OBJECTIVES: There are only a limited number of studies on instruments assessing fatigue in university students, although fatigue exerts negative influences on their health and academic performances and fatigue-related complaints are more frequently reported in young adults than middle-aged adults. The aim of this study was to validate the 9-item Fatigue Severity Scale (FSS) among university students including both undergraduate and graduate students in South Korea. METHODS: A total of 176 university students completed a battery of self-report questionnaires, including the FSS, the Brief Fatigue Inventory (BFI), the Beck Depression Inventory-II (BDI-II), the Beck Anxiety Inventory (BAI), the Medical Outcomes Study Short Form 36 version 2 (MOS-SF36v2), and the Inclusion of Community in the Self Scale (ICS). The data were collected from February of 2012 to June of 2012. The reliability, convergent validity, divergent validity, and exploratory factor analyses were conducted to assess psychometric properties of the FSS. RESULTS: The mean FSS score was 3.20 (standard deviation = 1.43). The FSS demonstrated an excellent internal consistency (Cronbach's alpha = 0.93) and item-total correlations ranged from 0.56 to 0.90. Correlations of the FSS with the BFI (r = 0.71, p < 0.01), BDI-II (r = 0.54, p < 0.01), BAI (r = 0.46, p < 0.01), MOS-SF36v2 physical component summary (r = -0.28, p < 0.01), MOS-SF36v2 mental component summary (r = -0.55, p < 0.01), and ICS (Spearman's rho = -0.07, p = 0.33) showed acceptable convergent and divergent validity. Exploratory factor analysis defined one underlying factor (eigenvalue = 5.67) that explained 93.50% of the total variance. CONCLUSIONS: To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study to investigate reliability and validity of the FSS in university students. The FSS exhibits good psychometric properties for evaluation of fatigue among university students in South Korea. Since the FSS is easy to administer, score, and interpret, it could be a useful tool in research and practice for assessing fatigue among university students.