Established in 1875, Doshisha University is one of Japan's oldest private institutions of higher learning and is home to approximately 30,000 students across its four campuses in Kyoto. The Imadegawa campus
is located in the heart of Kyoto city, north of the Kyoto Imperial Palace and just in front of the famous Shokoku-ji temple.
Kyoto is on the central part of the island of Honshu (310 miles from Tokyo). This beautiful city was the capital of Japan and the residence of the Emperor for over 1,000 years. Also known as the 'cultural heart of Japan,' with temples, shrines, and traditional wooden houses, its cultural and historical heritage have been attracting visitors from all over the world.
Application cycles are open one semester at a time. Applications for the fall/academic year will open around December 1 of the year prior and applications for spring/calendar year will open around July 1 of the year prior.
Click through the brochure tabs to learn more about this program.
In order to participate in this program, you must meet the following eligibility requirements:
- Students must have completed at least 45 credits at the time of departure.
- For students applying for fall or academic year programs, this total does not include summer coursework that has yet to be completed.
- Students must have a minimum 2.5 GPA at the time of application and departure.
- Students planning to study abroad in the last semester of their senior year should discuss this with their GEO program administrator and major advisor as this may affect their ability to graduate on time.
- Recent transfer students cannot study abroad their first semester (not including summer) at Mason.
Exchange students can join one of two programs during their time abroad:
- Center for Global Education (CGE)
- Offers courses about Japanese nature, culture, and society in English (also attended by Japanese students)
- CGE students may also enroll in Japanese language courses (up to 3 credits) in accordance with their Japanese proficiency. The main purpose of the Japanese language courses for CGE students is to allow them to understand the elements of grammar and acquire basic conversational abilities. See below in the CJLC section for Japanese levels offered.
- Exchange students from English-speaking countries may also enroll in courses offered by the Institute for the Liberal Arts (ILA). These courses on Japanese culture and society have limited availability so registration cannot be guaranteed. Students may take up to 3 ILA subjects. Subjects include:
- Center for Japanese Language and Culture (CJLC)
- Offers intensive Japanese language and courses about Japanese culture in Japanese.
- Levels offered include: Elementary (I), Upper Elementary (II), Pre-Intermediate (III), Intermediate (IV), Upper Intermediate (V), Pre-Advanced (VI), Advanced (VII), Upper Advanced (VIII), and High Adanced (IX). Students will take a placement test after arrival.
- There are two courses that have been arranged to be flexible to the needs of international students:
- Intensive Course: Designed to develop four basic skills of listening, speaking, reading, and writing.
- Elective Course: Those taking this are recommended to take some subjects from the Japanese Language Courses each semester.
- Students wishing to participate in this program, must have a minimum of one year of study of Japanese at the college level prior to the time of application, or the equivalent.
Course Equivalency and Plan of Study
The Global Education Office has a Course Evaluation and Registration System
(CERS), which you will use to complete the steps needed to evaluate your courses abroad, and see how they will count at Mason. This database is accessible whether you have already applied, or are just beginning to think about studying abroad. Look at the courses in the database. You are by no means limited to these courses. The database shows courses that have already been evaluated. You can request equivalency for any course not yet evaluated, through CERS.
You are STRONGLY ENCOURAGED to look at this institution’s courses ahead of time to see how they will match up to your Mason degree requirements. Talk to your academic advisor about what courses you will need to receive credit for during your time abroad to stay on-track for your degree. When looking at courses keep in mind that course schedules can change. We recommend having twice as many courses approved as necessary.
The academic calendar at Doshisha University is different from Mason's. The fall semester runs from mid-September until mid-February and the spring semester runs from early April to early August.
Due to these differences, students may only study there for the academic year or the spring semester.
Students are expected to take a full-time course load during their time abroad. A full-time course load is 12-15 credits. A typical course is worth 2-3 credits.
- 3 Japanese language credits at Doshisha = 3 credits at Mason
- 2 subject credits at Doshisha = 2 credits at Mason
The maximum course load for students is 15 credits per semester.
When transferring courses back to Mason, the credits will transfer but the grade will not. However, you must receive the equivalent of a "C" or above in order to transfer your credit back. Refer to the table below regarding how grades are converted at this institution.
| Doshisha Grade
|A (4.0) Excellent
|B (3.0) Good
|C (2.0) Fair
|D (1.0) Pass
|F 0.0 Fail
Students participating in this study abroad program will automatically fulfill the Mason Global Understanding core requirement.
Doshisha University provides accommodation
to exchange students. If you wish to find your own accommodation, please be sure to inform the Office of International Students at Doshisha in advance.
- Mukaijima Student Center
- Single fully furnished room.
- Common facilities include a music room, lounge.
- Free internet.
- 15 minute walk from Mukaijima Station (Kintetsu line) and a 20 minute walk from Kangetsukyo Station (Keihan line). Total commute is about 45 minutes to the Imadegawa campus.
- Water included but electricity is paid separately.
Doshisha Volunteer Students will welcome exchange students at the Imadegawa Campus and guide them to their accommodation. Airport pick up is not available.
Doshisha University hosts a variety of events every year. Past events have included: Kabuki workshop, yuzen dyeing, MIX camp, and language exchange, and more!
This is a Bilateral Exchange Program. Students are enrolled as regular students at the partner university, pay Mason tuition to Mason, and pay room and board abroad. Students can use the budget sheets located at the top of this page to see what GEO estimates as expenses.
As this is a Bilateral Exchange Program, students will pay for their tuition as they normally do in PatriotWeb.
Application Fee: A non-refundable application fee of $200 for Mason students. This fee is paid online through the MasonAbroad application system.
Administrative Fee: A non-refundable administrative fee of $325 (for semester length programs) or $525 (for year-long programs) must be received in order to confirm your enrollment in the program. This fee is paid online through the MasonAbroad application system.
Financial Aid: Students using financial aid are encouraged to talk to their counselor regarding how their financial aid can transfer to their program.
Students are welcome to apply for the JASSO scholarship. Doshisha will select qualified applicants and recommend them to JASSO who will make the final decision.
GEO offers a number of need- and merit-based scholarships. All Mason students are welcome to apply:
Academic Year: Early-Mid February*
Spring: Early-Mid October*
*See the bottom of this page for the exact deadlines for the upcoming term(s).
Once accepted into a program, it will be your responsibility to apply for a student visa and/or residence permit (if required, based on your citizenship). You will receive details on this with your acceptance letter. Do not apply for a visa until after you have been officially accepted. Visit the Embassy of Japan's website for further information.
Application fee: $200 for Mason students.
Official Transcripts: An official copy of your Mason transcript is required as well as copies of official transcripts from any other college or university you have attended.
Passport Status: If you do not have a valid passport, you should begin applying for one now.
Signature Documents: Read and electronically "sign" the documents.
Questionnaires: Read and complete the documents according to the instructions.
*Additional paperwork may be required for this program and can be viewed inside your application.