What it’s like to study in Japan

How are you doing in Tokyo? I had been waiting anxiously for your blog posts for a while now, but there weren’t any updates haha, but I guess you did found yourself a cute boyfriend to keep you busy :).

What boyfriend ! :p

Lately I got quite a lot of people requested me to post my experiences of living here in Japan. I used to like writing very much – now I don’t haha.

But still sometimes I feel like to write. I don’t think that spending much time on karaoke and cheapest-italian-restaurant-franchise in Japan would be a good story so.. I am trying to write something more useful here. Okay then, you, please behave and appreciate my writing! T^T

It is winter here, I almost finished my first, fall semester in Titech.

Lab’s life
In Japan Universities, once you reached B4 (Undergraduate – fourth year) you will enter one of the labs led by the professor (sensei) to do research on your thesis. They said that sensei here is like half-human-half-god, you could fail and you could pass depend on him. I myself haven’t really understood what that’s mean, I think my sensei is kind to me all the time hihihi.

In lab, there are B4, master, and doctor (phd) students, assistant and associate professor, and professor. You will have your own desk and in my case, Sensei also provided all his students with MacBook :p

The culture of lab here is quiet, perhaps because it is place to study, similar to library. You cannot speak loudly and eat and drink inside the lab (though I and some of my lab-mates do eat snacks inside :p ). There will be one common dining room where you all can eat, discuss, chat, and even have parties there!

Twice a week, there will be zemi, or plenary meeting, in which all of the member of the lab should come. Zemi is like seminar, or research progress presentation by one of the students (who has the turn) in the lab. In my lab, the slides are in English, but the Japanese student presents it in Japanese. For international student, we present in English.

In some occasions, you will have parties – welcome party, year-end party.. you name it. We mainly eat and talk in party. Last year of 2013 I can’t join the party, so I just had one party with them on 2013 !

What about classes?
I am international student, and Titech provides us with some classes that are fully conducted in English. And also because of that, only a few Japanese students join in this kind of classes. However, I don’t have much options this semester because some classes I really want to join weren’t conducted in English aaahh so sad ! T^T

And also, here, some courses will only be conducted in particular semester. For example, a course that is presented in this fall semester (or this year) maybe will not be presented in the next semester or even next year. The good thing is that you can join almost all classes you want, even that classes are not in your department. I am thinking of joining French classes next semester :p

Different classes will have different evaluations: some only have one or two exams, some will have a lot of reports and assignments, some only have one final term paper, but some will have quizzes each week!

Japanese student
There is a phenomena in Japan I couldn’t find anywhere in my country. Japanese students (and also Japanese people in general) sleep anywhere! What I mean by anywhere, are, anywhere! In the seminar room when zemi takes place, in the class when the Sensei teaches, in the lab, in the train… One time, one of my classmates snored loudly in the class and my Sensei only smiled -,-. There is a stereotype that if a student falls asleep in class, it means that he studied so hard the night before.

“An adult that isn’t admired by children is a sad thing – So I will do my best here for the sake of my future children.”


6 thoughts on “What it’s like to study in Japan

      1. Anything about your life in Japan would be awsome ヽ(*≧ω≦)ノ : food , favourite shops , friends , learning the language , campus , funny stories that happened to you there … and TiTech’s clubs ,cercles and events (>_<)

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