University of Tokyo

University of Tokyo
University of Tokyo


The University of Tokyo (UTokyo) is the oldest and largest of Japan’s national universities. UTokyo coordinates an exchange program, called USTEP, that offers students an invaluable experience to study at Japan’s premier institution of higher education.

Quick Facts

Partner Program Type – Exchange

Minimum GPA – 2.85

Prerequisites – UTokyo spring semester is not recommended for new fall-admit transfer students, nor is fall semester recommended for new winter-admit transfer students because of the letter of recommendation requirement. Transfer students should complete at least one quarter within their major at UCSC before applying to UTokyo.

Eligibility – Good academic and disciplinary standing, Min Age: 18, Open to All Majors, Junior or Senior class standing by the time of departure

Term Options

Fall Semester – late September to early February

  • you must miss both fall and winter quarters to participate in this session

Spring Semester – early April to early August

Academic Year – late September to early August

Partner Program deadline dates



City & University
Tokyo, one of the world’s largest cities, offers a uniquely eclectic mix of traditional and contemporary attractions. The Hongo campus of UTokyo is located in the Bunkyo Ward, known as a seat of learning, with 15 institutions of higher education. The Komaba campus is located in the Meguro Ward, very close to Shibuya.

Learn more about the surrounding neighborhoods of the Hongo and Komaba campuses.

You may apply for University Housing arranged by UTokyo. However, due to the limited number of facilities available, housing cannot be guaranteed. Learn more about the University of Tokyo Housing Office. You can also apply for a privately managed residence of Kyoritsu Maintenance Co., Ltd.

Student Support

The University of Tokyo International Exchange Group and International Student Support offices provide a range of services and support for exchange students. Additionally, UTokyo offers resources and opportunities for you to integrate successfully into the culture and society.

Country Information Resources

Students with Disabilities

If you need support services abroad, notify your UCSC Disability Resource Center (DRC) Coordinator

Exchange students can use the Disability Services Office at UTokyo. 

Identities Abroad and Away

UC Santa Cruz Global Learning is committed to inclusion and equity in our various program options as well as striving to make everyone’s experiences abroad enriching, positive, and safe.

Learn more on our Identities Abroad and Away webpage.


Host University Courses

As a UTokyo exchange student, you will enroll full-time in courses alongside other local and international students for a semester or full academic year. 

Course Search

Search the UTokyo Online Course Catalogue.

  • Most courses at UTokyo are taught in Japanese. Use the language filter in the course catalogue to narrow down your results to courses taught in English.
  • As you select courses, take notice of which campus where the course takes place. UTokyo has two main campuses—Hongo and Komaba—and it takes about one hour by public transportation between the two. UTokyo recommends that you select most of your courses at one of the campuses. However, this does not mean you are not allowed to choose courses at the other campus.
  • You can study Japanese language courses through the Hongo Campus or the Komaba Campus. Regular and intensive language courses are available. Learn more about Japanese Language Education. You can enroll in multiple language courses as an exchange student, but at least one of your classes must be a non-language class.

Satisfying Requirements
It may be possible to satisfy major, minor, GE, and/or electives on this program.

Learn more about:

Course Load Requirements

You are required to enroll in a full-time course load while abroad as defined by your host institution:

  • Students are required to register for a minimum of 10 hours-worth of classes per week which is equivalent to 12 credits per semester. 6 courses per week is the minimum requirement. At least one of those courses must be a non-language class.

As a UCSC student, you must also continue to meet UCSC Satisfactory Academic Progress, which requires students to enroll in a minimum of 12 UCSC quarter credits per quarter. At UTokyo, you are required to ensure you meet this requirement by enrolling in the equivalent of at least 24 quarter credits in fall semester and at least 12 quarter credits in spring semester after conversion (see below).

Credit Conversion

UTokyo uses semester credits. These will be converted to UCSC quarter credits when added to your UC transcript.

  • 1 semester credit = 2 UCSC quarter credits
  • 2 semester credits = 3 UCSC quarter credits
  • 3 semester credits = 5 UCSC quarter credits
  • 4 semester credits = 6 UCSC quarter credits

Academic Restrictions

Some courses abroad may have enrollment limitations and/or restrictions, such as prerequisites. Review course information provided by the university partner to understand any course limitations and/or restrictions prior to official course enrollment abroad.

If you are unsure about your eligibility to enroll, please contact UCSC Global Learning at before applying to this program.

Academic Differences

Please note that the academic system, such as assignments, exams, course structure, grading system, etc., at your host institution may be different from what you are used to at UCSC. We highly recommend researching the academic system at your host university in advance to best prepare for your experience abroad.

Academic Calendar

We recommend comparing the host university academic calendar to the UCSC academic calendar to see how the academic calendars, holidays, and breaks differ.

Last modified: Feb 27, 2024