FAQ: Frequently Asked Questions for Exchange Programs

Instructions for current and prospective JYPE, IPLA, COLABS, DEEP, and DEEp-Bridge students

Language Requirements

Do you accept English certificates other than TOEFL®

Yes. We accept any internationally recognized English exam including IELTS, TOEIC etc.; your score should be equivalent to TOEFL iBT® 79 or higher. If your score is out of date, and you are not able to take one of the accepted exams by the application deadline, use the latest score you have.

Note: TOEFL is a registered trademark of Educational Testing Service (ETS). This product is not endorsed or approved by ETS.



Visas and Entering The Country

What are the procedures for obtaining a student visa?

After notification of the final results, successful applicants will be guided to our web application system for the Certificate of Eligibility (CoE), which is required to apply for a visa. Based on the information the student enters, Tohoku University will then apply to the Immigration Bureau for the CoE on behalf of the students. It takes approximately 2 months to get the certificate. As soon as Tohoku University receives the CoE, it will be sent to student/partner university. Then the student must apply for the student visa using the CoE at the Japanese embassy/consulate general in their country before departure for Japan.


Do you provide a pickup service from the airport?

No. We do not provide a pickup service. Please refer to the access information.



Grades and Transcript

What is the grading scale at Tohoku University?

One (1) Tohoku University credit is awarded for 45 hours of schoolwork. The grading scale is shown below.
AA:90-100 / A:80-89 / B:70-79 / C:60-69 / D: 59 or below (Fail)


Where and when will I obtain my transcript?

Your official transcript and other certificates will be mailed by post directly to your home university (coordinator) approximately 2 months after your program ends.



I was a former exchange student. I need my transcript(s) to apply for a new school/company. What should I do?

Complete our Certificate Request Form.
The Incoming Student Exchange Section will be in touch with you shortly after your online registration is confirmed.



Financing and Banking

Is there any scholarship available other than the JASSO scholarship for exchange students?

Unfortunately there is no other scholarship available for exchange students for these programs.



Health and Insurance

I am already enrolled in health insurance in my country. Do I have to subscribe to National Health Insurance in Japan too?

All international students staying in Japan more than 3 months are required to enroll in National Health Insurance in Japan. This insurance will cover 70% of medical costs at clinics or hospitals. The fee is approximately JPY 20,000 per year. See National Health Insurance for details.


What other types of insurance do I need at Tohoku University besides the health insurance?

In principle, students are required to have 2 types of student insurance: Personal Accident Insurance for Students Pursuing Education and Research ("GAKKENSAI") and Comprehensive Insurance for Students Lives Coupled with "GAKKENSAI" for International Students ("Inbound futai-gakuso"). Without them, students will not be able to participate in some of their practical training courses. 


Are there any healthcare and counselling services available at TU?

The Center for Counseling and Disability Services (CCDS)
The Center for Counseling and Disability Services [leaflet] are available for students in English as free of charge if encountering difficulties and/or anxious feelings while the duration of study. The details of student problems will be kept strictly confidential.

You may contact the center directly for more details even before your program starts.

> Counseling Office

> Disability Services Office


The Student Health Care Center (SHCC)
The Student Health Care Center conducts activities to maintain student health and promote healthy lifestyles while offering a variety of consultations and services concerning health. In addition to the main office on Kawauchi-Kita Campus, the Student Health Care Center has branch health care offices on the Katahira, Medical/Dental School, Engineering, and Agriculture campuses, where we provide health consultations and medical services.



Emergency/Disaster Management

What disaster management activities does Tohoku University conduct?

Tohoku University founded the Disaster Management Promotion Office to utilize the lessons of the Great East Japan Earthquake and take all possible safety measures for future disasters. Using the Earthquake Early Warning System, warnings are issued before earthquakes to notify people to take precautions. The university also has a Safety Confirmation system (English/日本語) to confirm the safety of all students and staff in case of an emergency.


What is the radiation level in Sendai?

Tohoku University measures radiation levels regularly: http://www.bureau.tohoku.ac.jp/anzen/monitoring/english.html.
Also, refer to Japan Travel Updates after the 3.11 Earthquake


What is your precautions against missile strike from neighboring country?

We have provided university-wide precautions in the event of a missile strike.