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FAQ | APU Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University

Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University International Undergraduate Admissions


APU Online Application System

What should I do if I forgot my password for the APU Online Application System?
If you have forgotten or lost your password, please notify us by filling in the form on contact page.

Studying at APU

What can I study at APU?
There are two majors to choose from at APU―Asia Pacific Studies and International Management. Majoring in Asia Pacific Studies will lead to a Bachelor of Social Science degree and majoring in International Management will lead to a Bachelor of Business Administration degree. Students study major-related courses in their basis language (English or Japanese) while also taking language courses in the opposite language.
I've never been to Japan and I don't speak Japanese. Can I still study at APU?
Yes. Many of our international students have never visited Japan or studied Japanese before studying at APU. Almost all courses at APU are offered in both English and Japanese, meaning applicants only need sufficient ability in one of these languages at the time of enrollment. However, for English-based students that have no Japanese language abilities, it is highly encouraged for you to start learning basic Japanese on your own before coming to APU. This will ensure you have a smooth start as you will be required to take intense Japanese language classes in order to graduate. The reverse applies to Japanese speakers with limited or no English ability.
Am I required to study Japanese at APU?
In order to graduate, it is necessary for English-based undergraduate students to fulfill at least 16 credits of Japanese language courses (excluding third year transfer students). Most students fulfill this requirement by the end of their second year. However, APU encourages students to continue their Japanese studies beyond the minimum requirement as Japanese language skills greatly benefit students when applying for jobs.
Can I major in Japanese at APU?
APU does not offer a degree in Japanese but English-based undergraduate students (excluding third year transfer students) undergo intense Japanese language classes as part of their regular degree. The reverse applies to students who enroll on a Japanese basis.
What career support does APU offer?
APU has extensive support through the Career Office to help students in their job search. For the 2016 Academic Year, 96.7% of APU students looking for employment received at least one job offer by the time of graduation. Some students choose to continue their studies by pursuing a graduate degree at APU or other graduate schools around the world.

Life at APU / in Japan

I have never been to Japan and/or do not speak the language. What assistance does APU provide to help me when I first arrive?
APU provides an arrival assistance service on specific dates before each semester where student staff greet incoming students at Fukuoka Airport and Oita Airport to help them travel to APU for the first time. Before classes start, as a new student, you will participate in several orientation sessions. A select group of second-fourth year students serve as resident assistants (RAs) and live on each floor of the dormitory, AP House, to help you adjust to your new life in Japan.
Is it expensive to live in Japan?
While Japan's metropolitan areas such as Tokyo and Osaka have quite high costs of living, APU is located in Beppu, which is a mid-sized city and thus considerably less expensive. Many students also choose to do part-time work while studying to help cover expenses.
Can I live on campus?
Yes. Incoming international students are required to live on campus at AP House (APU’s dormitory) during their first year at APU. AP House allows you to adjust to your new surroundings and make friends from all around the world. After your first year, you will move off campus, or you can apply for an extension of stay in the dormitory before the end of your first year (subject to the availability of rooms).
Where do students live off campus?
After their first year, most students move to private apartments or independent dormitories in Beppu. Many students choose to rent an apartment with friends to reduce costs. Housing support is available at APU to help students find off-campus accommodation.
How do most students commute to campus? Can students have a car or motorbike?
The city of Beppu is serviced by a comprehensive public bus system, which provides easy access to campus. As a student, you will be eligible to purchase a discounted yearly commuter bus pass. While you may own a car, you are not permitted to drive or park on campus. You may drive motorbikes to campus with proper permission.
Is part-time work available?
If you wish to do part-time work as an international student on a student visa, you are first required to apply for a work permit that allows you to work up to 28 hours per week part-time while school is in session. During breaks and vacations, you are permitted to work up to 40 hours a week. You can apply for this permit at the On-Campus Student Job Center after arriving at APU. Jobs are available both on and off campus. The average hourly wage is around 750-1000 JPY.
What dining options are available on campus?
The APU cafeteria on campus serves breakfast, lunch and dinner and is open daily even when classes are not in session. Pacific Café is another option and serves lighter food such as sandwiches and ice cream. This café is closed between semesters.
I am on a restricted diet. What options are available to accommodate this?
APU's cafeteria and café offer a variety of foods to meet the needs of those students with personal or religious diet requirements, such as vegetarian or halal. Additionally, AP House has over 40 communal kitchens that students are free to use to prepare their own meals. Some restaurants in Beppu offer vegan, vegetarian and halal options as well.

Tuition, Fees, Scholarships and Financial Aid

How much is tuition at APU?
Yearly tuition at APU is as follows:
First year: 1,328,000 JPY
Second – Fourth year: 1,412,000 JPY
What is included in the yearly tuition?
Tuition at APU covers course and administrative fees. Tuition does not cover other expenses such as housing, food, books or transportation.
What scholarships are available at APU?
International students who will obtain a student visa are eligible to apply for the APU Tuition Reduction Scholarship at the time of application. Once you become an APU student, there are other scholarships that you can apply for. You will receive more information on these after enrollment.
How can I apply for the APU Tuition Reduction Scholarship?
To apply for the APU Tuition Reduction Scholarship, you are required to submit a scholarship application essay in addition to your other documents at the time of application. You will be evaluated for the scholarship based on all submitted documents and your interview. It is not possible to apply for the APU Tuition Reduction Scholarship after enrollment.
Does APU offer any scholarships to cover living expenses?
There are scholarships for living expenses that you may apply for after enrollment.
Does APU provide any loans or grants?
No, APU does not have a loan or grant program, but you may apply for a number of different scholarships after enrollment. You are also encouraged to apply for private scholarships in your home country.

Applying to APU

I am currently in my last year of high school. When should I submit my application?
If you are currently in your last year of high school, you may apply at any time during the application period that corresponds to your country of residence and desired time of enrollment, as long as you will graduate before enrolling at APU. If you apply to APU before graduating from high school, you will be required to submit your most recent official transcripts with your application. If you are accepted to APU and decide to enroll, you will need to submit proof of high school graduation (such as a high school diploma or graduation certificate) before enrollment. Please check the relevant application handbook for specific application deadlines.
In my country, only 11 years of education are required to graduate from high school. Can I still apply?
If your education system only requires 10 or 11 years to finish high school then you will need to attend pre-university courses or the equivalent until you fulfill the 12 year education requirement. However, you may apply to the university if you have completed more than 11-year education at an educational institution designated by MEXT, even though your country's standard length of education is 11 years. For more detail, please contact the Admissions Office before applying.
Am I required to submit TOEFL/IELTS scores to apply to APU?
Whether or not you are required to submit TOEFL/IELTS scores depends on your application method and educational history. Please refer to the relevant application handbook for information.
Am I required to send original documents with my application? Is it possible to send a photocopy instead?
Applicants must submit either original certificates or certified documents*. APU will not return any of the submitted certificates (regardless of the certificate type). Therefore, please submit certified documents for original certificates that cannot be reissued.
*A certified document is one that has been marked as being equivalent to the original with a stamp or seal by the issuing institution (preferred) or a notary public.
May I submit any original documents by fax or online?
No. APU must receive your official documents by post. As we cannot verify the authenticity of faxes or electronic images, they cannot be used to make an admissions decision.
I cannot pay the application fee. Can you waive the application fee for me?
APU requires every applicant to pay the application fee. This fee cannot be waived. The fee covers the cost of screening your documents and the postage necessary to send you documents during the application process such as your admission result. APU cannot begin screening your application until the application fee has been confirmed.
What happens if an application is submitted without an application fee?
APU will not screen applications without confirming the payment of the application fee. In principle, APU will not contact applicants regarding unpaid application fees.
I am older than most students. Does this affect my application's chances?
There is no age restriction when applying to APU. We welcome individuals of any age to apply.
I am a dual citizen of Japan and another country. Can I still apply as an international student?
Applicants with Japanese citizenship, including dual citizenship, are not eligible to apply as an international student regardless of their country of residency. If you have Japanese citizenship, you must submit your application through Domestic Admissions. If one or two of your parents have Japanese citizenship but you are unsure if you yourself have Japanese citizenship, you are encouraged to contact your local Japanese embassy to confirm this.
I submitted my application, but I have not heard anything from APU. How can I stay updated on my application’s status?
After receiving your application documents and application fee, we will inform you by email usually within one week. This may take longer if you submit your application close to a deadline or when the office is closed for an extended period, such as during mid-August or the New Year’s holidays. If you have not heard from APU within three weeks of your application's scheduled arrival, please contact us. We advise you to use a registered mail service that provides a tracking number when sending your application.
How long does it take until I receive my admission result?
After completing your interview, your application will be screened and you can expect to receive your admission result and APU Tuition Reduction Scholarship result in approximately three to four weeks. Results are mailed out by post on the scheduled result notification day and are also available online two or three days after this. You will receive an email letting you know how to check your results online.
Will you let me know if I forget to submit one of my documents?
If anything is missing from your application or we require any additional documentation, APU will contact you by email. Please check your email regularly so that you can respond to our inquiries as soon as possible. When you submit your application, make sure your email address and your postal address are written clearly and accurately. Please be aware that missing or incomplete documents may delay your admissions decision significantly.
I would like to know the current status of my application.
You are welcome to inquire about your submitted application status on contact page. Please note that APU cannot give out final results by email or over the phone.
After applying, I moved or changed my mailing address. How should I update this information?
Please inform us at when you change your mailing address, telephone number or email address.
I cannot afford to pay the amount listed on the Invoice for Enrollment Procedure Fees all at once. Can I pay in installments or after I arrive at APU?
No. In order to begin your COE application process, APU must be able to confirm that you are financially able to support the cost of studying in Japan. For this reason, we must receive all fee payments before beginning the COE process.

About Student Visa

What is a student visa?
A student visa is issued by your local Japanese embassy/consulate and grants you permission to enter Japan for an extended period of time and undertake university level studies. However, before you can apply for a student visa, you must obtain a Certificate of Eligibility (COE).
What is a Certificate of Eligibility (COE)?
A Certificate of Eligibility (COE) is a document that is required to obtain a visa and is issued by the Immigration Bureau of Japan. If you are accepted and plan to enroll at APU, APU will apply for the COE on your behalf once you complete all enrollment procedures. You will receive detailed instructions on how to complete these procedures after you are admitted. When the Immigration Bureau of Japan issues your COE, APU will send it to you by registered mail. You must then apply at your local Japan embassy/consulate for a student visa.
I have heard it is hard to receive a student visa. Is this true?
APU works very closely with every applicant and the Immigration Bureau to make sure applicants are able to receive their COE and a student visa. Typically, this process goes smoothly and as long as you submit all required documents in a timely manner with correct information and do not have a criminal record, you should be able to receive both the Certificate of Eligibility (COE) and your student visa. However, please be advised that the Immigration Bureau of Japan and your local Japanese embassy/consulate make all final decisions regarding the issuance of COE’s and visas, and APU cannot guarantee that you will be granted these.
As part of the COE application, I must send documents such as bank statements. Can I send a photocopy?
When submitting official documents such as bank statements etc., APU cannot accept photocopies. APU must receive the original document. If you submit photocopies, we will not be able to process your COE application until the original document or certified copy is received. If you send us an original document that cannot be reissued, it will be returned to you upon request.
I have submitted all documents and paid all enrollment fees. When will I receive my COE?
Once we have received all of your documents and enrollment fee payments, your COE application will be processed and submitted to the Immigration Bureau. It usually takes about four weeks for the COE to be issued. Once APU receives the COE, we will send it to you by registered mail. This entire process, from the time we receive all your documents and enrollment fees to when receive your COE, takes approximately six weeks.

Traveling to Japan

When should I travel to Japan/APU?
APU will advise you on the dates that you should arrive on campus. Arrival assistance is available for those who arrive on the dates specified by the university before the semester begins. You should not arrive on campus earlier than the specified dates as there will be no available rooms in the dormitory, and you have to look on your own for accommodation.
What airport in Japan should I fly in to?
The closest major international airport to APU is Fukuoka Airport. If you are arriving in Japan at other airports (such as Narita, Haneda or Kansai), you can take a domestic flight to Oita Airport or Fukuoka Airport. (Limited flights between Oita Airport and South Korea are also available). Arrival assistance will be provided at Fukuoka Airport and Oita Airport on specified dates.
Can my family accompany me when I travel to APU for the first time?
Your family can accompany you to APU, but they will need to find their own accommodation during their stay. If they need a visa to enter Japan, they will also have to apply for visas on their own.

FAQ for Teachers, Counselors, and Family

I am a teacher/school counselor. Can I bring my students to Japan on a school trip in collaboration with APU?
Yes, however please see further details here.
For questions more specific to Teachers, Counselors, and Family, please see the following FAQ page.