Types of Schools in Japan
The following schools are available in Japan to international students.
１．Japanese language school
２．Specialized training college
６．Programs for research students
Disciplines to be provided, qualifications to be given at graduation, times for admission test and entry are different depending on each school. You are required to identify your purpose of study, and if you have any questions, research in advance or ask for advise from your school adviser or more directly from international student offices of schools before you make a decision.
1.Japanese language school
Japanese language schools provide Japanese-language education from basic, which can be divided into those that target students who wish to advance to specialized training colleges or universities and those that provide intensive Japanese learning programs. The certificate for completion of their programs or that for N1 or N2 of Japanese Language Proficiency Test will help you find a job in or outside Japan or go to a higher school.
What is Japanese Language Proficiency Test (JLPT)?
JLPT is, in principle, a test to measure Japanese language proficiency of non-native speakers of Japanese.
The test consists of five levels of N1, N2, N3, N4 and N5, with N5 being the lowest level, and N1 being the highest.
2. Specialized training college
Specialized training colleges provide education programs on knowledge, skills and technologies which would be necessary for your employment or daily life. In order to enter one of these schools, you have to complete 12-year school education. It takes two years to graduate from the colleges and you will acquire a qualification of “Licensed Specialist” which satisfies one of requirements of the immigration law and is required when you are employed by a Japanese company.
3. Junior college
Junior colleges provide high-school graduates with educational programs on skills and knowledge for which business persons will be required. It takes at least two years to graduate from a junior college, and you will acquire an” associate degree ” that satisfies one of the requirements of the immigration law and is required when you are employed by a Japanese company.
Colleges/Universities provide specialized education in systematical and theoretical systems. It takes at least four years to graduate, and you acquire a “degree” that satisfies one of requirements of the immigration law and is required when you are employed by a Japanese company. They have traditional departments of literature, education, law, etc. and also relatively new departments such as environmental system and tourism.
5. Graduate school
Graduate schools have two types courses: master course and doctor course, and the former requires at least two years, and the latter three years for graduation. Students who completed a master course acquire a “master degree,” and those who completed a 3-year doctor course acquire a “doctoral degree” which satisfies one of requirements for employment by Japanese companies.
6. Programs for research students
In addition to master and doctor courses described above, graduate schools have Japan-specific programs for research students , which allow the students to attend lectures of the college/university or use their facilities, but no degree is provided to them.
However, many of colleges/universities select candidates only by screening their papers, which enable international students to obtain the admission before they come to Japan. This system provides you with an alternative way by which you can learn Japanese and expertise and then take an admission examination for master/doctor course.
|Educational Institutions||Course details|
|Vocational school||2 years||You will learn specialized knowledge and skills of an occupation. While you learn in a comprehensive manner at a university, you will learn special areas of expertise more deeply at a vocational school. You can obtain a qualification called “Diploma.”|
|Junior college||2 years||As you study liberal arts for half of your university period, you will learn more practical skills. It is also possible to obtain a qualification called “Associate Degree.” There are also schools for learning specific skills such as nursing schools. Many women attend schools in Japan.|
|University||4 years||They theoretically learn education systematically and academically by the field. It is possible to obtain a qualification called “Bachelor’s Degree.” There is a wide range of departments which make each university unique. They learn skills necessary for a profession at a university, then enter a company they targeted. This is the common flow.|
|Graduate school||2 years||People who have completed their studies at a university will learn higher academics. There are Masters and PhD courses. People who complete Masters course obtain Master’s Degree and people who complete PhD obtain Doctorate Degree. Many people proceed to become a researcher at an institute.|
|Japanese language school||You cannot obtain a diploma at Japanese language educational institutions. You can learn Japanese prior to studying abroad in Japan.|
The Difference Between Private, Public, and National Institutions
|Private||It is a company as a school corporation. Tuition will be as high as twice that of public and national institutions as they need to arrange equipment. Each school is a brand that has its own educational policy which is its special characteristic.|
|Public||It is a school established by a local government (prefecture). There are many examination subjects.|
|National||The Japanese government established it for education and research. Generally, the tuition is lower. There are many examination subjects.|