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Programs : Brochure

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  • Locations: Hikone, Japan
  • Program Terms: May Term, Summer
  • Program Sponsor: Japan Center for Michigan Universities 
  • Restrictions: Non-JCMU applicants only
  • Budget Sheets: Summer
Dates / Deadlines:
Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Summer 2020 02/14/2020 ** Rolling Admission 05/07/2020 06/03/2020
NOTE: Please note that your home institution may also have mandatory advising and application procedures you must follow in order to be eligible to participate. Be sure to consult with the office responsible for education abroad / off-campus study at your school in advance of the JCMU application deadline.

Students traveling on passports issued by the U.S., Canada, South Korea, or several other countries with visa exemption arrangements with Japan for short-term stays generally do not need a visa. Students who are traveling on a passport issued by a country that does not have a visa exemption arrangement with Japan will likely need a visa. JCMU will help you acquire the visa as part of our post-acceptance process, but please complete your initial application in a timely manner to allow for sufficient time for visa processing.
May Term 2020 02/14/2020 ** Rolling Admission TBA TBA

** Indicates rolling admission application process. Applicants will be immediately notified of acceptance into this program and be able to complete post-decision materials prior to the term's application deadline.
Fact Sheet:
Fact Sheet:
Program Type: Field Study, Study Abroad Areas of Study: Japanese Cultural Studies, Teaching Methods
Housing Type: Residence Hall Language of Instruction: English
Minimum GPA: 2.5 Minimum Language Requirement: None
Program Description:
JCMU - Teaching English


Learn the needs and characteristics of ESL students in Japan!



Length: 4 weeks, from mid-May through mid-June

Credits: 6-8

Location: Shiga Prefecture, Japan

Housing: JCMU Residence Hall

Eligibility: Minimum 2.5 GPA, open to college students of all majors

Language of instruction: English

Program fees: Teaching English in Japan budget sheet

Tuition discounts: Students attending a JCMU Consortium school pay a discounted rate 


Summary: Learn the needs and characteristics of ESL students in Japan while exploring the country's culture! Explore about the unique cultural differences between how English is taught in Japan, and compare it with English language classrooms in the United States. You will get a chance to observe all levels of English classrooms, from elementary to post-high school. Are you an upper-level TESOL student? Then consider taking the practicum option while you are on the program! New friends, immersing yourself in a new culture, and a chance to prepare for a life teaching English internationally – what are you waiting for?

Location: Built as a castle town during the early 1600s, Hikone retains much of its original charm. Spend your time visiting sites such as Hikone Castle, one of only twelve Japanese castles to remain in its original construction. After a day of sightseeing, head back to our campus directly on the shores of Lake Biwa, the largest freshwater lake in Japan and the third oldest lake in the entire world. 

Looking for modern conveniences? In Hikone's vibrant downtown area, you can chill out in large malls, eat at a wide variety of restaurants, and even sing your heart out at one of many karaoke shops. Want to explore other parts of Japan? The city is only a short train ride away from the cities of Kyoto and Osaka, and on the bullet train line to Tokyo.

Cultural demonstrations: Visit the local Japanese universities, travel the country with your classmates, and engage in weekly cultural activities right on JCMU's campus.

Field trips & other benefits: You will be provided with your own bike to use while on the program. In addition, you will have the chance to go on a field excursion with your classmates! The location & date of the excursion are subject to change on a yearly basis, but past students have been taken to Kyoto, Nara, Uji, and more.



You will take the following classes while you are on the program: 

  • (3-5 credits) TESOL Methods Course/Practicum: You will participate in a course focusing on national and international approaches to ESL teaching while observing various ESL classrooms and settings. Rather than merely studying about TESOL methods from a textbook though, you will have the opportunity to actually travel to and observe various English language classrooms both at JCMU and at local school! Upper-level TESOL students can choose to take a TESOL practicum course in lieu of the normal TESOL methods course.

    While taking this course, you will gain a deeper understanding of the characteristics and needs of ESL education in Japan, providing you with practical skills and knowledge for a career in TESOL. This experience will be especially useful if you are planning on teaching English in Japan on the JET program (or other similar teaching opportunities) in the future. 
  • (3 credits) Japanese Culture & Society Course: This course will present you with the opportunity to further explore the foundations of Japanese culture and society and how they shape the lives of the Japanese people, which will help you fully understand the similarities and differences in teaching methods that you notice in your TESOL methods course. Classroom lectures will be enhanced with guest lectures, site visits, and Japanese cultural demonstrations and activities.


Want to learn what past students have said about their time in Hikone? Or do you want to read about what our recent students have been up to? Then visit the Alumni Testimonials and Events sections of the JCMU Official Blog!

College Classroom VisitationExploring Japanese NatureWorking w/Elementary SchoolersHigh School Classroom Visit