Students wishing to study abroad
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Preparing to study abroad

I’ve started to think about studying abroad, but where do I start?
First of all, set a general goal for your study abroad, such as more in-depth study in your field or improving your language sksills. Also, think about which country or region you’d like to visit. We also recommend that you talk to the International Affairs Division, your faculty advisor and the General Academic Affairs Division when thinking about studying abroad.

The Global Center for Higher Education holds study abroad information sessions twice a year, so be sure to go to these and gather information. Here you will be able to get lots of information about Akita University’s study abroad programs and ask your questions directly to students who have studied abroad.
I have a rough idea of what I want to study, the country/region I want to go to, and how long I want to study abroad. What should I do next?
There are a number of short-term study abroad programs ranging from a few weeks to a few months offered by each faculty, so you should contact the General Academic Affairs Division (or the Academic Affairs Division of the Faculty of Medicine if you are a medical student). Alternatively, check “a-net” from time to time to see what short-term study abroad programs are being offered by the various universities and organizations. If you want to study abroad for one whole semester or a year, consider going on an exchange program with an overseas partner university.

If you’d like to study abroad for more than one year, mainly for the purpose of earning a degree, please talk to your faculty advisor, especially your supervisor.
I am thinking of studying abroad as an exchange student at an overseas partner university. I would like to know about the procedures.
For details, please refer to the page for student exchange programs.
I would like some more information about the partner institutions where I can study abroad.
Please check the list of Akita University’s partner universities which can be found here. Click on the name of the partner institution to go to their website. Please note that you can study abroad at any of the partner universities with which we have concluded a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on student exchange.
Can I study at a university other than the partner universities?
Yes, you can. However, in this situation, you will be responsible for all of the procedures related to the study abroad yourself.
Can I study abroad as a graduate student?
Yes, it is possible. However, please talk to your academic advisor in advance.

Scholarships and language requirements

Are there any scholarships available for studying abroad?
The following are the main scholarships available.
  • The Akita University ‘Miraisozo Fund’ overseas student study support program (tentative)
    This program provides financial support for part of the international airfare required for the outbound travel of students from Akita University to study abroad. The maximum amount of support is 40,000 JPY for South Korea, China, Taiwan and Southeast Asia, and 100,000 JPY for other countries.
  • JASSO overseas study support program (dispatch by agreement) “Akita University Program for Solving of the Regional Problem” (tentative)
    Akita University provides scholarships to students participating in the Akita University Program for Solving of the Regional Problem, an exchange program that aims to build knowledge that will contribute to the resolution of regional problems through the application of individual expertise. The eligible countries and regions are Canada, Israel, Italy, Finland, Sweden, Romania, Germany, Philippines, Taiwan and South Korea. The monthly amount of the scholarship is 60,000 to 80,000 JPY, depending on the country and region. There are certain conditions that must be met in order to receive the scholarship, such as the course of study, the family’s financial situation, grades, and language ability.
  • JASSO type 2 scholarship (short-term study abroad)
    This is an interest-bearing scholarship loan that is lent to those who wish to receive a scholarship to study abroad for a short period of time at a junior college, university, or graduate school in a foreign country while still enrolled at a university or other institution in Japan.
There are various other scholarship programs you can apply to when studying abroad. Make sure you take the initiative to collect information from the following website. JASSO study abroad support website - Scholarships for study abroad brochure. (This website is in Japanese only.)
I would like to know more about the language requirements of my study abroad destination.
If you are studying abroad for the purpose of improving your language skills, you will not be required to have strong language skills at the beginning of your study abroad.

On the other hand, if you are taking courses mainly related to your field of study, you will be required to have a level of language proficiency that will not hinder your studies at the host university. The language requirements vary depending on the host university. Once you start thinking about studying abroad, be sure to study and take the language exams systematically so that you will be in a position to be able to submit language scores and other documents that meet the requirements. If you are studying at a non-English speaking university, you may be able to take classes in English, but you may be required to have attained a certain level of proficiency in the local language.

Credit approval, promotion and graduation

Is it possible for me to study abroad without having to repeat an academic year?
Students who have studied abroad are required to fulfill all the requirements for graduation in order to complete their studies without having to repeat a year. In the case of exchange students, the period of study abroad is counted as part of the period of study at Akita University. Therefore, students will not be suspended due to insufficient enrollment period at Akita University. However, it is important to carefully plan your course of study before you start studying abroad in order to graduate or complete on time. In the process of preparing to study abroad, make sure that you talk to your faculty advisor or the General Academic Affairs Division of your faculty.
Will the credits I earn at my host university be recognized as Akita University credits?
Courses taken while studying abroad may be approved as Akita University credits after the course requirements of your department have been reviewed. In order to receive credit for your study abroad experience after you return home, you will need to talk to your faculty advisor and the General Academic Affairs Division of your faculty beforehand about the courses you intend to take while studying abroad, referring to the syllabus of your host university before you leave.

Job search activities

Is it possible to balance studying abroad with job hunting?
In the past, some students who went to study abroad were able to balance their job search and study abroad by using the online system, taking part in online interviews, and attending information sessions while studying abroad.

We recommend that you talk to the Employment Promotion Section of the Student Support and Career Division about how to proceed with your job search activities even before you start studying abroad, and that you start preparing systematically from an early stage.

Status while studying abroad

What happens to my status and tuition fees while I’m studying abroad?
If you are an exchange student, your status will be “Study Abroad” and you will pay tuition to Akita University and be exempt from paying tuition to your host university.

If you are not an exchange student, your status will be “Leave of Absence” and you will not have to pay tuition to Akita University, but you will have to pay tuition to your host university.
Where will I stay during my study abroad?
If you are an exchange student, you will stay in the dormitory of your host university or in an apartment arranged by your host university. If you are not an exchange student, in principle, you will have to find your own accommodation, but in some cases, the organization offering the program or the host institution will be able to provide accommodation.
How much does it cost to study abroad?
It varies depending on the country/region you are studying in and how you spend your time while studying abroad. If you are an exchange student, you will be exempt from having to pay tuition to your host university, but you will have to pay tuition to Akita University during your study abroad. You will also need to pay for the airfare, visa application fee, travel insurance and local accommodation fees.
I have a negative image of foreign countries. How should I deal with this?
When abroad, it is important to take basic safety and security measures, such as not going out alone at night, keeping valuables such as money and passports on your person and out of sight, and not wearing flashy clothes. It’s always good to be vigilant and cautious, but if you take proper precautions, there is no need to be overly worried.

At Akita University, students who participate in exchange programs and overseas resource fieldwork at the Faculty of International Resource Sciences are required to join OSSMA Plus. It is a risk management service provided by Emergency Assistance Japan Co., Ltd. (EAJ) that also provides coverage for illness and injury such as medical treatment costs, relief expenses, etc. The University has a contract with EAJ to provide crisis management measures during the overseas travel of our students, and to manage and monitor student travel information, so that in the event of an emergency, EAJ can take the lead in quickly ensuring the safety of our students.