Anonymous asked in Education & ReferenceStudying Abroad · 1 decade ago

High school exchange student help?

i want to spend part of my junior year as a foreign exchange student in japan. My grades are getting better now that i actually am trying in school(As and Bs) I have a few questions about it. How hard is it to get in? How much is it? Can i use a computer program to learn the language as the requirement? Do i need a certain amount of years? If you can help me on this i would be very grateful. I also understand it will cost a lot of money so i will get a job this summer to help and i no which part of the year i want.

3 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    I also applaud your dedication in working on your grades - not just for getting into an exchange program, but for the quality of your life.

    I am a 5-time host mom (in USA) and volunteer with YFU. I will not pretend that YFU is the only exchange organization around, it's just the one that we ended up with after doing a bit of research. You don't mention a specific organization that you going to use, so I will assume that you haven't chosen one.

    More on that later, first your questions in order that you asked.

    How hard is it to get in?

    I don't know the specifics, but I have heard that Japan is one of the more stringent countries when it comes to reviewing incoming exchange students. I can tell you that it is one of the more popular choices with YFU. YFU has year, semester (fall or spring), and summer programs to Japan. I can also tell you that approximately 150 students will go to Japan with full or partial scholarships with YFU. I will attempt to find out how many apply and do a follow-up to my answer.

    How much is it?

    It is a very significant investment: summer programs will be $7500, semester = $9000, year = $11000. The scholarships can help (if you know Japanese, I would think that would help). I've also put a link below for more ideas to raise money.

    Can i use a computer program to learn the language as the requirement? Do i need a certain amount of years?

    I'm sorry, I can't make any recommendations about computer programs to use. I hope someone else can. However, Japan does not require previous language study. (Although I'm not sure you will get any academic credit here if you can't really participate in classes there.) The daughter of a friend of mine went to Japan for 6 weeks during the summer and only knew a few words before going. Obviously, it will be much easier to be there if you can speak and understand some Japanese.

    I hope this helps.

    If you haven't chosen an organization through which to travel, may I suggest YFU (Youth For Understanding)? When I have asked exchange students why they chose YFU, I get the following answers: (1) YFU gave them more bang for their buck and/or (2) someone they knew and trusted recommended YFU. 95% of the fees collected by YFU go for direct program costs (airline tickets, support in hosting country, etc.). YFU has been around for 59 years and has learned how to make exchanges successful. The main website has a ton of information!

    Which ever program you choose, make sure they are listed with the Council for Standards on International Educational Travel ( They routinely audit programs for quality.

    Good luck to you no matter what you choose!

    Source(s): For More Information: 1-800-TEENAGE Videos: American Overseas (1min) American Overseas (14min) Ideas for Raising Money: School Credit Guildlines: College Scholarship/Preferences Booklet: Contact Information for parents of former American Overseas students; Contact Information for former American Overseas students:
  • 1 decade ago

    First of all, it sounds like you really are making a commitment by improving your grades. That's great! Grades, application essay and recommendations are really important for getting accepted to an exchange program. There are different ones available, so start with your school district to see if they have any affiliations with a Japanese school, your city sister-city exchange program, your state programs and then look at some of the private ones. Some programs are designed to teach you Japanese during your program and others require a basic level (determined by a test). Below are a few links to get you started on your search.

  • Anonymous
    4 years ago

    My personal opinion is that the older you are t he more you will appreciate the experience.

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