Learning in Diversity

Extracurricular International Exchange Activities

Extracurricular International Exchange Activities

Tohoku University provides various opportunities for students to be involved in international student support and extracurricular international exchange activities. Some activities are conducted in close cooperation with the university, some are student-led, and some are conducted primarily as an organization, while others are individual activities.

GLC Administrative Assistants

Global Learning Center Administrative Assistants (GLC AAs) are student staff who assist faculty and staff in various tasks related to internationalization at Tohoku University. They are in charge of the International Student Help Desk and also assist guests from abroad.


About Tutors

To help new international students adjust to their environment as quickly as possible, students from the university act as tutors and provide support for school and daily life.
Tutors are appointed each semester by the head of the host department.
They are paid for up to 48 hours of work per semester. They handle important activities with commensurate responsibilities. By helping international students with school life, tutors themselves naturally learn about the language, lifestyle, and culture of other countries and Japan. Some students become interested in studying abroad after participating in tutoring activities. The activities vary depending on the status of the international student, their Japanese language ability, and their laboratory.

Usually, graduate/undergraduate students in the same laboratory as the international student are appointed as tutors, but some faculties and graduate schools also accept applications. If you are interested in this program, please confirm the application period and selection process at the relevant section in your department.
Tutors for the International Program in Liberal Arts (IPLA ) are also available at the Global Learning Center.

Tutor Guidance

Tutor Guidance is available on Google Classroom. The guidance consists of a video explaining the tutoring system and tutoring activities, stories from former tutors, a comprehension test, and other useful materials for tutoring activities. New tutors are required to take this course. Those who are interested in becoming a tutor and those who are interested in tutoring are also welcome to take this course. (Class code: x2qwnok)


IPLANET is a student organization that supports students in the International Program in Liberal Arts (IPLA ). Led by IPLANET student leaders, members take the initiative in planning and organizing events and providing support to international students throughout the year.


TUSTEM (Tohoku University STEM Student Network) is an international exchange organization founded in 2018 to foster mutual exchange between local and international students in undergraduate and graduate STEM curricula. It plans and hosts events and exchange conferences related to science and engineering in addition to assisting with Tohoku University’s international STEM programs (FGL, COLABS, JYPE, TSSP).

TUFSA (Tohoku University Foreign Students Association)

Tohoku University Foreign Students Association (TUFSA) represents all international students at Tohoku University. Established on November 3, 1965, TUFSA has been around, and has organized activities, for more than 50 years. TUFSA provides a platform for international exchange and strengthens ties between International and Japanese students at Tohoku University with the aim of making their time in Sendai a memorable and life long experience.

Tohoku University
Japanese Program Buddy Program

In this program, Tohoku University students act as “buddies” or “partners” for international students participating in the Tohoku University Japanese Program (TUJP), a short-term program for students from partner universities overseas that focuses on Japanese language and culture.

1. TUJP Buddy

Interact freely with program participants in small one-on-one or two-on-one groups outside of class (assist with Japanese language/cultural study, answer questions, and provide consultations, etc.).
Activities are scheduled for approximately 2 hours per week during the program.

2. Intercultural Collaborative Learning Class Partners

Partners will engage in intercultural collaborative learning activities, such as group work and discussions, with the program participants. Depending on the content of the program, Partners may participate in PBL done mostly in English, or discussions conducted mainly in easy Japanese.

3. Japanese Language Class Partners

Partners attend Japanese language classes, participate in group work in Japanese, and assist with conversation practice.

Applications for TUJP Buddy Partners will be accepted through the Global Learning Center website.

Student Learning Adviser (SLA)

SLAs (Student Learning Advisers) provide various kinds of learning support services to international students, including Japanese language learning (conversation practice and writing), exchange events, etc., at the Center for Learning Support.


E-mail: sla-support*grp.tohoku.ac.jp
(please replace the “*” with “@”)

The International Student
Concierge Service

The “International Student Concierge” desk is available at the main library in Kawauchi to help international students use the library and find materials. International student staff members speak English and/or other languages (e.g., Chinese). The desk is open on weekdays during class periods.


E-mail: gakushi*grp.tohoku.ac.jp
(please replace the “*” with “@”)

Online Community (Yammer)

The Global Learning Center has an online community on Microsoft Yammer. All Tohoku University constituents (students, faculty, and staff) are welcome to participate. Join our global community, make new connections, and share your thoughts, knowledge, experiences, and opinions.