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Programs : Brochure

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  • Locations: Kyoto, Japan
  • Program Terms: Fall, Spring
  • Homepage: Click to visit
  • Restrictions: AU applicants only
  • This program is currently not accepting applications.
Fact Sheet:
Fact Sheet:
Advisor: Jessica Kling Language Pre-requisite: none
Minimum GPA: 3 Class Level Required for Admission: Graduate
Language of Instruction: English Housing: Student Arranged
Program Description:

For questions regarding this program or your application, please email


Graduate students from AU can enroll in courses offered in the Global Cooperation Program (GCP) at RU. Students may earn up to nine (9) credits toward their AU degree. Classes in the GCP include:

Area Studies
Development Strategies
Policy Evaluation
Sustainable Governance and Policy


As all GCP classes are conducted in English, students are not required to demonstrate Japanese language proficiency. However, students are encouraged to begin studying Japanese prior to beginning the Program in order to gain communication skills for daily life in Japan.


Spring: April – July

Fall: September - February

Students may spend one semester at Ritsumeikan. Due to the differences between the AU and Ritsumeikan academic calendars, students are encouraged to participate in the program in the spring semester.


Students are registered through the SIS Office of International Programs for up to 9 AU-Ritsumeikan exchange credits (SIS-694). These exchange credits cover courses at RU only; research and/or internship credit is registered under normal AU guidelines.
Students are required to meet with their AU advisor and obtain formal pre-approval before registering for courses at Ritsumeikan. This ensures that all credits earned at RU can be applied toward the student’s AU degree.
Students register for RU courses once they arrive on-site at RU prior to the start of the semester.

Credit articulation: Grades and credits earned at RU are articulated through the SIS Office of International Programs upon receipt of an official transcript from RU. For conversion purposes, students should expect 1 RU credit to equal 1 AU credit.


Students pay regular tuition, emergency international health insurance, and technology fees to AU. Students do not pay the student activity fee, sports center fee, or SIS fee while studying at Ritsumeikan. 

Students are responsible for any incidental costs, such as library fines and lab fees, incurred during the program. Students are responsible for all personal expenses including housing and transportation.

Students are required to submit a non-refundable $50 application fee at the time of submitting their application to SIS Abroad. 


Students must find their own accommodations in Kyoto. There is no graduate student housing at on RU’s campus, but students may be allowed to live in RU’s International House. Any such arrangement would need to be approved upon acceptance into the program.


Once admitted to program, students are issued a Certificate of Eligibility by RU. Students then need to take this document, with a passport and visa application, to the closest Japanese Embassy to apply for a student visa.

Students are responsible for researching the most up-to-date immigration requirements and arranging all immigration documents.  


During the semester prior to the start of the program, the SIS Office of International Programs conducts a mandatory pre-departure meeting. Topics covered include administrative, logistical, security, health, and cross-cultural issues. RU also holds an orientation for students at the beginning of the semester.  


Complete and submit the RU application to the SIS Office of International Programs (OIP) by the specified deadline for the semester in which you intend to study abroad. Applicants are required to submit a non-refundable $50 application fee. Payment details are included in the online application. Students may not apply directly to Ritsumeikan University.
After all applications are received and reviewed, students will then be notified by e-mail from OIP with a decision regarding their nomination for study abroad.
Once nominated, you will be instructed to complete the RU application which requires the following information:

Research proposal
Personal Statement
Letter of recommendation from an SIS faculty member
Original transcripts
Copy of passport page
Health Certificate
Three passport-quality photos 

OIP will collect all paper applications and supplemental materials and mail them directly to RU.
RU makes the final admissions decision and corresponds directly with Program participants regarding all admissions and enrollment matters.
The Program is competitive, and applying does not guarantee admission.

Dates / Deadlines:
Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Fall 2020 03/01/2020
Varies by program 09/26/2020 01/25/2021

** The time it takes to receive an admissions decision varies greatly by program; it can take as little as two weeks or as long as several months. Contact AU Abroad for further details on your program's admissions timeline.

Indicates that deadline has passed

This program is currently not accepting applications.