You are currently viewing How to apply to study in Japan for international students?
Study in Japan

How to apply to study in Japan for international students?

The greatest attraction of studying in Japan is the academic environment where you can learn cutting-edge technology and acquire the knowledge that has enabled tremendous economic growth after the war. Study in Japan is a very good alternative for international students instead of studying in Korea, studying in Australia, studying in the UK, and studying in the USA.                      

Japanese universities and other universities can offer courses and research programs in virtually every field, including electronics, Japanese literature, medicine, and international business research. 

Many international students are studying at educational institutions such as Japanese universities and vocational colleges. Their number has increased rapidly since the 1980s and the majority of students come from China and Vietnam.

Even in Japan, the percentage of students attending universities (undergraduates) and junior colleges (regular courses) is extremely high at 56.2%. This number shows the high level of education in Japan. Many higher education institutions, such as universities and junior colleges, have excellent research, computing, and library facilities that allow students to conduct research in an excellent environment.

This article covers everything you need to know for studying in Japan like applying to study in Japan, expenses for studying in Japan, top universities in Japan,  scholarships for international students in Japan, and much more.

Why study in Japan?

There are many reasons to study in Japan. The cultural experience comes first. Japan is firmly rooted in East Asian culture, but it also has a strong influence on Western and American culture. But beyond that, you have a truly unique Japanese culture like no other.

Social life

Japan is a safe country with a low crime rate and most people are very polite. They also expect you to act the same, but if you look like an alien, you can escape with a lot of things. Japanese service is the best in the world and you will never fall. Whether you go somewhere cheap or buy a discounted side dish at a local supermarket in the evening, the food is great.

Japanese education system

The population of Japan is known to be the most educated and skilled population in the world. This is one of the key factors behind the country’s post-war economic boom and rapid growth.  International education in Japan

Japanese language schools play an important role in the cultural and social preparation for foreigners to function in Japanese society, pursue higher education and participate in the labor market.

Japanese-language school

Japanese is the gateway to Japan, whether you are studying, working, or wanting to make the most of your stay. Therefore, most students start learning Japanese at a language school. You can take a short-term language course of 2-12 weeks or enroll in a long-term program.

Japanese universities with English programs

Japanese universities offer a 4-year undergraduate course, a 2-year graduate course, and a 3 to4-year doctoral course. The school year begins in April and ends in March, with summer vacation from mid-July to early September and winter vacation from late December to early January.

The highest-ranked universities are Tohoku University, Kyoto University, and the University of Tokyo.

Employment Opportunities

Students can work part-time in Japan. Work allowances for a specific time of the week and you get enough money to support yourself. This is very useful as part-time income helps you survive in this country.

Why study in Japan from Nepal?

  • Start your adventure in Japan, which is probably the best place to learn technology, science, and finance. By studying in Japan, Nepalese can achieve their technology dreams and goals.
  •  By studying abroad in Japan, you can learn not only technology but also the ethics of time, values, and mutual respect.
  • Japan is also remarked as the safest country in the world. So, you’ll be quieter and don’t be afraid to live and study there. 
  • Japan has spent most of its annual budget on technology, science, and pharmaceutical research and the development of educational systems that provide education to all people in the country without discrimination in caste or level.
  •  Japan is good for middle-class students as it is not so expensive.
  • Japan has a very high level of education and is renowned for its engineering, business, and arts courses.


In case you have well processed the decision to study in Japan, now a very crucial step of getting along is the judgment and collection of requirements. The foremost requirement of consideration includes:

1. Funding: Documents that prove your ability to afford the cost of living, studying, and health insurance during the time of the study.

2. Decent academic performance: You need to have completed 12 years of formal education in your home country. In the case of a diploma, an accredited high school score is mandatory.

3. Japanese language: Japanese is the gateway to Japan, whether you are studying, working, or wanting to make the most of your stay. So, a strong command of the Japanese language is a very integral factor.

4. Student Visa: A secured and valid student visa is the final requirement to study in Japan.

Japanese universities usually accept students twice a year. Students can enroll in either the Spring Semester (November / April) or the Fall Semester (March / September). If it starts in the spring semester, it should start in November. In the fall semester, the process will begin in March as well. The following documents are required when applying to a Japanese university.

  • University application
  • Personal explanation letter
  • High school/university transcript (for undergraduate students)
  • Certificate of Completion (for graduate students)
  • Documents for passing standardized tests (SAT, TOEFL, GRE, etc.)
  • Copy of testimonial and passport

How to apply?

There is no unified online application platform. This means that international students need to visit the website of their favorite Japanese university and submit their applications.

Application requirements

  • Recommendation letters from past teachers and professors.
  • Proof of sufficient finances to support your studies and living costs in Japan.
  • High school grades or an accredited high school diploma score statement.
  • Original copy of your valid passport.
  • 6 passport photos.
  • Health certificate.
  • Customs clearance certificate from the Ministry of Interior of your country.
  • Pass the college entrance exam.
  • In addition to language-related questions, the exam also includes basic academic questions.
  • Pass the TOEFL exam.

Depending on the course you choose, the university may request additional documentation. Please note that these documents must be translated into Japanese or English before they can be submitted.

Admission Test:

Many Japanese universities use the Examination for Japanese University Admission for International Students (EJU) to determine if an international student has the academic abilities and Japanese language skills required to enroll in one of the undergraduate courses.

 EJU evaluates four subjects:

  • Japanese as a foreign language
  • Natural sciences (basic physics, chemistry, biology)
  • Japan and the world (basic liberal arts, critical thinking, and logical skills)
  • Mathematics (basic knowledge of mathematics)

Top Japanese Universities

Some top Japanese universities that practice EJU evaluation as per 2021 records are as follows:


Although Japan is a cheaper country, proper planning of your budget smartly can help you get better. Estimation of your finances and grooming them effectively as an abroad study is quite challenging stuff. 

The approximate expenses are listed below to ensure that you consider funding for accommodation, food, health coverage, and travel along with your tuition fee when calculating the estimated cost of studying in Japan.

Tuition fee

The best thing about Japan is that international students have to pay the same fee. Most schools in Japan charge an entrance fee in the first year. The tuition fee for the first semester is about 50,000 yen. A total of about 750,000 yen (about 7,000 US dollars) is required for the first year. 

For public universities, the fees are slightly higher and can be as high as $ 8,000. Similarly, the cost of a private university is about 15 grants per year. However, fees may vary from school to school. For example, a vocational school like Senmon Gakko (high-end) costs about $ 11,700. Technical subjects such as medicine, health, engineering, and art are a little more expensive, but liberal arts and business degrees are much cheaper.

Living Expenses

Another investment to make besides tuition is living expenses. This includes food, housing, electricity, and transportation. Living expenses also depend on the city you are staying in. Of course, small cities are cheaper than big cities like Tokyo. 

Living expenses vary mainly depending on the accommodation. A decent apartment at a reasonable price can save a lot of money. 

The misunderstanding that Japan is very expensive is not entirely true. Food is considered very cheap here with great quality. Also, you can find decent power and transport services as well.

List of scholarship programs for international students:

  • JFUNU Scholarships for Ph.D. in Sustainability Science
  • Fully-Funded Rotary Peace Fellowships
  • JFUNU Scholarships for MSc in Sustainability Programme for Developing Country Students
  • Japanese Government (MEXT) Scholarships for Young Leaders Program at GRIPS
  • ADB-Japan Scholarship Program for Developing Countries in Asia and the Pacific
  • The National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies (GRIPS) Scholarships
  • Japanese Government Scholarships for International Undergraduate Students

Life of international students in Japan

Japan is a leader in cutting-edge innovation in science and technology. Japan also boasts an impressive higher education system that engages in research and development. Interestingly, Japan also has the second largest number of Nobel laureates in any country in the world. In short, the quality of education is very high and important for Japanese people.

Unless you’re in a science lab, college life is a lot of fun. Students are observed to be staying many nights in the lab well past midnight to get data from experiments. Still, there is a dynamism in it that can be very attractive for the whole period of study to graduation. 

Public universities and a couple of very famous private universities have good funding in comparison to others. So, the facilities and supplies for research and learning could facilitate better. The quality of education is about average, or less with good quality research in certain departments. 

Japan is on a path of growth and exploration rather than perfection. A bit of mixing of cultural aspects, cuisine, and the noble experiences of dealing with Japanese society are the main motivations of students. They can be really unique, not in a bad or good way, just in a different way.

Opportunities after study

International students get to study, live and work for up to four years after completion of their studies as per the new post-study work stream visa offered by the Government of Japan. The standardized exam scores need to be presented in order to apply for a working visa.

There are several fields of work with great salaries offered to international graduates in Japan. Some of them are listed below along with the Average Annual Salary.

  • Medical and Health Care, 9,220,000 JPY (79,830 USD)
  • Science and Technical Services, 8,270,000 JPY (71,621 USD)
  • Real Estate, 6,990,000 JPY (60,523 USD)
  • Education, 6,550,000 JPY (56,728 USD)
  • Finance and Accounting, 6,360,000 JPY (55,082 USD)

Leave a Reply