Master-PhD Scholarship in KIST International R&D Academy, South Korea

The Korea Institute of Science and Technology (KIST) was established in 1966 under the auspices of Korean and US governments. The mission of KIST was to assume a central role as the first comprehensive research agency for the promotion of the nation’s economic growth and the modernization of engineering fields. It has since developed into the foremost R&D organization and the foundation of technological development in Korea.

KIST, with its accumulated knowledge and experience, now aims to become one of the world’s top ten research institutes by the year 2016. In keeping with that vision, KIST is proud to open the International R&D Academy.

Since 1990, KIST has produced more than 1,766 professionals with M.S. and Ph.D. degrees through KIST-Academia Collaborative Education Program, which is carried out in partnership with prominent universities in Korea. KIST has also continuously developed and provided training programs for professionals in close collaboration with the Korean Ministry of Environment, the Korea Industrial Technology Association (KOITA), the Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA), and other organizations. With such diverse experience in research and education accompanied by superior researchers, state-of-the-art equipment, and an abundance of funds, KIST aims to offer international educational programs that will produce high-quality professional human resources. Such professionals can lend their experience and expertise in the development of industrial technology in developing countries. Those who complete this educational program will be ready to immediately contribute to the industrial development of their respective countries. KIST will provide a tutorial system in which the educational process produces individuals with not only knowledge but also actual research experience. Such a system is available through close cooperation between industry and the academy, which will provide unique educational programs for the training of professionals needed in the technological advancement of developing countries. KIST will ensure the fullfillment of the individual’s aim, to be at the forefront of technological development, and to meet the fierce challenges of the 21st century. Those with the vision and enthusiasm are welcome to join the International R&D Academy for a bright future and a better society!


Master of Science (M.S.) and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degrees awarded to candidates who complete the required coursework of the corresponding courses.

Air fares
The applicant should cover his/her own airfares.

Applicants, once accepted, must use the letter of admission and the notarized letter of guarantee to obtain the proper visa. Citizens of countries other than Korea must have a student visa or, if already residing in Korea, a permission stamp on their alien registration.

Alien Registration
Foreigners who stay in Korea for more than 90 days have to take Alien Registration procedures.

All applicants need to submit below documents including online application form.

  • Completed Application Form plus Photo (image file)
  • Statement of Purpose
  • Housing Application (if applicable)


  • Resume (Curriculum Vitae)


  • SEALED Recommendation Letters (two)
  • Undergraduate & Graduate Degree Diplomas (Official registrar from your institution needs to confirm that copy of diploma is identical with the origin.)
  • SEALED Official Undergraduate & Graduate Transcripts (1 copy each), Including Grade-Point Average (GPA). Please submit a transcript after seal an envelope.
  • Score report for English Test (TOEFL or IELTS or TOEIC or TEPS). Please submit the original certificate or make an overture to us about relevant website with login details to verify it.
  • Two Photos (Passport Size)

All applicants should keep in mind the admission timetable in IRDA as follows.
Applications for the IRDA program will be accepted twice annually. Admission periods are for both the Fall and Spring semesters. The current deadlines are as follows:

  • for Fall Semester: by April 15
  • for Spring Semester: by October 15

Applicants are strongly recommended to submit their application package before the application deadline. The admission approval notification is made no later than 30 days before the beginning of the semester.

The scholarship awardees will be provided with a monthly stipend 900,000 Korean won(around US $800) for Master, and 1,200,000 Korean won (around US $1,100) for Ph.D. programs throughout their study. No tuition or registration fees are charged.


About KIST
KIST is a research institute. Can it confer degrees?
KIST has functioned as a research institute since its establishment in 1966. However, it does confer degrees through the University of Science and Technology (UST) which was established by KIST and a consortium of 22 other government institutes in Korea.

What is the difference between KIST and KAIST?
KIST and KAIST have similar names and there was a time when the two institutes were one institution, so many people are still confused. Basically, KIST is a research oriented institution located in Seoul, the capital of Korea. KAIST is an academic university in another city, Daejeon. However, KIST has educational programs and KAIST performs research as well.

What is the “Integrative Program” and how do I apply?
This is a combined program in which a student goes directly into the Ph.D program after completing his/her Master’s degree. Students are able to apply to the integrative program after completing 2 semesters of the Master’s course.

Admission FAQs

How can I apply to the IRDA program?
Applicants can visit and see a notice in the pop- up window. Otherwise, just click the short-cut

How can applicants get information about majors which are available in IRDA?
KIST doesn’t have specific majors like other academic universities. KIST has 6 research divisions and students will be attached to one of these divisions. Applicants can get information about our faculty and other academic information through this website and get further information concerning research fields at the KIST website (

I haven’t taken the TOEFL test. Can I apply?
Because all academic instruction in the IRDA program is conducted in English, English is an important criterion for admission and satisfactory performance of research. Moreover, a TOEFL score is required when applying for government scholarships. In consideration of applicants who may have difficulty in sitting for the exam, we also accept IELTS or TOEIC scores (TOEIC 730, IELTS 6.0 or TEPS 680 are also acceptable) The only exemption from the English testing requirement is for applicants who have finished an academic course and have lived more than 2 years in a native English-speaking country (e.g., the U.S.A, England, Australia, etc.).

Can applicants apply using an Institutional TOEFL score?
The international TOEFL administered by ETS is the only type accepted. A score from an Institutional TOEFL exam from a university or other institution will not be accepted.

I have not yet received my Degree. Can I still apply before graduating?
If you finish your course before our semester starts (usually March 1, September 1), you can apply by attaching an official certificate certifying your expected graduation.

When is vacation time?
The Fall semester usually starts in September and the Spring semester in March. Both semesters continue for 16 weeks. After a semester is completed, there are generally 2 months before classes begin again (4 months a year) and vacation can be taken at that time. However, since most of your time will be spent doing research work, which continues year round, most students are not able to take such an extended break. To arrange vacation time, it is recommended that students discuss the matter with their advisors. In usual case, students have 20 days vacation a year under advisors¡¯ permission.

Do I have to contact my advisor before applying?
After an applicant is accepted, the IRDA office will assign an advisor based on the applicant’s prior training and expressed interests. Applicants may get the information about the researchers through the IRDA website and contact them, but it is not mandatory.



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