If you want to pursue your education in a creative and modern country, Japan might be the place for you. Universities in Japan have it all: a world-class academic infrastructure, incredible research opportunities, and proven groundbreaking programs. They are particularly welcoming to international students, who are seen as contributing to the multicultural environment and promoting free thought.

Japan is regarded as one of the best nations in the world, with relatively low crime rates. This is one of the most critical considerations for international students. In addition to being very polite and encouraging, the Japanese have fantastic scholarships and grants to assist both foreign and domestic students on their path to higher education.

Hundreds of thousands of foreign students attend universities in Japan, demonstrating once again that this country is a popular destination. With mild weather, travel, and culture-enriched life, this might be the perfect place for every enthusiastic student. In this article, we will be looking at Japanese Government scholarships for international students.

MEXT Scholarship Awards

MEXT (Japanese Government Scholarships) are available for six different types of students, depending on the program. The scholarships are intended for science students, teacher training students, undergraduate students, Japanese studies students, technology college students, and advanced training college students. MEXT aims to help international students with financial issues that will allow them to comfortably live and finish their education in Japan. It also promotes international relationships and at the same time to have the opportunity to be involved in research opportunities in the country.

These scholarships completely cover tuition costs, and additional financial assistance is available in the form of a travel allowance (air ticket provided) and a monthly stipend depending on the field of study. The monthly allowance will depend on the course and the exact amount may change every academic year. This stipend is given to students to help aid in their living costs.

These scholarships are open to undergraduate and graduate students who are nominated by either the embassy or the university. The duration of the scholarships varies depending on the program, but it typically lasts up to five years for undergraduate students and up to seven years for medicine and dentistry students. The MEXT scholarship is valid for one year and six months for graduate students and includes Japanese language lessons.

Eligibility Criteria: MEXT Scholarships

To be eligible for Japanese government scholarships, students must meet the eligibility criteria, which vary based on the program of choosing. But in general, a candidate must be a non-Japanese resident with a valid student visa.

Undergraduate candidates must be over the age of 17 and under the age of 25 and have completed (or are about to complete) a 12-year primary and secondary schooling. A candidate may be required to submit a Japanese language certificate. If you have been planning to study in Japan, we recommend learning the language as early as possible. This may be one of the reasons to impress the deciding committee.

Graduate applicants on the other hand must be under the age of 35 before the enrollment date. Applicants must either be graduates of Japanese universities or have the same or higher academic capacity than a Japanese graduate. Additional requirements for some programs such as teacher training students, who have to be under 35 years of age must have at least five years of experience as a teacher. Also, Japanese studies students have to be between 18 and 30 years old with a major in the Japanese language or culture in a school or university located outside Japan.

Check Also: Available Programs for International Students

How to Apply: MEXT Scholarships

There are two ways to apply for the MEXT Scholarships: via the embassy or the regional university recommendations. Both require certain documentation and further testing. Candidates are selected based on academic achievements and overall enthusiasm for the Japanese language and culture.

Embassy Recommendation

One way to apply for the MEXT scholarship is through the embassy route. If you are applying through the embassy, you need to get the information from the Japan Embassy homepage of your home country. For example, if you are from India, visit the official website of the Japanese embassy in India.

Exams and dates will be coordinated through the embassy or the university. Most schools will require students to submit Japanese and English proficiency exams, but depending on the program, additional math, and physics, chemistry, or biology exams may also be required.

The recommendation period usually lasts up to a year and typically starts in April. After obtaining all of the necessary documents, eligible students will be invited for an interview. By late August, the embassy will forward a list of successful candidates to the Japanese Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science, and Technology (MEXT) through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Another thing to keep in mind is that the prospective student for the MEXT Scholarship has to show a willingness to learn the Japanese language and be overall enthusiastic about Japanese culture and way of life. This is one of the reasons why it is a good idea to learn the basics of the Japanese language even before you arrive in Japan. Even if there are courses available in English, the Japanese language is considered mandatory.

University Recommendation

MEXT scholarship may be granted through the recommendation of a university that has certain exchange program agreements with Japanese universities. These institutes will recommend potential students to the Japanese Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science, and Technology.

Scholars who have been chosen must provide necessary documents such as a letter of recommendation, identification or a passport, verification of prior experience and records, a health certificate, and records of language or special academic abilities. After the application process is completed, scholars usually arrive in Japan in September or October, although there are instances that students would arrive by March or April.


To summarize, Japan is a nation that is focused on the future while preserving its history and heritage. As a result, the country welcomes foreign students each year who are excited to be a part of tomorrow’s creative society. The colleges are cutting-edge and committed to education in every way. Universities collaborate closely with the state and government, and this collaboration has resulted in a large number of Japanese government scholarships available to international students. Given that Japan is reasonably priced and that extra financial assistance is available, there are no constraints to a perfectly balanced student life.


We hope this article will encourage you to apply for scholarships. If you’re interested in studying abroad, make sure to check out the Available Programs in Japan and Study in Japan pages for more study options!

About the Author: Hyun Lee

Hi! I am Hyun, and I am the founder at Global Scholarships. I've received a full-tuition scholarship at Birmingham-Southern College and a $1,000 Burger King Scholarship for my undergraduate degree and was offered a fully funded scholarship consisting of tuition, living stipend, and health insurance for computer science Ph.D. program at North Carolina State University. You can read more about my scholarship journey here. If you are interested, you can follow me on Linkedin where I regularly write about scholarship opportunities.

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  1. Wendy June 25, 2023 1:40 am - Reply

    Thanks a lot

    • Hyun Lee June 25, 2023 7:25 pm - Reply

      You are welcome!

  2. Anonymous July 14, 2023 5:31 am - Reply

    I’m interested

    • Hyun Lee July 14, 2023 10:59 am - Reply

      You should apply if you meet the requirements:)

  3. ayoub mannai July 28, 2023 2:52 am - Reply

    I have one years left to be 17 years old, and I am want to study engineering in Japan because I think that it is the best with the technology. I hope to get help from other people to do it

    • Hyun Lee August 9, 2023 11:50 am - Reply

      Hi, to apply for bachelor’s in Japan, you will most likely need Japanese language proficiency unless you are applying to English taught universities in Japan. You will need things like English proficiency scores, standardized exam scores, and strong academic background to apply to these universities although the criteria varies per university. We also have partner universities in Japan that offer Engineering courses, and you can find them in our opencourses page.

  4. Precious July 29, 2023 10:53 pm - Reply

    How to apply through the Embassy

    • Hyun Lee August 5, 2023 1:36 pm - Reply

      Hi, you will need to go to the Japan embassy’s homepage in your home country. They will have the procedure, application deadlines, etc on their homepage.

      • Sonu mishra March 9, 2024 12:53 am - Reply

        Hello, I want to study my undergraduate study for business and management in Japan… How I can apply?