Important Notice 
Due to the impact of COVID-19 (coronavirus), our admissions schedules and/or procedures may change.
Please kindly note that it will be announced on our website if any changes are made.

FAQ

General Questions

Is ICU accredited?

Yes. The academic programs of the College of Liberal Arts and the Graduate School are individually chartered by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT), in Japan. ICU is also a member institution of the Japan University Accreditation Association (JUAA). Credits earned at ICU are fully recognized by graduate schools of major universities in Japan, the United States and elsewhere; they are also normally accepted for transfer purposes as long as they fit into the student's overall program at his or her home institution.

What is the student population? How many international students are studying at ICU?

Total number of students are about 3,000, which is very small if you compare with the other many Japanese universities that have more than tens of thousands of students. Students with diverse backgrounds are coming from over 50 countries. Please refer to University Data for more details.

I'm not a Christian. Can I still apply?

Yes. ICU is not a proselytizing institution and it does not see nurturing Christians as its main goal. However, it holds as its mission the establishment of an academic tradition of freedom and reverence based on Christian ideals. For more information about ICU 's mission, please refer to "The Three Commitments of ICU ."

What is the language(s) of instruction?

Japanese and English. Over 30% of all courses offered at ICU (excluding language learning courses such as ELA and JLP) are taught in English, and that number is scheduled to increase to 40% by 2023. The rest of the courses are offered in Japanese or in both.

I don't know any Japanese. Can I still apply?

Yes. Regardless of the Japanese language proficiency, prospective students can apply to ICU through English Language Based Admissions (April / September Entry). Students admitted through these admissions need to complete Japanese Language Programs (JLP) in order to graduate. Please be aware that English Language Based Admissions require the applicants enough English proficiency that enables them to pursue academic studies at ICU in English as well.

Can I obtain a bachelor's degree by taking courses in English only?

No. Students admitted through English Language Based Admissions are required to take some Japanese-taught courses (besides JLP courses) in order to graduate. When it comes to ICU`s idea of bilingual education, please refer to the webpage of "Japanese-English Bilingual Education."

Even if I get admitted through English Language Based Admissions, can I still participate in ELA?

No. Students admitted through English Language Based Admissions are supposed to possess enough English language proficiency to take university-level courses in English. That means, by definition, the English for Liberal Arts program is not for them. However, some elective courses are available such as "English College Composition for JLP Track Students" and "Advanced English Studies courses." Please check out the course offerings for more details.

Are students admitted through English Language Based Admissions able to take the same academic courses as students admitted through other admissions conducted in Japanese?

Yes. All students study at the same campus with the same curriculum; except for the language programs (ELA or JLP track).

I'm a Japanese returnee and I think I'm fluent in Japanese. Do I still have to go through the Japanese Language Programs (JLP)?

All students admitted through English Language Based Admissions need to take a placement test for JLP. The test is to place them into the most appropriate courses in accordance with their levels of Japanese proficiency. Many returnees students who regard Japanese as their first or heritage language are placed in "Special Japanese Program" (see Japanese Language Programs) to improve the skills they are lacking.

I would like to participate just in the Japanese Language Programs (JLP). How can I apply?

JLP is NOT independent program, but a part of the graduation requirements for degree-seeking students. If you wish to study Japanese for one year, you first need to become One-Year-Regular student or Kenkyusei. Please check out the respective admissions categories.

If you are rather interested in a short-term program, see the "Summer Courses in Japanese (SCJ)."

I am interested in learning more about ICU. Do you have any other source of information that I can refer to?

Please visit the webpage of "Stories" where you can find messages from professors and students of ICU.

Do I need to make an appointment to visit your campus?

You can visit our campus anytime, but if you wish to talk to admissions counselors, we recommend you to inform us in advance. Click here for further information regarding the campus visit. Also, Open Campus events are held every year in Summer (July and August) and Spring (March). The event dates are announced on the ICU homepage.
*Due to the impact of COVID-19 (coronavirus), access to the campus and office hours are limited.
Please see Access to the Campus and Office Hours for more details.

Application Procedure / Eligibility

Is the application deadline a post-mark date?

No. All documents must reach ICU by the designated deadlines.

What is the difference between the First Application Period and the Second Application Period?
Is one advantageous over the other?

The only difference between the two periods is the application schedule (application deadlines and notification dates). There is no advantage or disadvantage in applying to either.

If I apply for English Language Based Admissions for April 2021 entry and not admitted, can I reapply for the September 2021 entry?

No. One year interval is required if applicants wish to reapply*. Applicants who apply for April 2021 entry will be unable to reapply for September 2021 entry, but able to apply for April 2022. Applicants who apply for September 2021 entry will be unable to reapply for April 2022 entry, but able to apply for September 2022.

*This rule also applies between April/September Admissions by Documentary Screening conducted before AY2020 and English Language Based Admissions conducted after AY2021.

If my application for the First Application Period is not successful, can I reapply for the Second Application Period?

No. One year interval is required if applicants wish to reapply regardless of admission results.

I graduated/will graduate from high school in Japan. Am I eligible to apply through English Language Based Admissions (April / September Entry)?

Yes. Those who have graduated or are expected to graduate a Japanese high school are required to submit SAT (with Essay), ACT Plus Writing or GCE A level as their Educational Certification for English Language Based Admissions.

I am completing my second year at a U.S. university before enrolling in ICU, but I graduated a Japanese high school. Do I have to take SAT or ACT as Admission Documents / Requirements?

Yes. The requirements are just as same as the U.S. high school graduates.

Admission Documents / Requirements

What is the minimum score requirement for IELTS / TOEFL / SAT / ACT / IB?

The Minimum requirement for IELTS is 6.5 and for TOEFL iBT is 79. There is no minimum requirement for the other tests. For your information, the approximate average score of those admitted to ICU through the English Language Based Admissions between 2015 and 2019 is as below:

TestsAverage Scores Between 2015 and 2019
TOEFL iBT99
SAT1,327*
ACT Plus Writing28.6
IB Full Diploma34
*NOTE: Only for SAT, it shows an average score between 2017-2019.
What is the minimum GPA required?

We do not set a minimum GPA requirement because GPA system is not used in some counties. Also, the screening committee will carefully examine not only your cumulative GPA, but also your progress through high school and each course level of grades.

I am an IB full Diploma student. Do I need to submit SAT scores as well?

No. However, as long as you will be able to obtain IB full Diploma, you may submit your SAT (with Essay), ACT Plus Writing or GCE A level scores, instead of your IB scores.

Do you offer conditional admissions based on predicted IB scores?

Yes. Please request your school to issue your IB predicted grades using the designated form (Form IB). Decisions will be made based on your predicted IB grades and other application documents. However, acceptance may be conditional upon receipt of final IB results.

I am studying in Germany and will take Abitur. But, I cannot submit the final result of Abitur by the deadline for submission of documents. Can I still apply?

Yes. If you are unable to obtain the result of the examination by the Second Application deadline of each admission season, please submit all other documents by the deadline and send the final result as soon as it becomes available. Please note that the admission decision will not be made until we receive the final result.

Can I send additional recommendation letters?

As long as we receive the two recommendation letters from persons we require, additional recommendation letters can be sent.

I am a native speaker of English. Do I still need to submit the proof of English proficiency such as TOEFL?
    A proof of English proficiency including TOEFL is optional if the applicants meets the following criteria:
  1. Have spent both junior and senior high school years - the last continuous six school years - at an institution in which English is the language of instruction, OR
  2. Are IB Diploma Candidates and have taken IB English A ("Literature" or "Language and Literature")
  3. Please check the information brochure for further information on the requirement.

My Diploma is the only copy and cannot be reissued. How can I submit my Diploma?

If your certificate or diploma / results of national exam is the only copy and cannot be reissued, please ask your school to prepare a certified copy. If this arrangement cannot be made for some reason, please consult the Admissions Center before the start of each online application period.

Others

Are there scholarships / financial aid that I can apply for prior to enrollment?

Yes. Please refer to the webpage of "Tuition and Aid."

Does the FAFSA Loan qualify for your university?

Unfortunately, not at this point. Please contact FAFSA directly regarding any related issues.

Can I get credits for AP and IB?

We recognize AP and IB as advanced level courses at the time of admissions, but unfortunately we do not give any university credits for these tests.

Can I find out how many credits can be transferred before enrollment?

Credits may be granted recognition only after students are officially enrolled at ICU. Interviews will be given during the orientation program. Please refer to the webpage of "Transfer Students" for more details.

I am interested in the six-week Summer Courses in Japanese. Can I apply through English Language Based Admissions?
Those who wish to participate in Summer Courses in Japanese before September matriculation should submit the SCJ application together with application for English Language Based Admissions (September Entry). The SCJ is applicable to applicants for September entry only. Please refer to INFORMATION BROCHURE of the year you intend to apply.
Are dormitory rooms guaranteed for all new students from abroad?

Unfortunately, we cannot guarantee for all students. However, chances to live in a dorm room are getting much higher, as two new dormitories opened in April 2017. Please see the following webpage for more details: https://www.icu.ac.jp/en/campuslife/dormitories/facility/index.html.
ICU Service Co., Ltd.will support you to find off-campus housing in case you did not get a room at one of our dormitories.




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