Learn about Otemon Gakuin University and apply

Find out more about studies, semester dates, fees and application deadlines at Otemon Gakuin University as well as information on how to apply.

Semester dates and application deadlines


Spring Autumn
Semester dates September 15th – January 19th
Orientation September 12th – 13th
Application deadline April 30th, 2017

2018 (all dates still tentative)

Spring Autumn
Semester dates April 4th – July 20th   September 12th 2018 – January 14th
Orientation April 2nd – 3rd   September 12th
Application deadline December 10th, 2017   April 30th, 2018

2019 (all dates still tentative)

Spring Autumn
Semester dates April 3rd – July 29th TBA
Orientation April 3rd TBA
Application deadline December 7th, 2018 TBA

Key facts about Otemon Gakuin University

Otemon Gakuin University (OGU) started as an educational institution in 1888 with the establishment of an elementary school. The operations expanded in 1940 with the opening of a junior high school, and a senior high school ten years later in 1950. On its 80th anniversary Otemon Gakuin University was established and since then it has been undertaking educational activities as a comprehensive educational institution with an extensive educational network.

Today, Otemon Gakuin University has 6 departments with 4 graduate schools offering various programs in undergraduate, master’s and Ph.D. levels. They offer courses in Economics, Management, Psychology, Sociology, International Liberal Arts and Regional Development studies.

See what you can study at Otemon Gakuin University.


Otemon Gakuin University
2-1-15 Nishiai
Ibaraki City, Osaka
567-8502, Japan

University’s website


Studying at Otemon Gakuin University

Asia Exchange students participate in the Japan program of the Otemon Gakuin University, an international program taught in English. The semesters last 4–5 months and run from April to July and from September to January each year. Otemon Gakuin University is responsible for teaching and transcripts of records.

The aim of the study program is to acquaint students with Japanese language, culture, literature, philosophy and society and to deepen students’ knowledge of Japan and Asia in general. In order to help students get the most out of their exchange experience in Japan, the courses include also several interesting activities and excursions in addition to classroom studies.

  • Courses

    The program consists of the following courses:

    Read more about the courses below

    Japanese culture

    Japanese culture course offers an insight into Japan’s ancient and intriguing cultural heritage that attracts interest and visitors from all over the world. Students are introduced to the unique Japanese etiquette, behavior patterns, mentality and traditions that have a profound influence on every aspect of the local business, family and everyday life.

    Japanese society

    Japanese society course sheds light on how local businesses and organizations use current information communication technologies to tackle prevailing strategic and social challenges. Through interesting Japanese case studies, students will together learn and apply new skills that meet the demands of the modern digital and business management practices.

    Japanese literature

    This course aims to increase students understanding of Japanese seasonal cultures and Haiku, while simultaneously developing their Japanese language proficiency. In the course, students will learn to make their own Haiku poem and understand the art behind it and practice the traditional Hiragana writing system written by brush.

    Japanese philosophy

    The Samurai culture has enthralled the world for centuries, and the recent global turmoils have again led people to look for answers in the code of ethical conduct – or Bushido – of the Samurai that cherishes the virtues of courage, honor, integrity and sincerity. Students now have the chance to delve into the history and cultural identity of these mysterious warriors, and learn the significance that the Samurai ideology holds for the modern Japanese society.

    Japanese economics

    In this interactive course, students learn to identify the economic and social features that make the Japanese society so unique and different from other nations. The class topics explore the main points of the country’s economy and examine the competitive strategies of Japanese firms and communities in both domestic and international markets.

    Japanese language classes

    All the exchange students are required to participate in Japanese Language classes. The language classes are divided in four levels (beginner, elementary, intermediate, advanced), according to each students’ previous language skills.  The students take a placement test to determine their language proficiency. The class sizes are small so that the students and teachers may engage in close dialogue, and the students can get the appropriate help for their needs.

    The class meets five times a week for 15 weeks per semester, for a total of 112,5 lecture hours per semester. The Japanese language course is non-credit bearing, but in most cases home universities have granted credits for the course due to its intensity. The total amount of contact hours in Japanese language lessons and evaluation ratings will appear on the student’s transcript.

  • Credits

    Each course held at Otemon Gakuin University is worth 2 Japanese credits, with a 45 hour workload per one credit. One completed course most often converts to around 3-4 ECTS credits and around 3 US credits.

    Read more about credit conversion in Japan.

  • Activities outside class

    Otemon Gakuin University has a variety of sports and art extracurricular activities that exchange students are also allowed to participate in. Different clubs include martial arts, soccer and baseball among others. There are also clubs and circles for subjects that allow you to become familiar with Japanese culture, such as tea ceremony, flower arrangement and manga. Taking part in these club activities will help you to meet other students and enrich your student life

  • Student visa

    Students are required to obtain student visa to study in Japan. To obtain student visa to Japan, you must  obtain a Certificate of Eligibility from Otemon Gakuin University. To obtain a Certificate of Eligibility, Otemon Gakuin University will contact the local immigration office and make an application on your behalf, but before that you should have supplied Otemon Gakuin University with all the required documents on the application. After Otemon Gakuin University finishes your Certificate of Eligibility, we will send the original certificate to you.

    Please find out the full Visa application procedure here.

  • Otemon Gakuin University Accreditation

    All academic courses available at Otemon Gakuin are conducted under the strict supervision of the Japanese Ministry of Education and accredited by the Ministry.

    Japanese language courses designed the for overseas students are not under the supervision of the Ministry. Nevertheless, all the language teachers hold master’s or higher education degrees with prior practical teaching experience at university level.

Student testimonials

Coming soon!

Blogs from Japan

My Exchange Semester in Japan

Vivian is a Canadian studying in Finland and now on an exchange semester at Otemon Gakuin University in Japan.

Check the blog

 Become a blogger

Do you want to write a blog during your study abroad semester? We’re always on the lookout for good bloggers. If you’d like to write a blog and have us link to it from this page, let us know!

Hints and tips for bloggers

Applying to Otemon Gakuin University

The program at Otemon Gakuin University is designed for everyone who has an interest in Japan, Japanese language and culture.  The program is equally beneficial for those who have no deeper previous knowledge about Japan and those who have already immersed themselves in the Japanese culture to some extent.

The Japan program will help you reach a deeper understanding of the Japanese language and culture, while giving you the valuable experience of living in Japan. Applying to the program is easy and you will receive your confirmation within a week.

Please read the application instructions carefully.

  • Who can apply

    Minimum requirements

    • A minimum age of 18 years
    • Currently enrolled at an institution of higher education (university, university of applied sciences or similar)
    • All applicants are expected to have sufficient knowledge of English (B2 level). No language test is required.

    See the additional requirements.

  • Required attachments
    • An official transcript of records in English (stamped by your home institution).
    • A copy of the identification page of your passport (please note that your passport must be valid for at least six months after your trip starts).
    • A resume.
    • Proof of financial ability to cover your study abroad semester in Japan.*
    • Application essay in English (why you want to study at Otemon Gakuin University, have you studied the language or culture before, how will your studies at Otemon Gakuin University help you in the future etc.).
    • A recommendation letter in English from your home university (any teacher/professor) that confirms your English skills are strong enough to study abroad. Alternatively you can provide an official language certificate such as TOEFL, IELTS, DAAD or similar.
    • A color photo. The background should be white and the file should preferably be in JPEG-format.

    *Bank statement issued by a financial institution of the applicant or his/her parent to indicate a balance equivalent of at least US$8,000. If such statement can’t be made available, please ask someone (e.g. a parent) to secure your financial assistance up to US$8,000 by filling and signing this Declaration of Financial Ability. The amount of US$8,000 is a requirement set by the university to ensure that no student is forced to interrupt their semester due to insufficient funds. However, although general living costs in Japan are higher than in many other Asian countries, in reality it is still possible to manage with a considerably lower budget.

    After initial acceptance

    After you submit the application and required attachments, you will receive your initial acceptance letter. When you have your initial acceptance letter you must fill in and send us the Application for Certificate of Eligibility (all 3 pages in Excel format), and Certificate of Physical Examination (in PDF format) which will be required to apply for the student visa to Japan. Read more about the Japanese student visa.

    If you have chosen the home-stay program as your preferred accommodation, then please also fill the application for the home-stay program as well as the Home-stay Agreement Form (both in PDF format).

    The deadline for submitting the additional documents will be announced at a later date after the application period has ended.

    Travel insurance

    Students are required to have a valid accident and health insurance for the whole duration of the program from their home country. A copy of the insurance certificate can be requested in the beginning of the semester. Check out our recommended insurance providers.

    In addition to the insurance acquired from the student’s home country, all exchange students whose stay in Japan exceeds 3 months are required to sign up for a Japan National Health Insurance in the beginning of the semester. The monthly cost of this insurance is 2000 JPY; however, international students are eligible for a considerable discount. The insurance covers approx. 70% of all local health and dental care costs.

    Students can also purchase an additional health insurance from a local insurance provider appointed by the university for additional protection. The price of this insurance is 6330 JPY and it is paid in one payment in cash at the university. If you plan to purchase this insurance, please fill out this Insurance Consent Form (in PDF format).


  • Application form & instructions
    • Scan all the required attachments to your computer in PDF format.
    • Fill out the online application form and submit it with the required attachments.

    Otemon Gakuin University Application Form

    Note! After submitting the form, you will be redirected to a confirmation page and will receive a confirmation email. Check your inbox for the mail and if you don’t find it there, check your spam folder. If you haven’t received a confirmation email, please contact us immediately.

    Uploading and submitting the attachments

    Upload the attachments in PDF format. If possible, please send all the attachments together with the application. If you are missing some attachment at the time of applying, you may send the attachment(s) later. If your application is missing all the attachments, we cannot start processing it. All attachments must however be sent to us within 30 days of submitting the application or by the application deadline at the very latest.

    For applications or attachments submitted after the application deadline, we are obliged to charge an additional fee of 100 EUR (120 USD) as per our terms and conditions.

    Confirmation and official acceptance letter

    You will receive a confirmation of your study placement in 1 weeks, starting from the day your application is complete with all the required documents.

    You will receive the official acceptance letter 1.5 months before the semester starts at the latest. In your application, please indicate a permanent address so that the document can find you.

    Payment and cancellation

    Together with the initial confirmation you will receive an invoice for the application fee which must be paid within 10 days.

    The invoice for the tuition fee will be sent about 2.5 months before the semester starts.

    If you decide to cancel your participation in the program, you must send us a notification via email. Cancellations by other means (e.g. by phone or text) will not be taken into account. The application fee will not be refunded if you decide to cancel. For more information, see the terms and conditions for cancellation.

    Should you fail to pay the application fee or the tuition fee on time, we reserve the right to cancel your participation in the program. For more information, please see the terms and conditions.


Quick facts

4 months

Max. Credits:
ca. 20–25 ECTS

Tuition fee:
1990 EUR / semester

Application fee:
75 EUR

Are you from outside of Europe?
Read more about the fees here.


Established in


Our partner since


Tuition fee

Reason to choose Otemon Gakuin University

The Japan program will help you reach a deeper understanding of the Japanese language, culture, society and economy while giving you the valuable experience of living in Japan.

Experience the best parts of Japan by living between the modern, metropolitan Osaka and the historical and scenic natural beauty of Kyoto.

Various excursions and club activities are held to help the students get more out from their study abroad semester.

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