University of Oxford logo
  • Tuition Fee:
  • Local: $ 13.9k / Year
  • Foreign: $ 30k / Year
  • Languages of instruction:
  • English
  • StudyQA ranking:
  • 656pts.
  • Duration:
  • 1 years

    This is a twelve-month programme offered jointly by the Faculty of Oriental Studies and the School of Interdisciplinary Area Studies that combines courses about Japan, an intensive language programme, a research methods course and a 12,000-word dissertation. Native speakers of Japanese or those with native speaker competence are also encouraged to apply.

    The MSc in Japanese Studies is intended to be both a stand-alone course for those seeking to improve their language skills and an interdisciplinary introduction to the study of modern Japan. It is taught by full-time members of the Nissan and Oriental Institutes and all the courses are designed for master's-level students.

    The department does not teach Japanese language for beginners. However, it does offer language teaching which will equip you to do research about Japan. The levels range from JLPT Level 3 up to and beyond Level 1.

    The course acts as either a foundation for those intending to seek employment working in Japan or with the Japanese, or as a preparation for further research on Japan either on the follow-on MPhil course or on a doctoral programme at Oxford or elsewhere. It is taught over three terms.

    There are five components to the MSc degree:

    • a core course on research methods
    • two courses about Japan chosen from the following options (NB not all options may be offered every year):
      • Modern Japanese History
      • Japanese Linguistics
      • Modern Japanese Literature and Film
      • Japanese Politics
      • Japanese Economics
      • Japanese Social Anthropology
      • Sociology of Japanese Society
      • Classical Japanese Literature
      • Classical Japanese
      • Old (8th century) Japanese Texts
      • Modern Japanese Literary Texts
      • Texts in Japanese Linguistics
      • Classical Japanese Texts.
    • the Japanese language course or, if you have native speaker language competence, a further course about Japan
    • a dissertation of 12,000 words.

    The courses about Japan have been designed for students at the graduate level and most students will be on the Japanese studies programme. Some courses may also be taken by students who are studying elsewhere in the university. For example, the course on Japanese politics is an option for both students in Japanese studies and students on the MPhil in Politics (Comparative Government).

    The research methods course is assessed on the basis of projects and tasks set in the course of teaching. The language course is assessed through a combination of tests and quizzes set during the year and an end-of-year examination. The courses about Japan are assessed by a three-hour written examination in English in the chosen subjects. The research project (dissertation) is examined for its competence, conceptual grasp and innovation soon after submission on 1 September.


    UK requirements for international applications

    Universities in the United Kingdom use a centralized system of undergraduate application: University and College Admissions Service (UCAS). It is used by both domestic and international students. Students have to register on the UCAS website before applying to the university. They will find all the necessary information about the application process on this website. Some graduate courses also require registration on this website, but in most cases students have to apply directly to the university. Some universities also accept undergraduate application through Common App (the information about it could be found on universities' websites).

    Both undergraduate and graduate students may receive three types of responses from the university. The first one, “unconditional offer” means that you already reached all requirements and may be admitted to the university. The second one, “conditional offer” makes your admission possible if you fulfill some criteria – for example, have good grades on final exams. The third one, “unsuccessful application” means that you, unfortunately, could not be admitted to the university of you choice.

    All universities require personal statement, which should include the reasons to study in the UK and the information about personal and professional goals of the student and a transcript, which includes grades received in high school or in the previous university.


    Program requirements

    1. Academic ability

    Proven and potential academic excellence

    Applicants are normally expected to be predicted or have achieved a first-class or strong upper second-class undergraduate degree with honours (or equivalent international qualifications), as a minimum, in any subject or discipline, although it is preferable to have some social sciences or humanities background.

    For applicants with a degree from the USA, the minimum GPA sought is 3.5 out of 4.0.

    No Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or GMAT scores are sought.

    For non-native speakers of Japanese, Japanese language proficiency equivalent to the Japan Foundation Japanese-Language Proficiency Level N4 is required, and in general, an aptitude for Japanese language learning.

    2. English language requirement

    Higher level

    Test

    Standard level scores

    Higher level scores

    IELTS Academic 
    Institution code: 0713

    7.0 Minimum 6.5 per component  7.5  Minimum 7.0 per component 

    TOEFL iBT 
    Institution code: 0490

    100

    Minimum component scores:

    • Listening: 22
    • Reading: 24
    • Speaking: 25
    • Writing: 24
    110

    Minimum component scores:

    • Listening: 22
    • Reading: 24
    • Speaking: 25
    • Writing: 24
    Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE) 185

    Minimum 176 per component

    191 

    Minimum 185 per component

    Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (CAE) 185

    Minimum 176 per component

    191 

    Minimum 185 per component

    3. SUPPORTING DOCUMENTS

    • Three references (letters of recommendation)
    • Official transcript(s) of previous university-level degrees
    • CV/résumé
    • Statement of purpose/personal statement:500 words
    • Written work: Two essays of 2,000 words each
    • Certificate of Japanese language proficiency
    • Clarendon Scholarships. This unique scheme offers around 140 new, fully-funded scholarships each year to academically outstanding graduate students, as well as providing a lively and stimulating community of scholars.
    • Hill Foundation Scholarships. The Hill Foundation Scholarships fund Russian students to study for full-time graduate courses in any subject at Oxford. The Hill Foundation is a charity which aims to create a community of Oxford scholars and alumni who will work to improve Russian life and culture.The scholarship will cover 100% of University and college fees and a grant for living costs (of at least £14,296). Awards are made for the full duration of your fee liability for the agreed course.
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