The Korea Herald


Korean language test for foreigners to take place 3 times abroad in 2021

Two exams -- one in May and the other in November -- are scheduled to be held only in South Korea

By Kan Hyeong-woo

Published : Jan. 21, 2021 - 16:03

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Screen capture of the Test of Proficiency in Korea (TOPIK) website Screen capture of the Test of Proficiency in Korea (TOPIK) website
The Test of Proficiency in Korean (TOPIK), a Korean language exam for nonnative speakers of Korean, will take place three times outside of South Korea this year, according to test administrators.

The overseas exams are slated for April 10-11, July 11 and October 16-17 and the registration periods for each test are January 29-February 3, May 21-27 and August 3-9, respectively.

Two more exams will be held only in South Korea in May and November.

Anyone who wishes to apply to take the test can refer to a nearby designated institution, such as the Korean Education Center in their area. Test venues are located in 311 regions in 87 nations.

As registration periods could differ and the tests might not be held in some regions depending on the local situation, such as an increased number of coronavirus cases, test administrators advise people to check with their designated institution first.

Administered by the National Institute for International Education under the Ministry of Education, the TOPIK aims to set a language learning path for those who do not speak Korean as their native language and promote the Korean language by officially evaluating Korean proficiency.

The test results can be used for receiving scholarships from the Korean government, attending Korean universities, getting a job at Korean companies or public institutions, obtaining permanent residency or other specific visa types in Korea and acquiring a Korean language instructor certification.

More detailed information about the exam itself, registration procedure and test venues are available on the TOPIK website (

By Kan Hyeong-woo (