Need a place to study? How about a Gongbu Bang?
There are 2 major variations of Gongbu Bangs (공부방), or Study Bangs within South Korea. They could either be mini tuition centres and self study areas for students. For this article, I’ll be talking about both, but more on the latter!
Similar to most Asian countries, South Koreans can be hardcore when it comes to studies. School hours can stretch on till late at night, and even then they have to go to cram schools! (Tuition centres with intensive classes similar to juku in Japan).
These mini tuition centres tend to look like a normal house or small library but it is run by a single teacher. He/She tends to focus on a few particular subjects like Mathematics and the sciences, languages like English/Korean/Others or even the arts. They may other staffs to help run day to day tasks, but they aren’t exactly allowed to have other teachers.
These types of Gongbu bangs are more personal and student focused rather than the massive cram schools. The fees themselves seem rather decent, as they are about 1 million won (roughly $900 USD) per month per student for a class of 10-20 students. Though they will differ greatly depending on the location and type of class you choose (Arts and music classes tend to have extravagant prices!)
Now, when they aren’t studying with a teacher, a good number do study on their own. However like most of us, we face the problem of finding the ideal location to study where learning is conducive and free of external distractions like noise and electronics. This is where self study Gongbu Bangs come in.
These study rooms resemble our typical libraries but, they are a bit more personalised! Apart from the normal large tables in the main room, these Gongbu Bangs have individual rooms for group studies and cubicles for self studies! Even then, there are 2 types of cubicles, the first being something that we are accustomed to:
As strange as it looks, this is a study box. Just like how it looks, it’s a small box for you to study in, and it is customised to help accommodate all your learning needs. It is big enough for you to fit in and place all your revision materials and solid enough to give you some privacy, silence, and solitude as you focus on your work.