- Location: Japan - Tokyo
- GPA Requirements: 3.0 GPA
- Other Requirements: One semester of college-level Japanese or equivalent. Since Japanese is not offered at Allegheny, the requirement can be met via a summer language course or self-study which is verified by a program faculty member.
- Program Structure: Hybrid
- Application Deadline: February 20 for fall programs and September 20 for spring programs
- Program Term(s): Spring, Academic Year,
- Official Website: Japan Study at Waseda University
Full Year: Mid-September through early August (includes Cultural Internship in Feb/March)
Spring Semester: mid-March through early August
Fall Semester: Mid-September through early-February
About this Program
Japan Study enables students to become international citizens as they explore Japan in depth, build language skills, and experience Japanese culture. Living with a Japanese family, taking courses at Waseda University, and participating in a cultural internship offer different windows for experiencing and understanding the complex society of contemporary Japan.
Language study is at the core of the Japan Study experience and students are required to take six credits of Japanese language each semester at the Center for Japanese Language (CJL). Students also take courses at the School of International Liberal Studies (SILS) at Waseda University. SILS offers a wide array of courses taught in English, covering various topics in Japanese and Asian studies, as well as content courses across the curriculum. Indeed, while course selection varies somewhat each year, students can find classes on subjects ranging from Discrete Mathematics to The History of Pantomime. Waseda professors, who come from Japan and around the globe, teach these classes.
The Cultural Internship (CI) is a once in a lifetime opportunity for students to experience new facets of Japanese culture firsthand. For approximately four weeks during winter break (February/March), students are immersed in a cultural or volunteer experience with local institutions throughout Japan. Many students describe the Cultural Internship as one of the highlights of Japan Study.
Before departing for Japan, students will take the CJL (Center for Japanese Language) Level Check Test, which ranks their Japanese language ability on a scale from 1 to 7. Students Level 5 and below must enroll in 6 credits of language courses each semester. Students who score at Level 6 are only required to take 3 credits of Japanese language, and those scoring Level 7 and passing a listening and reading test or JLPT N1 are exempt from taking Japanese.
Enrollment in 8 credit hours of SILS lecture courses at the intermediate or advanced level is required for students taking 6 credits of Japanese. Additional SILS credits are required for students who test out of Japanese. Students have the option of taking up to an additional 6 credits, in either SILS courses, CJL courses, or an additional foreign language (Spanish, Korean, Chinese, etc.). Typical course-loads consist of 6 credit hours of Japanese Language per semester and 12 elective course credit hours. Students are required to take at least 8 credits of SILS lecture courses and 6 credits of Japanese language courses.
Courses taken with local or other international students.
In SILS (School of International Liberal Studies), the one-year/semester program is called Study Plan 3 (SP3). SP3 students are required to take at least 8 credits of SILS lecture courses and 6 credits of Japanese language courses.
For a full list of course offerings, visit Waseda University’s website here. Search through their course catalog with the instructions on the website.
One semester of college-level Japanese or equivalent. Since Japanese is not offered at Allegheny, the requirement can be met via a summer language course or self-study which is verified by a program faculty member.
Housing & Student Life
During their time in Tokyo, students live with a Japanese host family. This allows them to learn about Japanese society through immersion in the most basic social grouping in any culture: the family. Students improve their language skills, discuss current events, participate in holiday gatherings, and enjoy everyday activities with their host families. It is not uncommon for students to keep in touch with their host families after leaving Japan. Indeed, some alumni are still close with their Japanese families decades later, inviting them to their weddings and introducing them to their children.
Each host family is unique. Students have lived with small children, retired couples, large extended families, or just a single person. Homes may be old and traditional or modern and Western. Some host families speak fluent English, and some know only basic words and phrases. Learning to adapt and be flexible is an integral part of the experience abroad, and most students consider their home stay to be one of the highlights of their time in Japan.
Students are interviewed upon arriving in Japan and matched with the host family that best suits their lifestyle and expectations. Families furnish breakfast and dinner, and students typically have private rooms. In special circumstances, alternative living arrangements are allowed. Arrangements must be proposed during orientation and approved by the Resident Director and Program Coordinator in Japan. Contact our office for more details.
Fees & Costs
Students are charged Allegheny tuition, a $800 off-campus study fee, independent living room rate, and a complete meal plan. Allegheny financial aid, except work study/campus employment, is applied toward the program. Program fee includes housing, breakfast and dinner, commuting expenses in Tokyo, and Cultural Internship. Extra costs include round-trip transportation to Japan (approx. $1,800-$2,000), Japanese National Health Insurance (about $25/month), lunches, books, cell phone contracts (about $20-$80/month), personal expenses.
Allegheny students must apply for approval to study off-campus from the Global Education office AND apply directly to their chosen program.For this program, students should work on the Allegheny approval application at the same time as the host program application. The Allegheny approval application deadline is February 20 for fall programs and September 20 for spring programs. Study away approval applications will be reviewed immediately following the appropriate semester deadline. The separate application deadline to apply directly to this program will vary and could be before or after Allegheny’s approval application due date. Check directly on their website (linked at the top of this page) for deadline information. For more information about the study away application process, please visit the application steps page.