Lexis Korea Korean Language Program Review

Location
Jung-gu, Seoul 100-101, Korea

Review

Lexis Korea is one of several private Korean language providers located in the heart of Seoul’s famous Gangnam district. They have also established a second campus in Korea’s second largest city, Busan (review to come), but this review will focus on their Seoul campus.

Lexis as a company began with English language schools around Australia, but today has expanded into the Asian market.  Since they are a private institute, rather than university-affiliated, Lexis Korea has a lot of flexibility when it comes to class schedule and course options, and hence is particularly popular with working professionals, short-term travellers, and those preparing for further Korean studies.

 

Affordability

You can join the regular ‘Intensive’ programs at Lexis Korea at any time of the year and for any period of time. On top of this, they also offer more specialised courses, including private tuition. The basic prices (2019) are listed below.

  • Intensive Korean Course (25 hours per week) KRW 280,000-320,000 per week (weekly cost decreases with intended length of study)
  • Intensive Korean Course (15 hours per week) KRW 215,000-245,000 per week (weekly cost decreases with intended length of study)

These options come at a premium but can prove cheaper for learners who do not have the time or resources to invest in a 10-week term university program. The 15 hours per week Intensive course is great for the time-poor, with classes from 9am-12.15pm Monday to Friday. The 25 hours per week program adds a practically-oriented afternoon program which finishes at 3.30pm daily. The afternoon classes offer choices of focus areas for each student, allowing you to further your Korean in a way that is interesting to you.

 

Location

Lexis’ school is located high above the bustling main street of Gangnam below where you can find a plethora of restaurants, bars, and nightclubs – although the premium location definitely commands a premium in these respects. The area is jam-packed (as in, shoulder to shoulder) every day of the week with a mix of office workers, students (attending English academies), and tourists. You can thank PSY for that. There is also plenty of local and nearby shopping with CoEx mall only a short trip away. The famous high-end street of eateries and boutiques, Garosugil, is also nearby,

 

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Housing

Located in the heart of Gangnam, the well-known entertainment district of Seoul, living costs do come at a premium. Student accommodation in the immediate area is hard to come by and is also very costly per square meter! If you do find someplace, don’t expect to be able to afford living in what would be considered a standard sized room in the West!

Studio apartments near Gangnam station will usually demand 10,000,000 KRW key money and around 700,000 KRW monthly rent (or more). If Gangnam is too pricey to live in then there are plenty of housing options further along metro line 2. Subway stations such as Bongchon and SNU station are a short 15-20 minute subway ride and come at a much more affordable price – check another review to find out more about the area.

Lexis Korea also provides a housing service to help students find housing to fit their budget, including various types of accommodation. These include providing language tuition to a Korean family in lieu for free stay, home stay (half board and full board options), serviced apartments, guesthouses, and goshiwons.

Alternatively you can look for a place to live near Gangnam here.

 

Reputation

The majority of former students you talk to who have studied at Lexis are happy with the program. The program is known to be well organised, has a good social atmosphere, friendly staff, convenient for short-term study stints and tends to attract more western students than other academies in Seoul. Lexis is known to focus more on conversational Korean and practical learning via its own designed textbooks, than found at university programs. However, the school does also offer academic focused course programs for those preparing TOPIK exams and entry into a Korean university. Housing is the one common complaint made by past students but to be fair it’s not always easy meeting expectations of students from other countries, and all academies deal with the same problem. Our advice is to weigh up the option of organising your own rent both in terms of cost and convenience versus booking through the academy. Asia Option has a Housing Guide for Korea with useful explanations to get you started.

 

Atmosphere

Lexis is housed in a commercial building in the popular Gangnam district, home to some of Korea’s largest companies and also a hub for education academies. Lexis is run very much like an English academy so it doesn’t have the university campus atmosphere, and instead there is a more of a small family feel to it. The lack of campus atmosphere isn’t much of a concern as most students are not there for long and are keen to explore other areas of Seoul. Combine this with the office workers that will pour onto the Gangnam streets at 7pm and after hours party goers for a truly eclectic mix.

Staff and teachers are very friendly and helpful and much easier to liaise with than most big universities. In terms of student demographics, Lexis attracts predominately western students from Germany, France, Sweden, America, Canada, Australia and the UK; with 70% students from western countries and 30% from countries in Asia. The typical age of students is late teens to mid 20’s who are on study vacation or filling in time before finding work. 

 

Opportunities

Students at Lexis really appreciate the excursions and cultural experiences on offer, as the school viewing these cultural activities as an important part of the learning process. Leveraging their knowledge of the English teaching industry, Lexis have cleverly combined language courses with extensive extra-curricular activities, including company visits, university tours, cultural activities, and group ‘meet ups’ (open to the public). They also provide cooking classes, classes based on popular Korean dramas, and a wide range alternative class options.

The school has a large professional/English teacher population, which can open some doors if looking for work-related opportunities.

Lexis is also unique in offering pathway courses. The school offers language classes which are recognised as a pathway program for faculties offering degree programs at both Gangkuk University and Hanyang University.

 

Asia Options Verdict

It is good to see that the Korean language is becoming more accessible outside of the universities’ monopoly. Korean language schools like Lexis have positioned themselves to provide the whole experience, developing travel programs, interesting classes, extra-curricular activities, pathway programs, and good support services including housing arrangements.

The level of service and their tailored approach to learning at Lexis Korea is more likely to be better than you could receive at a large university.

For the long-term learner it might not be the best choice since the course is not necessarily structured as a long-term program, but for a working professional in Korea, English teacher, or a summer student with time constraints, then it’s hard to go past Lexis Korea. Lexis provides a lot of flexibility as you can join and leave courses when you want and you have the option to pay weekly. This flexibility comes at a slightly higher cost, especially compared to long-term university programs, but they no doubt give a range of options above and beyond university programs. If you can’t make the fixed schedules of university programs work for you, Lexis is likely to have a much better option for you.

However living in Gangnam where the school is located may not be the best option, as it is probably the most expensive area in Seoul.
What Students Say... 5 Leave your rating
An amazing experience!
I have studied at two language schools in Seoul now, but I am very glad that I found Lexis for the second time. Classes are great, the mix of nationalities among the students is amazing and my teachers were the best I've ever had. I will be back!
December 4, 2018, 5:06 am
Affordability10
Location10
Reputation10
Opportunites10
Atmosphere10
0
2
I love Lexis
This was my first trip to Korea and i was so nervous, but I loved it. Lexis is a great place to study korean!!!
May 12, 2017, 6:11 am
Affordability10
Location10
Reputation10
Opportunites10
Atmosphere10
0
5
10 weeks...lots of study but good fun, too
I'm a high school language teacher and I set the bar pretty high for language classes, but Lexis met and exceeded everything I could have expected. The course is very intense, but there's heaps of support and it felt achievable. There's a great social scene and I don't think I've slept for the last 3 months. Very good experience and I strongly recommend it.
March 13, 2017, 3:44 am
Affordability9
Location10
Reputation10
Opportunites10
Atmosphere10
1
7
Fantastic experience!
I studied at Lexis for 12 weeks, ending in February 2017.

Lexis was a great study experience. The school is 'mid sized', with about 120 international students when I was there, and many local students who are studying English. It was very easy to meet local people to exchange language, and for me this was a huge positive.

Classes are fast - really, really fast. I studied Japanese previously at university, but I think learned more Korean in 12 weeks at Lexis than I did in 3 years of Japanese study at university. Teachers are very professional and keep the class moving. I have only positive things to say about the classroom experience.

I don't understand the feedback on this page about accommodation. Lexis books students into a local goshiwan, and they are all the same or at least very similar, no matter which school you study at. A few people in my class stayed in homestay, and I think that is something that I would choose to do next time, just for the experience.

I don't really have any negatives. This was a great experience for me, and I will probably come back to Lexis (and Seoul!!) next summer. I give Lexis a 'strong recommend'.
March 9, 2017, 9:08 pm
Affordability8.5
Location10
Reputation10
Opportunites10
Atmosphere10
0
11
At your own risk
I would suggest not going here or be prepared as they have no problems lying and attempting to squeeze all the money they can from you. If you can help it don't book an accommodation with them. You can find better and cheaper things on craigslist (search for castlefine in the housing section). They say it is 12 square meters and that is laughable. I got there and it was 5 at best. I literally had about 1 1/2 sqft of unoccupied floor space which ended up being occupied by my luggage. (I lived in Japan so I am not exaggerating on size. I know small rooms). The fridge was right under the desk which means you can't sit at the desk. They only outlet is under the desk when it is almost impossible to reach so I hope you don't need to charge more than 1 thing. (only 1 open outlet anyway) You also coudnt open the fridge since the chair blocked it and it opened towards the bed instead of away and since it is against the opposite side of the desk you get a few inches before it hits the desk chair but you need to practically stand in the bathroom to reach inside enough to keep something in the door. I contacted them within minutes of entering the room. They tried to tell me it was 12 sqr meters and it includes the bathroom. Well the none bathroom section is only 6x5 foot room and the bathroom was about 6x2 so you are looking about about 6x7 or 42sq ft. 12 square meters is approaching 130sqft. They had no other rooms so I found my own place. I had to work remote while in Korea and I needed to be able to use a desk. Oh, they also had charged $1k USD for this room for 5 weeks. Then they said they wouldn't refund me $400 of that. 100 for the finding fee then 300 for two weeks rent. Accept their paperwork says that 2 weeks rent is only for home stays (which are an option) but they said "that isn't what we meant". $1k was a decent price when you think you are getting 12 sq meters in Gangnam. This room would go for about $200 in a normal situation.

Now let's talk about the books. It cost me $100 for books for 5 weeks. Their "books" are printouts that look like they went to Kinkos or some other shop and had them binded. In fact, they probably did. I went to Sogang last summer and the books were much cheaper. I want to say less than $50. These were real books. You got a text and workbook of professional quality and they are exclusive to their program so it isn't like they are just using someone else's book.

Now the teacher I had was nice and the classes move fast. Ex you would learn past, present, and future verb conjugation in a single day. I would say the best use would be to start there to prep yourself so you don't get in a lower level at the school you are really going to learn at. You will probably test under your level especially if you are lower level and this gives you a chance to review and get your feet wet in Korea. The only other reason I could suggest it is the reason I took it in the first place. It is flexible and you can start and end any time.
April 19, 2016, 8:04 am
Affordability5
Location8
Reputation0
Opportunites3.5
Atmosphere5
4
6
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