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Academics

Field of Study: Humanities

Doshisha University's Center for Japanese Language Study and Culture offers intensive Japanese language study from beginning to advanced levels. You will develop a better understanding of Japanese culture through courses ranging from politics to religious studies.

Unique study opportunities

  • Explore the contemporary role and meaning of manga, anime, and noh plays in Japanese culture.
  • Settle in for a seated meditation practice a zendo hall through a religious studies class.
  • Learn the contemplative art of Japanese flower arrangement, Ikebana.

Language

Language of Instruction: Japanese

Language Study: Japanese

If you demonstrate advanced Japanese language proficiency at the placement test at the start of the term, you may take courses taught in Japanese in Doshisha undergraduate programs, in addition to Japanese language courses.​

Courses and credit

Requirements While Abroad

To successfully complete this program:

  • Take a full-time course of study: Seven courses for a total of 21 quarter/14 semester UC units
  • Students typically take 15 quarter UC units of language and 6 quarter UC units of elective courses
  • You may take up to one-third (33%) of your courses pass/no pass

Current Program Courses

Japanese language study is offered at nine levels from beginning to advanced to suit your needs. In addition to Japanese language, previous participants have received UC credit for courses related to religious studies, anthropology, political science and Asian Studies.

If you demonstrate advanced Japanese language proficiency at the placement test at the start of the term, you may take courses taught in Japanese in Doshisha undergraduate programs, in addition to Japanese language courses.​

Catalogs and resources

Academic culture

To be successful academically, you must take the initiative. Take personal responsibility for your education, formulate clear academic goals, and then pursue those goals with determination rather than depending solely on UC or host university requirements for direction. Japanese university courses typically have less structure than UC courses. Professors rarely provide syllabi and, even if they do, may change the content of the course during the term. Check with each professor about specific course requirements, paper deadlines, exam dates, and any other matters related to your academic responsibilities.

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.

Student Behavior

Japan is a country where courtesy and behavioral propriety are extremely important in all social interactions. Be respectful toward teachers at all times and sensitive to the cultural styles and ethics of Japanese society.

Most locals and Japanese professors will avoid correcting unacceptable behavior.  Follow the example set by the Japanese students. If you have questions about what is considered acceptable behavior in Japan, talk to the study center director and staff.

Attendance

Class attendance is required unless you are explicitly excused for a valid reason. Many faculty members monitor and consider attendance in class, on field trips, and at academic events when determining the course grade.

Grades

You will earn direct UC credit and grades for all coursework. Grades for this program are usually available in late September or early 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. the grade itself is generally considered appropriate and adequate feedback.

Grading is typically conducted by detracting points for errors, rather than rewarding points for correct work. If you experience difficulties with your language courses, ask the study center staff about tutoring assistance.

Beware of rumors about lenient grading at Japanese institutions. Some 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 between UC students and instructors.