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Fact Sheet:
Fact Sheet:
Minimum GPA (Undergraduate): 2.5 Language of Instruction: English, Japanese
Housing: Campus Housing Number of Credits Offered: 12-16
Language Courses Offered: Japanese Eligible Population: 02 Sophomore, 03 Junior, 04 Senior
Type of Program: Bilateral Exchange Click here for a definition of this term Area of Study: Linguistics, Nutrition, Religious Studies, Honors, Communication, Economics, Environmental Science, Global Affairs, History, Integrative Studies, Japanese Studies
Click here for a definition of this term Study Abroad Host: Global Education Office Open to non-Mason Students: No
Click here for a definition of this term Course Equivalency Database: View Approved Courses Program eligible for VA Benefits: No
Program Description:

Kansai University

Osaka, Japan

Kansai University
USD 800 Feat. Exchange Grant
Kansai University, one of the leading comprehensive universities in Japan, celebrated its 130th anniversary in 2016. Located 20 minutes outside of central Osaka, the Senriyama campus, where most departments are located, is situated among scenic hills. It is only a five minute walk to the train station, which can transport you to downtown Osaka. There are over 30,000 students enrolled, including more than 800 international students. 

Osaka prefecture is located in the Kansai region of Japan which is situated in the central area of the main island on Honshu. Osaka is recognized as being the historical commercial center of Japan. Osaka City serves as the prefecture's capital, and with a population of approximately three million people, is the third largest city in Japan. Kansai University is considered to be one of Osaka's representative universities, and its campuses are situated in perfect locations to enjoy the excitement of downtown Osaka and the cultural treasures of Kyoto, Nara, and Kobe, all of which are accessible by short train rides.

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.

Courses Available

Students attending Kansai University can learn the Japanese language and various topics related to Japanese culture through one of two curriculums
  • KUGF Curriculum: The purpose of the KUGF curriculum is to improve language proficiency and communication skills, develop a high level of cross-cultural understanding, and foster global leadership skills. The curriculum can be categorized into two courses:
    • Global Frontier and Skill Up for Studying Abroad
      • These courses are taught entirely in English and are open to both Japanese and international students. There are eight "modules" to choose from within the Global Frontier section. Each module is a theme with a few classes within it. Please note: Skill Up for Studying Abroad courses are designed for those wishing to acquire English language skills.
        • Module 1: Engineering Approach to Urban Issues
        • Module 2: Food Science & Biotechnology
        • Module 3: International Business & Entrepreneurship
        • Module 4: Japan Studies
        • Module 5: Language Teaching & Communication
        • Module 6: Studies on Foreign Affairs
        • Module 7: Fundamentals for Social Science Studies
        • Module 8: Applied Science and Engineering
    • Japanese as a Second Language
      • These courses are designed to support international students with Japanese language studies. Various levels of classes, from basic to advanced, are available. You will take a language placement test upon arrival. 
      • In addition, courses are offered that provide basic knowledge of Japan, an introduction to the culture of Japanese companies, Japanese language skills from a business perspective and there are also courses available that place you in a real company or organization.
  • Specialist Subjects: Exchange students with high Japanese language skills can enroll in Japanese-taught courses.

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.

Academic Calendar

The academic calendar at Kansai University is different from Mason's. The fall semester runs from late September until late January and the spring semester runs from early April to late July.

  • Important Dates
    • Scroll down to the FAQ section, there is a space regarding the academic calendar.
Due to the schedule at Kansai, students may only study abroad there for the academic year or the spring semester.

Credit Conversion

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 credits. 

  • 2 Kansai credits = 2 credits at Mason

Students must take a minimum of 7 classes per week at Kansai.

Grade Conversion

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.

 Kansai Grade Mason Grade
S (90-100%) A+
A (89-80) A
B (79-70) B
C (69-60) C
59-0 F

Global Understanding

Students participating in this study abroad program will automatically fulfill the Mason Global Understanding core requirement.


Kansai University has four student dormitories for international students. All four dorms house both Japanese and international students, which provides a perfect environment for rich cross-cultural experiences.
  • Student House "Shureiryo"
    • Male only dorm operated by Kansai University
    • Twin rooms available
    • Approximately 10 minutes on foot from Senriyama campus
  • Dormitory "Tsukigaoka"
    • Female only dorm operated by Kansai University
    • Twin rooms available
    • Approximately 15 minutes on foot from Senriyama campus
  • Kansai University International Dormitory
    • Co-ed dorm operated by Kansai University
    • Single rooms available
    • Approximately 20 minutes by train from Senriyama campus
  • Dormy Ryokuchi-Koen 3
    • Operated by a third-party organization affiliated with the university
    • Approximately 10 minutes on foot from Senriyama campus
Kansai University will introduce students who'd like to do a homestay or live in an apartment to an affiliated company.

Student Services

Extra-Curricular Activities

The Division of International Affairs at Kansai University offers a number of activities to provide opportunities for exchange students to meet with Japanese students and explore aspects of Japan outside campus life. Various kinds of activities and events are held throughout the year. The international students, Japanese students, and the local community get together and work actively.

There are activities you can easily participate in on campus such as Japanese cultural experiences, Japanese language support, daily life support services, sporting events, and exchange student parties. Outside of the campus, you can have the change to experience home visits, study tours to learn about Japanese society, and field trips to museums and cultural assets.

Airport Pick Up

Airport pick ups are available for a fee on the designated arrival date.

Global Buddy Program (GBP)

This is an optional program that will pair you with a KU student who can help you adapt to life in Japan. After arriving, students will be able to join the welcome part for international students and events specifically organized for GBP members.

Program Cost

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.

Program Payments

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.


GEO offers a number of need- and merit-based scholarships. All Mason students are welcome to apply:

Application Deadline:

Academic Year: To be determined*
Spring: To be determined*

*See the bottom of this page for the exact deadlines for the upcoming term(s).

Visa Information

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 requirements:*

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.

Application instructions:

GEO Program Administrator

Name Martha Sadler
Phone 703-993-2154
  Make an appointment

Additional Resources

Follow Kansai University on Social Media

Dates / Deadlines:
Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Spring Semester 2023 10/10/2022 ** Rolling Admission TBA TBA

** Indicates rolling admission application process. Applicants will be immediately notified of acceptance into this program and be able to complete post-decision materials prior to the term's application deadline.