High school course in Korea consists of three years. Individuals who graduate from middle schools or pass a qualification exam and/or an assessment that offers equivalent credits can be admitted into high schools. There are four types of high schools- General High Schools, Special-Purposed High Schools, Vocational High Schools, and Autonomous High Schools. Student selection procedures differ by school types and/or school location (e.g., metropolitan or provincial areas). Students are required to pay admission fees and tuition since high school is not considered compulsory education in Korea.
General High Schools provide general education across diverse areas, which account for the major part of all types of high schools. Students are commonly selected based on their academic records and selection examination scores of the region.
Special-Purposed High Schools aim to provide professional education and/or training in specialized areas. Special-Purposed High Schools can be divided into multiple specialty tracks. Science high schools raise intelligent learners in science, foreign language high schools raise talented learners in foreign languages, international high schools raise internationally renowned professionals, arts high schools raise artists, sports high schools raise athletes, and high school customized to industrial needs provide curriculum that is directly linked to industrial sectors. Students for Special-Purposed High Schools are selected based on transcripts, teacher recommendations, interviews, performance examination results, evaluations that assess students' self-directed academic skills, and so forth.
Vocational High Schools aim to provide education that raises creative and intelligent learners in specialty areas through field-based experiments and experienced-centered education in accordance with students' skills, talents, and aptitudes. Diverse vocational education including agriculture/life industry, industry, commercial information, fishery/marine, housework/business and so forth are provided other than general courses such as Korean language, math, English, and social studies based on the characteristics and aims of the high school. Students are selected based on their academic records, interviews, performances, and so forth.
Autonomous High Schools are high schools that have more autonomy in implementing a curriculum compared to other high schools. They employ diverse and specialized educational programs with more autonomy and accountability in school management. There are Autonomous Public High Schools and Autonomous Private High Schools. Students for Autonomous Public High Schools are selected based on academic records and selection examination scores of the region, and students for Autonomous Private High Schools are selected based on transcripts, teacher recommendations, interviews, evaluations that assess students' self-directed academic skills, and so forth.