Take advantage of this unique opportunity to study and live in the culturally rich environment of Kyoto and explore the heart of Japan. Experienced instructors lead small, intensive language classes, devote personal attention to you and tailor the curriculum to your particular needs and linguistic ability. Hands-on extracurricular activities offered on a weekly basis will enhance your understanding of Japanese society and culture.
The Kyoto Consortium for Japanese Studies (KCJS) program offers intensive language training for highly motivated undergraduate and graduate students who have completed at least one, two, three or four years of college-level Japanese or the equivalent. Studying at KCJS for the summer will enable you to:
- Study 2nd, 3rd, 4th or 5th year Japanese. Accelerated 2nd and 3rd Year tracks are also available.
- Learn classical Japanese if such a course is not offered at your institution
- Raise your Japanese language proficiency to a higher level in a short period of time
- Live in Kyoto, one of the most beautiful and historical cities in the world
- Participate in a variety of hands-on, cultural experiences in a city steeped in history and renowned for its traditional and modern artists, artisans, and musicians
- Live with a local Japanese family in a homestay or make your own arrangements to live in an apartment
KCJS is centrally located in Kyoto on the Imadegawa campus of Doshisha University, bounded on the south by the Imperial Palace grounds, and to the northeast by Shokokuji temple.
Established in September 1989, KCJS is a consortium of 13 American universities which sponsors this rigorous, academic program. Columbia University serves as the lead administrative institution of the consortium and works with the KCJS staff and board of delegates members from each consortium school to oversee all aspects of the program.
Members of the consortium include:
Boston University, Brown University, University of Chicago, Columbia University/Barnard College, Cornell University, Emory University, Harvard University, University of Pennsylvania, Princeton University, Stanford University, Washington University in St. Louis, and Yale University in association with the University of Virginia.
The KCJS welcomes applications from outside of the consortium.
Eligibility and Application
- Open to undergraduates and graduate students in good academic standing. Recent graduates may also apply.
- For Second Year Japanese: must have completed one year of college-level Japanese or the equivalent.
- For Third Year Japanese: must have completed two years of college-level Japanese or the equivalent.
- For Fourth Year and above & Classical Japanese: must have completed three years of college-level Japanese or the equivalent.
- For Fifth Year Japanese: must have completed four years of college-level Japanese or the equivalent.
- Minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA.
- Minimum 3.0 average GPA in Japanese language courses.
How to apply
Want to apply? Click the “Start an Application" button at the top of this page. You will be asked to set up a short profile, which will allow us to send you relevant information about your application. Once you’ve created a profile, you will see a checklist of items that you will need to submit. These generally include:
- Application questionnaire(s)
- Personal statement
- Letter of recommendation from someone who has recently taught you Japanese
- Letter of recommendation from someone who has taught you at the university level who can attest to your academic skills
- Official transcript(s)
Visit the Kyoto-based KCJS Summer Website to find comprehensive information about:
- housing options
- extracurricular activities
- student experiences including photos, videos and blogs
- KCJS staff and faculty
- Doshisha University
Grades and Transcripts
Upon successful completion of the program, grades are entered into Columbia's online grading system and students can request a Columbia University transcript. Non-Columbia students (including Barnard) can request electronic transcripts online through the Columbia University registrar.
No credit is granted to students who do not complete the full program.
Program Fee Summer 2017:
Modern Japanese: $5,130
Classical Japanese: $4,100
Tuition and fees are subject to Board of Trustees approval and may change.
Note: Costs will vary depending on program length, housing choice and other factors. Carefully review the "Summer 2017" fee link above for specifics.
Financial aid and scholarships
If you are on financial aid, check to see if it can be applied to studying abroad. In general summer financial aid is not available to Columbia College or Columbia Engineering students, but may be available to School of General Studies students. Non-Columbia students should check with their home schools for funding availability.
Funding Your Summer in Kyoto
Eligible students may apply for the following scholarships applicable to this program:
Freeman Awards for Study in Asia
Created to assist U.S. undergraduate students (U.S. citizens or permanent residents only) with demonstrated financial need and limited prior experience in East and Southeast Asia, Freeman-ASIA will fund approximately 400 U.S. students over the next two academic years (2016-17, 2017-18), with awards ranging from $3,000 per student for summer study and $5,000 per semester, to a maximum of $7,000 for a full year abroad.
Prospective students should visit the Freeman-ASIA website for eligibility requirements, full application instructions and a list of deadlines.
KCJS Summer Scholarship
KCJS awards limited need-based scholarships. The number and amount of awards vary depending on the pool of applicants, and awards usually range between $500 and $2,000. Download a KCJS Summer Scholarship Application.
Foreign Language and Area Studies Scholarship (FLAS)
Find out who administers the summer FLAS program at your home school. For Columbia/Barnard students, the FLAS Fellowship competition is open to undergraduates and graduate students, including Ph.D. candidates, who are U.S. citizens, nationals, or permanent residents. Undergraduates must be applying to study the third year level of the language or above.
Columbia students may also be eligible to apply for the following scholarships:
Ishizuka Global Fellowship in East Asian Studies
This grant has been created to provide funding assistance for current Columbia College students on financial aid who wish to study abroad during the summer in Asia. Preference shall be given first to students engaged in the study of Japanese language and culture and second, to students engaged in the study of other East Asian languages and cultures, but whose research and interests include Japan.
Shirato Fund for Japanese Language Study
The Shirato Fund Scholarships will provide two $2,000 scholarships to undergraduates and graduate students accepted to Columbia-approved intensive Japanese-language study programs for the summer. Please note that awardees will be required to take a Japanese course upon their return to Columbia in the fall; to submit a short report on your use of the scholarship; and to give a presentation at the study abroad information session about the language program in which you participate. Contact Fumiko Nazikian for more info.
Weatherhead East Asian Institute Funding
Columbia University's WEAI offers funding for research, language acquisition, unpaid internships, and dissertation write-up during the summer and academic year to selected Columbia students committed to professional and academic engagement with East and Southeast Asia. Eligibility varies depending on the particular funding opportunity.
Summer Language Fellowship for International Ph.D. Students
The Summer Language Fellowship for International Students supports international Ph.D. students (who are not permanent residents) in the humanities and social sciences at Columbia who need to study a foreign language (applies to all languages) abroad during the summer. The fellowship award maximum is $3,000. Students can apply online and should contact firstname.lastname@example.org with questions.
For more general information and resources on financing your time abroad, please see the pages below:
Withdrawal and Refund Policy
A student in good academic standing who is not subject to discipline may be permitted to withdraw at any time. Withdrawal is defined as the dropping of one's entire program in a given term as opposed to dropping a portion of one's program. Any student withdrawing must notify the Resident Director in writing; failure to attend classes or notification to instructors does not constitute formal withdrawal and will result in failing grades in all courses. Any adjustment of the tuition that the student has paid is calculated from the date on which the Resident Director receives the student's written notification. Only tuition is refunded. Fees (application, transcript, housing, etc.) are never refunded, either in full or in part. All students who withdraw will be charged a $75.00 withdrawal fee.
Withdrawal and Adjustment of Fees
For the summer term, the refund schedule is as follows:
|Withdrawals processed||will be refunded|
|After 3rd week||0%|
Visit the Kyoto-based KCJS website to learn about the program's Resident Director, Summer Programs Academic Director, on-site staff and faculty members.