Seoul: Yonsei University Exchange Program

A student poses in front of a Yonsei University sign.

Program Term:

Autumn Academic Year

Language Requirement:



 Xhesika Bardhi

Application Deadline:


Funded opportunity to study at Yonsei University in Seoul, South Korea.

The College’s program at Yonsei University in Seoul, South Korea, affords qualified Chicago students an opportunity to study at one of the oldest and most prestigious comprehensive universities in South Korea.

    This is an intense academic immersion program in which students take regular coursework in their program of study, in Korean or English, alongside degree-seeking students at the university. Yonsei University, founded in 1885 as the first modern institution of higher learning in Korea, is a highly regarded comprehensive research-intensive university. It has 114 academic programs in 23 colleges, offering instruction in most of the normal “arts and sciences” subjects. Yonsei operates exchanges with a significant number of international universities (including Chicago) and hosts roughly 1,300 exchange students from around the world every year. Yonsei, located in central Seoul, was named one of the most beautiful campuses in the world by CNN.

    Yonsei operates on a two-semester calendar with the autumn semester running from late August to the end of December, and the spring semester running from mid-February to the end of June. Students have the option to study at Yonsei for either the autumn semester or the entire academic year. Students will normally be enrolled in the standard course load at Yonsei. Students with limited knowledge of Korean will choose from a subset of courses offered in English each semester.

    You will have the option of on-campus housing of various types, or off-campus private housing if you prefer. Options for international students are laid out on Yonsei University’s website (on the Admissions page, see the Housing menu bar for International House or SK Global House). The International House and SK Global House feature modern equipment and facilities such as a communal kitchen, music room, fitness center, coin-operated laundry, computer room, lounge areas, study rooms, food court, etc.

    Students apply for dormitory accommodation through Yonsei’s portal once they have been admitted. Find comprehensive instructions on how to use the housing portal as well as general information regarding their housing facilities on their website.

    NB: Although housing costs will be reimbursed (see below under Finances), it is your responsibility to complete the online application for housing and to pay the deposit during the summer preceding your arrival, as reimbursement from the scholarship takes place upon arrival in Seoul. Chicago does not act as a billing agent, go-between, or guarantor in these transactions.

    As a participant in the Seoul Exchange Program, you remain registered as a full-time student in the College. You will receive full credit for your work at Yonsei. Normally, students who participate for the full academic year receive ten to twelve (maximum) credits. Students studying for a semester receive four (maximum) credits. Course titles, units of credit, and grades are placed on your Chicago transcript. Since the use of these credits in a specific degree program is variable, you should consult with your academic adviser and program chair to determine the exact distribution of credits.

    Yonsei offers courses in the following Faculties:

    • Korean Studies
    • East Asian Studies
    • Social Science (International Relations)
    • Business & Economics
    • National Science & Engineering
    • Korean Language (KLI)

    Note that courses in the following departments are restricted:

    • Medicine/Dentistry/Nursing
    • Music
    • MBA

    Seoul Exchange Program participants pay regular College tuition and a nonrefundable study abroad administrative fee. The tuition is paid in conformity with the home campus payment schedule, and the nonrefundable study abroad administrative fee is submitted when accepting a place in a program.

    Yonsei University Exchange Scholarship 
    For all students accepted for exchange, the Yonsei University Exchange Scholarship will provide an overall living stipend of 2.6 million Korean Won once the student is on site to cover housing (reimbursement) and additional living expenses. Students pay miscellaneous living expenses, including food, books, travel, and incidentals while in Seoul. (Note: 1 U.S.$ equals approximately 1,229 Korean Won as of April 2022.)

    Precise figures for the Seoul Exchange Program for the 2024–2025 year are listed below:

    Academic year tuition: as set by the Bursar’s Office

    Study abroad administrative fee: $675

    Included in scholarship:

    • stipend (from which housing reimbursement and some living expenses are covered)

    Out-of-pocket expenses include:

    • roundtrip airfare to and from program site
    • passport/visa fees
    • transportation on site
    • meals
    • course materials
    • personal entertainment and travel
    • communications (most students bring or buy a cell phone)
    • health insurance and upfront payments for care
    • other miscellaneous expenses 

    Study abroad students retain their financial aid eligibility. For more information about financial aid resources, please see our Tuition, Fees, and Funding section.

    The Seoul Exchange Program is open to University of Chicago undergraduate students only. Applications from outside the University are not accepted.

    For most students the third or fourth year is the most appropriate time to participate in this program. It is open to all majors. Students who would like to attend classes in Korean must provide proof of Korean language proficiency (KLPT level 4 or above or assessment by a Korean instructor). The admissions process is competitive, and you will be expected to present a transcript showing solid and sustained work in your major courses. In general this is a challenging program, which assumes a high level of independence and resourcefulness.

    In order to apply to this program you must first complete Chicago’s study abroad profile via the online application. Once you have completed this profile you will then select “Seoul Exchange Program” under the program list for program applications and click “apply.” Here you will be able to submit your intent to apply and will be given explicit instructions for completing the Yonsei Exchange Application.

    To discuss the Yonsei University Exchange Program and the possibility of participating, please contact Xhesika Bardhi.