NOTE: IGPLS stands for the International Graduate Program in Language Sciences, and GSICS for the Graduate School of International Cultural Studies.


How does IGPLS differ from the other departments in GSICS?

First, IGPLS is one of two graduate programs (the other being G2SD) by GSICS to be conducted entirely in English. Second, IGPLS accepts students in October, whereas most of our other departments accept students in April in accordance with the general academic calendar in Japan.

Does IGPLS accept students in April?

No. IGPLS only accepts new students in October.

Do I need to take the Japanese-Language Proficiency Test (JLPT) to apply to IGPLS?

No. A JLPT score is not required to apply to IGPLS; although, we may ask about your JLPT score at the interview if your plan of research is focused on the Japanese language. We do, however, require applicants to submit their scores of the TOEFL, TOEIC, or IELTS.

How do I pay my application fee of 30,000 JPY?

If you live outside Japan, we have an online payment system through which you can pay your application fee by credit card. If you live in Japan, you can pay your application fee via ATM or online bank transfer.

Is there anything I need to do before submitting my application?

If you meet the requirements for application given in our application brochure, you are eligible to apply to IGPLS. However, we strongly recommend prospective applicants to contact one (or more) of our faculty members in advance in order to confirm whether our program can accommodate your research interests or not.

Where can I find information about faculty members and their research?

Visit the People section of our website for information about our staff.

Application Documents

How do I submit my application documents?

Application documents are to be submitted through the online application system, The Application Office (TAO). We do not accept applications by mail or email.

What qualifies as “a sample research paper written in English” mentioned in the application brochure?

A sample research paper is a paper written by you about any research topic that you have been interested in. They include your BA (or MA) thesis, a term paper you wrote for a course/class you attended previously, a paper you published in an academic journal, and so on. They will help us examine your ability to conduct research in the field where you intend to work. Summaries or excerpts are not acceptable.

My native language is English. Do I need to submit a TOEFL/TOEIC/IELTS score?

If you submit an official document certifying that the medium of instruction of your higher education was is English, you may not need to submit scores of the English tests. For example, if you have grown up in the United States of America and graduated from university there, we will deem you to have sufficient ability in English by inspecting your graduation certificate and transcripts. In any case, it is advisable for you to contact us well before preparing your application documents in order to check whether you can be exempt from the English score requirement.

What is the minimum English test score requirement?

Ideally, we would expect successful applicants to have around 100 in TOEFL-iBT or its equivalent in the other tests. Note, however, that we evaluate applicants on the basis of all application documents. Even if an applicant’s score in TOEFL-iBT is lower than 100, we may admit them if we judge from their application materials that they have sufficient ability to study at our graduate school. Conversely, if an applicant has a score of 100 in TOEFL-iBT, we may not admit them if we judge them to have insufficient academic ability (for example, if their BA thesis is of poor quality).

What is “the Statement of Financial Basis”?

Applicants are required to submit a Statement of Financial Basis, which we will use to confirm whether their study at IGPLS will be sufficiently supported financially. Any kind of document/form including a balance certificate from your bank would be acceptable if it officially shows that you will be able to spend at least your first semester at IGPLS without financial problems. Although we do not announce any particular figures in this regard, you may visit the following websites to check the costs of living at Tohoku University:

If your parents financially support you, documents such as balance certificates from their bank account(s) or income certificate(s) issued by their workplace will suffice. If you have been selected as a scholarship recipient, a certificate from the organization will also suffice.

Financial Support

If I am admitted, how much will I need to pay for admission fees and tuition?

You will need to pay a one-time admission fee of JPY 282,000 at the time of your enrollment. Your tuition (JPY 267,900 per semester) will be automatically withdrawn from your bank account each semester.

How do apply for an admission fee or tuition waiver?

Incoming students may apply for an admission fee waiver or deferment through the Financial Support Office. Tuition waivers and deferments are also available to eligible students. Visit here for more information.

What other forms of financial support are available?

There are various scholarships available from the university and public/private organizations. Visit here for information about scholarships for international students. Some graduate students may also be able find work within the university as teaching assistants (TAs) or research assistants (RAs), though the pay is not enough to cover living expenses.

How can I apply for a MEXT Scholarship?

You can apply for a MEXT Scholarship either through the Japanese embassy in your home country (embassy recommendation) or through the university (university recommendation). For more information on the embassy recommendation, please contact your local Japanese embassy or consulate general. Students are not able to directly apply for the university recommendation. Instead, you will need to ask your prospective supervisor at GSICS to prepare your application documents and submit them to the university. For this reason, if you wish to seek this scholarship, you will need to directly contact our faculty members and find a prospective supervisor prior to applying to IGPLS.