Japanese Government (MEXT) Scholarship

The following information is intended for prospective international students currently based overseas and wishing to attend Kyoto University on the Japanese Government (Monbukagakusho: MEXT) Scholarship.

For information for privately-financed international students currently enrolled at Kyoto University, see Scholarships for privately-financed international students.

Categories

The Japanese Government (MEXT) Scholarship, funded by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT), is available to seven categories of students: 1) Research Students (Graduate-Degree Students and Research (non-degree) Students), 2) Teacher Training Students, 3) Undergraduate Students, 4) Japanese Studies Students, 5) College of Technology Students, 6) Professional Training College Students, and 7) Young Leaders Program (YLP) Students.

Kyoto University accepts the following categories of international students:

Research Students Undergraduate Students Japanese Studies Students
Graduate degree and non-degree students Undergraduate degree students Credited auditors

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Application period, eligibility, and benefits (as of April 2017)

Categories Research Students Undergraduate Students2 Japanese Studies Students3
Application
Method
Overseas Selection
Embassy Recommendation University Recommendation Embassy Recommendation4 Embassy Recommendation University Recommendation
Application
period
Around
March
Around December1 Around
March
Around December Around February1
Selection
method
Evaluation of submitted documents, a written exam, an interview, and others Evaluation of submitted documents, an interview, and others
Eligibility Those who have graduated, or expect to graduate, from an undergraduate or higher degree program Those who have graduated, or expect to graduate, from a secondary school or equivalent Those enrolled in an undergraduate program at an overseas university, and who expect to return to that university after completing a Japanese studies program in Japan (advanced Japanese language proficiency is also required)
Age (at time of acceptance) 34 or younger 17-21 18-29
Duration Non-degree students: up to 2 years, including a six-month Japanese-language training period5 (not mandatory for those with sufficient language skills) Non-degree students: up to 18 months Five years, including a one-year Japanese language training period2 One year
Degree students (master's, professional, and doctoral): until completion of the degree program (not to exceed the standard number of years required)
Monthly stipend
  • Non-degree students 143,000 yen
  • Master's and professional-degree students 144,000 yen
  • Doctoral students 145,000 yen
117,000 yen 117,000 yen
Those residing in certain regions may be eligible for an additional monthly payment of 2,000 or 3,000 yen
School Fees Examination, admission and tuition fees are exempted
Traveling Cost One round-trip ticket is provided

1 These periods are for application through Kyoto University.
2 Undergraduate MEXT Scholarship recipients are not eligible to enroll in the six-year programs at the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences' Division of Pharmacy and the Faculty of Medicine's School of Medical Science.
3 For details on Kyoto University's Japanese studies program, see Japanese Studies Students Program (in Japanese).
4 University Recommendation is also available, but is limited to the Undergraduate International Course Program of Civil Engineering, Undergraduate School of Global Engineering, Faculty of Engineering.
5 Intensive Japanese language training is available to MEXT Research and Teacher Training Students expecting to conduct graduate-level research in the Kyoto or Shiga region. For details, see Intensive Japanese Language Course for Monbukagakusho Scholarship Students.

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Application procedures (overseas selection)

Pre-arrival applications should be submitted through either:
1) a Japanese diplomatic mission (Embassy Recommendation) or
2) a Japanese university (University Recommendation).

Most of the MEXT Scholarship students at Kyoto University earned their scholarships through Embassy Recommendation.

Note: For information for privately-financed international students currently enrolled at Kyoto University, see Scholarships for privately-financed international students.

1) Embassy Recommendation

To obtain an "Embassy Recommendation", applicants must submit their applications to the Japanese embassy (or consulate) in their home countries for the initial screening. Those interested are advised to contact an appropriate Japanese diplomatic mission in their countries.

In China, however, applications should be submitted to the country's Ministry of Education for the first screening. The application requirements, schedule, and process differ from those for Embassy Recommendation. Successful applicants usually arrive in Japan in October. Contact appropriate authorities in China for more details.

Before arriving in Japan March Application
May-July Screening by the Japanese diplomatic mission
Application for a Letter of Acceptance from a Japanese university6
October Screening by MEXT
February (-July)7 Notification of results
March (September)7 Immigration procedures
During the stay in Japan Early April (October)7 Arrival in Japan
 

Research (non-degree) students:

  • Japanese language training
  • Preparation for entrance exams
  • Conducting research

Undergraduate, master's, doctoral, or professional-degree program begins

 

Note: Students need to have passed the entrance exam before the program begins.
Entrance examination
Undergraduate, master's, doctoral, or professional-degree program begins
Returning to home country

6 Important notice regarding Embassy Recommendation

Previously, applicants were required to submit a Letter of Acceptance from a Japanese university at the time of application for an Embassy Recommendation (or during the first screening). Please note that, beginning in 2006, only those who have passed the screening by a Japanese diplomatic mission are qualified to request such a letter.

Those who have passed the first screening and require a Letter of Acceptance from Kyoto University must choose their prospective academic advisor, such as by searching the webpages listed below. They must then prepare the following documents and email them to that person.

Those unable to find contact information on their prospective academic advisors are advised to inquire at the administrative office of the Faculty or Graduate School concerned, specifying the name of the person they wish to contact.

Required documents (not returnable):

  • Notification of preliminary selection issued by the Japanese diplomatic mission
  • A Letter of Acceptance (prescribed form)
  • Copies of documents submitted to the Japanese diplomatic mission
  • Any additional documents requested by the prospective academic advisor or administrative office

Kyoto University webpages:

 

7 Months in parentheses are for those arriving in October.

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2) University Recommendation

Kyoto University screens the applications and selects candidates to recommend to MEXT as research, master's, professional-degree, or doctoral students. To apply for a University Recommendation, contact the faculty member that you would like to have as your academic advisor, and ask that person for assistance.

Before arriving in Japan December Application
Early January Screening by Graduate School
Late January Screening by Kyoto University
February-March Screening by MEXT
May Notification of results8
July-September Immigration procedures
During Stay in Japan Early October Arrival in Japan
 

Research (non-degree) students:

  • Preparing for entrance examinations
  • Conducting research

Master's, doctoral, or professional degree program begins

 

Note: Students need to have passed the entrance exam before the program begins.

Entrance examination
Master's, doctoral, or professional degree program begins
Returning to home country

8 Results for the special program will be announced around July.

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