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Yokohama National University

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Please do not contact this university directly.
For all enquiries please contact the Exchange Office at
Last updated November, 2017

Academic Information

Language of Instruction

Yokohama National University instructs courses entirely in Japanese, however, short term exchange students can take courses which are instructed in English. Exchange students are expected to attend Japanese Language courses.

Course Information

Junior Year Overseas Programme

The City of YokohamaThe Junior Year Overseas Programme at Yokohama National University (called "JOY" for short) is a unique exchange Programme for undergraduate students interested in studying at Yokohama National University (YNU) for between six months and a year. The JOY Programme was created to offer these students a broad-based curriculum of courses taught in English by top faculty at YNU for students who wish to learn more about the many faces of Japan-its society, culture, business, environment, and advances in science and technology, among others-while working on their Japanese language skills.

The programme welcomes a wide spectrum of students, from those who have never taken Japanese but want to learn more about what Japan has to offer, to those who wish to hone their Japanese language skills while pursuing advanced studies in their specialty. JOY students will be able to choose from a variety of Japanese language courses. There are five main levels: A (beginner) to E (advanced). The basic class for each of these levels is the "General" class, which meets two times a week for four class periods (four credits). In addition, students can take classes focusing on specific aspects of Japanese language such as speaking, listening, writing, and kanji.

Japanese Language

Yokohama 3. While the JOY Programme is not an intensive Japanese language course, JOY students can take a wide variety of Japanese classes at Yokohama National University. Students can take up to six credits per semester in Japanese language courses (for Japanese language courses, one credit=90 minutes), which can include courses offered by the JOY Programme or those in the Inter-Faculty Supplementary Japanese Language Course offered for the entire international student population.

In the latter course students can take classes in one of five levels, including courses specifically focused on kanji, writing, conversation, or listening. Other opportunities for Japanese language instruction are also available.

On average, JOY students take between six and twelve hours of Japanese instruction a week, depending on their needs and schedules.

Semester Dates

  • Academic Year: April - February
  • First Semester: April – July
  • Second Semester: October - February
  • YNU semester dates

Course Load and Minimum Unit Requirements

  • Minimum course load: Four credits per semester.

Completion Certificate

A certificate of completion will be issued to students who acquire twelve credits or more in one semester (two credits for non-language courses=90 minutes of class), or twenty-four points or more in one academic year. At least four of these credits per semester must be from International Exchange courses. Up to six credits per semester from Japanese language courses can be counted towards the certificate, although interested students are free to take more than that in course work if they want to.

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Accommodation and the Cost of Living


Yokohama National University International CentreYokohama National University provides two dormitories for international students, Minesawa International Student House and Yokohama National University International Student House.

More info

Cost of Living

The average cost of living in Yokohama is at least 100,000 Yen per month.

ItemMonthly expense (Yen)
Housing10,000 - 70,000
Transport0 - 5000
Misc. (books, communication etc.)30,000
Total76,000 - 141,000


For those students who prefer to find their own flat rather than stay in a dormitory, the YNU Co-op puts together an apartment guide. A one room, one kitchen apartment will cost around ¥40,000 (NZ$540)-¥60,000 (NZ$800) per month.

Additional Information

Information for International Students

Student Visa and Insurance

Information on Student Visas and Insurance for students going on exchange can be found elsewhere on this website.

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Exchange Experiences

The University, City and Region

The University

Yokohama National University EntranceYokohama National University (YNU) was established in 1949 and has developed into a university composed of four faculties-Education and Human Sciences, Economics, Business Administration, and Engineering-and four graduate schools-Education, the International Graduate School of Social Sciences, Engineering, and Environment and Information Sciences-with over 1,000 faculty and staff and more than 10,000 students. Founded on fifty years of history and tradition, Yokohama National University is a highly international institution that values practical and viable scholarship, and conducts education and research that aim for a university that is individual, open to society, and actively undertaking new experiments.
Yokohama National University has over 850 international students from 66 countries.

The City of Yokohama

Yokohama is the gateway joining Japan with the world. Ever since Commodore Matthew Perry forced open Japan's closed borders with the Treaty of Kanagawa signed in 1854, Yokohama, as a port since 1859 and a city since 1889, has been the primary site where Western culture has made its first steps into Japan and where things Japanese have set out for the four corners of the world.  Now Japan's second largest city, Yokohama is a vibrant, varied, and international community, combining the old Western mansions of Yamate with the neon glitter of Chinatown, the traditional architecture of Sankeien with the modern complex of Minato Mirai 21. Convenient to Tokyo, the ancient capital of Kamakura, and the hot springs of Hakone, Yokohama is a splendid site for learning about Japan and its relation to the world.

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Further Information

For further information about Otago Global Student Exchange please email