Return to the search form Return to your search results

Kanda University of International Studies Exchange

Fast Facts

Sessions Offered:

Fall, Spring, Calendar Year, Academic Year


Chiba, Japan




Good academic and disciplinary standing; 3.0 GPA; 2 semesters of college-level Japanese; refer to the Application tab for more details

Application Due:

Fall & Academic Year:

Feb. 10

Spring & Calendar Year: Sep. 22

Program Cost:

Refer to the Application tab for more details

international office with students from all over the world holding up flags

The International Office

Kanda University of International Studies (KUIS) is a private university located in Chiba, close to Tokyo. The motto of KUIS is, "Languages are the foundation to link the world in peace." The university is dedicated to developing individuals who have the ability to communicate with people all over the world. With this goal in mind, the Japanese Language and Culture Program (Ryugakusei Bekka) was established in September 2000. This reciprocal exchange program between the University of Iowa and KUIS allows UI students to undertake a semester, academic year, or calendar year of study in the Japanese Language and Culture Program at Kanda.

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

View of Kanda campus

Students admitted into this exchange will primarily focus on intensive Japanese language learning through Kanda's Interaction with Japanese Program. The main academic component of this program is a set of compulsory language courses (speaking, reading, writing, and listening) totaling 8 s.h. Students must also enroll in at least 6 s.h. of elective courses (2 s.h. each) that reinforce language competencies (pronunciation, grammar, etc.) or sociolinguistic and sociocultural competencies. Most of these electives are taught in Japanese, although two are taught in English. The compulsory language courses and elective courses are intended to support language acquisition and cultural immersion. As such, this program is most suitable for Japanese majors and minors or students with a sincere interest in developing their Japanese language skills.

Exchange students are required to take a minimum of 14 s.h. per semester and are able to take up to 18 s.h. per semester while studying at KUIS. Credit received from KUIS 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.

Cultural Activities

Karate Demonstration, with a very high kick to break boards

Karate Demonstration from the Student Club

There are many activities available to the exchange students throughout the year at KUIS. Because KUIS is dedicated to developing individuals who have the ability to communicate with people all over the world, they have a Culture Exchange Deck, Multilingual Communication Center, and many other spaces on campus dedicated to facilitating cultural exchange. KUIS also has a very robust campus life and many clubs and circles that exchange students are encouraged to join.

Program Dates

KUIS 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. Therefore, please note that these are the dates for the first and second semesters of KUIS's academic year:

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

Second Semesters (Fall) are typically from late September through mid January, although KUIS gives exchange students the option to take final exams in December.

For More Information

Steps to Studying Abroad

  1. Before initiating an application with Kanda University of International Studies, students must complete a Discover Study Abroad session at the University of Iowa. 
  2. After completing the Discover Abroad session, students must call the Study Abroad office at 319-335-0353 to be assigned to the appropriate study abroad advisor.
  3. Once assigned, students must meet with their study abroad advisor to receive program application instructions.

Study Abroad
1111 University Capitol Centre
Iowa City, IA 52242

Phone: 319-335-0353

Kanda University of International Studies

Welcome to Kanda sign

Kanda University of International Studies was founded in 1987 with the goal of developing individuals with the ability to communicate across cultures. The University has departments of English, Spanish and Portuguese, Asian Languages, and International Communication. In addition to its undergraduate programs, it offers two MA programs and a PhD program in Language Sciences. In 2000, KUIS established the Japanese Language and Culture Program for visiting students from partner institutions.

The campus includes a Multilingual Communication Center (MULC) that houses seven language areas where international students can speak with Japanese students studying Chinese, Korean, Indonesian, Vietnamese, Thai, Spanish, or Portuguese. Another building contains a lounge called the Cultural Exchange Deck that invites social interaction and foreign language practice between local and international students. Kanda's campus also has a medical center and multiple cafeterias and cafes.


Study space in KUIS8 building in Kanda

Kanda boasts a spacious campus in the model school zone located in the Makuhari New City Area in Chiba Prefecture. This area is famous for its giant arena - the Makuhari Messe - surrounded by new business buildings and nice shopping malls. Many large companies, including IBM, Cannon and SEIKO, call Chiba home. It is only a 30-minute train ride to Tokyo and 40 minutes to Narita International Airport.


Senso ji temple in Tokyo

Japan is an island country in East Asia, located in the northwest Pacific Ocean. Japan is the world’s tenth largest country by population, with 127.3 million people. Tokyo, Japan’s capital city, is the world’s largest metropolitan area, with a population of 32.5 million people. Japan is the world’s third largest economy. Japanese companies in the top 100 of the Fortune ranking include Toyota Motor, Honda Motor, Nissan Motor, Panasonic, Sony, and Toshiba.

US Department of State Country Information

The US Department of State provides safety and security information for every country of the world to help you assess for yourself the risks of travel. Each country information page contains a Travel Advisory, Alerts, and other important details specific to that country that could affect you.

Pay close attention to the entry and exit requirements, local laws and customs, health conditions, and other details to help decide whether traveling to any given country is right for you. Non-US citizen travelers may also wish to seek guidance from the embassy of their country of citizenship. The UI International Travel Policy for Students addresses restrictions on student travel to high-risk locations and engagement in high-risk activities abroad.

Living Arrangements

women's dormitory room, with a bunk bed and ladder.  very clean, compact, and very nice.

Women's Dormitory Room

Living options include residence halls and apartment-style housing. The residence halls have mostly single rooms that include a bed, study desk and chair, closet, mini refrigerator, and air conditioning. Some residence halls have shared bathrooms, while others have private bathrooms in each dorm room. Each residence hall has shared kitchen and laundry facilities and internet access.

Subject to availability, students can also choose to live in studio apartments located in a building a short distance (5 minutes by bicycle) from the KUIS campus. Each apartment includes a bed, study desk and chair, futon, washer, mini refrigerator, microwave, and air conditioning. The building also includes internet access.

Cost information, photos, and floor plans of these housing options are available in the Accommodation section of the KUIS website. Please note that student must pay KUIS directly for their housing costs each semester.


If you do not have a passport, it is important that you apply for one as soon as possible to ensure you receive it before the program begins. US citizens can find more information about how to apply for a passport on the US Department of State’s website.

Important notice for students without a valid passport or whose passport will expire within the next 12 months:

US citizens can find more information about how to renew a passport on the US Department of State’s website.

Students with a valid passport should check the expiration date. Passports must be valid for at least 6 months AFTER the anticipated return to the US from studying abroad. If your passport is not valid for at least 6 months after your anticipated date of return to the US, you must renew your passport before applying for the visa you will need to enter your host country.

Expedited processing service is available for US passports (although this still takes several weeks and is at an additional cost). UI Study Abroad encourages students to ask the passport agency at the time of application whether expedited service is recommended.

Non-US Citizens

Students who are not US citizens should contact their consulate for more information if they need to get a new passport or renew their passport.

Travel Arrangements

Students are advised NOT to purchase airline tickets until they receive acceptance confirmation from both UI and KUIS. If you have questions and/or concerns about this, 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. KUIS will provide accepted students with more information on arrival details closer to the date of departure.


The KUIS Exchange is open to UI students of all majors who have an serious interest in Japanese language and 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.
  • Prior study of Japanese language: Students need to have completed 2 semesters of college-level Japanese. This should ensure UI students pass their language placement test at KUIS with a level of N5 or higher which is required for participation in the Bekka program.
  • 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 KUIS based on their own internal requirements.



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.

PDFCost Sheet for KUIS Exchange, Spring 2020 - for College of Liberal Arts & Sciences students

Scholarships & Financial Aid

For more information about receiving financial aid while studying abroad, please review the following:UI Financial Aid Information

You can find more information about options for funding your study abroad experience including scholarships on Undergraduate Scholarships for Study Abroad.

How to Apply

Spots for UI students: Enrollment for the Fall 2023 session is limited to 2 semester students.

Interested students should make an appointment with the designated UI Study Abroad advisor to discuss the program and the application process. Appointments can be scheduled by calling 319-335-0353. During the appointment, the advisor will provide full application instructions. Note: Application materials will not be reviewed unless a student has already met with the advisor 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. Please note that the non-refundable $50 application fee will be charged to your U-Bill as part of this online 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 KUIS.
  • Step 3: Once nominated, the student completes the exchange student application process for KUIS. 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 KUIS. The application is reviewed by KUIS, which makes the final acceptance decision.
  • Application Deadline

    Applications for Spring and Calendar Year are due on September 22.

    Applications for Fall and Academic Year are due on February 10.

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

    Health & Safety Planning

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

    Prepare for Departure

    Iowa Regents CISI Health Insurance 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.


    Any students who will need to apply for a Japanese visa will need to wait until receiving their official admission letter from KUIS 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.


    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.