- 18 years of age or above
- Good academic and disciplinary standing at Penn State
- 2.75 cumulative GPA or better at the time of application
- Sophomore standing or above at the start of the program
Expand your understanding of this country by immersing yourself in contemporary Japan and its culture—what better way to learn the Japanese language? At Kanda University of International Studies (KUIS), you take a 6-credit language course specially designed for IES Abroad students (with the option of taking up to 10 credits of language). You'll also take English-language area studies courses focusing on popular culture, economics, history, political science, and contemporary society. KUIS is a modern and vibrant university with an international faculty and state-of-the-art facilities.
You can also enroll in the Social Organization in Japan with Field Placement course, which provides you with first-hand experience in a Japanese organization. Spend one day per week as a participant-observer at a local business or not-for-profit organization, and then share your experience in a seminar course to learn more about Japanese culture. With sufficient language ability, you can audit a Japanese-taught digital communications course at Digital Hollywood University. Possible course disciplines include Film, Animation, and Video Game Design.
Academic Year: late August - mid July
Fall: late August - mid December
Spring: late March - mid July
Refer to IES Abroad's website for the specific dates, if available. Note that the Japanese academic calendar is different than the U.S. academic calendar with their school year starting in April.
Tea ceremony, calligraphy, music, dance, and martial arts—all this and more you can explore during your time in Tokyo. Live and learn in this exciting city where the past mingles with the future, and the modern stands side-by-side with the traditional.
KUIS is located within walking distance of the IES Abroad Center in Makuhari, a modern city in Chiba prefecture, which is in the Greater Tokyo Area (just 30 minutes from downtown Tokyo). The area around the Center has easy access to public transportation, offers many public amenities, like shopping and dining, a movie complex, a game arcade, parks, the beach, and open spaces to relax and hang out.
IES wants you to feel at home in Tokyo, so they do everything they can to help you integrate into life in the city. Check out their IES Abroad Tokyo Center newsletter to see what our current Tokyo students are up to. Our E-pal program introduces you to a local student before you even arrive. Through your E-pal, you will have the chance to practice speaking Japanese and meet up for events as you get settled in.
Education Abroad in Countries with a Penn State Restricted Travel Designation
In order to comply with Penn State’s International Travel Policy, students interested in studying abroad in countries that Penn State has designated as “restricted” for travel, a petition for a waiver must be submitted. Once a petition is complete, and if the student is approved for study on the program in question, the student may be asked to meet with the Director of Education Abroad and the petition will be reviewed by the Penn State International Restricted Travel Committee (IRTC). The necessary petition will be included in the online application process for this program. To see if your program is taking place in a restricted travel country, please visit the Global Programs website.
Available Fields of Study
Anthropology, Architecture, Asian Studies, Communications, Economics, Environmental Studies, Film Studies, History, Japanese, Marketing, Political Science, Sociology, Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies
To find courses at IES Tokyo, follow the instructions on their website.
To see what Penn State students have previously taken on this program, see the Historical Course List, which is meant to be a guide as to what courses might be available and how they might transfer to Penn State. Courses listed here may not be offered during the semester you attend the program and the credit amount or course title may have changed.
Note: You are not limited to choosing classes on the program Historical Course List. You should consult the full list of courses on IES' website before choosing a program.
To find appropriate courses that will fit into your degree requirements, you will need to work with your academic adviser. Suggested tips:
- Research courses available on your program
- Meet with your academic adviser to discuss potential courses abroad and your degree requirements
- Keep in mind that courses abroad may change or may be unavailable for your selected term, so you will need to discuss possible back-up course options
- To register for courses on this program you will work with IES
Program-specific Course Information
Create your own academic experience by selecting from the following required and optional program components:
- Japanese language course at KUIS (required, 6 credits)
- Japanese language elective courses at IES Abroad Center (must be placed in 300-level Japanese or higher, optional, 2 credits each)
- English-taught IES Abroad area studies courses or KUIS area studies courses (optional, credits vary)
- Japanese-taught Digital Hollywood University area studies course (optional, 0 credit)
- Field placement and required seminar (optional, 3 credits)
- You must enroll in a minimum number of 15 credits and a maximum number of 18 credits
- You cannot take any courses abroad on a Pass/Fail basis
- World Campus courses should not be taken in addition to or as a substitute for courses offered abroad
- You may not take sport or physical activity courses (e.g. sailing, bowling, yoga, etc.) abroad
- If you are studying abroad in your final semester at Penn State, please note that Penn State may not receive your grades in time for graduation
Course Equivalency Process
In order for courses from abroad to appear on your Penn State transcript, each course must be given a course equivalency. Please visit the Academics section of the Global Programs website for information on the course equivalency process.
Courses can be submitted for course equivalency before, during, or after the education abroad program, however, you should begin this process as soon as possible as it can take on average 2-4 months or more for courses to receive a Penn State course number. In some cases, it can be difficult to obtain syllabi from abroad before the start of the term, but when possible, courses can be submitted for review before departure. Talk to your Education Abroad Adviser about requesting syllabi.
Grade and Credit Conversion Scale
Grades and credit conversions from your host institution cannot be changed. They will be converted to Penn State credits and grades based on the following scales:
Grade Conversion Scale
|Host Institution Grade
||Penn State Grade
Credit Conversion Scale
|Host Institution Credit
||Penn State Credit
|3 credits per course
||3 credits per course