Why should I study in Japan?

The country of stunning temples and shrines, amazing natural landscapes, food and culture...

How to study in Japan?

Around 300,000 international students are currently studying at universities, junior colleges, professional schools and other educational institutions in Japan. Their numbers have been increasing rapidly since the 1980s, with a majority of the students coming from China and Vietnam. Most university courses in Japan are only available in Japanese. However, a small number of universities offer four-year undergraduate degrees with courses taught entirely in English. Furthermore, several universities offer one or more English courses at a master's and/or doctoral level.

Japan's Higher Education System in International Comparison

In this section, we highlight the overall performance of Japans universities on the institutional level per U-Multirank dimension. The table below shows the national breakdown of Japans universities and how they stand across the spectrum of above average (receiving a score of ‘A’ (very good) or ‘B’ (good)), versus below average (receiving a score of ‘D’ (below average) or ‘E’ (weak)). In doing so, U-Multirank offers a clear picture on the country’s strengths and areas for improvement.

It becomes apparent that in general Japan's higher education institutions perform strongest in U-Multirank’s teaching & learning and knowledge transfer dimensions.

National performance: Japan

Percent of all Universities 100% 80% 60% 40% < below Average above > 40% 60% 80% 100% Teaching & Learning 2% 96% Research 38% 37% Knowledge Transfer 22% 66% International Orientation 25% 45% Regional Engagement 40% 46%

How much does it cost to study in Japan? 

Monthly living expenses (including tuition) in Japan for international students on average nationwide comes to about 138,000 Yen. Regionally, the Shikoku region has the lowest living expenses at 104,000 Yen, while the Kanto region has the highest living expenses at 154,000 Yen.

What are the entry requirements for Japanese universities?

A typical Japanese university application requires the following items:

  • References from professors/teachers
  • Proof that you can financially support yourself while studying
  • High school transcripts and/or diplomas

You have to take part on an entrance exam to be able to apply for Japenese universities. While foreign students are not subjected to the sanity-bending rigours of the Japanese exams, they are required to take the Examination for Japanese University Admission for International Students. This includes academic and language testing, and is offered twice a year (in summer and fall, respectively). If you are applying to a university that requires English language skills and you are not a native English-speaker, you may be required to take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL).

How to get a Stipend/Scholarship in Japan?

No matter the reason, paying high tuition fees can be a source of stress for many. However, there are many options for financing your studies, including the use of scholarships. There are various scholarship opportunities available for international students looking to study in Japan. Depending on your country of origin and the level of studies, there are different options for funding. To explore what scholarship options are available, check this scholarship database.

Do I need a Student Visa for Japan?

International students intending to study for more than three months in Japan will need to apply for a student visa. For this, a Certificate of Eligibility is needed, which will be applied for on your behalf by the Japanese institution.

 

Top Student Cities in Japan

 

How do Japanese universities fare in U-Multirank?

  1. In its 2021 edition, U-Multirank covers 41 higher education institutions from Japan.
  2. Japanese universities perform very strong in the dimensions Teaching & Learning and Knowledge Transfer.
  3. Eight Japanese universities reached at least ten top group positions (’A’ score).
  4. The institutions with the highest number of ‘A’ scores are Osaka University (13), Tokyo Medical and Dental University (13), and Tohoku University (11). All three universities have the majority of top group positions in the dimensions Research and Knowledge Transfer.
  5. Three Japanese universities are listed in one of our global ‘Top 25 Performers’ lists: The University of Tokyo in Research Publications (absolute numbers), University of Toyama in Co-publications with Industrial Partners and Osaka University in our new Collaboration Index.
Japanese universities in global comparison

Consumer Basket

Main course

900 ¥

Drinks

430 ¥

One-way ticket

220 ¥

Cinema ticket

1,800 ¥

Useful vocabulary

Hello

もしもし

Bye

バイ

Thanks

感謝

Please

してください

Student report: Japan

Video: Study in Japan

Stay informed about U-Multirank:

Financial Partners:

close Icon

Consent Preferences / Cookie Settings

This page allows you to opt out of optional cookies used by the U-Multirank website.

Once you have set your cookie preferences, we will follow the specific choices you made. Please remember that if you delete your cookies, or use a different browser or computer, you will need to set your cookie preferences again. 

Required Cookies

These cookies enable core site functionality. It is not possible to disable these cookies since our services do not work without them. They are emitted by the CMS and by the U-Multirank Data Collection-API and they hold information about your choices. They are used for functional purposes only and are not valid beyond this session.

Tracking Cookies

These cookies are used to track performance and to monitor functionality of the website. This information helps us to optimize our services. Embedded partners are Google Analytics, Google Tag Manager, DoubleClick and HotJar.