Sophia University is a community based on the spirit of Christianity. We search for truth, we search for values, and we work for the "human" formation of our students. Our university is made up of various members; all of us are expected to participate in the developing of the university as we work in various roles. We share mental attitudes of mutual respect and we share the desire to take joint responsibility for our institution. We recognize and support each other's human dignity and basic human rights.
Our faculty members respect academic research. While they deepen their own individual research efforts, they also devote their attention to various contemporary problems, in the hope of transmitting to new generations of students the spiritual and intellectual culture of human beings. Our faculty members must bear in mind the need to raise the consciousness of our students about a variety of problems that confront the whole human race.
Our students must cultivate a keen consciousness of problems in contemporary society and an ability to make judgments about these problems, while at the same time pursuing research in their areas of academic specialization. Thus, our students will come to form their own human character and will become equipped with the power to contribute to the construction of human society.
Making the most of its special character, our university offers chances to conduct research on Christianity and Christian culture. At the same time, our university acknowledges differences in ways of thinking and encourages academic research about many kinds of ideas. In this way, one can truly cultivate powers of insight into the problems of human beings and their world, along with a critical spirit in addressing such problems.
For the sake of academic progress, freedom of thought and freedom of research must be protected and an attitude of academic impartiality must be adhered to. Thus, our university will not permit any interference with thought and research from political or ideological pressures or from any other intervention of outside power. We earnestly desire to open wide the windows that face our contemporary world, as it changes so rapidly. We earnestly desire to share the sufferings and hopes of all human beings. We earnestly desire to be of service to the welfare and the creative progress of our world.
The university is located in Tokyo, Japan. Tokyo is Japan’s capital and the world’s most populous metropolis. Tokyo is also one of Japan’s 47 prefectures, consisting of 23 central city wards and multiple cities, towns, and villages west of the city center. Tokyo offers a seemingly unlimited choice of shopping, entertainment, and culture. The city’s history can be appreciated through museums, historic temples, and gardens.
Participating exchange students will be eligible to enroll in the Faculty of Liberal Arts or the Faculty of Science and Technology, and on a space available basis in other Sophia faculties for which they are linguistically and academically qualified. Courses in the Faculty of Liberal Arts are centered on Comparative Culture, International Business and Economics, and Social Studies. Courses available in the Faculty of Science and Technology include the Green Science and Green Engineering programs. In principle it is compulsory for exchange students to register and complete Japanese Language course(s). Please note that exchange students in the undergraduate program may not take Graduate Courses. Students may use the Syllabus Inquiry to find course listings.
The Faculty of Liberal Arts is distinguished from other universities in Japan and other faculties within Sophia by several notable characteristics. The student body as well as teaching staff is international in character. It includes graduates of ordinary Japanese high schools, foreign students who have been educated in high schools and universities overseas, Japanese students returning from abroad, exchange students from overseas, and dependents of foreign families resident in Japan. All courses except language classes are conducted in English. At the same time, intensive training in the Japanese language is offered for students whose native language is not Japanese, and classes in reading and writing in Japanese provide special training for native speakers who have been educated abroad or in a non-Japanese speaking environment. The aim is for all students to acquire a bilingual capacity in both English and Japanese.
The "Green Science” program, offered by the Department of Materials and Life Sciences, is designed to train the student on the fundamentals of chemistry and biology and to apply this knowledge to overcome environmental issues.
The “Green Engineering” program, offered by the Department of Engineering and Applied Sciences, is designed to learn electrical and mechanical engineering skills to help develop energy conservation technology, efficient power generation and distribution and power transmission. Class sizes are kept small so that students can communicate closely with their instructors as they pursue their chosen fields in science and technology, beginning with basics such as Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry and Biology, and then continuing on to more advanced studies such as Environmental Chemistry, Environmental Biotechnology, Clean Energy and Environmental System Analyses. As the campus is also home to liberal arts programs, students can also participate in non-science courses that can help develop their cultural background so that they can pursue environmental issues in a broad perspective.
Academic Year: late September - late July
Spring Semester: early April - late July
Due to the academic calendar, fall-semester only study is not possible. Students may study for the year or for the spring semester.
Sophia University offers several housing options for exchange students. Exchange student dormitories are not located on campus so students commute to campus using Tokyo's efficient subway system. Information about the housing options can be found here. Details about expected costs of housing and living expenses in Tokyo can be found here.
UVA students will pay their regular tuition rate and fees to UVA for the term they are on a UVA Exchange Program. Students are additionally responsible for room and board, transportation, and personal expenses. Students will pay the host institution or make their own arrangements for accommodations. Check the host institution web site for accommodation choices, cost, and application procedures.
Students are responsible for booking and paying for their own international airfare as well as researching and obtaining the necessary visa.
UVA students are required to purchase CISI emergency medical and accident insurance.
Tuition and Fees:
Students will pay their regular tuition rate and fees to UVA for the term they are on a UVA Exchange Program. Tuition and fees will be billed to each student’s SIS account and can be paid as normal.
Housing and Meals:
Students are responsible to pay for accommodation and any required or preferred meal plan. Students will pay the host institution or make their own arrangements for accommodations. Check the host institution web site for accommodation and meal plan choices, cost, and application procedures.
Travel and Travel Documents:
Students are responsible for booking and paying for their own international airfare as well as researching and obtaining the necessary visa. Students should also budget for in-country transportation costs.
UVA students are required to purchase CISI emergency medical and accident insurance. More information can be found on the insurance web page
Students should be prepared to purchase required books and supplies. Students should also budget for additional personal expenses; examples include laundry, phone costs, personal travel, meals out, etc.
If you are not able to find accommodation costs or application, cost of living, or other information you need in order to prepare for your study abroad program, please contact your Education Abroad Advisor.
You can find detailed information regarding financial aid and study abroad on the following websites:
The University of Virginia believes in providing reasonable accommodations for students with documented disabilities on an individual and flexible basis. If you believe that you would require adjustments in order to fully participate in this program, please contact the Student Disability Access Center at 434-243-5180 as early as possible in order to begin this dialogue.
Passport and Visa
All participants will need a valid passport in order to participate in the program. Students must ensure that their passport is valid at least six months past the program return date. US passport holders will need a visa to participate in this program. International students should meet with their International Student Advisor and Education Abroad Advisor in the International Studies Office as part of the application process.
Health and Safety Information
All students considering Education Abroad should consult the Students Abroad section of the U.S. Department of State’s web-based travel resources and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Traveler’s Health web resources to research health, safety, and security conditions; visa requirements; immunization requirements; and recommendations on staying healthy and safe in their target destination(s). Students should also carefully review the UVA Education Abroad Health & Safety Abroad web page. Parents and guardians are strongly advised to review all of these resources, as well. UVA students and visiting students enrolled in UVA Education Abroad programs are subject to the University of Virginia’s Policy on Student International Travel.