International Exchange

International Exchange

For those who want to come to Korea for education or research, please refer to this page for visa information, study or research opportunity, and life in Korea.

International students, postdocs, and professional researchers who want to study or do research in Korea in the field of quantum science and technology are welcome to apply for appropriate types of visas from the Korean consular office in their home countries. 

Specific type of visa you need varies from person to person, but in general, those who wish to study or do research in Korea may apply for D-2 (regular degree), E-3 (research), or E-1 (professor) visa. If you need to bring your family, they may apply for F-3 (dependent family) visa.

For more details about the visa, please refer to the Korean Visa Portal. 

If you want to visit Korea for a short period to attend academic conferences or technical meetings, you may be eligible for visa-free entry, depending on your nationality on the passport. Korea has visa waiver agreements with 112 countries for short-term visits. In general, you will need to apply for K-ETA (Korea Electronic Travel Authorization) to enter Korea without visa. The length of stay for visa-free entry varies depending on the nationality of the entrant, so please refer to the official homepage of K-ETA.

In most universities in Korea, mathematics, physics, electronic engineering, and computer engineering are the main departments, and they are essential for nurturing workforces in the field of quantum science and technology. In particular, a curriculum alliance of nine famous universities, the Quantum Workforce Center, official English pages under preparation) was formed to train graduate students in the field of quantum science and technology and provides integrated master's and doctoral degree programs. They even provide internship opportunities at the companies and government research institutes as part of the program.

You may want to visit a website about studying in Korea, where you can get information on preparation for admission and visa, scholarship, job, and education fairs, etc.

Over the past 25 years, Korea has grown steadily in science and technology research, thanks to the government's continued support. Korea's total R&D expenditure in 2020 was 93.717 trillion won ($78.9 billion), an increase of 4.246 trillion won (4.5%↑) from the previous year, which is 5th in the world among OECD countries (1st in the US, 2019 657.5 billion dollars), and the ratio of R&D expenditure to gross domestic product (GDP) increased by 0.19%p from the previous year to 4.81%, ranking second in the world* (No. 1 is Israel, 4.93% as of 2019).

The increase in R&D expenditure has energized the research community in Korea, leading to an increase in good academic papers. Looking at the status of academic publications by country over the past 25 years, Korea ranked 13th in the world in number of papers covering all fields and was even a country that published the 10th most papers in the field of physics and astronomy.  Quantum science and technology research is very active in Korea, backed by the government’s aggressive investment.

Quantum science and technology research opportunities in Korea are relatively unknown, but many projects begin each year and require experienced or highly motivated young researchers. There are many organizations and groups doing research on quantum information science. Government-funded research institutes such as KRISS, KIST and ETRI are conducting basic and applied research in all fields of quantum computers, quantum communication, and quantum sensors, and many researchers are needed. In universities, the number of professors participating in quantum science and technology research is rapidly increasing, and participation in various fields such as physics, electronic engineering, computer engineering, and mathematics is increasing, leading to multidisciplinary research. For the list of universities doing graduate education or research on quantum science and technology, refer here.

Studying in a foreign country is an exciting experience. As you discover new cultures and make new friends, you will feel part of a global citizen. Korea is a dynamic society in which a deep-rooted culture derived from long history and tradition and an advanced economic system that has grown rapidly in a short period of time are well harmonized. Once “The land of morning calm”, it is now becoming a mosaic country with many immigrants. You can find many foreign students on any college campus, and the lectures being taught in English. On weekends, you can relieve stress by walking around Bukchon and Insadong in downtown Seoul where you can get a glimpse of traditional culture, by going to a world class K-pop performance somewhere,  or by going out of the megacity to the beautiful hills and mountains. 

On the one hand, living in another country may mean a lot of inconvenience as you must adapt to many unfamiliar things. You can get e-services regarding the legal registration and extension of stay from Hi-Korea site, where you can actually submit applications and receive approval documents. If you have questions about official and legal processes that you may need to know to live in Korea, such as getting a driver’s license, renting a room or a house, opening a bank account, or even quarantine procedures for pandemics, Easy to Find Practical Law should be useful.