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SOUTH KOREA - ISEP Keimyung University

The beautiful Keimyung University is the perfect study abroad option for a student to immerse themselves in the traditional Korean culture - there is even a traditional village on campus. Located in the third largest city in Korea and only an hour and a half commute from Seoul, Keimyung University boasts a prime location. With a variety of English course offerings and an excellent Korean Language Program, students have the opportunity to truly get the most out of the classroom experience. Keimyung also offers a variety of cultural experiences which include free Korean culture classes and field trips. Students spend days touring historical sites as well as visiting hi-tech companies such as POSCO and Hyundai motors. Keimyung University is guaranteed to immerse students into Korean culture and reward them with rich experiences and lasting memories.

This program is best for a student that is independent.  A student must be comfortable with advocating for themselves on campus to thrive in this location. Please be aware that there may not be the same access to internet or amenities to which you may be accustomed.  Student services and especially class registration may not be at all similar to what is done at the College and may be difficult for some students to adjust.

Learn more about Keimyung University here! Read the ISEP Country Handbook to learn more about visa requirements, educational system, and culture.

Experiences of Former Students


“Keimyung University is a great place to not only learn, but to fully jump into and experience Korean culture. The university is molded around creating global citizens. It is an ideal university for any student who would like to try something new and would like to have the best time of their life in Asia!” - David Findlay ( UK)

To be eligible to participate in this program, students must meet the following requirements:

  • Good academic and judicial standing during time of application AND time of participation in program
  • Undergraduates must have completed at least two semesters of study at Lake Forest College AND have junior status or higher before participation. 
  • At least 18 years of age by the program’s departure date. 
  • Be able to stay at the host program for the duration of the semester, including through the exam and travel periods
  • Minimum GPA of 2.75.  
  • Language Requirement: For courses taught in Korean, fluency is required.
  • The student must submit ISEP language proficiency report in the application, even if native speaker.

Students applying to ISEP must apply for an Exchange option (in any country) as a first choice but may apply to a Direct option as a back-up. Direct options may have an additional cost (see a financial section for more information).


Keimyung University is located in Daegu, an exciting urban center of over 2.5 million people and one of Korea’s top three cities. The campus is a two-hour train ride from downtown Seoul, an hour from Busan and the beaches of the South Coast, and surrounded by a host of easily accessible UNESCO World Heritage sites. Among these World Heritage Sites are Gyeongju, the ancient capital of the Shilla Dynasty, which has retained much of its ancient splendor, and Haeinsa, a Buddhist temple complex just south of the campus, the depository of the Tripitaka Koreana, a series of 80,000 ancient woodblock Buddhist Sutras. Keimyung is perfectly positioned to allow students to maximize their time and explore Korea, both old and new. The university is famed for its beautiful architecture and grounds and was selected as one of the top 10 most scenic campuses in Korea in 2001. The campus features a traditional Korean village (Hanhakchon), a museum with rare ancient texts, and an impressive chapel with one of the largest pipe organs in northeast Asia.

To learn more about the visa process for this country, please visit the ISEP Country Handbook for South Korea. 


Founded in 1954 as Keimyung Christian College, Keimyung University (KMU) is a private, co-educational university with over 24,000 students (21,000 at the undergraduate level and 3,000 at post-graduate level). The university is located on a beautiful 450-acre site on the outskirts of Daegu city, the third largest city in Korea. It is a university with a very international environment, and located conveniently at the crossroads of historical and modern Korea, in the heart of Korean culture.

Korean credits are equivalent to US credits. Three hours of class work per week for 16 weeks is equal to three US credits. Eight hours of class lecture per week for six weeks (summer session) is equivalent to three US credits. 

To Earn 4 Lake Forest credits, students must take 15-16 US semester credits.

To Earn 3 Lake Forest credits, students must take 12 US semester credits.

The number of credits listed here is estimated, and GEO will work with you, your advisor, and the registrar to ensure you are earning enough credits to keep you on track for graduation.


The social aspect of university life for Korean students is very important and students enjoy socializing with peers on campus when they are not attending class. While some students may have negative opinions regarding school study, Korean students generally agree that the most difficult part about university life is passing the entrance examinations.  


Students are generally required to take midterm and final examinations.  Other tests, presentations, research papers, and projects may also be expected of students.  A student‘s performance in a course is determined by the results of examinations, class attendance, and participation of the student. Student performance is usually graded on a 100 point scale. 


Academic Environment and Teaching Style

Please understand that the academic system is quite different. Classes are usually lecture-based, instead of discussion or group work. Classes are often much larger than those found at Lake Forest College. Grades are based heavily, at times almost entirely, on one end-of-term exam, though some courses will also offer a midterm.  Professors are often more formal than those in the United States.

All courses/modules may have prerequisites.  Some departments may have limitations on numbers of courses that can be taken within or outside it.  Be aware of these limitations.


Among Korean universities, Keimyung was one of the first to initiate a full-scale internationalization program. Currently, Keimyung offers 100 international faculty members teaching a host of courses in English. Almost all departments offer some courses in English. Our international college, Keimyung Adams College (KAC), offers courses taught in English in both International Relations and International Business by its international faculty.

Semi-intensive Korean language courses are offered in addition to regular classes during the academic year and/or semester for Beginner to Intermediate levels. Intensive Korean language courses are offered for an additional fee.

All KAC courses (International Business and International Relations) are taught in English.

Please see the Courses page for more information on courses available for ISEP students.

Note: If you cannot access the course list page properly, please be sure to use the latest version of the Microsoft Internet Explorer browser.

Please review the ISEP country handbook for more information on the education system, grades, class hours, and classroom etiquette.

Student Life

Founded in 1954 as Keimyung Christian College, Keimyung University (KMU) is a private, co-educational university with over 24,000 students (21,000 at the undergraduate level and 3,000 at post-graduate level). The university is located on a beautiful 450-acre site on the outskirts of Daegu city, the third largest city in Korea. It is a university with a very international environment, and located conveniently at the crossroads of historical and modern Korea, in the heart of Korean culture.


KU organizes a full orientation to assist in the transition to life in Korea, both on and off campus. The orientation for incoming students takes place in the first week of the semester. KU also takes the opportunity of our semester Welcoming Party to let incoming international students get to know each other and meet some of the local students and staff. The “Buddy” program matches each new international student with a Korean student. The Korean Buddy will be in communication with their International student prior to their departure and will be there to meet them upon arrival. The Korean Buddy then offers friendship, advice on social activities, and important assistance with language issues. The Buddy Program is invaluable in assisting with the integration of international students into an environment which is very different from their own.


Airport pick-up available from Daegu Airport only. The host will also provide arrival directions with acceptance packet.


During the semester, Keimyung offers a field trip for two days to local industrial and historical sites, provided free of charge. A complimentary Korean culture class, which consists of a number of Korean folk culture-based activities including calligraphy, tea ceremony, ceramic art, paper art, and more, is provided once a week at our replica Korean traditional village. Students are also invited throughout the semester to attend various local festivals and cultural events. The Keimyung International Lounge is a place for international and Korean students to meet and socialize. The wide range of events includes international film festivals and showings, music, games, and a variety of both social and academic gatherings. The lounge hosts a farewell party for international students and their Korean Buddies at the end of each semester.

  Experiential Opportunities
CCAP (Cross-Cultural Awareness Program)
Keimyung University was exclusively designated as a collaborating institution representing Daegu City by the Korean National Commission for UNESCO in November 2005. International students participate in CCAP by presenting the culture of their home country to Korean children at schools. This is in the service of raising awareness of other cultures in Korea and promoting inter-cultural dialogue. A certificate of participation is issued by the Korean National Committee for UNESCO as a token of appreciation for participation in the program. For more information, please visit the website
Housing and Meals

Students are housed in double-occupancy rooms in one of the residence halls located on campus. Housing is not available for families or couples. Students receive a plan for 16 meals per week (including 2 meals in weekday, and 3 meals in the weekend) at the university’s cafeteria with a stipend to cover weekday lunches. 

Financial Information

For all approved programs for guaranteed financial aid transferability, students pay their Lake Forest College tuition plus a program fee. The program fee for a semester with the ISEP Exchange to Keimyung University includes orientation, on-site director, university fees, housing, and the equivalent of 19/meals per week.

Here is an estimated budget for the Fall 2019/Spring 2020 programs:

Budget Item


Lake Forest College Tuition


Program fee (estimated)

Note: Spring may have added cost for Southern Hemisphere programs, as that starts a new academic year.


Total Expected Billed by Lake Forest College


ISEP Confirmation and Application Fees


ISEP-required health and repatriation insurance (estimated, $90/mo)

Note: Some countries require national insurance, which may be instead of, or in addition to, ISEP insurance. Check ISEP


Additional Meals


Estimated Airfare

*Students placed on ISEP Exchange may be eligible for up to $750 airfare award


Estimated Personal Expenses (passport, visas, immunizations, textbooks, supplies, personal expenses, additional national insurance if required, travel insurance, additional travel etc.)


Total Expected Out-of-Pocket Expenses




Tuition rates and program fees are subject to change each year, but this information was up-to-date as of March 2019. We will notify applicants, and update this page if the program fee or other estimates change.

You can discuss with Financial Aid your specific aid package and your expected family contribution.

Deposits to other programs, if required, are paid by the student to the host program, and will appear as a credit on your study abroad term bill from the College.

Keep in mind that you may spend more or less in certain areas like personal expenses, travel, meals, or airfare, depending on exchange rates and your own spending habits. Classroom or lab fees are not included in this estimate and will depend on your course registration choices.  

Don’t forget to apply for scholarships! A great listing can be found here.  

  • Contact:

    For Questions About the Initial Application Process:

    Alexandra Olson
    Coordinator of the Global Engagement Office