ようこそ! At St. Olaf, you can pursue your interest in Japan and the Japanese language in the following ways:

  • You can major in Japanese. [Approved,  November 2016]
  • We offer from beginning to advanced (4th year-level) language courses. Students not only develop skills in the language but also gain knowledge of Japan in all of the language courses by using various authentic materials. You may take Japanese language courses to fulfill the College’s foreign language requirement, to major in Japanese or Asian Studies, or complete a concentration in Japan Studies [concentration available up through class of 2020].
  • We offer various Japan-related courses both from Asian Studies as well as from other departments such as art history, history, philosophy, political science, psychology, and religion.
  • You can choose three different campuses for study abroad: Waseda University in Tokyo, Nagoya University in Nagoya, and Hokusei Gakuin University in Sapporo. Study abroad can be for a semester or a whole year.
  • You may apply for an  Internship during the summer: Education First (EF), an international education company in their Tokyo office in Shibuya, or Joy English Academy, a private English language school in Obihiro, Hokkaido.
  • You may join the Asian Conversations Program to broaden your understanding of Asia while studying Japanese and travel to Japan for Interim in the sophomore year..
  • You can also participate in various extra curricular activities, such as Taiko drumming, martial arts, or anime.
  • Some of our graduates have received Fulbright scholarships, been accepted for the JET Program, and continued learning about Japan in various graduate programs.


For more information, contact

  • Prof. Karil Kucera, Chair of Asian Studies/Professor of Art History and Asian Studies, at kucera@stolaf.edu
  • Prof. Rika Ito, Professor of Japanese Language, at ito@stolaf.edu