IUC FAQ

When do I apply for the 10-Month Program?
Applications for the 10-Month Program are usually due in the middle of January of the year of attendance (i.e. for the program beginning September 2019, applications are due January 2019).

When do I apply for The Nippon Foundation Fellows program?
Applications for The Nippon Foundation Fellows PhD program and The Nippon Foundation Fellows MA/MS/MBA/JD program are usually due in the middle of December, the year prior to attendance (i.e. for the program beginning September 2019, applications are due December 2018).

When do I apply for the IUC Summer Program?
The Summer Program application is due March of the year of attendance (i.e. for the program beginning June 2019, applications are due March 2019).

How do I apply for the 10-Month Program?
Applications will be made available on this website in the months prior to the deadline and submitted via Interfolio.com. You will need a CV, transcripts, two general references and a language reference, and a request for the mandatory proficiency exam. There is a non-refundable application fee payable by credit card.

How do I apply for The Nippon Foundation Fellows program?
Applications will be made available on this website in the months prior to the deadline and submitted via Interfolio.com. You will need a CV, transcripts, two general references, and a language reference, and a request for the mandatory proficiency exam. There is a non-refundable application fee payable by credit card.  You do not need to complete the 10-month application.

How do I apply for the IUC Summer Program?
Applications will be made available on this website in the months prior to the deadline and submitted via Interfolio.com. You will complete a Summer Application form, Summer Language Evaluation Form, Summer Essay Form and transcripts.  The Summer Language Evaluation form must be filled out by someone (preferably a Japanese Language teacher) qualified to judge your proficiency in Japanese.  There is a non-refundable application fee payable by credit card. Only complete applications (including application fee) will be reviewed.

Do I need a visa to study at the IUC Summer Program?
Typically students who hold US passports are able to travel to and enter Japan for up to 90 days on a tourist visa.  However, you must consider your country of origin.  Some countries do not have a reciprocal agreement with Japan.  Students from these countries may be required to obtain a visa.  Please take this information into consideration as you make plans.  We urge you to make early contact with your local Japanese consulate regarding the correct process and procedure for entry into Japan for the summer program.

Ideally I would like to enroll in the IUC Summer Program followed by the 10-Month Program.
These two programs have separate applications, separate application deadlines, and separate Selection Committees.  You will need to apply to each program separately.

If I am not selected for the Nippon Foundation Fellows Program, can I still apply to the 10-Month Program?
If you are not selected for the Nippon Foundation Fellows Program, your application will be automatically considered for admission to the 10-Month Program. If admitted to the 10-Month Program you will be considered for any applicable scholarship.

When I apply to the Nippon Foundation Fellows Program do I need to complete a 10-Month application as well?
Submit just one application to the IUC.  Applicants not selected for the NFF will automatically be considered for admission to the 10-Month Program.

Who is eligible to apply to the IUC? (10-Month, NFF, or Summer Programs)
Applicants for IUC programs (1) are graduate students enrolled in a degree program or professional school at a university or college, degree candidates at a university or college, qualified undergraduates, college graduates who intend to enroll in a graduate program or professional school after completing IUC training, or professionals already working in a Japan-related field who hold a degree or advanced degree; (2) have demonstrated outstanding professional promise, as reflected by grades, recommendations, and statements of purpose; (3) have completed two years or more training in a rigorous college-level Japanese language training program or the equivalent; and (4) have obtained an acceptable score on the Inter-University Center Japanese Proficiency Exam.
Applicants for The Nippon Foundation Fellows Program/PhD must be currently enrolled in a PhD program.  Applicants for the Nippon Foundation Fellows Program MA/MS/MBA/JD must be currently enrolled in graduate study or recently graduated. 

  • The IUC admits up to 60 students for the 10-Month Program.
  • The IUC admits up to 20 students for The Nippon Foundation Fellows Program.
  • The IUC admits up to 42 students for the IUC Summer Program.

Who are the average IUC students?
Most students applying to the IUC are either planning on entering a graduate program immediately following the program, or are currently enrolled in a graduate program (PhD, JD, MA, MS, MD, etc.)
and are studying at the IUC to improve their Japanese for research or for use in conjunction with their career. There are students of all ages at the IUC, and every year there are a fair number of students who intend to find work in Japan post-IUC, or intend to use Japanese in a professional career post-IUC.  Some students have already completed graduate training and seek IUC language training to further enhance their career.

What do you study at IUC?
The majority of classes at the IUC, especially during the first half of the program, are dedicated to Japanese reading, writing, listening, and speaking. Morning classes are dedicated to grammar, and utilization happens through giving speeches, discussions on certain topics, and writing essays. In the afternoon, the classes are geared toward comprehension, with the utilization of news clips, newspaper articles, and other media.

The second half of the program is more customizable to the student, with a number of various electives to take along with the grammar courses. Courses can include modern Japanese history, Japanese literature, popular culture, business Japanese, law and more.

During the 4th quarter, students are expected to work on an individual project on a topic of choice, concluding in an oral presentation at year-end.
 
In addition to the regular courses, students are also expected to complete SKIP (Special Intensive Kanji Program), where students will work on their own to learn the nearly 2,136 Standard Usage Kanji. SKIP includes quizzes, which will be undertaken either before or after classes.

What do IUC students go on to do after the IUC?
To date, the IUC has trained more than 2,000 students. This small but highly influential pool of graduates has done more to heighten international awareness and understanding of Japan than any other group of people over the last five decades. More than half have joined the professoriate, and hundreds more have taken leadership positions in other Japan-related professions. IUC graduates have:

  • taught tens of thousands of students at more than 200 universities;
  • served at every level of university administration, from president to department chair;
  • shaped government policy as foreign service diplomats;
  • facilitated bilateral business and trade as corporate executives, lawyers, and officers of the American Chamber of Commerce in Japan;
  • fostered deeper understanding of Japan as award-winning translators, authors, editors and journalists;
  • promoted cultural knowledge and exchange as curators of major Japanese art collections;
  • provided leadership in a variety of non-profit organizations such as Japan and Japan-America Societies;
  • received countless honors in a wide array of academic disciplines and professions.

Are there extracurricular courses?
There are various courses that students may choose that take place weekly, after the afternoon classes finish. These courses vary, but past examples include calligraphy, business Japanese, and classical Japanese.

The IUC also arranges for speakers (sometimes IUC alumns) who lecture on topics such as Nationality of Japan-born Taiwanese, Global Warming, and the first Japanese Woman to Study Abroad.
In addition, the IUC often arranges field trips. A literature course class may visit the Yokohama Public Library, or the Japanese culture class might go to a Japanese temple. There are also events put on for the entire student body, such as field trips to parks, or ikebana lessons.

It is through these extra curricular events that some students discover volunteer opportunities within the community.  Serving as a community volunteer enhances the year long experience by improving language skill and enables students to interact with local agencies and citizens while it deepens the cultural experience.

Who are the teachers?
The instructors at the IUC come from varied educational backgrounds, both in the U.S. and Japan, and are trained in Japanese language teaching.  Most have a specific area of expertise, such as art history, literature, history, political science, economics, anthropology or law and offer specialized courses in these disciplines.  All are native speakers. 

How much studying do IUC students do in and out of class?
There is a reason the IUC is called an “intensive” language program! Although classes do not begin until 10 am, most students arrive at the facility at 9 am to work on SKIP or other homework and on-going  projects. In addition, you can expect to spend most of your after class time on homework, essays, speeches, or SKIP practice. As stated elsewhere, the IUC workload does not leave time for part-time work.

How much do students improve after 10 months?
This depends on the student. The IUC is a “get-what-you-put-in” kind of program. Because there are no official grades, the workload, and how much of that workload gets done, depends on the individual student, and their enthusiasm. If a student is motivated, there is no limit to how much they can improve with the sources available at the IUC.

How does the IUC evaluate the performance of students in its programs?
IUC students are constantly evaluated throughout the term of their program, and they are given a detailed, written evaluation at the end of their coursework. This evaluation letter constitutes the IUC equivalent of a “transcript.” As a matter of school policy, the IUC does not issue letter grades for courses. Students whose home institutions require a one-word summary of the IUC evaluation letter should have their institution contact the Stanford Administrative Office <iucjapan@stanford.edu>. 

Does the IUC offer course credits that can be transferred to schools in the U.S. or elsewhere?
No, the IUC does not offer course credits. The mission of the IUC program is to train students with career goals that demand high fluency in Japanese; such students typically do not need course credits to achieve their aims.

When will I learn if I’ve been admitted to the 10-month program?
Students are notified via email by the end of March.

When will I learn if I’ve been admitted to The Nippon Foundation Fellows program?
Students are notified via email by the end of March.

When will I learn if I’ve been admitted to the Summer Program?
Students are notified via email by April 1.

Is there a wait list?
The IUC maintains a wait list for both the 10-Month Program and Summer Program.  Every effort is made to contact students immediately after an opening becomes available.
For the 10-Month Program, we attempt to finalize the class list no later than early June.
For the Summer Program, we attempt to finalize the class list no later than May 1.

When will I learn about scholarship for the 10-Month program?
The majority of scholarship assignments take place during the months of May-July.  Students who do not initially receive an award during this period may receive scholarship in a subsequent funding round.  Scholarship assignments are fluid and continue throughout the summer months until all funds have been assigned. 

What are my chances of receiving tuition scholarship?
IUC scholarship support is merit based (primary) and need based (secondary) and thus all applicants are considered for any applicable scholarship.  The IUC is able to provide partial, up to full, tuition scholarship for approximately 40 students.  Typical enrollment is 40-45 students, however, we are able to accommodate up to 65 students at the IUC.  During 2017-18, the awards ranged from $26,000 - $33,000 and some awards included modest living stipends.  Not all students who are offered admission will receive IUC scholarship.  Admission to the IUC does not imply or guarantee receipt of scholarship. 

What about cost of living scholarships?
The IUC has some living stipends available.  The Nippon Foundation Fellows scholarship includes a modest living stipend.  Approximately half of the 10-Month scholarships include a modest living stipend.

What is the tuition for the 2018-19, 10-Month program?
Tuition for the 2018-19, 10-Month program is $33,000.  Students currently enrolled in a degree granting program from a consortium member institution during the 2017-18 academic year receive a guaranteed  tuition scholarship of $7,000 to attend the Inter-University Center during 2018-19. Fees are set each year and subject to change.

What is the tuition for the 2018 summer program?
Tuition for the 7-week summer 2018 program is $5,000 (US).  Students currently enrolled in a degree granting program from a consortium member institution during the 2017-18 academic year receive a guaranteed tuition scholarship of $600 to attend the Inter-University Center during summer 2018.  Fees are set each year and subject to change.

Are there other costs for the 10-Month Program beyond tuition?
In addition to tuition, students need to have funds for housing, local transportation, food,
medical insurance (Japan National recommended, as well as US Travel Insurance/Repatriation/Emergency Evacuation are required), Internet, cell phone, and RT airfare are some examples.  Sample student budgets may be viewed in the Resources section of the web site.

Will my current student loans be deferred while enrolled at IUC?
 Each year, several IUC students ask the IUC administrative office to help them obtain deferrals for outstanding educational loans with other institutions.  We are willing to help in such efforts when possible, and many of our students are successful in obtaining such deferrals.  There have, however, been cases in which the deferrals are denied, and the loan officers’ logic is not always clear.  IUC students should, therefore, be aware that some deferrals might be denied by loan agencies.  The Inter-University Center does not participate in the guaranteed student loan program and is unable to certify loan applications.  A student graduating with a BA or BS but admitted to a graduate school should seek assistance from that graduate school on loan certification. 

Will I be able to purchase discounted rail passes and other items with a “student discount” card?
No.  IUC students do not hold student visas.  The cultural affairs visa does not provide for student discounts.

Do I need a visa to study at the IUC 10-Month Program?
Yes, if admitted you will need to obtain a Cultural Activities visa.  The IUC will provide assistance with this process.  You will be expected to apply for a Certificate of Eligibility (CoE) prior to making your visa application.  The CoE will require that you are able to demonstrate that you have the funds to participate in a year of study abroad (tuition + living costs).  The CoE application will be due in late May.

When do I apply for my year-long visa?
Accepted students will be sent visa information after admission.  Before applying for a visa, students must make an application for the Certificate of Eligibility (CoE) (see above).  The CoE application is coordinated by the Yokohama staff and can only be made through arrangements with their office.  Please do not apply for a visa until you have completed the CoE application in late May.  For the NFF or 10-Month Program, you will travel to Japan on a cultural affairs visa good for one year from date of entry.  The CoE application will require you to demonstrate that you have the available funds (tuition + living costs) to participate in a year of study abroad.  Scholarships may be used to help offset these costs.

What sort of assistance will I receive in locating housing?
For the 10-Month Program, we offer a variety of housing options and assistance.  Admitted students will be sent detailed housing information in June.  Some local apartments are available from landlords who routinely rent to IUC students.  Other options include apartments in Weekly Mansions, shared apartments, or locating housing independently with IUC Yokohama staff assistance if required.  The IUC does not offer assistance in locating homestays.  Students are encouraged to locate housing through other channels or recommendations as available.  It is best to wait until you have been admitted before securing housing. 

For the summer program, once you have been admitted, we provide information on how to locate and reserve housing.

How do I arrange for banking while in Japan?
Upon arrival in Japan, you will be issued a Residence Card.  With this proof of registration you should be able to open a Japanese bank account at a designated branch of a major bank with which the IUC has a relationship.  Many students forgo opening a Japanese bank account and rely on ATM machines, and/or withdrawing funds from a US bank such as CitiBank.  Citibank ATMS accept foreign ATM cards and are open 24 hours.

How can I import or bring medications into Japan for personal use?
The Japanese Government makes decisions on what medications or medical devices may be imported legally into Japan, and unfortunately the limited information available at the American Embassy and our Consulates does not include comprehensive lists of specific medications or ingredients.  This information is available only from the Japanese authorities, subject to change.  Please refer to the web site referenced below for a more thorough discussion.

http://japan.usembassy.gov/e/acs/tacs-medimport.html

Before mailing or bringing any medication to Japan, read the above referenced web site carefully.  If you fail to follow Japanese law you may be arrested and detained.

Is there an IUC Student Handbook?
Yes!  We provide each student with an extensive Student Handbook in May.  The handbook contains valuable information on travel/arrival, foreign registration, Internet access, banking, rentals, transportation, medical insurance, and general logistics.  You will be provided with a smaller handbook
during orientation at the IUC.

Where can I find an IUC academic calendar?
The academic calendar is posted on the IUC website
https://web.stanford.edu/dept/IUC/cgi-bin/resources/index.php

Where can I find more information on the 10-Month Program?
Please visit our web site
https://web.stanford.edu/dept/IUC/cgi-bin/programs/index.php

Where can I find more information on The Nippon Foundation Fellows Program?
Please visit our web site
https://web.stanford.edu/dept/IUC/cgi-bin/programs/nippon-foundation.php

Where can I find more information on the IUC Summer Program?
Please visit our web site
https://web.stanford.edu/dept/IUC/cgi-bin/programs/summer-program.php

Where can I download a brochure for the 10-Month Program?
Please visit our web site
https://web.stanford.edu/dept/IUC/cgi-bin/resources/index.php

Where can I download a brochure for The Nippon Foundation Fellows Program?
Please visit our web site
https://web.stanford.edu/dept/IUC/cgi-bin/resources/index.php

Where can I download a brochure for the IUC Summer Program?
Please visit our web site
https://web.stanford.edu/dept/IUC/cgi-bin/resources/index.php

Where can I download a sample student budget for the 10-Month Program and/or the Summer Program?
Please visit our web site and search under Prospective Students section
https://web.stanford.edu/dept/IUC/cgi-bin/resources/index.php

How do I contact the Stanford administrative offices?
Telephone: 650-725-1490
Email:  iucjapan@stanford.edu
Web: iucjapan.stanford.edu

How do I contact the Yokohama office?
Telephone: 81-045-223-2002
Email:  iuc@iucjapan.org
Web: www.iucjapan.org

Please Note:
The IUC retains the right to cancel or modify the program at any time, for reasons that may include, but are not limited to, natural disasters, emergencies, or health and safety considerations.  Program modifications shall not alter the student’s obligation to pay tuition.

Fees and content are subject to change.                  

 

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