When you think about studying in Japan, what comes to your mind first? Perhaps studying in a Japanese language school for about 2 years, and then studying for 4 more years in a university, right? What if you could study at a Japanese University right after graduating from high school without losing 2 precious years from your life? What if you could study for 4 years entirely in English?
Here is great news for you! There are many world-renowned universities in Japan offering special undergraduate courses in English for international students. Today you are going to get a crystal clear picture of studying in Japanese universities, as well as in English.
Why study in Japan?
Thinking about studying abroad? If you are not from one of the following countries, the US, Canada, or Australia are probably your top choices. I hope that by reading the article, you may think about your choices again and add Japan to your list.
World Ranked Universities
QS World Ranking 2020 confirmed that, in comparison to the top 500 world-class universities, 14 Japanese Universities managed to top the list and proved the pride of the world-class Japanese education system. For example, The University of Tokyo ranked 22, Kyoto University ranked 33, and Tokyo Institute of Technology ranked 58 in the whole world. Clearly, the academic and research capabilities of the Japanese universities is top-notch. But studying or researching in Japanese is the main obstacle that forces international students to go for American or Canadian universities over Japanese universities. But now, Japan has many top-ranked universities that offer courses in English, and the result is already clear as the number of international students is rising expeditiously.
Low Tuition Fees
In comparison to world-class universities around the world, Japanese universities are quite affordable. For example, the American education system is well renowned in the whole world, but let’s compare the tuition fees of the USA for 4 years with Japanese universities’ tuition fees and living expenses.
Estimated data from “Tokyo International University 4 year Tuition Fee Calculator” compares the price of studying and living near the TIU campus with US universities and finds that a TIU degree is an unbelievable $98,511 more reasonable than an average American university. Therefore, Japan is a great option for students with a low budget aiming for higher education.
Getting the chance to live in a peaceful country
According to 2018 Global Peace Index, Japan was ranked 9th out of 84 countries in the whole world for peacefulness. Besides that, Japan is one of the safest countries in the world. For example, it is a common sight in restaurants to see expensive laptops or smartphones left on the table as a sign of a booked seat where the customer may not even be near the seat for a long period of time. That is how much trust Japanese people have in society!
The crime rate is unbelievably low in Japan. Japan also has the National Health Insurance scheme where patients only pay thirty percent of their total health care cost, which is almost only a few dollars per visit to the hospital. Incredibly cheap, isn’t it?
Endless Scholarship Opportunities:
People say that it is a lot tougher for Japanese students to get scholarships than international students studying in Japanese universities. From my own personal experience, I do not even disagree with this opinion. I also found Japanese scholarships relatively easy to get compared to the scholarships of the US and Canada.
This is where international students should take advantage of the opportunity. There is a saying that a lot of students do not get into American Ivy League Schools because they do not even try to apply for it due to lack of confidence. Same goes for Japanese scholarships as well. Many people lose the desire to try for the scholarships after they see mounds of paperwork that has to be done. So be confident and at least apply!
Some scholarships are given before getting into the school, some are given individually, and some are given through school. The Monbukagakusho Scholarship, Japan Student Services Organization Scholarship, Inner Trip Foundation Scholarship, Japan Educational Exchanges and Services (JEES), Friends of Asian Students along the Tojo Line, and Nitori International Scholarship Foundation are some of the highly recommended scholarships for international students.
Attractive Salary with Boundless Job Opportunities After Graduation: Check In Price.com claims that the average wage per month in Tokyo is around $3,000. Undoubtedly, that is a pretty high salary compared to many countries around the world. The good news is that international students can often find a job after graduating from Japanese universities and live in Japan with a valid working visa.
However, the job hunting process in Japan is totally different from other countries. For instance, if you are going to graduate from university in March next year, you have to start job hunting in March of this year. That means you have started sending resumes, join briefing sessions and/or seminars, and the companies will call for interviews and written exams starting in June. In October, you will have a job in your hand before you even graduate from the University. Isn’t it great?
Getting into Prestigious Graduate Schools after Undergraduate Studies :
Since 2002, Japanese people have been awarded the highest number of Nobel prizes in Asia, and second-highest in the whole world. This statement makes it clear that Japanese people do not compromise with higher education and research. There are many prestigious and famous graduate schools all around Japan. Japan is a great place for international students who want to enter into the academic or research field after undergraduate studies.
Interestingly, Kyoto University has 17 Nobel Laureates (since 2000) in different departments. If you can get into a university like Kyoto U., there is a good chance you’ll be in the same classroom with a Nobel Laureate during undergrad or grad school.
Ganbatte Kudasai (Good luck)!
Learning the Japanese Language Whilst Earning a Degree in English: There are lots of long and short term courses that students can take here in Japan. But getting a language school diploma in 1 or 2 years is one of the favorite choices of international students up until now. Unfortunately, if those students have not already finished their bachelor’s degree from their own country, it can be tough to get a job in a company with a high salary and promotions after several years of work. These students are only learning the Japanese language, while students from English based universities are completing a bachelor’s degree in 4 years, and at the same time learning the Japanese language. Undoubtedly, lack of a bachelor’s degree and special skills stops Japanese school students from standing out in the job field. Basically, while earning a bachelor’s degree in English, university students get extra time to learn the Japanese language.
Be Self Sufficient while earning a Degree: During study abroad in Japan, you can teach English, work in a restaurant, or do any legal work to earn money as long as it is compliant with your visa. It is legal to work 28 hours a week with a student visa in Japan. On average, students can earn around 900 Japanese yen as a part-timer. That means that in a month one can earn about 900x28x4=100,800 Japanese yen from part-time work.
On the other hand, as a student in Japan, one student needs approximately 80,000 to 100,000 Japanese yen a month for accommodation, food, transportation, etc. Therefore, it is completely possible for a student can earn a little bit more than the amount of money he or she needs for everyday expenses.
In addition, in the USA, international students can work for 20 hours a week, while the starting wage is almost the same as Japan depending on the location. Japan has a clear edge here because of the limitations the US has on working hours for students.
Furthermore, one student can easily earn his everyday expenses and decrease the burden of borrowing a huge amount of money from his/her parents. Above all, working part-time does not only make a student self-sufficient, but also it helps improve their Japanese speaking level.
From working in the food industry to working as a part-time English teacher, there is a huge range of job opportunities here in Japan for international students.
A Once-in-a-Lifetime Experience: Those of you reading this article are likely almost finished with your high school life and have spent almost 18 years of your life living in the same place. Are you feeling scared about leaving your parents? Confused whether you should take the big step or not? Trust me! This will be a memorable experience for you! Studying abroad gives you a taste of independence and makes you believe in yourself and makes you stronger as a person at the same time.
This life-time experience comes with endless emotions. You will be happy, sad, homesick, not to mention annoyed after facing so many problems in every step during foreign life. But at the same time, you will learn to tackle all those problems and find solutions to them on your own. That is arguably the most satisfying part of studying abroad. You will come to know yourself better, and make better decisions by yourself which will make you a far better as a person. If this experience can be gained while living in a country like Japan with a unique culture, students all around the world should never miss a chance like this. Want to know more? Continue reading this article and select the universities that suits you the most!
Picture Source: https://www.h-net.org/jobs/job_display.php?id=57013
The University of Tokyo:
The University of Tokyo was founded in1877, and the university claims it is the oldest and largest among all the national Japanese universities. With 3 main campuses in Hongo, Komaba, and Kashiwa, the University of Tokyo has a total of 28,409 students. The university focuses on research, and a great example to understand their success in the research field is the number of times their papers have been cited. The University of Tokyo is heaven for international students who have the dream to work in academic or research areas.
Courses Offered in English: Programs in English at Komba (PEAK):
1. International Program on Japan in East Asia
- International Program on Environmental Sciences
IELTS/TOEFL: 7 or above in IELTS and TOFEL iBT 100 or above
Application Fee : 5,000 JPY
Picture Source: https://www.international-scholar.com/2018/02/21/tokyo-international-university
Tokyo International University: With 1600 students from over 60 countries, Tokyo International University has become one of the best choices in the recent past for international students because of its international environment, scholarship opportunities, qualified faculty members, high quality of education, and campus near Tokyo. TIU offers a vast range of facilities to provide a world-class education to the students, such as a study abroad program at Willamette University (sister city of TIU) in Oregon.
Courses Offered in English:
1. BS.c in Digital Business and Innovation
- B.A. in Business Economics
- B.A. in International Relations
IELTS/ TOEFL: 5.5 in IELTS and 61 in TOEFL iBT
International Cristian University: Founded in 1949, ICU is situated in the heart of Tokyo. With 31 majors offered in English, ICU offers double major degrees to students. A green campus in the middle of the city, the truly international environment has made ICU one of the most cherished universities to the students around the world.
Courses Offered in English: 1. Art and Culture 2. Music 3. Literature 4. Philosophy and Religion 5. Economics 6. Business 7. History 8. Law 9. Public Policy 10. Politics
- International Relations 12. Sociology 13. Anthropology 14. Media, Communication , and Culture 15. Biology 16. Physics 17. Chemistry 18. Mathematics 19. Information Science 20. Language Education 21. Education 22. Linguistics 23. Psychology 24. American Studies 25. Asian Studies 26. Development Studies 27. Environmental Studies 28. Gender and Sexuality Studies 29. Global Studies 30. Japan Studies 31. Peace Studies
IELTS/ TOEFL: 6.5 in IELTS and 79 in TOEFL iBT
Application Fee: 30,000 JPY for regular students
Picture Source: https://en.apu.ac.jp/home/about/content225/
Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University: Situated in the city of onsen named Beppu in Oita
Prefecture, APU is improving rapidly and has already become an attraction for international students. Interestingly, 50% of its students are international, from 91 countries around the world. Students who want to live in a more peaceful and cheaper area than Tokyo, APU can be a great choice for them.
Courses offered in English:
1. College of Asia Pacific Studies (APS)
- College of International Management (APM)
IELTS/ TOEFL: 5.5 in IELTS and 61 in TOEFL iBT
Application Fee: 35,000 JPY
In a nutshell, there is a huge number of universities in Japan which are offering English based undergraduate degrees to international students. There are many more universities with different opportunities or special facilities than just the universities introduced here. Now, it’s your duty to do further research and find the best that will help to accomplish your dreams. So, are thinking about adding Japan to your study abroad destination?
Anik / Bangladesh