So you filled out your preferences, made some minor/major changes and you’re finally settled with a university for ICS. YAY! You’re now ready for the next step, which involves a lot of paperwork. I freaked out during this stage, but it’s actually not that bad if you follow all the instructions the coordinator gives you. I’m referring to your applications to get approved for study in the host university.
You may be wondering, “When do I get the applications?”. Honestly, it really depends on the university you are going to. Some may send you the applications quickly, some takes time, but always check your UTS email each day because the ICS coordinator will provide it to you and the necessary information. Otherwise, you can always ask him/her about it when you have the time.
Also, the deadline for the submission will also depend on the university. In my case, I got the application on the 17th August 2015 and the deadline was 8th October 2015, which means that I got plenty of time to complete and submit. Unfortunately, I have a few friends who got their applications and they had to submit it one week after they got it. Just be prepared if you are in this kind of situation.
Now to the bulk of this post, the applications. What do you need to submit? I assume that the documents are very similar regardless of where you’re going
1.Application for Certificate of Eligibility
This is the document which allows you to enter Japan as an exchange student. There are some parts of the document where you don’t have to fill in as that is done by the host university. It’s both in English and Japanese, so if it’s only in Japanese, you may want to ask the coordinator to help you with this.
2. Application for Host University
Basically you’re trying to enrol into the university. Most applications would have English and Japanese, but again if it’s only in Japanese, consult the coordinator.
Have either your Japanese teacher or the ICS coordinator to fill this out. They’ll write down reasons for recommending you to be enrolled in the host university.
The ICS coordinator will provide you with the transcript, which details the subjects you completed as well as the marks you got.
5. Certificate of Health
Most people will be worried about this document. You will have to take this to your doctor and perform health checks. The document will look like the link here -> http://www.mladiinfo.eu/wp content/uploads/2014/12/7Certificate_of_Health.pdf
At first I was overwhelmed with what it requires, but it was not that difficult because all the necessary stuff can be obtained within my local area. The doctor will network you with other services to get the X-ray check, blood test, eye test and lab test. Get the doctor to fill out the details for you and you should be okay with this document. It took me about 3 days to do all the test and fill out the certificate, so it’s best to get this done ASAP.
You’ll have to write an essay about why you want to study in Japan, in either English or Japanese. Be honest with what you say in this section, because you don’t want to give the university a bad impression of you. This is like writing an essay to apply for the JET program, which I’ll probably do when I’m done with my degrees. Things to consider would be like the benefits of learning a language or the expectations you have about Japan. 1 or 2 pages should be okay.
7. Financial Statement
The host university needs to know that you are financially capable of living in Japan for the year. Go to your bank and request a financial statement that says you have approx. $10000 AUD or more. Even the ICS coordinator told us this, “Just get your parents to transfer the money to the account under your name and then return it once you got the statement”. Don’t worry too much about not having the fund beforehand, unless you actually do have that amount.
The size of the photos are basically the passport photo size. Just go to a store and ask if you can make about 10 passport photo.
9. Photo page of your passport.
Scan and print the page of your passport with the photo of you and the details.
After you done all the documents, make a second copy so that you can submit the real documents to the host university. Hand them to the ICS coordinator and you’re done with this step. I know it’s tedious, but if you correctly filled out the details, you’ll make the life of the people at the international offices in the host university much easier. After submitting the documents, you should get a few emails from the host university if they need anything from you. I only had to submit the application for certificate of eligibility in excel spreadsheet not in word document and that’s about it. Now continue with your studies and the waiting game begins.