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Faculty of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies

Year abroad (Year 3) | Convenor: Dr Miki Kawabata

You will spend at least eight months in your third year, studying Japanese in Japan. This is an excellent opportunity to increase your fluency and understanding of the language. It also provides the opportunity to start work on your dissertation, which must show evidence of a substantial use of Japanese language sources, whether oral or textual.

A number of choices are available in terms of the location and type of your year abroad, though the most usual route is through the Center for Japanese Language and Culture (CJLC), Doshisha University, Kyoto.

  •  The Department of East Asian Studies has an agreement with the CJLC
    • This is a good private university situated in the north of the city. The main campus is bordered by the extensive grounds of Shokokuji to the east and the old Imperial Palace to the south.
    • It is expected that the majority of students will take advantage of this arrangement, which is by and large hassle free and provides a good base in one of Japan’s most attractive cities.
    • Applications to CJLC are initially managed through the Faculty, after which correspendonce take place between CJLC and individual students, with the Faculty copied in. 
    • The course comprises twp semesters and fees are calculated in terms of credits. The tuition fee covers 20 credits (10 per semester), which means, in essence, language classes Mon–Fri.
    • In addition, other courses are available in CJLC up to a further 10 credits free of charge. Anything over these 10 credits will be charged at the normal rate.
    • There is no obligation to attend any classes taught in English.
    • There will be plenty of opportunity to get involved in other activities and the library and other facilities will be made available.
    • Your performance will be evaluated at the end of each semester in accordance with normal CJLC practice. 
    • It is a requirement for the purpose of the exchange agreement and visa status to participate fully in classes and tests. 
    • There will be a placement test on arrival, but this does not tie the student to that level for the whole year. If appropriate, it is possible to move to a higher level course for the second semester.

  • The MEXT Undergraduate Scholarship in Japanese Studies is a generous scholarship offered by the Japanese Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT) and offers undergraduates an opportunity to deepen their understanding of the language and culture of Japan through study at a Japanese university (recent successful applicants have studied at institutions such as: Doshisha, Hitotsubashi, Keio, Kyoto, Osaka and Sophia universities).

  • Alternatively the Japanese Studies group is in the process of establishing internship opportunities with a number of Japanese businesses 

  • If a student wishes to make his or her own plans this is possible but it should be noted that
    • a detailed plan must be agreed to by the Study-Abroad Coordinator before the end of January at the latest
    • no administrative help can be expected.

The responsibility for the timely completion of application forms, applying and paying for student visas and so on, lies with the student, irrespective of which option you choose for your year abroad.

The full costs, details of residence permits and visa requirements for the year abroad in Japan will be provided if you take up the course. You will be expected to pay (if not covered in your grant):

  • air fares to, from, and within Japan
  • accommodation
  • Cambridge University tuition fees at Year Abroad rates (see year abroad tuition fees for details)

Most Colleges do not charge College fees to students during the year abroad.