Asia Pacific University: An International University in Japan


Asia Pacific University is a globalized university, a second home to many foreign students from around a hundred different countries, providing them with not only quality education but the chance to interact with diverse cultures. Learn more about Asia Pacific University and be part of this international community.

Why pick Asia Pacific University (APU)?

General information and statistics

Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University (APU) first opened its doors in April 2000 as Japan’s first genuinely international university. APU’s mission is to develop global leaders with the ability to work in a diverse range of fields and industries by providing international education.

In the past eighteen years, APU has not only reached but exceeded its goal. As of 2018, APU has produced over 10,000 alumni from over 130 countries and regions all over the world. These alumni have experienced great and quality teaching from APU’s highly qualified and dedicated faculty from 24 countries.

※ Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University Official website, "APU’s History and Alumni"

APU offers two graduate schools that welcome students into a multicultural environment with a curriculum that fully utilizes English as the language of instruction. The Graduate Schools at APU focus on Asia Pacific studies, as well as management. These programs are fully accredited by the Japanese Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science, and Technology (MEXT).

Asia Pacific University is located in Beppu, Ōita, on the island of Kyushu in southern Japan. Studying in APU means you will be residing in a mid-sized city and in one of Japan’s most visited locations. Having very affordable and lower living costs compared to larger cities such as Tokyo, your life at APU will have both excitement, for living in a famous tourist destination, and serenity, for being surrounded with beautiful nature.

Notable achievements

  • AACSB International Accreditation

One of the remarkable milestones achieved by the university is being one of the only three institutions in Japan to receive AACSB International Accreditation. Out of the three institutions, APU is the only one offering an undergraduate business curriculum that uses both English and Japanese as the medium of instruction.

The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, or simply AACSB accreditation is widely regarded as the highest level of accreditation for business school. In fact, less than 5% of the 16,000 business school programs in the whole world have earned this accreditation.

  • UNWTO.TedQual Certification

Aside from this, APU has been the second institution in Japan and the only private university in the country to receive UNWTO.TedQual Certification for its Hospitality and Tourism program.

United Nations World Tourism Organization Tourism Education Quality (UNWTO.TedQual) Certification is granted to institutions across the world that conduct high-quality tourism education, research, and training programs. As of March 2018, only 71 institutions worldwide hold this certification, including APU.

※ Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University Official website, "Hospitality and Tourism Program Receives UNWTO. TedQual Certification"
  • JUAA Accreditation

In 2015, APU has also received its Japan University Accreditation Association (JUAA) accreditation which means that the university has met the JUAA’s criteria for domestic accreditation. APU’s status will be retained until March 31, 2023.

A truly international university

APU is genuinely an international university with a unique multicultural learning environment consisting of half international students and half Japanese/domestic students. This means that the university has a 50-50 ratio of international and domestic students. Because of this rich mixture of language and culture on the campus, APU has earned the reputation of being Japan’s “global village”.

In order to maximize this diverse community of learners, APU introduces an interactive style of education creating everyday opportunities for students with different cultural, ethnic, and socioeconomic backgrounds to interact and learn from one another.

Education and Student Life

Education, colleges, and areas of study

APU offers two undergraduate majors that you can choose from – the Asia Pacific Studies (APS) and International Management (APM). Most courses are available in both English and Japanese, and because of APU’s adaptable curriculum, you can actually take courses from both colleges.

For English-basis students, in your first and second year at the university, you are going to study courses related to your major in English while also learning the Japanese language. The aim of this is to raise your proficiency to be able to take other courses in either language by your third and fourth years.

At APU, you are not going to simply memorize facts or listen to lectures. Instead, you will be participating in interactive discussions and classes together with your co-students and faculty with diverse cultural backgrounds in order to tackle complex global problems and its possible resolution.

Let us now take a closer look at the two undergraduate programs offered by APU.

  • College of Asia Pacific Studies (APS)

In APS, you will gain a broad understanding of the diverse political systems, economies, societies, and cultures of the Asia Pacific while enhancing your skills in language, information technology, and research. It will also prepare you for future careers in government, international organizations, media, the travel industry, and multinational corporations. Under the APS are the following four areas of study:

  • Environment and Development

  • Hospitality and Tourism

  • International Relations and Peace Studies

  • Culture, Society, and Media

  • College of International Management (APM)

APM will prepare you to become one of the next generation’s international business leaders by cultivating your own global perspectives, business ethics, and problem-solving skills. In APM, you will acquire a broad understanding of the diverse political systems, economies, societies, and cultures of the Asia Pacific, at the same time, gaining basic and advanced knowledge and skills in business administration. Under the APM are the following four areas of study:

  • Accounting and Finance

  • Marketing

  • Strategic Management and Organization

  • Innovation and Economics

Food and Dining, Pacific Café, Japanese and international dishes

Satisfying your cravings and filling up your tummies is never a problem at APU because there is a large variety of food and dining options on the campus and around the local area. You can also find ingredients for many international dishes at local supermarkets, food stores, and online vendors. In fact, there are too many choices and options of local restaurants serving both Japanese and international cuisines that will surely give you a headache in deciding where and what to eat.

On the campus, you may go to the cafeteria that is offering both Japanese and international food, as well as halal and vegetarian options. You may also try the Pacific Café, which has lighter options like sandwiches, coffee, and ice cream. Another good alternative is patronizing local food trucks and vendors who come to the campus and provide specialty food and drinks.

Campus life, student clubs, campus festivals

As an APU student, there are so many ways you can take a breather from studying. This includes eating out with your friends, going shopping, visiting some tourist attractions, enjoying hot spring baths, singing karaoke, and many more. What’s more interesting is that you don’t have to travel far to enjoy these activities because they are actually available around the city and the vicinity of Beppu Station.

Aside from these fun out-of-the-campus activities, there are also more than 140 student-led organizations that will give you opportunities to gain useful skills, create memorable experiences, and socialize with your friends. There are also some campus festivals that you might enjoy including the Tenkusai Campus Festival. It is a two-day event and the largest festival of APU wherein students run food stalls offering specialties around the world, produce exciting performances, and arrange games, contests, and dances.

Essential information for applicants

Scholarships available

After enrollment, you can avail of various scholarships offered by domestic and international companies, municipal government, and the Japanese Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science, and Technology (MEXT).

In addition, you can also apply for the APU Tuition Reduction Scholarships that offer tuition discounts in percentages of 30%, 50%, 65%, 80%, and 100%. These scholarships would definitely help in reducing the financial burden for outstanding international students.

Part-time jobs

APU offers services to help students secure and apply for the right work permits before they start working part-time jobs. After acquiring a valid work permit, students are allowed to work part-time on and off the campus for up to 28 hours a week during the semester and a maximum of 40 hours a week during vacations.

You can work on campus in the cafeteria, co-op shop, library, and media center, and also as a teaching assistant for courses. You can also find works outside the campus as English tutors or as employees in hotels, restaurants, and shops.

Educational qualifications for enrollment

In order to qualify for enrollment, you must abide by these educational qualifications. You must have graduated or be scheduled to graduate from a secondary or high school determined by the Japanese School Education Act. Another option is having an academic background that matches their educational criteria by the time of enrollment to APU.

A quick guide to their enrollment procedure

There are three simple steps to enroll at APU:

  1. Online Application

  2. Online Interview

  3. Final Results

Please take note that the date for spring enrollment is April 1 and for fall enrollment is September 21.


Studying in Japan is a good choice because you will definitely receive the high-quality education you’ve been looking for. However, studying at Asia Pacific University in Japan is the best choice because aside from guaranteed excellence in education, you will also have an enjoyable and memorable stay in the university with all the amazing experiences it has to offer. So, enroll now at APU because countless opportunities are waiting for you!

Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University Official website


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