Seoul National University

Seoul National is also the first of Korea's famous SKY universities, known for their academic performance and elite status within the country.

Seoul National University is considered the most prestigious university in South Korea, and is ranked #37th in the world (QS 2020). Seoul National has a population of over 28,000 students, and boast alumni like the 8th Secretary-General of the UN, former President of the International Criminal Court, former Director-General of the World Health Organization, and CEO and chairman of Samsung Electronics. It is also the setting for a variety of Korean dramas.

Key information


English, Korean


Fall, Winter, Academic year

Program type


Application information

Application status



2020-21 applications

Applications for Winter 2021 exchanges are still open. First come, first considered for remaining spaces!

University-specific additional requirements

1-2 references required - see the Eligibility section below.

2021-22 applications

Open Nov. 1, 2020

Program details

University-wide areas of study:

Seoul National offers a variety of courses in: Archaeology, Anthropology, Art/Fine Art, Art History, Communications, East Asian Language & Cultural Studies, Economics, Geography, International Relations, History, Linguistics, Music, Philosophy, Political Science, Psychology, Religious Studies, Sociology, Astronomy, Biology, Chemistry, Earth Science, Environmental Science, Math, Natural Sciences, Physics, Statistics, and Engineering (Biomedical, Chemical, Civil, Computer, Electrical, Energy, Geomatics, Mechanical, Oil & Gas, Software). >> Find courses here! Note: course list is updated in July/Jan for the following semester, so use the previous year to make a tentative course list until updated courses are available. 

Restricted/limited programs: Medicine, Pharmacy, Law, Dentistry. Vocal Music, Economics, and Business courses are only open to students enrolled within the relevant program at UCalgary. Department of Computer Science and Engineering courses are extremely limited as well, so placement is not guaranteed.

Course requirements:
Students at Seoul National must take a minimum of 3 up to 6 courses (18 credits). 3 credits = 3 units at UCalgary.
Course registration for Fall/full-year students takes place in late July, and for Winter students, in late January. You can take Korean Language Program courses provided by the SNU Language Education Institute, but will be assessed fees for this. 

Students applying to the Department of Korean History, Psychology, or Statistics must show proof of Korean language proficiency.  

The academic year is divided into two semesters, Fall and Spring.

  • Fall Semester runs from early September to late December
  • Spring Semester runs from early March to mid-June
  1. Costs

    Exchange students pay their tuition and academic fees to the University of Calgary. Other expenses are paid directly to the service provider. 

    Also, remember to include things like visas, insurance, vaccinations etc in your budget planning. South Korea mandates all students be enrolled in a national health insurance service. This will be applied for at the time of application to your host university, and costs about $60/month. As the coverage is not comprehensive and doesn't include places outside of Korea, students should also seek their own medical insurance in addition to the coverage in Korea.

    Seoul cost comparison vs. Calgary: Click Here

  2. Funding

    Seoul National offers a Global Korea Scholarship (GKS) for select incoming exchange students nominated by University of Calgary International and the Haskayne School of Business to apply for the competitive scholarship. Nomination does not guarantee award selection. 

    Did you know that you can take your UCalgary funding with you on exchange? 
    Since you remain a degree seeking student at UCalgary while on exchange you remain eligible for any awards and scholarships you are eligible to receive from the university as well as student loans.

    Our office administers the International Study Travel Grant for students travelling on approved UCalgary study programs that are credit bearing. The amount changes year to year as the money is split evenly between qualified applicants. Students may only receive the study travel grant once. Please see the exchange funding page for more information.

On-campus residences are available for incoming exchange students. A dormitory application guide will be provided to accepted students. See more information here: 
And here: 

Off-campus housing assistance can be requested from SNU OIA, or from your SNU buddy. See more information here: 

This exchange is open to regular, full-time students in any faculty at UCalgary, who have completed at least 1 full year (10 courses) at the post-secondary level, with a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.7 (B-). Proficiency in English or Korean is strongly recommended, but no certification is required (except for Korean History, where TOPIK Level 5+ certification is required). 

An academic reference is required for a complete application. 

While only one reference is required for our application, please let your reference know that if you are selected for SNU, they will require submission of your reference to be re-written on their reference template, in addition to the template we provide. You will be asked to submit this additional reference copy only after you have been nominated to this partner, since the reference needs to be completed on a specific form provided by SNU.

Also, if you are a music, fine arts, or physical education student, you may be required to submit a portfolio including pictures of your work or recordings of your performances.

Haskayne Students:

Haskayne students at UCalgary can ONLY apply for this partner through Haskayne, and must meet the Haskayne requirements for exchange.

What resources are available for new students?

There is a student-run organization called SNU Buddy which helps exchange students’ settlement at SNU. SNU Buddy organizes various events and cultural activities throughout the semester. All exchange students offered acceptance will receive an invitation e-mail to join SNU Buddy before the beginning of the semester. Buddies may also be able to assist with logistic advice such as finding off-campus accommodation, phones/banking, etc. 

How can I learn or improve my Korean?

Exchange Students can additionally take Korean Language Programs provided by the SNU Language Education Institute, on a fee-paying basis. OIA will provide partial financial support for the tuition fee for exchange students. Please visit the following website to see the program information:

Have questions?

Study Abroad 101

Please watch this YouTube playlist before reaching out or booking an appointment.

Watch Study Abroad 101

Academic Advising

Before applying to study abroad, you should ask your academic advisor how an exchange might align with your degree (e.g. best time to go, what courses you need).

After you are accepted, you should ask your academic advisor more specific questions about courses/transfer credits. It’s also recommended to follow up with your advisor again once you return to Calgary.

Find your academic advisor

Study Abroad Advising

If you have questions about this exchange program, you can meet with the specific advisor for this program by booking an appointment through the link below. Appointments are currently on zoom.

1. Select “Book an Appointment”
2. Select “Study Abroad Appointments”
3. Select “Book by Appointment Type”
4. Read through the list of appointment types to select the most appropriate type and view available times.

Book an appointment

The exchange advisor for this program is: Kathryn Bauer

How to Apply

Download the application guide

This PDF contains information on how to complete your application and what to do after you have applied.

Application guide

Identify three programs of interest

We recommend applying for your top three programs for the priority application deadline, as placement may be competitive. We will assess your applications in ranked order.

Check requirements and deadlines

These may vary by program, so check the individual program pages and make sure that you are aware of any different application deadlines or eligibility requirements.

Start your application

Once you have gathered everything you need, you can begin your application!

Please note: Applications will not be considered complete until all required documents are submitted in full.


International travel presents challenges that may not be found when attending classes on campus. There may be a lack of resources, emergency services, hospitals, accessibility issues and/or demands on the physical and the mental self, all of which can challenge individuals when away from their usual support systems and structures. Adequate preparation is essential.

For this reason, it is imperative that you evaluate all aspects of your own physical, psychological, emotional and spiritual condition against the rigors of the particular study abroad program you are selecting. If you are unsure of whether or not this program is a good fit for you and/or if you have any circumstances that could impede your enjoyment of the program, please contact us. Our Study Abroad Team will be happy to assist in finding the best options for you and arrange any supports or accommodations necessary to ensure your success.

Please note if you have or are seeking a certificate from Student Accessibility Services, you should provide this early to your Study Abroad Advisor to ensure that the option that you are seeking can support your needs.