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Institutes Providing Japanese-Language Education
Contents:
1.Types and numbers
  2. Choosing an institute providing Japanese-language education
  3. Admission qualifications and procedures
  4. Application period
1.Types and numbers
Higher educational institutions in Japan, in principle, conduct all their classes in the Japanese language with only a few offering classes in English (Refer to Chapter 5, 4.) It is extremely important, therefore, that international students wishing to study in Japan have an adequate knowledge of the Japanese language. For this reason many international students study the language in Japan for six months to two years before applying to higher educational institutions for admission.

1. Types and numbers
There are two types of Japanese-language institutes that provide Japanese-language education designed for international students who wish to enter Japanese higher educational institutions. There are 58 schools operated by private universities and 373 schools accredited by the Association for the Promotion of Japanese Language Education, as of February 2003.

Students who have only completed 10 or 11 years of education after completing their primary and secondary education (e.g. in Malaysia, the Philippines) are eligible for university entrance qualification if they have completed the "course of preliminary study for university entrance" designated by Monbukagakusho: MEXT. (Offered by 17 schools; see (3) Course of preliminary study for university entrance and Chapter 15.)

(1) Preparatory Japanese-language programs at private universities
Preparatory Japanese-language programs at private universities for international students in Japan are regular courses offered by private universities, defined by law (the School Education Law) as a part of university education. The duration of the courses is not more than one year. These courses have been established for international students who wish to study the Japanese-language, the culture and society in Japan, or basic subjects to prepare for entrance examinations to enter a university undergraduate course. International students who wish to go on to higher education may either proceed to the same university, or other universities.
Students in these courses have the advantage of facilities, such as part-time work, accommodation, welfare programs, such as medical fee subsidies, as they are eligible to acquire the status of residence as "college student."

(2) Private Japanese-language institutes
Private Japanese-language institutes include various establishing bodies such as school juridical people, juridical people provided for by the civil law, joint-stock corporations, private organizations neither controlled nor protected by law, and individuals. As for their status under the law, some institutes are authorized as specialized training colleges (senshu-gakko) or miscellaneous schools (kakushu-gakko). In addition to Japanese courses, some of these institutes offer preparatory courses in subjects tested in university entrance examinations, private tuition and short courses, in duration ranging from several weeks to several months.Preparatory courses for university entrance may range in length from half a year to two years. Number of hours and availability of accommodation vary depending on the institute.

Students are granted a status of residence of either (1) "college student", if taking a postsecondary course at specialized training colleges; or (2) "pre-college student", if taking other courses, for example at miscellaneous schools.
  Courses are available for students with less than 12 years of primary and secondary education in their home countries. (Refer to (3) Course of preliminary study for university entrance.)

(3) Course of preliminary study for university entrance
To be admitted to a higher educational institution in Japan, students should have completed 12 years of primary and secondary education. Students who have only 10 or 11 years of education after completing their secondary education (e.g. in Malaysia, the Philippines) should either
(1) attend a higher educational institution in their home country for one or two years to complete the required 12 years of education; or
(2) come to Japan after completing their secondary education in their home countries to take a one-year course of preliminary study endorsed by the Monbukagakusho (offered by 17 schools; See Chapter 15). Students are advised not to seek university entrance status from institutions whose preliminary study courses are not endorsed by Monbukagakusho. The status of residence for international students of preliminary study for university entrance will be "college student."

*According to the survey conducted by the Japanese Ministry of Justice in the year-end 2001, 41,766 international students were granted "pre-college student" status of residence. 30,170 of them came from China (including Taiwan and Hong Kong), 7,587 from North and South Korea, 440 from the Philippines, 430 from Myanmar, 409 from Thailand, and 2,730 from other countries. Besides pre-college students, there are several thousands students attending Japanese- language institutions under the status of residence as "college student."


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