Study in Japan “The Land of Martial Arts and Culture”

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Study in Japan

Your study in Japan is backed with excellent education, knowledge and technology. The country has been offering varied products like digital cameras, electric vehicles, artificial hearts and optical fibres. Do you how much have instant noodles change the dietary life of the world? Also, the famous Karaoke innovation is of Japanese origin. International students can enjoy the beauty of Mt. Fuji, Itsukushima Shrine, Himeji Castle and various other world heritages. In fact, Japan is a country where freedom of religion is guaranteed by the constitution. Counted amongst the countries with the best education system, Japan can be the ideal location to pursue a degree program and gain global exposure. There is an array of universities in Japan that are of national and international importance and studying a program there can help you convert your career aspirations into success. 

Country  Japan 
Capital  Tokyo 
Language  Japanese 
Population  125,480,000
International Students  312,000
Academic Year April – March
Currency Japanese Yen (¥) 
Time Zone JST (UTC+9)

Why Study in Japan?

There are not just a few reasons but many good reasons to study in Japan. Some learners are attracted to the country’s rich cultural heritage while others are fascinated by the high educational standards. Do you know that Japan welcomes nearly 5 million students study abroad annually with more than 1,50,000 foreign students from more than 170 countries? But, what makes it one of the most popular destinations in East Asia? 

  • Japan is a small island nation with high educational standards. Whether you choose STEM courses or a language program, there are more than 700 universities ranked in the top 200 worldwide. 
  • The country boasts to have 22 Nobel Prize winners who have made remarkable discoveries in fields like Physics, Chemistry, Physiology, Medicine, Literature and more. 
  • The chance to study in Japan can be an unparalleled opportunity to live, work and explore a unique culture, deeply rooted traditions, harmonious and serene environment.
  • You can enjoy diverse cuisines like sushi, ramen, soba and tempura, summer festivals and ceremonies in friendly rural villages and global cities. 
  • Moreover, Japan is one of the safest countries in the world packed with an advanced healthcare system that is reflected in its high life expectancy rate.

Japan Education System

Another great reason to study in Japan is because of its unique education system. Higher education in Japan begins after 12 years of schooling: elementary education (6 years of elementary school) and secondary education (3 years of lower secondary school and 3 years of upper secondary school). Japan education system uses a traditional approach to educate the students and impart the necessary skills and knowledge. The table below incorporates the structure of the Japanese academic system with the respective age groups: 

EDUCATION LEVEL DURATION (in years) AGE (in years)
Primary  Nursery (Yōchien)Elementary school (Shōgakkō) 36 3 to 66 to 12
Secondary Lower Secondary (Chūgakkō)Upper Secondary (Kōkō) 33 12 to 1515 to 18
Higher  University (Daigaku) 2-4 18+

International students can be admitted to one of five types of higher education institutions:

  • Technological colleges
  • Professional training colleges (specialised training colleges’ postsecondary courses)
  • Junior colleges
  • Undergraduate universities
  • Graduate schools

These higher education institutions are classified into three groups based on their founding bodies: national, local public, and private.

National Local public Private Total
Colleges of technology 51 3 3 57
Professional training colleges 9 184 2,586 2,779
Junior colleges 17 306 323
Universities(Undergraduate) 86 94 615 795
Graduate schools 86 84 473 642
Study in Japan

Those wishing to study in Japan can take part in Japanese martial arts. You will be surprised to know that Japanese institutions have sent more than 60 athletes to the Olympic games. From training in Judo, Kendo, Karate and Kyudo to learning taiko drumming, Japanese calligraphy, shamisen and tea ceremony, there are endless opportunities in the country.

Are you planning to study in Japan? Continue reading our guide to find out everything you need to know about Japanese universities, visa requirements, the application process, student life and what steps to take next.

Planning Your Studies in Japan

Higher education in Japan starts upon the completion of 12 years of education and to support this there are different types of higher education institutions for students across the world.

Academic Degrees to Study in Japan

You can choose subjects like Economics, Education, Physics, Information Science, Medicine, Agriculture, Engineering, Design, Art, Fashion, Anime, etc. Take the distribution of various academic degrees in Japan in the table given below:

Associate Degree Junior College 2 to 3 years
Associate Degree College of Technology 3 to 3 years and 6 months
Bachelor’s Degree University 4 to 6 years
Master’s Degree Graduate School 2 years
Doctoral Degree Graduate School 3 years
Diploma Professional Training College 2 to 3 years
Advanced Diploma Professional Training College 4 years

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Short-term Study in Japan

Those planning to study in Japan can consider opting for courses teaching Japanese language, culture and comparative culture through:

Short-term Study Japanese Language Institution or Short-term University Program Several months to 1 year
Student Exchange Program University Up to 1 year

Japanese Language Learning

When we talk about Japanese as a language, it is both difficult and easy. The language consists of a total of 46 syllables that can only be pronounced in a single way. In fact, the pronunciation is rather easy because most of the syllables exist in English and other EU languages. Once you master these, you will surely have access to a huge vocabulary. However,  in Japanese, the level of grammar is very high. It consists of 3 writing languages – Hiragana, Katakana and Kanji. The first two have one character per syllabus while the third consists of a couple of thousand Chinese characters and is more challenging. Many schools expect learners to have a basic understanding of Katakana and Hiragana before they start their long-term study in Japan. Are you aspiring to pursue university entry courses or programs to enhance Japanese conversation and Business Japanese? Then consider the following course:

Language  Acquisition Japanese Language Institution Up to 2 years
University Entry Japanese Language Institution or Preparatory Japanese Language programs offered at Junior Colleges or Private Universities 1 to 2 years

Important Exams to Study in Japan

Are you aspiring to study in Japan? Then, start preparing for various examinations that are important selection criteria for your admission to a Japanese university.

Category Exams
English Language Proficiency Tests International English Language Testing System (IELTS), Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), Test of English for International Communication (TOEIC) or the Eiken Test
Japanese Language Skills Examination for Japanese University Admission for International Students (EJU), Japanese-Language Proficiency Test (JLPT)
Proof of Academic Abilities Scholastic Assessment Test (SAT), International Baccalaureate exams, American College Test (ACT), Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT), Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) and test scores of a unified institution entrance exam in India

Top 30 Universities to Study in Japan

The Government of Japan has taken a keen interest in attracting more than 3,00,000 international students by the end of this year. For this, universities in Japan are introducing more courses either taught entirely or partly in the English language. Also, the teaching staff is being recruited from outside the country and increasing youth exchange programs with universities in other nations. Japan has more than 700 universities out of which 80% are private, besides there are specialized colleges offering the vocational types of degrees to international students. Let us take a look at the list of top 30 institutions for you to study in Japan:

  1. The University of Tokyo
  2. Kyoto University
  3. Tokyo Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech)
  4. Osaka University
  5. Tohoku University
  6. Nagoya University
  7. Hokkaido University
  8. Kyushu University
  9. Waseda University
  10. Keio University
  11. University of Tsukuba
  12. Hiroshima University
  13. Tokyo Medical and Dental University (TMDU)
  14. Kobe University
  15. Chiba University
  16. Hitotsubashi University
  17. Yokohama City University
  18. Kumamoto University
  19. Nagasaki University
  20. Osaka City University
  21. Okayama University
  22. Kanazawa University
  23. Gifu University 
  24. Niigata University
  25. Tokyo Metropolitan University
  26. Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology
  27. Kagoshima University
  28. Osaka Prefecture University
  29. Yamaguchi University
  30. Gunma University

Want to get admission to your dream university abroad? Then, Register Here!

Tuition Fee and Cost of Living

It is quite obvious that the average tuition fee to study in Japan is not as high as that in the US and the UK. Your first-year fee for an undergraduate program will be around ¥800,000 at a national university. As for the private university, the fee may range from ¥1,100,000 to ¥1,640,000, excluding medical, pharmaceutical and dental colleges. And, studying in a local public university may cost around ¥930,000. When we talk about the costs of living in Japan, it is around ¥89,000 per month covering rent, food, insurance, entertainment and other living costs.

Japanese Government (MEXT) Scholarship

The Government of Japan offers the following scholarship for Indian students:

Student Type Level of Study in Japan
College of Technology Students Undergraduate level leading to associate degree (diploma)
Undergraduate Students Undergraduate level leading to a bachelor’s degree
Specialised Training College Students Undergraduate level leading to a certificate
Japanese Studies Students Undergraduate level leading to a certificate
Teacher Training Students Undergraduate level leading to a certificate
Young Leaders’ Program Students Master’s degree course
Research Students Research studies (possible  to continue to masters or PhD course)

Top 4 Japan Scholarships for Indian Students You Never Knew Existed!

Accommodation to Study in Japan

It is calculated that approximately 75% of international students in Japan stay in private houses or apartments, although there are student dormitories operated by the local government and universities. Once students receive their letter of recommendation from the host institution, they should start gathering information about housing and accommodation immediately. Points to keep in mind during your accommodation search include:

  • Rent and initial costs?
  • Size and equipment of the room?
  • Distance from the university and the time required to reach the institution?
  • The convenience of the surrounding environment like distance to public transport and convenience for shopping.

Top 20 Animation Schools in Japan

Who is a Joint Guarantor?

A Joint Guarantor is important when international students rent an apartment in Japan. In case you do not pay your rent on time or cause any damage, the Joint Guarantor can pay for the overdue rent or repairs to the landlord. For those with limited Japanese connections, an institution-related person can serve as a Joint Guarantor for the international student.  

Insurance to Study in Japan

There is a Comprehensive Renters’ Insurance managed by the JEES (Japan Educational Exchanges and Services) for international students moving to study in Japan. It covers unexpected emergencies to help students avoid unnecessarily inconveniencing their joint guarantor. In order to reduce medical costs, a system of National Health Insurance (NHI) is available for foreign learners. Those residing for 3 months or more can easily subscribe to NHI (Kokuho). When receiving treatment for illness or injuries, you have to present your insurance card to be eligible for the discounted payment. But, you must check to find out what is included in your medical insurance. Other than this, students can enrol in Casualty Insurance and Personal Liability Insurance plans to cover expenses incurred by unexpected accidents that are not covered by NHI.

Application Process to Study in Japan

Before you begin your application, do your homework by examining the official websites of the universities you’re most interested in, as well as contacting the Japanese embassy or consulate in your area for further questions and information. Given below is a step-by-step guide on how to proceed with your application process to study in Japan: 

Select your Study Area 

Start by choosing what you want to study and what degree of education you want to pursue. Do you want to pursue a career in business, information technology, or medicine? Whatever it is, Japan has a wide selection of internationally recognised degrees. Also, think about whether you want to go to a public or private university, as the admission process may differ.

Check the Admission Requirements 

There are specific admission requirements you must consider when drafting your application for Japanese universities, depending on your goal and academic level. After you’ve decided on a study major, look up institutions that offer courses in your field and contact them for further information. You can also go to their websites for more information. 

Gather all the Documents

This is likely the most time-consuming process, so make sure to obtain all essential documents at this point, depending on the university, academic level, and specific needs. The following is a list of typical university application paperwork:

  • A completed application form signed by the embassy authorities
  • Proof of payment for the application fee 
  • Certificates and diplomas depending on the level you are applying to
  • Copy of your passport
  • Passport sized photos
  • Motivation letter and/or letters or recommendation
  • SOP, CV, essay and LOR.

Here’s a List of Important Documents Required to Study Abroad

Submit Your Application

There is no single online application platform in Japan. As a result, you must submit your application through the university to which you wish to be admitted. If you need further information about your application, contact the institutions of your choice ahead of time, and stay away from any illegitimate university agencies. Pay your application fee and submit it using the university’s site. Pay close attention to each university’s application deadlines and application intake periods.

Apply for a Japanese Student Visa

Congratulations, you’ve made it to Japan and are now officially a student! It’s time to contact your university to pay the first instalment of your tuition costs after you receive your letter of acceptance. Then, as quickly as possible, you must apply for a Japanese student visa. To schedule a meeting and gather documentation for your visa application, contact the Japanese embassy in your home country. It’s also time to acquire the documentation for your National Health Insurance (NHI).

Arrive in Japan

It’s time to start looking for housing choices when you’ve received your student visa and prepared all of the essential documentation for your insurance. Before you go, do some research online and decide whether you want to stay in a student dorm, a guesthouse, or a private room. Pack your belongings, brace yourself, and board an aircraft to Japan. Your ideal study adventure is about to begin!

When to Apply?

Your study in Japan will usually start in April with the second semester beginning in October. Language schools often commence in January or July and short-term courses may start every month at few institutions. If you are planning to go for long-term courses on a student visa, then you need to apply approximately 6 months in advance. Take all the required entrance exams and submit your language proficiency score while applying for admission.

Study in Japan: When to Apply?

Immigration to Study in Japan

If you are planning to study in Japan, you need to first apply for a COE (Certificate of Eligibility for a Status of Residence) at a regional immigration services bureau in Japan. It is recommended to check with your university on documentation requirements when applying as each university may have its own requirements. Later on, you will be asked for evidence showing your ability to pay all the expenses during your stay in Japan. This could be a savings balance certificate or an income certificate.

What is “Student” Status?

The “student” status is given to any international applicant who is planning to study at a university, college of technology, junior college, professional training college or a Japanese language institution.

Student Visa Application

Once the COE has been issued, you can submit the visa application form at the Japanese embassy or consulate in India. Some of the important documents include a valid passport, visa application form, recent photographs and COE. These are essential to enter Japan. A Residence Card (Zairyu Card) will be issued to you if you are residing for more than 3 months which you should carry at all times.

Immigration for an Entrance Exam

If you are travelling to Japan to take an exam, then you must obtain a “Temporary Visitor Visa” at the Japanese embassy or consulate in India. This will permit you to be able to stay in Japan for nearly 15, 30 or 90 days.

Permission to Engage in Activities Other than “Student” Status

As we already discussed, your “student” status is granted for the sole purpose of studying in Japan. However, if you plan to work part-time in the country, then you will have to file an application at a regional immigration service bureau or other such official organisation. 

Temporary Exit from Japan

As an international student in Japan, if you plan to return to India temporarily or visit another country for a shorter span of time, then you must apply for a re-entry permit at the regional immigration bureau or other such organisation. However, you are exempted from this, if you have a valid passport and residence card and return to Japan within 1 year of your departure.

Extension of the Period of Stay

If you wish to extend your stay in Japan beyond the authorised period, then you will have to file for an extension of stay with a regional immigration service bureau at the time of entry into Japan.  Any delay can lead to serious expulsion from the school and the loss of any scholarships, penalties or deportation.

Bringing a Dependent to Japan

Under the “dependent” status of residence, the dependent spouses and children of international students can reside in Japan. However, it is recommended that international students should bring their dependents after they are familiar with the country and are economically stable.

Work in Japan

Are you deciding to study in Japan? You will be surprised to know, that in terms of revenue, Japan is home to some of the leading brands not just in Asia but across the world. Some of these are Mizuho, Mitsubishi Corporation, Nissan, Honda, Toyota, Sony, Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group, SoftBank, Canon. The country boasts to have the second-largest developed economy in the world, largest electronics good industry and third largest automobile manufacturing country. The opportunity to study in Japan is packed with designing electronic goods and high-quality fashion. It is a land of precision and creativity, so you will be learning from the best! In fact, the Japanese job market is remarkably fluid due to which the demand for an internationally oriented and language-skilled person is always strong. On average nearly 50% of Japanese companies look forward to employing foreign graduates.

Part-Time Work in Japan

In Japan, over 76% of privately funded international students work part-time. On average, they make around JPY 59,000 (INR 39,354) per month. It is impossible to afford all school expenditures and living expenses just through a part-time job. Make sure you have a good financial strategy in place so you don’t have to rely on part-time income too much.

Internships in Japan

Internships allow students who have not yet graduated to obtain experience working in companies in jobs related to their degree or future career. Internships are recognised as part of the educational curriculum at several universities, and they are given academic credit. Please contact your school directly to enquire about internship opportunities and the possibility of receiving course credit. If the internship pays, you’ll need to get “permission to engage in activity different than that permitted under the previously approved status of residence.” Please apply for “permission to engage in activities other than those permitted under the status of residence previously granted” if you want to complete an internship that will require you to work more than 28 hours per week. This necessitates submitting paperwork to a regional immigration services bureau that clearly states the purpose of the internship. Let’s discuss how can students find internships in Japan:

  • University career centre: Make sure to check the office’s bulletin board regularly.
  • Job search websites: These websites post information about a large number of internships in various industries and occupations.
  • Dedicated internship agents: These agents are highly knowledgeable about companies seeking applicants for their internships, so mismatches between students and companies are much less likely.

FAQs

How much does it cost to study in Japan for a year?

Even at private colleges, tuition rates in Japan are normally under US$12,000-18,000 per year, which is far less than foreign fees in nations such as the United States and the United Kingdom.

Can I get a job in Japan?

In Japan, unique sectors and marketplaces develop, providing a diverse range of opportunities that may not be available in the home nations of overseas workers. Keep in mind that in order to work in the business as a professional, many jobs will demand you to have prior experience or specialised talents.

How can I go to Japan to study?

Determine which visa you need.
Apply to a school in Japan.
Fill in the school’s visa application document.
Get your CoE.
Apply at the Japanese Embassy in your country.
Get your visa.
Fly to Japan and when to book your tickets.
Arriving in Japan – landing card and work permit.

Is studying in Japan difficult?

Studying in Japan can be a fantastic experience, but it can also be a frustrating experience if you don’t speak the language. Accept the challenge, learn the basics, be kind to everyone you encounter, and exercise patience.

Which subject is best to study in Japan?

The most popular majors to study in Japan include economics and business, science and technology, education or humanities.

Thus, if you want to study in Japan, the options are innumerable. Take the assistance of experts at Leverage Edu who will help you write an impeccable statement of purpose and will guide you through the entire admission process. You can also use our AI tool to gauge your skills and interests and find the best suitable course for you!

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