This site is a government-approved information site for studying in Japan operated by the Japan Student Services Organization in cooperation with the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. and More

Text Size
Planning studies in Japan

Japanese Educational System

In Japan, the higher education starts upon the completion of 12 years of education: elementary education (6 years of elementary school) and secondary education (3 years of lower secondary school and 3 years of upper secondary school). There are 5 types of higher education institutions where international students can be admitted to, which are 1) Colleges of technology, 2) Professional training colleges (postsecondary course of specialized training colleges), 3) Junior colleges, 4) Universities (undergraduate) and 5) Graduate schools. Depending on the founding bodies, these higher education institutions are categorized into three types: national, local public and private.

Japanese Educational System
  • After completing your major in a junior college or college of technology recognized by the National Institution for Academic Degrees and University Evaluation (NIAD-UE), you can obtain your "bachelor's degree" if you pass the examination set by the NIAD-UE. Please check further details from the school you are applying in.
Japanese Educational System

Most higher educational institutions in Japan set its academic year from April to March of the following year. Many of higher educational institutions adopt the semester system.

academic year
The long holiday seasons are usually in summer (end July ~early September), winter (end December ~early January) and spring (February ~March).

Most of the educational institutions in Japan start their academic year in April. There are some institutions which start academic year in autumn.

admission-graduation
Number of higher education institutions
  National Local public Private Total
Colleges of technology 51 3 3 57
Proffesional training colleges 9 189 2,962 3,160
Junior colleges - 17 314 331
Universities
(Undergraduate)
86 93 603 782
Graduate schools 86 83 467 636
Data from the 2018 School Basic Survey by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology
※ The Open University of Japan is categorized as a private university.