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Immigration procedures for international students


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First, obtain enrollment permission

If you plan to enter Japan by Method A or Method C, first you have to be admitted by a school in Japan. After being admitted, you need to apply for a certification of eligibility with a college student status. Then, go to the Japanese embassy in your home country to apply for the visa for entering Japan.
Otherwise, in the case of coming to Japan to take examination by Method B, you should apply for a short term visa with an admission ticket to an entrance examination. After taking the examination in Japan, return to your home country to wait for the examination result. If you are admitted, follow the procedure to apply for visa as described above (the same as with entering Japan by Method A or C).

Apply for visa

After receiving admission, you must follow the procedures to apply for a Certificate of Eligibility from immigration authorities in Japan. A Certificate of Eligibility is issued before a visa application by a regional immigration authority under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Justice. If you are not in Japan, you have to ask friends, relatives or other people in Japan to complete this procedure.
Japanese language school and vocational school complete this procedures for students they accepted.
Please be careful that some college or undergraduate course and graduate school of university do not apply for Certificate of Eligibility for students they accepted. Therefore, in these cases, you have ask people who you know in Japan to do this for you. However, if you do not have any acquaintances in Japan to resort to, you should ask a favor of the school you are going to enter to do this for you.
It cost two months to apply for Certificate of Eligibility of "college student" visa.. After receiving Certificate of Eligibility from the proxy, you should go to Japanese embassy in your homeland to apply for "college student" visa.

What is covered in the screening process?

Two factors will be inspected when the immigration authority screens your application for a Certificate of Eligibility (COE).

1. Whether you received Admission or not
The immigration authority will inspect your graduate certificate of the latest school you attended in your home country and the admission issued by the school you will enter in Japan.

2. Whether you have sufficient financial resources that cover tuition and living expenses. The immigration authority will inspect certificates of your bank balance and income.

In some cases, the COE will not be issued if your documentation is incomplete, even if you have enough money to cover the expenses for studying in Japan. Study in Japan is impossible without being issued a COE.
Same additional screening will be made when you apply for visa, even if you received a COE. In some countries, there will be an interview. Embassy officials will test your Japanese ability and ask you information about the latest school you graduated from. They will also look over your financial situation. If a visa has not been issued, it is impossible for you to study in Japan even with the admission sent by universities. In such cases, you will have to defer your admission and try again later.

Flow Chart

The procedure you should take in order to come to Japan after being accepted is shown in the graph below. Please use it for your reference.

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