Seinan Gakuin University – Fukuoka, Japan

Seinan Gakuin University (SGU) is a private humanities-focused university with a long history of international exchange and cooperation. The international exchange program, now managed in the Center for International Education, is one of the oldest such programs in Japan. With a total graduate and undergraduate student population of about 8,500, SGU is consistently ranked as one of the leading privately-funded universities in Western Japan.

Fukuoka city, where Seinan Gakuin is located, is situated on the island of Kyushu, the southwestern most of Japan’s four major islands. It is a city built on commerce, with a population of about 1.6 million, and has developed as the cultural and commercial center of the island. The city enjoys a convenient geographic location with easy access to other Asian nations, only 540 kilometers from Seoul and 870 kilometers from Shanghai, versus 1,100 kilometers to Tokyo.

One of the key attractions of Fukuoka is the way it combines the convenience of the city with a rich natural environment. The public transport network is excellent, with rail, bus and subway services that make it easy to get around in the city. Lush natural surroundings – sea and mountains – are only about 30 minutes away from downtown, and the city is noted nationwide for its delicious foods.

Programmes of study

All students on exchange at Seinan Gakuin University study a combination of Japanese language courses and elective modules which are taught in English in relation to Japanese culture, history, tradition, business and society.

The Japanese language courses include Comprehensive Japanese, Writing and Reading which are offered at different levels. Students with no prior knowledge of Japanese language can start at beginners level. Detailed information about the course offer can be found here.

Exchange students will be required to follow a full programme of study for the academic year based at Seinan Gakuin University.

Travel & accommodation

  • Travel – the nearest major airport to SGU is Fukuoka Airport, 20 minutes away using the subway.
  • Accommodation – Students can apply to live in the on-campus International Houses which may be shared or private. Off-campus housing is also available. Further information about accommodation types and costs can be found here. While SGU try to accommodate housing preferences, they are not able to guarantee that these will be met.

Visas & insurance

  • Visas – To take part in this exchange you are responsible for ensuring that you meet Japanese entry requirements.
  • Insurance – DMU insurance is not sufficient for studying on exchange in Japan. It is mandatory for exchange students at Seinan Gakuin University to purchase Japanese National Health Insurance (NHI), Personal Accident Insurance for Students Pursuing Education and Research (PAS) and Comprehensive Insurance for Students Lives. Further information about insurance can be found here.


Living costs in Japan tend to be similar to those in the UK. We recommend that you do further independent research to gain a better understanding of the cost of your year abroad. To help you, we have a created a simple cost comparison between the UK and Japan: