|Programs for International Students
University Programs for Learning Japanese
Many students wish to study Japanese with a view to later taking an undergraduate or
postgraduate course at a Japanese university. Those who wish to do so typically study the
language and perhaps related subjects for one or two years before sitting the entrance
examination for the university.
Such preparatory Japanese-language courses for foreign students are offered by private
universities as regular courses within the curriculum. These courses, which often include
Japanese society and culture among the subjects, are usually taught in Japanese, though some
universities do offer courses in English. With some schools, students who later wish to enter
undergraduate or postgraduate courses at the same university – rather than elsewhere – may
receive special benefits and procedures, such as waiver of the admissions selection process.
Other institutes, such as specialized training schools and various language schools, also offer
preparatory Japanese-language courses, but prospective students are advised to check whether
a school has been officially designated by the Ministry of Justice.
To assess proficiency in Japanese for undergraduate and postgraduate courses, some
universities use the Japanese Language Proficiency Test (JLPT), which is designed for people
whose first language is not Japanese to measure and certify their proficiency. This test is
conducted both in Japan and overseas during the months of July and December.