Japan — Ryukoku University, Kyoto

With roots dating to 1639, Ryukoku University is one of the oldest Universities in Japan. Founded on the principles of Jodo Shinshu Buddhism, the University today has seven faculties ranging from the humanities to the natural sciences. Boasting a student population of approximately 20,000 spread over three unique, attractive and accessible campuses in the ancient capital of Kyoto and neighboring Shiga, the university continues to preserve the past while at the same time press the boundaries of knowledge into the future.

Ryukoku has three campuses in and around Kyoto. These campuses are within easy reach of each other so you should be able to easily commute between the three. Free shuttle buses run between the campuses throughout the day (15 minutes travel time between Fukakusa and Omiya, 45 minutes travel time between Fukakusa and Seta).

FUKAKUSA, located in southern Kyoto, is the main campus. The Center for the Promotion of Global Education and all the JEP Kyoto classes are located on this campus. The Faculties of Economics, Business Administration and Law, Policy Sciences, along with lower level Letters courses and Junior College are located here. Furthermore, the Faculty of Intercultural Communication (which, until now has been located on our Seta Campus), was relocated to this campus as the Faculty of International Studies in Spring 2015.

OMIYA is the original campus (founded in 1639), and is located in central Kyoto. This is where the upper level courses in the Faculty of Letters are taught.

The SETA campus is located in Shiga prefecture, and is the newest and largest campus, surrounded by nature. This is where the Faculties of Sociology, Science and Technology, and Agriculture are located.

For more campus information, please click here.

Duration of exchange: Academic Year (the program begins in the fall) or Spring (on a space-available basis)

This program is not currently accepting applications. Please contact a study abroad advisor for more information regarding other available programs.


The school’s dormitories are available for exchange students. Exchange Students are placed in one of four university dormitories: Ryukoku International House, Tomoiki International House, Omiya-so, or Mukaijima Gakusei Center. There are Japanese student tutors in the dormitories to help you during your stay at Ryukoku University (with the exception of Mukaijima Gakusei Center). Please click here for more dormitory information.


Program Cost

In addition to CSUN tuition and fees, students are responsible for round-trip airfare and all living expenses (approximately ¥80,000 per month, including national health insurance). CSUN financial aid can be applied toward this program. 

Students participating in Campus-Based Exchange program to Ryukoku University continue to pay tuition to CSUN and may use their CSUN financial aid (where eligible). Program fees and out-of-pocket expenses listed represent one semester abroad (unless otherwise stated). Students participating in an academic year should adjust accordingly. Students are also strongly encouraged to apply for scholarships. For more information on possible scholarships, please contact Eleanor Wolgast or Rebecca Spector.

Program Cost

CSUN Tuition and Fees (Resident)*


CSU Mandated Insurance


 *If you are not a resident of California, you must add $396.00 to your tuition for each unit.

Academic Information

Ryukoku University’s Japanese Experience Program in Kyoto (JEP Kyoto) aims to provide practical training in the Japanese language, while also offering Japan-related elective courses exclusive to exchange students. Students may also register for regular university classes if they meet the course’s language requirements and have the instructor’s permission.

The normal program term is one year from September to August. When space allows, a Spring semester option from March to August is also sometimes available. Program participants must enroll in a minimum of 16 units per semester, including language study. Preference will be given to students applying to study abroad for the full academic year. Check back then for application deadlines and other information.

More information on the Japanese Experience Program in Kyoto (JEP Kyoto)

More information on the Undergraduate and Graduate Courses at Ryukoku University.

Requirements and Application Information

Students applying to study at Ryukoku University must: 

  • Have a cumulative overall grade point average of 3.0 or higher
  • Have Sophomore-, Junior- or Senior-level standing.
  • Have completed at least second-semester Japanese (JAPN 102)

While priority will be given to declared minors and majors in Japanese and to students who have taken additional Japan-related courses at CSUN, all students are welcome to apply. Prospective applicants are strongly encouraged to discuss their preparation and study plans with the faculty advisor for Japan-related study abroad.

Applications for the Japan: Ryukoku University program are not available at this time. For any questions regarding this program, please contact the CSUN Study Abroad Advisors.


For program and application information, please contact Eleanor Wolgast, or Rebecca Spector, at the International and Exchange Student Center.

For additional program information, you may contact the following faculty member:

Dr. Drake Langford, Modern and Classical Languages and Literature Department
(818) 677-3460