Return to the search form Return to your search results

Meiji University Exchange

Fast Facts

Sessions Offered:

Spring, Academic Year


Tokyo, Japan




Good academic and disciplinary standing; 3.0 GPA; refer to the Application tab for more details

Application Due:

Academic Year: Feb. 15

Spring: Sept. 25

Program Cost:

Refer to the Application tab for more details

nice modern campus building. compact and all windows.

Main Campus Building

This reciprocal exchange program allows University of Iowa students to study at Meiji University in Tokyo for the spring semester or for an academic year. The Meiji University Exchange does not focus on intensive Japanese language learning. Instead, UI students participating in this exchange have two options: 1) Take regular Meiji University coursework taught in Japanese alongside local students or 2) take courses in English in one of the three Undergraduate Schools at Meiji that offers an English track.

Regardless of which option they choose, all exchange participants must apply to and be accepted by both the university and the Meiji Undergraduate School of their choice. The various Undergraduate Schools have different locations around Tokyo, making it nearly impossible to take courses in more than one School. This structure gives students the opportunity to focus on their preferred discipline.

Note: The purpose of this student exchange is to facilitate an educational experience in an unfamiliar environment for participating students. To that end, students are not eligible to return to their home country to study through this exchange program.

Academic Program

students in traditional Japanese room with tatami mats, having a cultural lesson

Learning culture


Exchange students are required to take a minimum of 12 s.h. per semester and are able to take up to 18 s.h. per semester while studying at Meiji. Credit received from Meiji will be treated as transfer credit. Interested students should make an appointment with the UI Study Abroad advisor for more information on transfer credit and be prepared to consult with their academic advisor, as well.

Most courses at Meiji are 2 s.h. each and therefore cannot be used to satisfy General Education requirements within the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. Students interested in using Meiji coursework to fulfill UI major, minor, or certificate requirements should speak with their academic advisor before applying for this exchange program.

Regular Courses in Japanese

Students who wish to take coursework taught in Japanese at Meiji must possess a superior command of the Japanese language (extremely strong fourth year students or above) and demonstrate their language skills via an online placement test. If accepted, these exchange students study alongside regular, degree-seeking Japanese students in one of Meiji's 11 Undergraduate Schools (much like Colleges at UI). Access to regular classes in the Undergraduate School is determined by the results of Japanese language assessment. Information about Undergraduate Schools and courses is found on Meiji's Undergraduate Schools website.

Courses in English

Students who do not possess superior Japanese language abilities may wish to take coursework in English. Courses taught in English that are open to exchange students can be found in the English tracks within the School of Political Science and Economics, the School of Business Administration, and the School of Global Japanese Studies. Students taking their core coursework in English at Meiji can also opt to take a Japanese language learning course.

School of Global Japanese Studies

The School of Global Japanese Studies identifies Japanese culture as the focus of its educational research. With the outside world craving ever more information on modern-day Japan, this Japanese studies-based program targets not only traditional Japanese culture but also Japanese culture as it exists today. This broad definition of Japan’s culture and its social systems also includes the corporations, industries, and communities that drive the global spread of information about Japan. At the same time, the School of Global Japanese Studies provides an internationally minded education with the aim of developing truly international citizens who can actively communicate ideas to the world based on an awareness of Japan in the context of the wider international community.

The School's English track allows Meiji students to complete their four year program with courses taught entirely in English, and these courses are also open to foreign exchange students not proficient in Japanese. Students can refer to the Curriculum Chart for a listing of classes. Classes marked A or B cover different material and are offered spring semester (A) or fall semester (B). In some cases, the B course requires the corresponding A course as a prerequisite.

Business Administration

The School of Business Administration consists of three different departments. The Department of Business Administration trains students to become members of the professional community with the ability to understand diversity and change while continuously seeking best practices. The Department of Accounting trains students to be certified public accountants or other accounting professionals as well as experts on the accounting and financial activities of corporations and other organizations. In the Department of Public Management, students become specialists who are ready to take on organizational management in administrative organizations, nonprofits, or other institutions.

There is a variety of courses taught in English for any given session. The decision of which classes will be offered in English is not made until the end of the fiscal year; students will be making final course selections after they arrive. To see the range of English-taught classes in the business school, refer to the Course List. You can also review the Curriculum Chart for a broader overview.

Political Science and Economics

The School of Political Science and Economics organically links politics, economics, administration, society, and culture with the aim of producing exceptional leaders who can make their mark in politics, administration, industry, or their local community. Students will gain an understanding of how modern society is structured, the skills to identify the major trends affecting our society, and the insight to determine how our current social conditions may impact our future.

Please see the Curriculum Chart for more information on the variety of courses potentially available.


Meiji operates on the traditional Japanese academic calendar, which begins in the spring and goes through the fall. Thus, the Japanese academic calendar aligns with the calendar year, as opposed to the American system. These are the dates for the first and second semesters of Meiji's academic year:

First Semesters (Spring) are typically from early April through late July.

Second Semesters (Fall) are typically from early September through early February. Because the Spring Semester is already underway at UI in February, UI students cannot choose to study at Meiji for only the Fall Semester.

For More Info

If you have questions or are ready to apply to this program, please make an appointment with the program advisor by calling the Study Abroad office at 319-335-0353 (M-F, 8-5). The Study Abroad receptionists can help you schedule an advising appointment.

Meiji University

In the spirit of the Meiji Restoration, Meiji University was founded in 1881 around a core of French law studies in the hopes of eventually bringing individual and human rights to the common people. It began as a law school in the home of one of its three founders, all lower-ranking samurai. Through reforms and additions over the years, including the first School of Business Administration established in Japan, today it comprises several four-year Undergraduates Schools with related Graduate Schools. The university has produced leaders in all areas, and is especially proud of its accomplishments in the fields of law and politics.

The Center for International Programs addresses the needs of foreign students at Meiji. In addition to a comprehensive orientation program, advising and tutorial programs, Japanese language support classes, and one-day excursions, the Center sponsors intercultural activities organized by the International Student Association.


With a population of 13 million, Tokyo is one of the largest cities in the world. The development of Tokyo, a city much newer than most Japanese cities, began in 1603 when it was selected as military headquarters for the first Tokugawa Shogun. While the nominal capital remained in Kyoto, Edo functioned as the nation's administrative center and was renamed Tokyo upon becoming the official capital with the Meiji Restoration of 1868. Devastated in World War II, it was quickly rebuilt and is today an ultramodern city spread over an area of 230 square miles, two to four times larger than New York, Chicago or Los Angeles.

Living Arrangements

Incoming exchange students are assigned to one of five dormitories located close to the various campuses locations around Tokyo. The specific housnig placement depends on which school one is attending so that students will be close to appropriate campus location. The dorms are within commuting distance from campus.

The dorms are typically single occupancy; each room includes a bed, study desk and chair, and A/C. Many rooms have private bathrooms, although certain dorms have shared bathrooms. The dorms also have communal kitchen and laundry facilities. Wired internet is available, but students must provide their own LAN cable. Students will complete a "Housing Request" form during the application process and will be contacted by Meiji with further details about housing options if they are accepted in to the program.

Cost information and photos of these housing options are available in the Fact Sheet for the current academic term. Please note that student must pay Meiji directly for their housing costs each semester.

Travel Arrangements

Students are advised NOT to purchase airline tickets until they receive acceptance confirmation from both UI and NUFS. If you have questions and/or concerns, please contact the UI Study Abroad Advisor at 319-335-0353.

Students are expected to find their own flights to Japan, though UI Study Abroad can assist by providing advice regarding airline booking options. Meiji will provide accepted students with more information on arrival details closer to the date of departure.


The Meiji University Exchange is open to UI students of all majors who fulfill the following requirements:

  • Clear interest and commitment: Students must demonstrate a clear academic or personal interest in the program's subject matter and a commitment to engage responsibly in coursework abroad.
  • Preparedness and maturity: Students must demonstrate preparedness to take on the heightened responsibilities associated with international study and travel. Students must demonstrate a commitment to behave responsibly abroad while respecting cultural differences. Students are expected to obey both local laws and program directives conveyed to participants before and during the program. The University of Iowa Code of Student Life applies to all program participants while abroad.
  • Minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA: Students must have at minimum a 3.0 cumulative GPA to participate in this program.
  • Good academic and disciplinary standing: Students must be in good academic and disciplinary standing at the University of Iowa. Academic and disciplinary history will also be considered when determining whether a student is prepared to represent the University of Iowa as part of this program. Students who, even after being accepted into a program, are put on either academic and/or disciplinary probation for any period of time overlapping with the study abroad program dates are ineligible to study abroad. In these cases, students must forfeit their acceptance, will not be allowed to study abroad and are wholly responsible for any and all financial expenses incurred.
  • Sophomore, junior, or senior standing: Students must have sophomore, junior, or senior standing at the time the program begins. First year students cannot participate in this program.
  • Approval of UI Study Abroad advisor: A student's application must be reviewed and approved by their UI Study Abroad advisor.
  • Acceptance by host institution: The number of participants is limited by reciprocity in the numbers to be exchanged, and meeting the minimum requirement for eligibility does not guarantee acceptance into the program. Even if a student is nominated by their UI Study Abroad advisor to participate in the exchange, the final acceptance decision is made by the international student office and the sponsoring departments at Meiji based on their own internal requirements.

Program Costs


University of Iowa students pay their regular University of Iowa tuition and mandatory student fees and study at our partner university without further tuition payment. However, students should be prepared to pay the host university directly for certain expenses, such as housing. These expenses are included in the program cost sheet (more information below).

Study Abroad Administrative Fees

University of Iowa study abroad administrative fees are charged for all participants. They are based on tuition set by the Iowa Board of Regents. Please check the Costs of Study Abroad page for more information on these administrative fees.

Cost Sheets

Cost sheets are documents that outline the total estimated costs associated with participating in this program and can be used for financial aid purposes. They include fees charged on students’ U-Bill, as well as out-of-pocket expenses. Actual out-of-pocket expenses will vary from individual to individual. Quoted estimates are conservatively high, yet realistic.

The cost sheet includes the Study Abroad Administrative Fee and Mandatory Iowa Regents CISI Travel Insurance. Please see the respective websites for further details. Please contact your UI Study Abroad Advisor with questions regarding this cost sheet by calling 319-335-0353 to schedule an appointment.

Cost Sheet for Meiji Exchange, Spring 2018 - for College of Liberal Arts StudentsPDF

Cost Sheet for Meiji Exchange, Fall 2017 - for Tippie College of Business studentsPDF

Cost Sheet for Meiji Exchange, Spring 2017PDF

Cost Sheet for Meiji Exchange, Spring 2016PDF

Financial Aid and Scholarships

Most financial aid (scholarships, grants, and loans) is applicable to study abroad programs. Please check the UI Study Abroad website for information on financial aid and how it may be applied to studying abroad. You are also encouraged to speak with someone at the Office of Student Financial Aid to explore financial aid options.

Scholarship Opportunities exist for study abroad participants. Please explore UI Study Abroad’s websites for UI Study Abroad Scholarship Opportunities and Non-UI External Awards.

Withdrawal policy

After applying for a UI Study Abroad program, notice of withdrawal must be made in writing to University of Iowa Study Abroad. The date on which the letter or e-mail message is received is the date by which your costs will be calculated. If for any reason you withdraw after the confirmation deadline and before or during the course of the program, the amount/percentage shown in the following chart represents what you will be required to pay to the University of Iowa.

Date of Withdrawal Student Financial Responsibility
Between confirmation and 45 days before program start date $500
Between 44 and 30 days before the program start date $1000
Between 29 and 15 days before the program start date $2000
Less than 14 days before the program start date 100% of Study Abroad Administrative Fees ($400)
100% of UI Tuition and Fees

Consult with your UI Study Abroad advisor for any clarification about fees and billing. Note that when you withdraw from a program, any money already paid directly to a program provider and/or a host university will potentially be forfeited. Check with your specific provider/host university for details. Additional penalties for cancellation of airline tickets may also apply. Check with your airline for further details.

Application Deadline

The online application for the Spring Semester will be available from Aug. 1 to Sept. 25.

The online application for the Academic Year Programs will be available from Jan. 2 to Feb. 15.

Any supplemental materials are due to the UI Study Abroad office one week after the application deadline.

How to Apply

Interested students should make an appointment with UI Study Abroad Advisor Emily Gruis to discuss the program and the application process. Appointments can be scheduled by calling 319-335-0353. During the appointment, Emily will provide full application instructions. Note: Application materials will not be reviewed unless a student has already met with Emily to discuss the program.

The application process consists of three major steps:

  • Step 1: After meeting with the UI Study Abroad advisor, students must complete the online UI Study Abroad Application.
  • Step 2: The UI Study Abroad Application is reviewed. If the student meets the requirements for the program and there are sufficient spaces available in the exchange, the UI Study Abroad advisor nominates them for study at Meiji.
  • Step 3: Once nominated, the student completes the exchange student application process for Meiji. All required application materials must be submitted to the UI Study Abroad office by the date(s) specified. The advisor will then send the application materials to Meiji. The application is reviewed by Meiji, which makes the final acceptance decision.
  • Confirmation of Participation

    Spring 2018

    Once you receive notification that you have been nominated by UI to participate in the Meiji University Exchange, download and carefully review the PDFConfirmation of Participation formincluding the Withdrawal Policy. By signing and submitting this form to our office, you agree to accept the program’s Withdrawal Policy, which outlines the financial commitments you would have in the event of withdrawing your participation from the program. Please return this form to UI Study Abroad (1111 UCC) by November 29, 2017. Students who do not submit this form to our office by this date will be automatically withdrawn from the program.

    In addition to submitting their Confirmation of Participation form, students should review the following:

    Iowa Regents CISI Health Insurance Information

    UI Financial Aid Information

    Students are also encouraged to complete the PDFHealth Preparation Guide for International Travel form with their medical practitioner. This document is intended to help you plan for your medical needs abroad. Please DO NOT turn this form in to UI Study Abroad.

    Important: Students who are studying abroad in Japan should apply early for a Yakkan Shoumei certificate to be able to bring a supply of medication into Japan. For more information and instructions, please visit the website of the U.S. Embassy & Consultates in Japan. The site contains the application for a Yakkan Shoumei certificate.


    In order to prepare for your time abroad, you are required by the University of Iowa to complete two orientations. These may be in addition to orientations provided by the host university. See below for more information.

    Online Education Abroad Pre-Departure Orientation

    You are required to complete the International Programs online “Education Abroad Pre-Departure Orientation” course distributed through ICON prior to departure. This orientation is mandatory for all students going abroad under the auspices of the University of Iowa. It covers many practical matters about living overseas, such as health and safety, communication, money, goals and much more. You will be enrolled in this course by International Programs and an email will be sent to you once enrolled. If you have any questions, you can email

    Program-Specific Orientation

    This orientation will be facilitated by your UI Study Abroad advisor and will cover content specific to your program and host country. It could be conducted in a group setting or one-on-one depending on your type of planned activity abroad. Your advisor will send you more information about this mandatory in-person session.


    Any students who will need to apply for a Japanese visa will need to wait until receiving their official admission letter from Meiji before they can begin applying for a visa. UI Study Abroad staff can provide some assistance and advising on the Japanese visa application process, but ultimately the individual traveler (the student) is the person who is responsible for providing correct information on the visa application and securing the visa and all other required documentation prior to travel.