Akita International University (AIU) is a four-year liberal arts university, located in the lush green city of Akita prefecture in the Tohoku region. Famous for being a prestigious university that aims to enhance intercultural and global higher education, Akita International University currently offers bachelor’s degrees in Global Business and Global Studies, as well as master’s degrees in Japanese Language Teaching, English Language Teaching, and Global Communication Practices. Apart from their core English-based programs, AIU also provides extra language-learning opportunities for every student with up to six foreign language courses, including Japanese. Meanwhile, you can also improve your English language abilities through Akita’s intensive English for Academic Purposes (EAP) program.

Akita International University, with the aim of emphasizing international liberal arts education, looks forward to welcoming those wishing to make the world their stage. This global university strives to provide a comfortable learning environment for its students. The following impressive statistics are evidence of its achievement and prestige:

Quick facts:

  • Top Global University
    Leading Internationalization Category (Japanese Ministry of Education)
  • #1 Engagement
    THE Japan University Rankings 2019
  • #1 Environment
    THE Japan University Rankings 2019
  • #10 Best University in Japan
    THE Japan University Rankings 2020
  • #24.5
    Percentage of international students (2020)
  • #12.1
    Percentage of acceptance rate (2020)
  • #195 institutions in #50 countries and regions.


Akita International University has two intakes each year, in April and in September. Each of the following programs has specific criteria and application procedures.

Undergraduate Program

Number of students accepted: Not specified


  • Does not possess Japanese nationality
  • Must be 18 years of age or older
  • Completed or expected to complete a 12-year curriculum before the expected day of arrival at Akita.

Required documents:

  • Application Form (in English or Japanese)
  • Statement of Purpose (approximately 500 words in English)
  • Diploma and Transcripts: High school transcripts and Certificate of High School Graduation or Scheduled High School Graduation
April 2020 Admission
September 2020 Admission

Graduate program

The Graduate School of Akita International University consists of three programs: English Language Teaching Practices, Japanese Language Teaching Practices, and Global Communication Practices.

Required documents
  • Application Forms
  • Personal Statement and Study Plan
  • Two Letters of Recommendation
  • Resume (CV)
  • Certificate of undergraduate graduation or a certificate of your bachelor’s degree
  • Transcript
  • Document which verifies your language proficiency

For further details, read on Graduate English Programs at Akita University

Transfer program

Number of students: 2nd year: 7; 3rd year: 1


Language Ability: You must submit proof of your English ability, which can be one of the following:

2nd Year Student】: 71 points or higher on the TOEFL iBT® TEST, 530 or higher on the TOEFL® PBT TEST, or 6.5 or higher on the IELTS.

3rd Year Student】: 79 points or higher on the TOEFL iBT® TEST, 550 or higher on the TOEFL® PBT TEST, or 6.5 or higher on the IELTS.

NOTE: The score must be valid through the end of the application period.


You must have a cumulative GPA (Grade point average) of 2.50 or higher (4.0 scale).

Required documents:

  • Application form (in English/ Japanese)
  • Admission form and Photo Form for examination
  • Statement of Purpose (approximately 500 words in English)
  • Diploma (Please submit proof of graduation or expected graduate certificate from a university, junior college, or technical college. )
  • Transcript from university
  • Transcript from high school
  • Letter of Recommendation (The letter may be written in English or Japanese.)
  • A document which verifies English Proficiency

You must send all required documents to AIU by registered airmail, or bring the documents directly to AIU. Once AIU receives your documents, they will start holding an examination and an interview.

Interview: Based on submitted documents, you will be notified of your individual interview in Japanese and English.

Exam: You will be notified of the exam schedule once the interview is completed.

Screening process: It is based on documents submitted an English essay, examination, and an interview.

For further details about April 2021 admission, please refer to the following links:

Short-term program

Application Procedure

There are three steps in the application procedure:

Step I: Nomination

All applicants must be nominated by their home institutions prior to the deadline above.

For students from Partner Institutions, please contact your home institution study abroad office for information about your institution’s nomination procedures. After you complete the process, AIU will send your home institution username and password for you to access the online application system. Be sure to get this information from them to start your application.

For all other students, please contact AIU by email at with the name, title, and email address of your study abroad advisor to begin the nomination and application process.

Step II: Online application

After you receive your username and password from your home institution, you must complete the Online Application Form from Online Application System.

This process is important because it will be used for your immigration documents, acceptance letter, and AIU registration. Therefore, please be careful with the information in your application form.

Step III: Hardcopy application submission

After completing the online application, submit the following hardcopy, original documents by post to AIU. The required documents are as follows:

1. Completed, signed application form

2. Original academic transcript

3. International Student Reference Form  (2 pages) (Please click to download)
NOTE: Partner institution students: 1 form; All other students: 2 forms

4. Proof of English Language Proficiency (Non-native speakers, only)

5. Two ID Photos

6. Photocopy of passport

7. Proof of financial resources
Further details about proof of financial resources, click here.

Note: All documents must be written in English or accompanied by an English translation.

For a brief overview of the AIU exchange program, please see 2020 – 2021 Fact Sheet (Updated February 2020)

For further inquiries:

Center for International Affairs
Akita International University Yuwa, Akita-City 010-1292 Japan
Tel. +81-(0)18-886-5936, +81-(0)18-886-5937
Fax. +81-(0)18-886-5853
Inbound Students:
Outbound Students: