Soongshil University is a prominent university in Korea established back in 1897 with a relatively unknown Korean language program. Originally founded by a Christian missionary from America back in 1897, Soongsil is still considered today a private Christian university.
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Like with many other mid-range universities in Korea that offer Korean language classes their options and fees are much more attractive. A single term will cost 1,300,000 KRW at Soongshil, which is almost 400,000 KRW cheaper than the bigger Yonsei and Sogang courses. So if your budget is tight then Soongshil is worth considering.
- Regular Course (200hrs/Term) Mon – Fri 9am – 1pm – 1,300,000 KRW per semester
- Application Fee: 60,000 KRW
Located in Dongjak-gu, Soongsil is conveniently located in the neighbourhood of Sangdo between Chung-Ang University to the North and Seoul National University to the South. A 5-minute bus ride from Chung-Ang University, the university is also situated on Soongsil University Station of Seoul’s subway Line 7 which makes getting to and from uni from anywhere on Line 7 a breeze. There’s also a plethora of buses which service Soongsil which make it one of the most accessible universities in Seoul. The campus is surrounded by a few cheap student restaurants, cafes and bars all in walking distance but it does lack the genuine party scene of Sinchon/Hongdae or even local Sillim. However it is only a short subway ride away from Gangnam so you would not be missing out!
There are many housing options for students in the surrounding neighbourhoods of Sangdo, Cheongnim and Heukseok. One room rentals and officetels are are popular option but would need to be acquired before the start of the semester at the risk of missing out on the best available. Goshiwon’s are another popular and cheap option especially with students however living in a room the size of a shoebox isn’t everyone’s thing.. As SNU is not far it would also be worthwhile to live close to SNU station on Line 2. Cheap, student housing is in abundance, only a short bus ride to Soongsil Uni and not to mention the tempting offer of bars, restaurants and drinking spots – Check out the review for SNU for more details. Housing in these areas and nearby are generally on the cheaper side than other popular areas around universities.
The Soongsil campus dormitory building is located literally right next to the language school and is also a good option for prospective students however there is limited availability.
The building itself is state of the art, separated into male and female living quarters with shared facilities including a fitness centre, cafeteria, laundry room, seminar room and even a 24-hour GS25 convenience store. The room options available are quadruple, double and single and prices vary accordingly. The double rooms are the most popular option for students and offer a clean, modern, furnished room with desk and chair, bed, fridge, microwave and of course Wi-Fi all included.
The dormitory fee is about 400,000KRW a month with utilities included. A great option if you are willing to give up the freedom of living by oneself. You can also save quite a lot on things such as transport and food by choosing this option.
Soongshil is one of the lesser known Korean language options in Seoul. The university itself amongst Koreans has a relatively good reputation and is renowned for its Computer Science and IT departments. The Korean lessons are focused mostly on grammar, speaking and listening, with less emphasis being places on reading and writing.
Soongsil’s student body is much more diverse than what it would appear. Although the majority of students you will find are from China, there are many students from Japan, Taiwan and Turkey just to name a few. It is still not a popular option among native English speakers however which means there are opportunities for native English speakers to find tutoring and other opportunities on campus.
You will also see a few exchange students roaming the campus grounds, however you will find they usually do not speak Korean as most are in Korea for a short-term exchange.
The campus is nice enough in terms of atmosphere, with some nice spots around campus to relax and escape the hustle and bustle of Seoul. Classes are fun and you require your active participation, which make for a fun and interactive learning experience.
Soongshil unfortunately has limited access to job opportunities. Joining student associations is not as easy as some other universities and beside’s campus job boards it will make it difficult to find any part-time jobs or professional networking via this university. However there is a lack of native English speakers on Campus so there may be opportunities to go into private tutoring.
Asia Options verdict
Soongshil doesn’t have it all, but it doesn’t pretend to. The course follows the basic outline and uses the SNU produced textbook. The area around Soongshil is no frills as well and it’s location in central Seoul make it easily accessible from nearby sudent housing areas such as Bongchon, Sillim, Sangdo and Heuksok. While Soongshil doesn’t have anything special, it does supply what is required at a bargain price, and if we factor in the low cost of living in the nearby areas then it makes soongshil one of the best options for the budget conscious.
Uses the SNU Textbook / Outline
Limited Work Opportunities
Limited Social Scene
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