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A country of opportunities where long-rooted traditions and modern technologies coexist in harmony; that is Japan. Japan, inhabited by over 125 million people, consists of the four main islands of Hokkaido, Honshu, Shikoku, Kyushu and nearly 4000 small islands. People visit Japan for various reasons; to enjoy its long and diverse culture, its natural beauty, the traditional Japanese cuisine - a designated UNESCO intangible cultural heritage - to do sports or to engage in business. The relationship between Australia and Japan has been very close and mature politically, economically and culturally; for example, Japan was Australia's second-largest trading partner in 2018-19. Japan is an amazing country which can offer you a lot.


The Japanese language program offers a comprehensive list of courses from foundational to over-advanced courses including many thematic and specialised courses. Japanese is an orthographically-intense language. In order to assist the well-balanced acquisition of the four language skills, spoken- and written-focused courses are separately offered to beginners in the first year. There are plenty of advanced and over-advanced courses even after completing the first eight courses which make up a Japanese language major. The four advanced courses, all of which are thematic courses, focus on current affairs, literature, culture, society and other topics. The program also offers research-oriented and specialised courses (e.g. translation and Japanese language teaching) to students with a high proficiency of the language. Students will have various opportunities at different stages of their learning to spend time studying at one of the partner universities in Japan. We have 18 active partners, all of which are top-ranked universities in Japan. Students can enjoy this opportunity through intensive courses in the summer break, through the exchange/semester in Asia program, through our flagship program of the Year in Asia (Japan) program or other programs. Competitive scholarships are available for in-country studies to qualified students. Self-sourced learning abroad opportunities are also available. 

Study options

Students can take Japanese language courses towards a number of majors, minors, specialisations or as elective. A Japanese major and minor can be a part of a Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Asian Studies, Bachelor of Languages, Diploma of Languages amongst many other programs. A Japanese specialisation can be a part of a number of Master programs at ANU, for example, Master of Asian and Pacific Studies, Master of General and Applied Linguistics and Master of General and Applied Linguistics (Advanced). Most Japanese language classes are held in person but some courses may be offered online.

Undergraduate courses Japanese 1: SpokenJapanese 2: SpokenJapanese 1: WrittenJapanese 2: WrittenJapanese 3Japanese 4Japanese 5 and Japanese 6 . See ANU Programs and Courses for study options.

The School of Culture, History and Language places a unique emphasis on in-country experience. For more information on exchange programs and in-country language opportunities, visit the ANU global programs or enquire