The government is keen to attract more international students, and has set a target of having 300,000 foreign students in the country by 2020 (it reached the 100,000 mark in 2003). As a result, universities are focusing on making life easier for foreign students, from the application process all the way through to finding a job after graduation.

One thing that will certainly help to attract international students is the introduction of more courses taught partly or entirely in English. Other schemes to attract more overseas students include:

  • Hiring special staff to support international students
  • Allowing students to start courses in September (instead of April, which is when Japan’s academic year usually starts)
  • Recruiting more teaching staff from outside Japan
  • Increasing exchange programs with universities in other countries

Aware that living and studying in Japan is expensive compared to many countries, the government has also introduced additional financial support for foreign students. Various university scholarships and grants are available through the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT) and the Japan Student Services Organization (JASSO).

There are approximately 780 universities in Japan, of which about 80% are private. There are also specialized schools and colleges that provide more vocational types of degree.

List of Universities –



In 2004 the South Korean government set a target of attracting 100,000 foreign students to its universities by 2012, and by 2011 the country had enrolled over 85,000 international students from 171 different countries. Now the initiative has sets its sights even higher, with an aim of 200,000 international students by 2020.

As part of this ongoing focus on internationalization, several universities in South Korea, including Yonsei University, are opening new international campuses to meet growing demand, while five universities have opened branch campuses at the Incheon Global Campus (IGC), including the State University of New York (SUNY).



A vibrant and multicultural city state, Singapore includes some of the most prestigious universities in the world, with Nanyang Technological University (NTU) and Singapore National University both ranked among the top 15 in the QS World University Rankings. If you want to study in English in Singapore, the good news is that English is one of its official languages, with around 80% of the population fluent, and it’s also the official language of instruction at universities. However, costs in Singapore are relatively high – you can expect to pay around US$10,000 per year for tuition fees, and the high standard of living is matched by high living costs.



Malaysia is quickly becoming a popular study destination for international students, and has recently invested heavily in the higher education sector, for example by welcoming international branch campuses, which are run by universities based in other countries. Existing branch campuses include those operated by the UK’s University of Nottingham and Australia’s Monash University. However, the country’s own universities more than hold their own, with Universiti Malaya its highest ranked at joint 114th in the QS World University Rankings.

English is the language of instruction at private colleges and some government universities, and is also commonly used among Malaysians. For those less proficient in the language, most colleges also offer English proficiency classes. The cost of living for international students in Malaysia is as low as US$5,000 per year.



There is a great deal of diversity in India, both in terms of culture and language – hundreds of dialects are used here, and in fact the 2001 census identified no less than 26 different mother tongues with more than a million speakers. However, in Indian universities, the language of instruction is largely English, especially at postgraduate level, and there are often language classes available for non-native speakers to strengthen their knowledge of the language. The costs of living in India is very affordable, and tuition fees are also on the low side, with courses usually costing US$3,200-7,700.



Study in Taiwan –

Another country with a growing number of international students choosing to study in English is Taiwan, in which the language is widely spoken and understood. Keen to attract international students, universities in Taiwan are increasing the number of degree courses taught partly or entirely in English. There are currently 41 universities offering 121 English language programs, which you can search for via the Study in Taiwan website. The country’s highest-ranked university, National Taiwan University (ranked joint 76th in the world), has tuition fees starting at US$3,300.


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