Programs for International Students
Non-degree Programs

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.