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University of Oregon

Japanese Global Scholars (JGS) is a program at the University of Oregon for advanced Japanese speakers. What sets JGS apart from every other Japanese language program is its commitment to real-world fluency (linguistic and cultural) without requiring students to major in Japanese language.

How do we do it? First, JGS students are all highly-motivated high-achieving students from different walks of life. We encourage this diversity by asking our students to major in any of UO’s degree programs, and not just Japanese language and literature (you’ll complete this major or minor along the way). All students are encouraged to live in the JGS on-campus housing, part of the new Global Scholars Residence Hall. Additionally, we coordinate a year abroad of direct enrollment at Meiji University in Tokyo—with classes relevant to your major, internships and other service opportunities, and merit scholarships.

Why do we do it? Many students graduate with limited knowledge of a second language and limited overseas experience—in short, limited real access to another culture. In today’s global market, we believe these critical facets must be part of a good undergraduate education. So instead of having to choose between fluency in Japanese as a literature major (the typical path at other universities) and your life’s pursuit, JGS students get both: professional fluency in any major offered at UO.

What does it take? As an advanced program our students are all at or above typical fourth-year Japanese fluency levels. Moreover, because the program is reserved for the best students of Japanese on campus, we recruit only like-minded students: those who demonstrate excellence in academics and life, and are motivated to go above and beyond. We do this because we know that is what it takes to succeed after you graduate, and we want to make sure each JGS student gets our full attention. If you have a 3.2 GPA or higher, the desire to master Japanese, and the motivation to open up your world then we would love to hear from you. To apply, send us an email at


Our Courses:
Qualified students are eligible to take select regular UO courses in Japanese. Lectures, readings, assignments, and tests are all in Japanese and have the same level of academic rigor as regular UO classes taught in English. Moreover, besides covering everything you would in a conventional English course, JGS students are privy to the Japanese perspective on each course topic.

Our Year Abroad:
Successful students are eligible to spend a year directly enrolled at a top Japanese university—direct enrollment means that you will take classes in your major with Japanese students and be held to the same standard while having your credits transfer to your UO major. This unique experience will set you apart from students in traditional study abroad programs and allow you to make lifelong connections with Japanese students, friends and family.


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