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Academics

Fields of Study: Engineering, Science

Under faculty supervision, you'll be assigned to a team in one of the University of Tokyo's​ science or engineering labs to conduct research through experiments, peer consultation, group work, and interactive discussions. Interactions with University of Tokyo researchers and final presentations round out the 6-week summer experience.

Unique study opportunities

  • Design and conduct your own independent research project with the guidance of a faculty mentor.
  • Work with a research team and develop the skills to collect, interpret, and critique data to resolve a new question or evaluate a design.

Language

Language of Instruction: English

Language Study: None

Courses and credit

Requirements While Abroad

To successfully complete this program:

  • Take a full-time course of study: One lab research course for 7.5 quarter/5 semester UC units of lab research required
  • You must take the course pass/no pass

Current Program Courses

You can take a lab research course, focusing on a STEM topic such as:

  • Biological sciences
  • Chemistry
  • Computer science
  • Earth sciences
  • Engineering
  • Mathematics
  • Physics

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.

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 courses, talk to the study center director and staff.

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.