Japanese Studies HKU School of Modern Languages and Cultures HKU
HomeStaffProgrammeStudy in JapanScholarshipsInternshipStudentsNews LinksContact Us

Study in Japan

Exchange Programmes in Japan

Akita International University is a brand‐new institution that was established in 2004 in the northern part of Honshu. It is innovative and experimental with a student body of only 500+. The medium of instruction is English, with the exception of the Japanese language courses for International Students. It offers two tracks, Global Studies and Global Business, and an extensive Japan Studies Program for international students
Hitotsubashi was established in 1875 by the Meiji government as the Tokyo College of Commerce to promote studies in commerce and economics. It has three faculties – commerce, economics, and law and social sciences ‐ each of which is of a very high standard. Although it is one of the smaller national universities in Japan, it maintains its reputation as one of the top universities in the country, especially in business and social sciences.
Hokkaido University of Education, Sapporo, is located in the metropolitan capital of Hokkaido, the northern most of the four main islands of Japan. It was first established in the mid‐Meiji period (1886) as a normal school (a teacher training school) and became a national university in the postwar period. The subjects it covers range broadly from Arts (including Music and Fine Arts) and Social Sciences to Natural Sciences. It has special Japanese Language and Japanese Studies programmes for foreign students. It welcomes all students who are interested in Japanese language and Japanese Studies to its small, friendly campus outside the scenic city of Sapporo.
International Christian University (ICU) was established after World War II along American university lines with considerable aid from American educational and religious institutions. Since then it has established a strong reputation in the field of international education and maintains extensive exchange programmes with universities in many countries. Foreign and Japanese lecturers offer a wide variety of courses in English and Japanese many of them focusing on Japan itself.
Kansai Gaidai University started in 1945 as a small, private language school outside Osaka. Its origins are reflected the name of the institution, Kansai Gaidai (Kansai University for Foreign Studies), and its academic emphasis is on foreign languages studies, and regional studies, including Asia. Exchange students from the University of Hong Kong will be placed in its Asian Studies Programme, which covers the history, culture and contemporary society of Japan, as well as of other countries in the region. The medium of instruction of this programme is English. Japanese language is an important part of this programme, and is required for all foreign students at the university.

Keio University was founded in 1858 by Yukichi Fukuzawa, a renowned intellectual in the Meiji periods whose portrait is on the 10,000 yen banknote. As the oldest private institution of higher learning, Keio is highly selective and holds a prestigious ranking among the universities in Japan. It boasts a strong alumni network throughout the world, including in Hong Kong. Keio’s eight faculties – Letters, Economics, Law, Business and Commerce, Medicine, Science and Technology, Policy Management, and Nursing and Medical Care – are spread over its five campuses. Exchange students attend Japanese languages courses as well as Japanese and International Studies courses taught in English on its main campus in the Mita district of central Tokyo.
Kobe University is one of the oldest and largest national universities in Japan. Its history traces back to the establishment of Kobe Higher Commercial School in 1902. Kobe University has 11 faculties, 14 graduate schools, 1 research institute and many centres, covering 4 scientific disciplines, namely the humanities, social sciences, natural sciences, medicine and life sciences. About 1,000 international students from 70 countries are currently studying at Kobe University. The University has academic agreements with 170 universities and institutions in 35 countries.
Founded in 1897 in the ancient capital of Japan, Kyoto University is the country’s second oldest university. It is one of the world’s leading research universities with six Nobel Laureates. It is a comprehensive university with over 13,000 undergraduate students in ten faculties – Integrated Human Studies, Letters, Education, Law, Economics, Science, Medicine, Pharmaceutical Sciences, Engineering, and Agriculture. As of 2007, there were more than 1,200 foreign students studying at Kyoto University, mostly as research students. Japanese Language courses are offered by the University’s International Center.
Kyushu University was founded in 1911 as one of Japan’s most prestigious, formerly referred to as imperial, universities, alongside those of Tokyo, Kyoto, Tohoku, Hokkaido, Osaka and Nagoya. Kyushu University is located in Fukuoka, the largest city in the southern island of Kyushu, which has prospered as Japan’s gateway to continental Asia. International students enrol in the “Japan in Today’s World” programme that combines Japanese language courses with an English‐based Japanese studies curriculum. Students can choose from diverse courses on cultural patterns, economics, popular culture, history, literature, law, gender issues, politics, education, global and regional affairs, development studies, and urban psychology. If students possess the requisite language skills, they may be permitted to enrol in regular courses taught in Japanese.
Nagoya University is another former imperial university that enjoys a glowing reputation and has a Nobel Prize winner among its faculty members. It is a comprehensive university situated in central Japan with more than 15,000 degree students including over 1,100 international students, mostly from Asia. The Education Center for International Students offers various courses, including Japanese languages courses at eight levels, as well as “Introductory Lectures in Japanese Studies” on culture, international relations, and linguistics conducted mostly in Japanese.

Oita University is a postwar national university. It is located in the old castle town of Oita in eastern Kyushu, which serves as a gateway to the scenic Kuju‐Aso National Park as well as to the Inland Sea National Park. It consists of the Faculties of Education, Economics and Engineering. It offers special programmes for foreign students in Japanese Language and Japanese Studies, covering various aspects, including Japanese and local history, Japanese thought, culture, education, economics, politics, technology, and current affairs. Like the Hokkaido University of Education in Sapporo, its relatively provincial locale, far from Japan’s metropolitan centres, enables students to experience Japanese life in a more relaxed, friendly atmosphere.
Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University (APU) is also situated in Oita, Kyushu. It was established in 2000 in Beppu City, an area known for its hot springs. The 5,300‐strong student body is truly multicultural: 40% of students (around 2,300) are from outside Japan and hail from 78 different countries and regions. APU offers almost all of its classes in both English and Japanese. This means Japanese language proficiency is not essential to study at APU.
Founded in 1900 in the heart of Kyoto, Ritsumeikan University, a sister institution 46 of APU, enjoys a solid reputation as a private institution of higher learning and research. Ritsumeikan’s “Study in Kyoto Program” not only offers Japanese language classes at varying degrees of proficiency, it also has courses designed to provide students with a hands‐on introduction to traditional Japanese culture and art. Those who do not yet feel confident of their ability to understand and speak Japanese can choose to participate in the university’s English language‐based “Japan and World Perspectives” track.
Soka University is another postwar private university. It is affiliated with the Soka Gakkai, a lay Buddhist organization. Soka has Faculties of Arts, Law, Economics, Management, and Education. It also has the well‐established Institute of Japanese Language, where the teaching of Japanese as a foreign language is undertaken. Soka has been active in building up extensive exchange programmes with many overseas universities. There is a considerable body of foreign students, including many from Asia. With the exception of the language programmes offered by the Institute of Japanese Language, all teaching is done in Japanese.
15 Sophia University is a community based on the spirit of Christianity. We search for truth, we search for values, and we work for the "human" formation of our students. Our university is made up of various members; all of us are expected to participate in the developing of the university as we work in various roles. We share mental attitudes of mutual respect and we share the desire to take joint responsibility for our institution. We recognize and support each other's human dignity and basic human rights.

16 The University of Tokyo, also known as "Todai" was established in 1877 as the first national university in Japan. As a leading research university, Todai offers courses in essentially all academic disciplines at both undergraduate and graduate levels and conducts research across the full spectrum of academic activity. The university aims to provide its students with a rich and varied academic environment that ensures opportunities for both intellectual development and the acquisition of professional knowledge and skills.
Located in the western suburbs of Tokyo, not far from the ICU, is the Tokyo University of Foreign Studies. It is the oldest foreign language institute in Japan. It was established in the closing years of the Edo period, and expanded after the Meiji Restoration, to promote studies in various foreign languages in preparation for the opening up of Japan. It now offers a wide range of courses in many of the world’s major languages and cultures. It is also one of the first universities in postwar Japan to offer courses in Japanese as a second language to foreign students.
Utsunomiya University is a postwar national university. It was incorporated as a university in 1949; however, its foundation goes back to the Meiji period when what was to become its Faculty of Education was established as Tochigi Normal School in 1874. It is located in Utsunomiya, the capital of Tochigi prefecture (about 100km north of Tokyo) and the gateway to the famous Nikko National Park. It is a relatively small university consisting of the Faculties of International Studies, Education, Engineering, Agriculture, and a number of Graduate Schools. Like Oita University, its small size and location in a provincial city make for a more relaxed living environment.
Waseda University, founded in 1882, is one of Japan's top private institutions of higher learning, and is often compared and contrasted with Keio. Waseda is, by far, the largest among our partner institutions in Japan, with a large international student body, and dynamic plans for globalization. Among its 50,000 students, approximately 2,000 are from overseas, including over 500 students from Greater China. Waseda’s undergraduate program is wide‐ranging and consists of several schools, including Political Science and Economics, Letters, Commerce, Social Sciences, International Liberal Studies, Law, Education, Science and Engineering, and Sports Sciences. The main campus is located near Shinjuku, in the northwestern part of Tokyo.
Japanese Studies HKU