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Programs : Brochure

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  • Locations: Nishinomiya, Japan
  • Program Terms: Academic Year, Calendar Year, Fall, Spring
  • Homepage: Click to visit
  • Restrictions: SJSU applicants only
  • Budget Sheets: Fall
Dates / Deadlines:
Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Spring 2021 10/01/2020 ** Rolling Admission TBA TBA
Calendar Year 2021 10/01/2020 ** Rolling Admission TBA TBA

** Indicates rolling admission application process. Applicants will be immediately notified of acceptance into this program and be able to complete post-decision materials prior to the term's application deadline.
Fact Sheet:
Fact Sheet:
Program Type: SJSU Bilateral Exchange Class Eligibility: Junior, Senior, Sophomore
Language of Instruction: English, Japanese Housing Options: Apartment, Homestay, Off Campus
GPA Requirement: 2.75 Internship Option Available: No
Eligible Majors & Concentrations: Anthropology, Asian Studies, Business, College of Business, Economics, Global Studies, History, International Business, Japanese, Management, Political Science How competitive is admission to this program?: Not Competitive
Program Description:
    Kwansei Gakuin University
  • Earn SJSU resident credits for all completed courses.
  • Pay your normal SJSU tuition and fees.
  • Use your financial aid and apply for scholarships.
  • Immerse yourself in Japanese culture.
  • Study for one semester or an academic year.
  • Gain an advantage when applying for jobs and graduate school.

Nishinomiya, Japan
PortNishinomiya is a city located in Hyogo, Japan, between the cities of Osaka and Kobe. On April 1, 2005, the city of Nishinomiya celebrated its 80th anniversary. It is best known as the home of Koshien Stadium, where the Hanshin Tigers baseball team plays home games and where Japan’s annual high school baseball championship is held. Nishinomiya is an important commercial and shipping city in the Kansai region with the third largest population in Hyogo Prefecture. 

Hyogo Prefecture, KansaiKansai is Japan’s second largest urban region following the Tokyo metropolitan area. The Kansai region includes Hyogo Prefecture, where Kwansei Gakuin University is located, as well as prefectures of Osaka, Kyoto, Nara, Shiga and Wakayama. Kansai is home to ancient capitals, and rich in historic architecture and cultural assets designated as national treasures, making the region ideal for learning about Japanese culture.
Kwansei Clock tower 2Kwansei Gakuin is one of the most prestigious private schools in Japan which dates back to in 1889, when it was founded by the American missionary, Reverend Walter Russell Lambuth, M.D., in Kobe. The Nishinomiya Uegahara university campus is located about halfway between Kobe and Osaka in the city of Nishinomiya. In 1929, Kwansei Gakuin moved to this campus, which is designed in a "Spanish mission style" by William Merrell Vories (1880–1964), who was a missionary, architect, educator, and entrepreneur born in the United States, worked mainly in Kansai area in Japan.

Kwansei Law SchoolKwansei Gakuin University (KGU) is an independent institution for higher education, offering Bachelor's, Master's, and Doctoral  degrees in over 35 different disciplines to a student body of about 20,000, including approximately 400 foreign students. The University maintains academic standards that rank among the highest of all Japanese universities and colleges. KGU places a large emphasis on producing 'global citizens'; and in 2014 was selected by the Japanese Government as one of 37 Universities nationwide to receive funding under the Top Global University Project
The Kwansei Gakuin University allows students to enroll in KGU undergraduate courses and/or the Contemporary Japan Program (CJP).

Contemporary Japan Program:  There are two tracks available within the CJP: the Japanese Language Track, for students who wish to focus on their Japanese language studies; and the Modern Japan Track, for students who wish mainly to learn about Japan via English-taught courses through a variety of subjects. Students can only choose one track. Note: Students in either track can register for all Japan Studies Courses
  • Japanese Language Track: The Japanese Language Track (JLT) focuses on providing students with the best possible Japanese language education, allowing them to improve the four skills essential to communication: reading, writing, listening, and speaking. It aims to achieve this through both the mandatory Japanese language classes, which are divided into multiple levels from beginner through to advanced so as to meet the needs of all students, as well as through a selection of Japanese-taught elective courses. Students wishing to enroll in this track are required to be able to read and write the two Japanese phonetic scripts, hiragana and katakana, by the time they arrive in Japan (for the lowest level of Japanese language classes, no prior knowledge of grammar or vocabulary is required), and pass a placement test upon arrival at KGU. Students who do not pass the placement test will automatically be moved to the Modern Japan Track.  As well as the aforementioned Japanese language classes and Japanese-taught elective courses, students in the JLT can also choose to enroll in English-taught elective courses. Also, Nihongo Partner's are available for JLT students. Acting as language partners the exchange student’s first semester, KGU local student volunteers assist the exchange students in their practice of Japanese. Only students who are enrolled in Japanese Language Track and apply in advance are able to be assigned Nihongo Partners.
  • Modern Japan Track: Students enrolled in the Modern Japan Track (MJT) will not be required to take Japanese language classes; instead, their studies will focus around understanding and studying Japan through English-taught courses. These courses will be broken down into five main categories: Art and Culture, Business and Economy, Society, Politics and International Relations, and Linguistics. Through these courses, students will gain a deep understanding of contemporary Japan, as well as the underlying cultural, social, and historical background through which modern Japan was formed. Furthermore, students in the MJT can also supplement their English-based studies with elective Japanese language classes if they so desire. Students in this track must in enroll in the 2-credit Japan Studies Course ‘Modern Japan Seminar’. This class will be held once per week, and attendance is closely monitored.
KGU Undergraduate Courses & School of International Studies :

Undergraduate courses are offered both in Japanese and English. In order to take courses offered in Japanese, a student must be fluent in Japanese. Courses taught in English are offered through the School of International Studies in the following majors:

Kwansei Library
  • Political science
  • Global Studies / International Relations
  • Economics
  • Business Administration 
  • Management
  • International Business 
  • Anthropology
  • History 

For a list of courses: Contemporary Japan Program & Other Course Access

Important Information for Fall Semester Applicants: term dates for the Fall Semester at Kwansei Gakuin University overlap somewhat with the beginning of the Spring semester at SJSU.  Fall semester applicants must either make arrangements to start the Spring semester after their exchange program late, or be prepared to take the Spring semester off entirely.  For this reason applicants are advised to apply for the Academic Year or the Spring semester. 
  • Students must: Have sophomore, junior or senior standing by the semester of departure,
  • Be enrolled as an SJSU student for one semester prior to departure, or be a California community college student eligible to enter SJSU by the semester of departure,
  • Have a cumulative GPA of 2.75 or higher.
  • Students applying for the Japanese Language Track must at least be able to read, write, understand, and pronounce the two Japanese phonetic scripts( hiragana and katakana) before they arrive in Japan.
  • Students applying to take regular university courses taught in Japanese must meet either of the following requirements: 
    •  Pass level N1 of the Japanese Language Proficiency Test before arriving in Japan (students who already have N1 are still required to take the RCA test)
    • Obtain a high score on the placement test, and then pass the RCA (Regular Course Aptitude) test held later during orientation.

KGU guarantees accommodations to all incoming exchange students, but not all students will be able to be placed in the accommodation of their choice. Many students choose home stays for their accommodation.

Homestay: The majority of exchange students are placed in homestays arranged by the University. The University takes pride in this part of the program, as Japanese language learned in class is practiced and supplemented through living with a Japanese family. Students are immersed in Japanese customs and ways of thinking, making this a valuable experience. Students are normally provided with their own room, furnished with bedding, wardrobe, desk, chair and heater. While living with a host family, students are provided with breakfast and dinner from Monday to Friday and three meals on Saturday, Sunday and Japanese National Holidays. Please note that it is not uncommon for students to commute one hour to school depending on the location of your homestay.

Dormitory:  A limited number of dormitory spaces are available for exchange students. All dormitories are located off-campus and costs such as utilities, living expenses and whether or not meals are included differ depending on the dormitory. Students should note when making their accommodation selection, that dormitory fees work out to approximately the same as the homestay option and should budget accordingly. 

Personally Arranged Accommodations: Exchange students can also opt to arrange their own accommodation. In that case, it is recommended that they arrive in Japan 1-2 weeks before the designated arrival date in order to secure accommodation and have everything worked out before the beginning of the semester. Please note that in Japan, “key money” (a non-refundable deposit) is commonly required when renting an apartment. If required KGU will serve as the guarantor needed to rent an apartment, provided that the student enters a special housing insurance recommended by KGU. Please understand that if you wish to find your own accommodation, apart from acting as a guarantor if necessary, KGU has no responsibility to help you with any of the procedures involved with renting an apartment in Japan - this option is hence not recommended for those without at least a high level of Japanese reading comprehension and general conversational skills.

Information about accommodation can be found here
      Kwansei students
Orientation:  A three to five-day mandatory orientation at the beginning of each semester, introduces new students to life within the university and western Japan. Students also take a Japanese placement test during this time.
Nihongo Partners: Acting as language partners for the exchange student’s first semester, KGU local student volunteers assist the exchange students in their practice of Japanese. These students are also available during the orientation period to help students settle into their new environment.

Global Student Network (GS): The GS Network is the official student group endorsed by CIEC and provides various supports to exchange students during orientation. They also plan and hold cultural exchange activities for both exchange students and KGU students over the course of the year.

Spiritual Life:  Various programs are sponsored by the Christian Center and events such as concerts (pipe organ, choir, hand-bells, etc.), art exhibitions, special lectures, and club meetings are often held in the Lambuth Chapel. Each school has its own chapel program between 10:35- 11:05am Monday through Friday. The University also supports students who come from other religious backgrounds. The Kansai region has Islamic mosques, Jewish synagogues and churches of several different denominations.

Coffee Hour and International Events: Various international events including Coffee Hour and International Student Week occur throughout the school year. Coffee Hour is held three times per semester and is an opportunity for new exchange students, researchers and visiting professors to meet and converse with KGU students, faculty and staff members in several languages. Coffee Hour is organized by the CIEC office and often includes aspects of Japanese or international culture and other general entertainment. International Student Week takes place in the spring semester and is an opportunity for exchange and international studies to introduce their culture to Japanese students. Furthermore, Japanese students are also given the opportunity to introduce their culture to international students.

Fujita Global Lounge:  This lounge provides a place for international students and Japanese students to meet informally. A main feature of this lounge are several large LCD plasma monitors which display news from all over the world, such as Japan, the United States, China and Korea

Clubs and Circles: Exchange students are encouraged to join KGU student groups to enrich their study experience in Japan. There are over 150 cultural and sports clubs and circles on campus. 
Fall Semester: September–January
Spring Semester: March–July

NOTE: KGU offers the Winter Intensive Period to students who enroll at KGU for two semester beginning in the Fall. During this period, students are required to take at least 2 credits from the offered courses. Studying for one year from the Fall Semester to the Spring Semester only. Winter Intensive Period: February - March . 
Estimated Costs:These costs are current as of 2018–19. These are estimated costs for the whole semester. Consult the Bursar’s Office for up-to-date information on tuition and fees. Personal expenses do vary between students: those who eat out at restaurants or plan to travel frequently should estimate higher.
  • SJSU Tuition & Fees: $3,900.00
  • Round Trip Transportation: $1,500.00
  • Room & Meals: $2,000.00
  • Books & Supplies: $200.00
  • Health Insurance: $450.00 *SJSU & Japanese National Required Insurance 
  • Other Insurances: $120.00 (**See details below)
  • Personal Expenses: $1,000.00
  • Total: $9,170.00
* Health Insurance Students: All outgoing exchange students are required to purchase the SJSU-approved University health insurance plan through JCB Insurance Services. Additionally, all students must now purchase Japanese National Health Insurance when they arrive in Japan as well. 

** Personal Liability, Fire, Solatium and Rescuer's Expenses Insurance:
 All exchange students studying at KGU are required to purchase personal liability insurance, fire insurance, solatium and rescuer’s expenses insurance upon arrival in Japan. Application procedures will be carried out during the post-arrival orientation.

Financial Aid: Students who are participating in certified SJSU study abroad programs can use all of the financial aid including grants, scholarships, and loans (except work study) for which they are normally qualified.  For more information click here.

Scholarships: Scholarships for study abroad come in many forms: SJSU Study Abroad Scholarships, Program Specific, National and International scholarships. Find links for these scholarships and online scholarship search engines by clicking here.