After you’ve passed the first an second stages of the KGSP application process (ie been approved by a university or embassy and also by NIIED), you will be required to get a medical examination.
There was mucho confusion regarding this medical exam amongst the 2014 acceptee pool, so I would like to clarify some things.
First of all, it seems very detailed (asking about teeth, mental state, etc), but that doesn’t mean you need to go to a hundred different specialists.
I, conveniently, had my exam done in Korea, and they checked eyes, height/weight, chest xray (for tuberculosis), blood pressure, and they took blood, urine and stool samples (lovely right?). Other than that they appear to have just looked at me generally and decided everything else was okay.
Now unfortunately, each country has a different medical system and requirements. A lot of doctors may not be willing to sign off so quickly without an actual exam. You will definitely need to find someplace that can at least perform the tests above.
You do not need to send xrays or specific exam results along with the form. [**EDIT** As of 2015 they did ask for specific exam results as well. Check the instructions carefully.] You just need to have your doctor fill in the relevant spaces on the form NIIED provides, and sign it.
The exception to this rule may be the drug test, and largest source of confusion in 2014.
In 2014, although there was some fine print saying a drug test was required, it was not included in the official form for the doctor to fill out. This meant that the doctors didn’t know about it, and many applicants did not have one done – until they were requested to submit one much later by NIIED.
So, make sure you specifically request that a drug test be done, especially if you think it may not be included in the form.
The second problem with the drug test is that NIIED specifically asks for a test called TBPE. Unfortunately, however, TBPE seems to only be available in Korea, and maybe a few other countries. They do mention that if TBPE is not available then you can get another equivalent drug test, but not what drugs the test is designed to detect. The main drugs they are looking for are opiates, marijuana (THC), cocaine, and methamphetamines. If you can get tested for all of these then that is best, but drug testing is not as widely available in some countries. If you can get some combination of these tests, then get what you can (and it wouldn’t hurt to include a note from your doctor about it). If you cannot find any drug tests then contact the Korean embassy in your country. They may be able to tell you where tests are available, or that there are none available and you are therefore exempt from taking the drug test. Make sure you confirm with them though because if someone else from your country is successful at getting tested (inside your country) then not knowing will probably not be an excuse.
I would recommend looking into the availability of drug testing early (even before acceptance if you can without an actual exam) because there is only about one month to complete the exam and these communications can take some time. (You might want to wait about contacting the embassy until after you are officially accepted though.)
If marijuana is legal in your country/state/area (or even if it isn’t) and you do occasionally indulge, I would recommend stopping as soon as you decide to apply for KGSP. A positive result will disqualify you for the scholarship and marijuana (THC) is most definitely illegal in Korea. If you are caught with marijuana in the country, you will be deported, so get used to not using it now.
I am hopeful that NIIED will try to revise some of their forms in order to avoid repeating this year’s confusion, but just in case you should be informed.