FAQs for International Graduate Admission

Admission Process
Is it possible to send my application kit earlier than the application period?
You can send the application materials 1 or 2 weeks earlier than the application period to ensure that they will arrive before the deadline.
Can I send my scanned application documents via email?
We can only accept your application paperwork by Mail. Scanned documents sent by email can be received as supplementary documents; however, the application package as paper documents must be submitted by an applicant.
Do I need to submit my documents originally? For example: University Diploma, Certificate of English language proficiency etc…
Basically applicants need to submit original certificates. However, if applicants submit documents like University Diploma, which cannot be issued again, certified (or notarised) copies of the documents are accepted.
Where can I make payments for the application fee?
Please make payments of your application fee through the link below;
●Application Fee Payment for International Students to Soka University
I will receive my graduation certificate in the month of October. I want to apply during the period in August. Can I apply with my final year transcript for the April entry of next year?
In that case, please submit a certificate of expected graduation together with your final mark sheets.
Are there minimum GPA or percentage requirements?
There is no minimum GPA requirements for application.
Is there any difference in applying in Phase one, Phase Two and Three or is preference given to candidates who apply in Phase One?
There is no difference among those application phases.
On what basis will the online interview be conducted?
Applicants need to prepare equipment for the online video call (Camera, speaker and microphone), and connect to the internet through LAN cable (not Wi-Fi) to ensure stable internet connection. The interview will be conducted considering the time difference of the applicants’ country and Japan.
(IBSP) Should I look for my own supervisor at International Business Studies Program (IBSP) for writing a research plan? If so, where can I find the faculty information of IBSP?
If you apply for the International Business Studies Program (IBSP), applicants need to look for a future supervisor at Soka University to write a research plan.

Please refer to the attached link for our faculty list in IBSP. 
●Faculty List in IBSP

Their research field can be searched through the website below.
●Research fields the IBSP faculty
Is the International Business Studies Program(IBSP) equivalent to M.B.A program?
No, it is not. The degree awarded upon completion of the program is Master of Economics.
English Language Proficiency Requirements
Is there a time limit concerning the validity of a certificate of English language proficiency?
Applicants must provide a photocopy of acceptable TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) iBT or IELTS (International English Language Testing System) Academic Test scores achieved within the past two years.
Can I directly send my TOEFL iBT/IELTS score from ETS/British Council?
Yes. Please use the information below.
・TOEFL iBT University Code: B413
・IELTS: please select "Soka University Graduate School"
I completed the university degree in English. The English requirement can be exempted in my case?
Each English Medium Program has different requirements for English proficiency.

●For the Graduate school of International Peace Studies
All prospective applicants including those who identify themselves as native English speakers must demonstrate their ability to successfully complete an English-medium graduate program by providing a photocopy of acceptable TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) iBT or IELTS (International English Language Testing System) Academic Test scores achieved within the past two years. English language proficiency of TOEFL iBT 90+ / IELTS 7.0+ is expected for successful applicants.

●For the Graduate school of Economics, International Business Studies
All applicants to the Graduate School of Economics, IBSP, including those who identify themselves as native English speakers, must demonstrate their ability to complete an English-medium graduate program by providing a photocopy of an acceptable English test score achieved within the past two years.
[Minimum English Proficiency Requirement] TOEFL-iBT 80+, IELTS 6.0+, or Duolingo 105+ 

*The Duolingo English Test is an online English proficiency test that can be taken online, on-demand, for under an hour for only . The test is taken via a computer with a camera. It includes a proficiency score, video interview, and writing sample, which is shared with [Soka University-Graduate School of Economics] when you send your results. Certified results are available within 48 hours of the test session.

●For the Graduate school of Letters, International Language Education; TESOL,
If you are a native English speaker under the definition below, you are NOT required to submit a score of TOEFL iBT or IELTS.
Please submit photocopies of high school and university diploma instead.

*Definition of “Native English Speaker” in TESOL.
  • Those who have studied/used English from infancy
  • Those who employ English as their primary language on a daily basis
  • Those whose command of English is superior to any other language in which they are fluent
  • Those possessing sociolinguistic/linguistic English language proficiency in terms of grammar, vocabulary and pronunciation
Can I submit TOEIC, TOEIC-IP test or TOEFL-ITP test score?
We cannot accept TOEIC test. Also, We cannot accept Institutional test scores such as TOEFL-ITP test. Please submit an official score of TOEFL iBT or IELTS.
Cost & Financial Aids
How much does it cost for the two years Master's degree program?
As for the tuition and scholarship information, please refer to the link below.
●Tuition & Scholarships
Are there any further costs for the study materials?
It is up to what courses you will take in our Master's program. Some courses may require you to purchase your study materials with additional costs. Please check the Course Description and Syllabus at our website in advance.
Are there any requirements for me to receive the scholarship?
Under the current scholarship opportunities, all international graduate students are exempted from academic fees (except the admissions fee and the registration fee) and can receive a monthly stipend of 30,000 yen for the first year. As for the second year, they can receive the same as long as they meet the minimum requirement of academic performance (they need to acquire 20 credits or more in the first year).

For more detail, please visit our website below;
●Tuition & Scholarships
How and when can I apply to the scholarship for International Students?
As for the application for the academic fee exemption, an application form will be sent to successful applicants after the announcement of admission result. Successful applicants are required to submit an application form and official documents issued by public agencies stating the household income and income tax information for the most recent 1 year.

Regarding the application for the monthly stipend scholarship, international students are required to attend a scholarship orientation held right after the enrollment (in April or September) and submit an application form. They can receive the scholarship from the next month.
Does Soka University provide any part-time job opportunity for the students to arrange their study expenses while learning?
There are some part-time job opportunities available at Soka University. International graduate students can work as a Teaching Assistant, as staff at World Language Center, or at a cafeteria on campus. 
Are the students allowed to take part-time jobs while under the program, even if they only have a Student Visa?
You can take part-time jobs with the visa status of STUDENT, if you get Permission to Engage in Activity other than that Permitted under the Status of Residence Previously Granted. You can apply for the permission easily during your immigration inspection upon arriving at the airport. Otherwise, you would need to apply at the Immigration Bureau after entering Japan and it will take around 2 weeks.
Is it possible to live in on-campus accommodation at Soka University?
Unfortunately, on-campus accommodation at Soka University is basically for the students of undergraduate, exchange and non-degree programs, and is not available for graduate students. Alternatively, the university rents off-campus apartments on behalf of international graduate students and provides them to students upon their request. These apartments are located within a 15 to 20 minute-walk to campus, and cost approximately JPY 35,000 to 40,000 per month.
Would the apartments be single occupancy or on sharing basis?
The apartments would be single rooms. Sharing room including family type room is not provided.
Would the utilities fees included in the rent?
The utilities fees such as electricity, water, gas and internet fees are not included in the rent, so students need to pay those fees additionally.
If another apartment becomes vacant later closer to the university, is it possible to shift there while contract period?
The off-campus accommodation for international graduate students is a year contract. Therefore, students cannot shift to another apartment for the first year during their contract period. 
For the Spring entry students, the contract period starts from April to March. For the Fall entry students, the contract period starts from September to August.
Campus Life
Does Soka University provide cafeteria services?
Yes. For more information, please see the link below.
Is there vegetarian eating options in campus?
Vegetarian food option is still not available on campus, but you can find some food without meat and fish. Some international vegetarian students are studying at Soka University, and they are managing somehow. The University is now considering to introduce vegetarian food option, but it will take time.
How are expenses covered in case of hospitalisation, surgery, illness for the duration of the program?
There is an on-campus health center at Soka University; however, in case of hospitalization, surgery, and illness, it is highly recommended for international students to join National Health Insurance in Japan. With this insurance, 70% of medical expenses will be covered. The insurance fee would be about JPY10,000-15,000 per year. The International Affairs Office will organize a tour of the city office in September, and international students can join the insurance at the city office. Please see the information about National Health Insurance from HERE.
Do I have to get my Laptop? Or is there a provision from the university?
Laptop will not be provided by the university, but desktop computers are available on campus where students can login with their student ID.

Address for sending applications

  • Soka University
    Graduate School Section, Faculty Affairs Office
    1-236 Tangi-machi, Hachioji-shi, Tokyo, Japan 192-8577