Frequently Asked Questions

About Admissions/Visa

Who should I contact if I’m interested in studying at your school?

Please contact YDC’s International Center.
Phone: +81-(0)45-323-0300
Fax: +81-(0)45-323-0302

What is the minimum age to apply for your school? Is there an upper age limit?

The first criterion to obtain a student visa is having graduated from high school.
Therefore, an applicant must be at least 18 years old.
As for the upper age limit, it is about 30 years old, according to the standards set by the Immigration Bureau.
The upper age limit may vary depending on the applicant’s nationality, reasons for studying, and/or financial status.
If you are staying in Japan with other visas, there is no particular upper age limit as long as you are a high school student or older.

What kind of visa is needed to study at YDC?

You will need a student visa. Its duration of stay varies depending on the length of the program you apply for: 1 year and 3 months; 2 years; or 2 years and 3 months.

Can people with a dependent visa or a temporary visitor visa study at your school?

Yes, they can.

How long can I study with a student visa?

The duration of studying the Japanese language ranges from 1 year to 2 years (maximum). If you continue to study at a professional training college or university after graduating from our Japanese Language Course, you may extend the period of stay for your student visa.
The duration of the Specialized Course is 2 years. You can obtain a diploma by completing the 2-year program.

Can I move to the class at a higher level in the middle of a session?

Yes, if the level suits you and the class has a vacancy.

Do you have an entrance exam?

No, we don’t. However, we do conduct a placement test at the beginning to check students’ skill levels.

About Classes

From which countries do students come from to study at YDC?

Students are from about 30 countries around the world, including China (about 50%), ASEAN countries (nearly 30%, such as Taiwan, Hong Kong, Thailand, and the Philippines), as well as Europe (e.g., Italy, Sweden) and Americas (e.g., USA, Argentina, Mexico).

How many students are currently enrolled at YDC?

As of January 2018, a total of about 250 students are enrolled in long-term and short-term courses.

How many students does one class have?

It normally consists of about 15 students, depending on their Japanese language skill levels. The maximum number of students is 20.

Do you have any study rooms/halls?

There is a student lounge on the second floor of the school, where you can take a break or study.

How much is the tuition? Are there any other fees required?

The tuition and fees are as described below. There will be no expenses incurred after you arrive in Japan.

College Preparatory Course (1 year)
Screening fee
25,000 yen
Entrance fee
70,000 yen
600,000 yen
Facility fee
25,000 yen
Educational materials
20,000 yen
Extracurricular activities
18,000 yen
12,000 yen
Miscellaneous fee
15,000 yen
785,000 yen
College Preparatory Course (1.5 years)
Screening fee
25,000 yen
Entrance fee
70,000 yen
900,000 yen
Facility fee
35,000 yen
Educational materials
25,000 yen
Extracurricular activities
24,000 yen
17,000 yen
Miscellaneous fee
20,000 yen
1,116,000 yen
College Preparatory Course (2 years)
Screening fee
25,000 yen
Entrance fee
70,000 yen
1,200,000 yen
Facility fee
50,000 yen
Educational materials
30,000 yen
Extracurricular activities
33,000 yen
22,000 yen
Miscellaneous fee
25,000 yen
1,455,000 yen

Can I study in a private capacity?

Yes, you can.
One private lesson (1.5 hours) costs 4,500 yen. Please check this page for more information.

Can I take classes in my native language?

No, we only use Japanese to teach the language.
While it may seem difficult at first, it is the best way to learn the Japanese language.

I know nothing about Kanji. Can I still keep up with the class?

At the beginner’s level, we have separate classes for students with Kanji background (e.g., from China, Taiwan) and those without it. For the latter group of students, we spend 1 hour every day for Kanji studies by using a textbook prepared specifically for that purpose. So, you have nothing to worry about.
Students without Kanji background also master the characters gradually according to their language skill levels.

How many hours per day will I study at the school?

We usually have 4 units of 45-minute class per day.
For Japanese Language Course, you can choose either the morning or afternoon program.

What kind of textbook do you use?

We use “Minna no Nihongo” and “Dekiru Nihongo” at the beginner’s level. At the intermediate level, we use “TOBIRA: Gateway to Advanced Japanese.” In this class, we also prepare students for the Examination for Japanese University Admission for International Students (EJU) and the Japanese-Language Proficiency Test (JLPT).
At the advanced level, we frequently use real-life materials including newspapers.
We provide educational materials to achieve the learning goals for each skill, such as reading, grammar, composition, listening, vocabulary, and Kanji.

Are the teachers Japanese?

They are all Japanese, qualified and experienced language teachers.

In College Preparatory Course, can I study subjects other than the Japanese language?

We offer a variety of classes for college preparation, all free of charge.
EJU preparation: Japan and the World, Physics, Mathematics
Preparation for an art university (including graduate programs)
Art classes (drawing, preparation of a portfolio)
Manga (illustration) seminars for students interested in manga.
At open classes, you can also experience the Japanese culture and designing.

What are the open classes?

In addition to Japanese Language Course, we also have Specialized Course (Total Design Department, Manga Department, Fashion Department, and Comprehensive Japanese Course) and Upper Secondary Course (Design Course, Manga Course, and Fashion Course).
Open classes are available to all students at YDC. You can choose classes from the entire school, even those outside your specialty. You can also improve your conversation skills naturally through these open classes by studying with Japanese students.

Do you have classes to prepare for the Japanese-Language Proficiency Test (JLPT) and the Examination for Japanese University Admission for International Students (EJU)?

Preparation for the JLPT is provided within the regular classes.
You can also take special classes to prepare for the EJU, including Mathematics and Japan and the World.

About Paths after Graduation

What are some of the steps after learning Japanese at YDC?

Students go on to a graduate program, university, or professional training college.
Please check this page for more details on the paths after YDC.

If you graduate from college in Japan, you can obtain a work visa in Japan. More and more students at our Japanese Language Course have found employment, with help from the Career Support Center at YDC.
Let’s improve your Japanese language skills and strive to start your career in Japan! Our Career Support Center is happy to help you.

Will I get any advantage if I move on to Specialized Course at YDC internally?

You can receive preferential treatment for admission to Specialized Course, the YDC special scholarship, and tuition/fee reduction.

About Life in Japan

How much are monthly living expenses?

If you live in a dormitory, it costs about 100,000 yen.
Rent: 35,000 yen; utilities: 5,000 yen; food: 20,000 yen; mobile phone: 10,000 yen; transportation: 5,000 yen; and others: 20,000 yen.

Can I work part-time?

You can work up to 28 hours a week once you have the “Permission to engage in an activity other than those permitted under the status of residence previously granted (“the Permission”).”
While you can work up to 8 hours a day during the summer, winter, and spring breaks, the maximum is 40 hours a week.
You can get the Permission at an airport when you enter the country with a student visa.
Please make sure that you set your work schedule outside school hours and follow the rules on working hours!

What kind of part-time jobs do students have? How much do they usually make per hour?

Students who have just come to Japan usually find jobs that do not require a lot of Japanese language skills, such as sorting jobs at factories and parcel delivery companies.
You will have more options once you have better Japanese language skills. Some examples include waiting on customers at a tavern and working as a cashier at a convenience store.
The hourly wage is usually around 950 to 1,100 yen. It is slightly higher if you work late at night, on weekends, and on holidays.
You can make about 100,000 to 110,000 yen per month.

Will you help me find a part-time job?

Yes, we will. Since YDC is a specialized training college, we are allowed to provide free employment placement services.
In addition to employment placement services for part-time jobs, our International Center also provides support in preparing a resume, making a phone call to apply for a job, and preparing for an interview as needed.

What should I do first after I arrive in Japan?

You should go to the city office of your place of residence, where you will register your address and join the national health insurance.
At the first school orientation, we will give you guidance on how to fill out the forms.
Please make sure you complete this process within 14 days from the date of your arrival in order to avoid penalty charges.

Can I open a bank account and sign up for a mobile phone contract?

Yes, you can. We will help you with both, so you have nothing to worry about.

What should I do if I become ill?

You should go to the hospital with your national health insurance card. Please contact the International Center if you are not sure which hospital to go to.
If you are concerned about the language, we will accompany you to the hospital. So, please feel free to ask us.

How can I make Japanese friends?

Yokohama Design College has a number of Japanese students at its Upper Secondary Course and Specialized Course. So, please feel free to talk to them.
A group organized by Japanese college students, who promote international exchanges, hosts a monthly party at Yokohama Design College. Please enjoy this free event!
Please take advantage of these opportunities and make a lot of friends with Japanese college students♪

Other Questions

Do you have student dormitories?

Students go on to a graduate program, university, or professional training college.
There are several dormitories under the direct management of the school. If you would like to live in a dormitory, please apply at least one month before the Certificate of Eligibility is issued.
In general, two students share each room. The school will assign roommates based on their nationality and place of birth.
Guesthouses and monthly apartments are also available. If you are interested in these options, please feel free to contact us for advice and information.

Can I buy a student commuter pass?

Yes, since we are an educational corporation, you can get a student discount on the pass.

What are the criteria to become a supporter of an international student?

A supporter needs to prove that he/she has sufficient financial resources to cover all the costs (tuition, fees, and living expenses) throughout the student’s stay.
In general, relatives such as parents, brothers, and sisters serve as supporters. They do not need to live in Japan.

Is there any scholarship available?

Several students who demonstrate excellent performance can receive the Honors Scholarship from Japan Student Services Organization. These students are selected in a comprehensive manner based on their attendance, attitudes, teachers’ evaluation, and results of Japanese examinations for 1 year since their entrance to the school.
The monthly stipend of 48,000 yen will be provided for 6 months (as of June 2017).
If you move on to our Specialized Course internally from Japanese Language Course, you can receive 250,000 yen as a scholarship, which will be deducted from the first payment.