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Fields of Study: Social Sciences

As an international student, you can become part of the academic community at Hitotsubashi University, an engaging Japanese campus environment. Hitotsubashi University offers coursework taught in Japanese and English, and its undergraduate programs include four faculties for UCEAP students: Commerce and Management, Economics, Law, and Social Sciences.

Unique study opportunities

  • Get the complete Japanese university experience with an international community of students.
  • Enjoy small class sizes on a campus with the ambience of an Ivy League institution.
  • Access strong coursework taught in English in the fields of business, economics, international studies, and sociology.


Language of Instruction: English, Japanese

Japanese Language Study: Optional

Japanese language study is available from beginning to advanced levels (placement exam after arrival). Course units range from 2 to 10 Hitotsubashi units (3 to 15 UC quarter units).

Courses and credit

Requirements While Abroad

To successfully complete this program:

  • Take a full-time course of study: Minimum 21 quarter/14 semester UC units; usually 7 to 10 courses.
  • You can take a third (33%) of your courses per term for pass/no pass credit.

Current Program Courses

You will finalize your study plans and register for classes after arrival.

There are three types of courses available to UCEAP students:

  • Hitotsubashi Global Education Program (HGP)—Interdisciplinary courses, typically lower-division, taught in English. Choose from a variety of courses in the social sciences in the fields of Business, Economics, Law, Sociology, IT and others. The program also includes courses specifically designed for exchange students.
  • General Education—Courses are mainly taught in Japanese and include foreign languages, mathematics, information, natural science, sports, general courses, Japanese language, and Japanese affairs.
  • Undergraduate Courses—Courses are mainly taught in Japanese through four faculties including Commerce and Management, Economics, Law, and Social Sciences. 

Each Hitotsubashi faculty categorizes courses differently. For example, the School of Social Sciences categorizes courses as introductory, intermediate, advanced, seminar, and other. The introductory and many intermediate courses are usually assigned lower-division UC credit. The advanced and seminar courses are usually upper-division. The Global Education Program offers general education courses which are typically lower division or specialized courses which are typically upper division. 


Research and independent study are possible at Hitotsubashi University. Arrangements are made after arrival in Japan.​

Catalogs and resources

Academic culture

Japan is a country where courtesy and behavioral propriety are extremely important in all social interactions. As a representative of UC, your respect toward teachers and sensitivity to the cultural styles and ethics of Japanese society will make a difference.

Most locals and Japanese professors will avoid correcting offensive or unacceptable behavior. If you have questions about what is considered acceptable behavior in Japan, talk to the study center staff.


You will earn direct UC credit and grades for all coursework. Final grades for this program are usually available in October.

It is not the Japanese custom for instructors to give detailed comments on written work and final papers, and exams are not usually returned. Rather, the grade itself is generally considered appropriate and adequate feedback. You may inquire about your progress in a class, but do not discuss grades with your professors unless invited to do so; otherwise, it may appear that you are trying to negotiate your grade, which is frowned upon. Discuss questions related to grades or other classroom matters and appropriate plans for handling them with the UCEAP study center.

Some Japanese universities are similar to UC in their standards and grading system. Language courses in particular can be more demanding than at UC and the grading is often rigorous. In many cases, poor grades are the result of excessive absences, tardiness, missing assignments, and lack of communication with instructors. Grading is typically conducted by detracting points for errors, rather than rewarding points for correct work. Also beware of being influenced by the rigor—or lack thereof—with which Japanese students appear to be engaged in their studies. In contrast to UC students, Japanese students often place less emphasis on letter grades and more on merely passing their courses.

Tip: If you intend to put yourself on your campus degree list for graduation while on UCEAP, consult your campus advisors before departure about possible delays in the degree verification process.