Information on studies in Japan

How to enroll in Japanese universities, graduate schools or professional training colleges as an exchange student

Usually, an academic year for Japanese schools starts in April and ends in March of the following year. The enrollment is in April for most Japanese universities and professional training colleges. However, some graduate schools offer a September or October admission program.
In principle, applicants must have completed 12 years of formal school education to enroll in a Japanese university (or a faculty), junior college or professional training college. If the formal school education of an applicant’s country is less than 12 years, it is possible to study in a Japanese language school which has a university preparatory course authorized by the Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology of Japan to become eligible to apply.
In recent years, a number of universities (undergraduate programs) which teach students in English are on the increase. However, in most cases the courses are taught in Japanese, therefore applicants need to have a proof of an advance Japanese language ability of at least N2 level of the Japanese Language Proficiency Test (JLPT) when they sit for a university entrance exam. Under the Nikkei scholarship program, students can take Japanese lessons for a maximum of one year after arriving in Japan. Nevertheless, if students arrive in Japan without knowing any Japanese language, it is extremely difficult to reach the N2 level of JLPT within one year. It is recommended to make an effort to study Japanese before arriving in Japan for those applying for a Japanese-based program.
For enrolling in a graduate school (Master’s degree), applicants must have completed 16 years of formal school education. Applicants do not need to have an advanced level of Japanese language since there are many graduate schools (both Master’s and Doctor’s degrees) in Japan which offer courses in English.
For further details, please refer to the below website of Japan Student Services Organization (JASSO). Applicants should study the ‘Student Guide to Japan’ to prepare well.

日本留学ガイドブック“Student Guide to Japan”

How to find a school to study

Applicants can search for Japanese schools (university, graduate school, junior college etc.) from the below website.



How to select a graduate school

In order to enroll in a Japanese graduate school, applicants need to have a clear idea of a research subject they want to study and search for an appropriate school and advisor. Some graduate schools require applicants to contact an advisor directly prior to submitting an application to obtain an informal consent for enrollment.
Applicants can search for further details from below websites:


CiNii Articles(日本の論文をさがす)