About Hokkaido University 

Hokkaido University was founded in 1876 as Sapporo Agricultural College, and was one of the nine prestigious Imperial Universities in Japan, alongside the University of Tokyo, Kyoto University, etc.

In 2014, the university was selected as one of the Super Global Universities as a program initiated by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in order to get into the top 100 universities ranked globally. 

With the education in Japan opening itself to the world, Hokkaido University also offers many courses for both prospective undergraduate and graduate international students.

Undergraduate Programs

Integrated Science Program (ISP)

The ISP includes elements of both liberal arts and business studies. Students will first begin with general education, then choose to specialize in one of the three approaches, Biology, Chemistry and Physics. 

For prospective students, there are two stages of selection for admission. The first stage is based on application materials, such as transcripts, motivation essays, letters of recommendation, etc. Those who pass the first stage will proceed to the next stage of an interview over Skype where students will be asked about their academic ability. 

Modern Japanese Studies Program (MJSP)

Students will go through intensive Japanese training throughout their four-year degree, and it can be expected that they will acquire N1 by the time of graduation. Students will take courses from introductory to an advanced level about Japanese history, Japanese society, and political economy. With this extensive curriculum about Japan, MSJP students will have a thorough and in-depth understanding of Japan and benefit from the bilingual curriculum that the program has to offer.

Career paths open up in different directions for MJSP graduates for how flexible their skill set is. MSJP graduates proceed to graduate school to pursue their research about different aspects of Japan as a nation. Some other graduates apply their language and intercultural skills in multinational companies. Some opt for a new career in journalism, publishing, and translation/interpreting.

Graduate Programs

Engineering

Within the Graduate School of Engineering, there are 250 courses offered in 13 divisions, ranging from Applied Physics, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Materials Science to Environmental Engineering. 

For admission, the application process is slightly different from the undergraduate level. Prospective graduate students need to get matched with their potential supervisors. Then, they will submit an application package of required documents, which mainly include the application form, research proposal, Bachelor’s or Master’s thesis, past educational background, academic transcripts, recommendation letters, documents to prove English proficiency, etc.

Veterinary Medicine

Within the program, students will learn about the ethics needed for veterinarians, accumulate the skills needed for prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of animal diseases; and acquire research experience in the field of veterinary medical science.

The length of the program in order to acquire the degree is 6 years. Students will first take liberal arts and introductory veterinary science courses, then get into basic veterinary science in the first two years. From the third year, they will learn pathogens that cause animal diseases; then from the fourth year, they will enroll in both lectures and practical training on environmental and applied veterinary sciences. In the fifth and sixth year, students are required to participate in a clinical rotation, and they can also choose to join research laboratories. Students will also prepare themselves for the National Examination for Veterinarians to prepare for their career path after graduation.


Agriculture

The Special Postgraduate Program in Biosphere Sustainability Science

The Graduate School of Agriculture is closely connected with and inherits the legacy of Hokkaido University from its founding days as Sapporo Agricultural College. There are four divisions within the school: Bio-systems Sustainability, Agrobiology, Applied Bioscience, and Environmental Resources.

Students will learn about and conduct research in the preservation and utilization of natural resources to aim for a future of sustainable development. Under the guidance of their supervisors, students will get to dive deep into research about practical topics that affect the lives of humankind, such as stable food supplies, food safety, the preservation of the global environment, and biomass uses.

Science

The Graduate School of Science is home to divisions of Mathematics, Condensed Matter Physics, and Cosmo Sciences. Within Mathematics, the department’s teaching and learning goal is to achieve theoretical sophistication to discover empirical approaches that use computers for calculations. Within Condensed Matter Physics, students will get to conduct research on quantum materials and provide physics education based on quantum mechanics and statistical mechanics with their instructors.

Life Sciences

There are three divisions: Transdisciplinary Life Science, Biosystems, and Soft Matter.

Within Biosystems, students will learn and understand common biological systems that integrate a broad spectrum of biomolecules.

Within Soft Matter, provide systematic education on basic knowledge related to scientific research of soft matter (physics, chemistry, biology) and its applied sciences (material science, life molecular science, biophysics, medicinal chemistry, and functional science). Soft matter refers to soft substances such as polymers, gels, biological materials, etc.

Within Transdisciplinary Life Science, students will get to develop research skills to investigate the nature of life from new perspectives based on a foundation in physics, chemistry, and biology.

The program also pays attention to collaboration with other top-ranked universities around the world, mainly in Asia, about their research.

Chemical Sciences and Engineering

The program offered by the Graduate School of Chemistry and Materials Science. Within the graduate school, students can choose to enroll in a wide variety of subjects in chemistry and materials science, including recent advances in organic chemistry, physical chemistry, inorganic chemistry, organometallic chemistry, polymer chemistry, catalysis, materials chemistry, biochemistry, and chemical engineering.

Environmental Science

Within the Graduate School of Environmental Science, there are four divisions, Environmental Science, Earth System Science, Biosphere Science and Material Science. The program aims to equip students with an understanding of our environment and the possible scientific methods and technology of moving towards a resource-efficient society.

Conclusion

This prestigious national university in the middle of the beautiful Sapporo city is an ideal destination for international students who want to enjoy a quiet study environment as well as the nature of Hokkaido. Check out scholarships, such as the MEXT scholarship, as well as other means of financial aid to realize your dream!