast. 

3. Be aware of their application date

For KLI, there is an application date where you can send in your applications for each term.  I opted to start at their Fall term therefore my application date starts on May. You have to register an account on the website first before you can apply online. Once that is done, you will see a screen where it give you your login ID and password (write it down and don't forget because it's all in numbers lol)

4. Apply early

I can't stress this enough. Apply as soon as the application is open! I did mine exactly on that day and guess what? I did not receive a reply until 3 weeks later when i emailed them about it. Apparently they did not receive my application. wtheck?  Good thing i applied early, read on and you'll see why.

During the online application, you have to write a short essay about 250 words (in English/Korean). Honestly i can't tell you what to write but i just wrote about why i wanted to study korean language in Yonsei and how it will benefit me. After submitting the application, a screen will pop up giving you the bank details to wire in the application fee.

Also, you have to decide if you want to take the 8-level course or 6-level course. I opted for the 6-level course which means, i only study for 6 terms and finish the whole course!

5. Application fee payment

Yes, according to Yonsei you have to pay the application fee of 80,000won even before you know if you have been accepted or not and it is not refundable if you get rejected. that's pretty much leeching off my money.  

The next day after i send in my online application, i went to the bank and made the application fee payment. You'll have to wire transfer it. You can pay a little more than the stated amount because the bank often discount the money wired into their office in order to collect banking fees. 

However i did not wire any extra money, i just wire exactly the amount stated. I'd go to the bank and tell them i want to wire the money in Korean Won because i didn't want to pay any extra for the exchange rate that changes daily. The underpayments can be made to the office upon your arrival, so don't fret.

6. Sending in the required documents

Scan and send in all the required documents stated in the website along with your proof of payment for the application fee. I did so as soon as i got home from the bank and all i have to say is Yonsei takes about 3-4 weeks to reply your email. YES 4 FREAKING WEEKS so you can count how many weeks have been wasted.

I was very anxious already as the application due date is drawing nearer and i wasn't even confirmed for the course yet.

7. Course fee payment

So the awaited email finally arrived after 4 weeks informing me about the banking details for my course fee. They have not told me if i am accepted but just simply said that i have passed the screening. Nevertheless, i paid the course fee for 2 terms because it was stated in their website that if i want to apply a D-4 visa, i'd have to pay for 2 terms. (i think they have changed it now) 

Again, i emailed them the proof of payment as soon as i paid and yet, waited for another 3-4 weeks for a reply (i dont get why they're so slow tbh) By this time, about 3 months have passed and i still wasn't confirmed for the course yet didn't i say good thing i applied early?

* If you are applying for visa, ask them to EMS the acceptance letter and other documents to you as well in the same email. don't waste time~!

8. Final confirmation

After they have confirmed my payment, i received the final confirmation email along with my EMS tracking no. So yay~ 

Apparently, they wrote my house unit wrongly and my EMS documents were sent to my neighbour instead which in return i have to call up the post office and collect it myself. (You can check from the korea post website which local post will be receiving your EMS)

In conclusion, it took me 3 months+ just to apply.

i really hope the whole campus looks this pretty in Fall 
(pic source: google)

Applying for the dormitory is another hell i have to go through. 

The dormitory is on first come, first serve basis. Therefore you have to apply as soon as the application is open! 

Again, register yourself at the website and read the notice board for the online application date. Remember the date and time well. I have to wake up at 8.00am to do the application then wait for the results again.

They do not notify you via email, so check the website to see if you passed the application. Make your payment before the due-date (bear in mind wiring money takes 3-5 business day) 

Apparently, the housing office is really quick in replying emails. As soon as i send them the proof of payment, i got an email back in 10 minutes saying they'll inform me as soon as they receive the payment. Guess what? i got a reply from them just the next day confirming my payment.

So that will be all and you're all ready!

Now the only thing that is still bothering me is the visa. ugh.

* Important:
  • Always keep in mind wiring money takes 3-5 days therefore make your payment considering their payment due date.
  • Apply early, you really don't want to be stressing over their late email replies.
  • Read up on blogs that offers you their personal experience in applying for the university because you sure don't want to repeat the same mistakes they did.
  • Don't hesitate to spam them with emails if you think they take too long to get back to you (but don't go overboard either)
  • When you'r applying for the dormitory, check up on other living options just in case you are not accepted at least you have a place in mind.
  • I'd recommend you to transfer the money in KRW as it cuts down on the exchange rate differences.

Comment/subscribe if you find this guide helpful~!

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  1. Hello nice to meet u ~ passed by your blog while searching for about Yonsei KLI. Good to know that you are from Malaysia too ^^
    I applied for spring 2015 and now i was waiting for them to reply me whether they received my transfers tuition fees or not.. I email them quite few time with question and called my Korean friend helped me to call them until they are aware who my friend are trying to helped.. lolx
    anyway happy that stopped by reading your blog maybe we could meet someday in korea if there is a chance ^^ Have a nice day

    1. Hello. Thank you for dropping by :) Oh yes, the process of making them get back to you by email is tedious. And sure we could meet someday in Korea if there is a chance :)

      Have a nice day~

  2. Hi,may I know if I can apply it with local university's foundation?
    Thanks in advance!

  3. Wow..nice post!! and really very useful.
    I am also having the similar kind of experience from the last many months as I am also planning to attend the Yonsei Korean language (Summer 2016 and fall 2016). So far I have reached to the stage when I have paid the tuition fees for two semester and they accepted it today. Unfortunately it shows underpayment for one term(Summer 2016) with around 35000won even though I paid extra money and payment received status for Fall 2016 semester. I still have to receive an email regarding this. Hope to receive the email soon.
    One more question.. are there any scholarships if you score good marks in semester?

    Thanks :)

  4. Hi I was wondering is there anyone who knows about the UIC application process? I plan on attending yonsei for the UIC department but I would like to gather more information on it.


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