FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions


TUITION

Q1: Can I use the GI Bill to pay for my studies?

A1: Students entering Sophia University from AY 2024 will not be able to make use of GI Bill benefits to pay for educational expenses.


ELIGIBILITY

Q1: I am an international student. Are there any special admissions for international students?

A1: We do not offer any special admissions for international students. All students who have completed or are expected to complete 12 years or more of formal education outside or inside Japan can apply for the English-taught programs. The nationality or country where you complete the education does not matter.

Q2: I do not have any experiences living abroad. Can I still apply for the English-taught programs?

A2: Yes. Even if you do not have experiences living abroad, you can apply as long as you prepare the necessary documents.

Q3: I am a returning Japanese student from abroad. Is there a special admission just for returnee students?

A3: There is no special admission targeted just for returnee students in regards to the Faculty of Liberal Arts, the Faculty of Science and Technology English-taught programs and the SPSF. In the case of the Faculty of Liberal Arts, admission by recommendation (公募推薦) is possible for Japanese high school seniors. If you are interested in Japanese-taught programs, you may apply via the 海外就学者経験者(帰国生)入試.

Q4: Is there a minimum GPA to get accepted?

A4: Having applicants coming from different regions and educational systems around the world, we do not require a minimum GPA.

Q5: Can I apply for more than one English-taught program at the same time?

A5: Yes. However, you need to register online, pay the application fee and submit the application documents for each program.

Q6: I was not accepted the first admissions. Can I still apply for the second admissions?


A6: Yes. An applicant who has not been accepted in a previous application may reapply for the subsequent application periods, for the same or different programs. These applicants may reuse documents such as the certificate of graduation in their new application and must specify such documents in the Application Documents Checklist. The application form and essay cannot be reused and must be submitted again.


ENGLISH-TAUGHT UNDERGRADUATE PROGRAMS, CLASSES

Q1: What is the ratio of Japanese students and foreign students?

A1: In the Faculty of Liberal Arts, approximately 70% are Japanese students and 30% are foreign nationals, while in the Faculty of Science and Technology English-taught programs, approximately 80% are foreign nationals. However, even if the students’ nationality is Japanese, they could have dual nationality or have spent most of their lives abroad. Therefore, it is not possible to know students’ background from their nationalities.

Q2: Are all the classes conducted in English? I worry about having difficulty in following the English-taught courses.

A2: All the classes are conducted in English. All students will take the English placement tests at the time of entrance to the university and on the basis of the result, they might be advised to take some complementary classes to strengthen their English.

Q3: How can I see the list of courses and the syllabi?

A3: Please refer to each program’s specific webpage or to the Syllabus inquiry (*Go to our Web Piloti website).

Q4: What are the countries that international students usually come from?

A4: Most of the international students come from the U.S., China and Korea. In the Faculty of Science and Technology English-taught programs, many students come from Southeast Asia. Nationalities are diverse and they represent about 90 countries in the world.

Q5: After I join the SPSF, can I change my department?

A5: You cannot change your department after entering the SPSF. However, you can take a number of common courses shared among all the departments in the SPSF, and even classes from other departments, too.

Q6: Can I earn a Psychology degree in English?

A6: Unfortunately, we do not offer a Psychology degree in English.

Q7: Can I get a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science?

A7: The Green Science and Engineering programs offers several courses related to the computer science field, but you cannot get a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science specifically.


APPLICATION MATERIALS

Q1: Do all the application materials need to be original?

A1: Yes, all the application documents have to be original. If an original document cannot be reissued, a copy certified by the school official is acceptable. Also, if you bring the original application document to the Sophia University Admissions Office (Building 12, 1st floor) before the application deadline, we will make a copy and certify it.

Q2: What if my high school does not issue a certificate of expected graduation?

A2: If the transcript shows the date of expected graduation, you do not need a certificate of expected graduation. If your school does not issue a certificate of expected graduation, please ask them to write a letter indicating your expected graduation date. We also provide the form for the certificate of expected graduation here. PDF form / WORD form

Q3: Can I submit my transcript/certificate of graduation digitally?

A3: We can accept the transcript and certificate of graduation sent from your school via email/post. Please note that copies (digital or paper) sent from applicants cannot be accepted.


Q4: What should I do if I graduated high school early/skipped a grade?

A4: Please submit an official document issued by the school indicating the fact.

Q5: Do the recommendation letters need to be written on the provided format?

A5: No. As long as the content of the letter matches what is requested on the format provided, they can be written on separate/different sheets.
However, for the admission by recommendation (公募推薦), the provided form must be used.

Q6: Can letters of recommendation be submitted via email?

A6: Yes. Recommenders can send the letter directly to the Admissions Office email (admission-u-co@sophia.ac.jp), and they must use their official institutional email address when doing so.

Q7: I have attended several schools. Can I ask my former school teacher to write my recommendation letter?

A7: You can ask your former school teacher to write your recommendation letter as long as he/she can evaluate your academic performance.



TEST SCORES (TOEFL, SAT, etc)

Q1: Is there a minimum requirement for standardized test score (SAT/ACT/IB/GCE A-Level) to apply?

A1: There is no minimum standardized test score requirements for application, However all applicants have to submit at least one of the indicated scores (SAT/ACT/IB/GCE A-Levels.)

Q2: Can I apply with the Abitur?

A2: We do not accept the Abitur as a standardized test score. Only SAT, ACT, IB, or GCE A-levels are accepted.

Q3: Do all applicants need to submit either TOEFL or IELTS?

A3: TOEFL or IELTS can be waived if you have studied at least five years out of the last six years at an institution where English is the primary medium language of instruction.
For the admission by recommendation (公募推薦), it is necessary to submit scores that fulfill the eligibility requirements.

Q4: I do not need to submit TOEFL or IELTS since I have been studying at an English-taught institution since elementary school. Do I have to submit any certificate to prove the fact?

A4: You do not need to submit any certificate to prove your English background. We will confirm the fulfillment of the condition by checking the submitted transcripts and the applicant’s educational background.


Q5: How can I submit the test scores such as TOEFL and SAT?

A5: Please make arrangements with the testing institution so that the official score reports (including electronic score reports) will be sent to Sophia University. Our institution code number for TOEFL and SAT is [0819] and for ACT, [5575].
For the admission by recommendation (公募推薦), applicants can submit the original test taker report or a certified copy of their score report.

Q6: Can I submit the TOEFL ITP (Institutional Program) scores or IELTS Indicator scores for application?

A6: No. You cannot use TOEFL ITP scores or IELTS Indicator scores for the application. TOEFL Home Edition is accepted. Please note that MyBest scores are not accepted from 2024 entry admissions.

Q7: Is there an expiration date of the official scores?

A7: For document screening admissions (regular admissions for English-taught programs), scores taken more than two years before (counting from the month the application period starts) are not accepted. For SAT/ACT, scores taken more than two years before would be accepted exceptionally if you have been/were enrolled in a degree-seeking program for at least two years.
For the admission by recommendation (公募推薦), please refer to the expiration dates written in the respective application guidelines (in Japanese).

Q8: Would it be OK if I send the official score reports of TOEFL, IELTS, SAT and ACT to Sophia University more than once?

A8: As for the SAT and ACT, you can select the highest individual scores, and you can send us multiple score reports. As for the TOEFL and IELTS, you can submit the highest single test dates scores.

Q9: Do SAT and ACT scores need to reach Sophia University during the application period? What if the scores reach Sophia University prior to the application period?

A9: Scores are acceptable outside the application period and will be kept in the Admissions Office as far as they’re valid. You are advised to order the delivery of the official scores well in advance as it may take long for the scores to be delivered to Sophia University.

Q10: Can I check to see if the scores have reached your office?

A10: Due to the high number of applications and questions our office receives, we ask applicants to refrain from making this kind of inquiry. We strongly recommend you confirm the delivery status yourself via the testing institution.

Q11: I am an IB Diploma candidate/holder. Do I still need to take SAT or ACT?

A11: An IB Diploma candidate/holder does not need to take SAT or ACT. Note that Faculty of Science and Technology (Green Science/Green Engineering) applicants must submit specific IB subject scores, as indicated in the Application Guidelines.

Q12: Can I use EJU to apply?

A12: EJU scores are only accepted to apply for the Faculty of Science and Technology. For details about the required subjects, please click here.


SCREENING PROCESS

Q1: Is there an on-campus written examination or interview?

A1: No. Decision on acceptance or rejection will be based on document screening only. However, applicants must submit the scores of English proficiency tests (TOEFL/IELTS) and standardized tests (SAT/ACT/IB Diploma etc.) beforehand. Please refer to the application procedure for details on the waiver condition and other information. Also, please be aware that the screening process and required documents of the admission by recommendation (公募推薦) are different, and include a written exam and interview.

Q2: Other than the admission by document screening, is there any other kind of admission procedure available?

A2: For Japanese high school seniors who wish to apply for the Faculty of Liberal Arts, admission by recommendation (公募制推薦入試) is possible.

Q3: Can I ask for the application documents to be returned?

A3: All application documents cannot be returned once submitted.

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