Alleviating your concerns about studying and living in Japan.
Useful information for living in Japan.


Applying to Japanese Universities

Applying to Japanese Universities
Applying to school in one’s own country can be overwhelming but applying to school in a foreign nation can present a set of challenges of its own. If you are considering applying to school in Japan, the process is pretty straightforward. It’s simply a matter of knowing what information you need and when to supply the institution with the documents they need. Here are the basics:



Before you can even think about applying to a school, you need to consider whether you are eligible or not. In general, all you need to be eligible to apply for a school are the following:

  • 12 years of education through senior high school (or equivalent) in your home country
    • International Baccalaureate (IB) diplomas are also recognized by many institutions.
  • A valid passport
  • Sufficient funds to live and study in Japan
  • Sufficient Japanese proficiency for your program of study

If you satisfy the above eligibility requirements, congratulations! You may apply to universities in Japan.


Required Documents

It goes without saying that admission requirements will vary from institution to institution and between degree programs. Many colleges and universities ask for the following documents in addition to their standard application forms and fees:

  • A personal statement
  • Reference letters
  • Transcripts and diplomas
  • A valid passport
  • Passport-sized photos
  • Statement of financial eligibility
    • If self-sponsored
      • Original bank statement for yourself
    • If funded by a family member outside of Japan
      • Original bank statements for sponsor
      • Proof of employment for sponsor
      • Income certificate for sponsor
      • A document certifying the sponsor’s relationship to you
    • If funded by a sponsor in Japan
      • A tax certificate with the total amount of the sponsor’s income
      • Proof of employment for sponsor
      • Certificate of residence
      • A document indicating the sponsor’s relationship to you
    • If funded by a scholarship/fellowship
      • Original Scholarship letter stating: 
        • Scholarship amount
        • Duration of scholarship
        • Name of sponsoring organization

The above may seem like a lot of paperwork to get together but keep in mind that some schools may require less and some may ask for more. Please contact the school you are applying to for specifics pertaining to their application requirements.

After passing the initial screening, schools may ask for an entrance exam. If the institution you are applying to does not accept the EJU, you may have to make a trip to Japan to take their test.

If it is deemed that you meet the school’s standards for admission, congratulations again! You can now start to prepare for the visa application process and your new life in Japan.



Admissions for most schools in Japan operate on the following timetable:

April – May Contact school, request information, application materials, and details regarding application requirements.
By June Decide which school you want to go to.
By July Apply to take the EJU and take any other necessary exams.
August – October Submit your application materials and documents.
November – February Documents will be screened during this time. Take the EJU and any other necessary entrance exams.
January – March Receive screening results and/or admission letter.
Receive your certificate of eligibility for the status of residency (COE) and apply for your visa.
Pay tuition and fees and find a place to live.
Reserve/Purchase your plane ticket and travel insurance.
April Classes begin.


Please note that some schools in Japan have autumn admissions. This means that the timeline will be different for them. Also, if you are applying for Japanese government sponsorship the process may be a bit different. In these cases, please consult the school you are applying to or your sponsoring entity for more details.

Though the process may seem a bit overwhelming, good preparation and time management will help to make everything go as smoothly as possible. With perseverance and patience, and a bit of good luck, you’ll be on your way to studying in Japan in the near future!


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