Application and application process

Since my study is still on-going, the university will not issue me a ranking certificate, what should I do?

You can indicate what you believe is your ranking in the application form.  If you are selected, an official certificate will be required for submission to MEXT.  Proper explanation will be needed if there is a discrepancy between what you indicate in the application form and what is shown in the official certificate.

My university does not issue any ranking certificate, what should I do?

You should submit an official certificate showing the number of students in the graduation class and the highest mark obtained by student(s) in that class.

I have taken the TOEFL test but the result will not be out in time for submission together with my application before the deadline.

You can email the TOEFL score to the e3 office later.

Is there a format for the research proposal?

There is no format for the research proposal.  The proposal is required to know the applicant's research interest and to make sure that the applicant knows the research scope of the laboratory he plans to enroll in.  At the same time if professors in the lab the applicant applies find that what the applicant wants to do fits with the scope of another lab, they will recommend that the application be forwarded to that particular lab.

If you apply for admission to the master's program, a 1-2 page abstract is fine.  However if you apply for admission to the doctoral program, you proposal should be concrete and at the same time demonstrate your ability and potential in conducting research.

The website said that applicants need not contact professors in advance but some of my friends who were selected did contact in advance. 

Japanese professors are very busy and as a result most prefer to review all the applications at the same time.  Doing so enable them to compare qualifications and choose the most promising applicant.  

How is the application processed?

After the application deadline, applications are sent to laboratory that applicant indicates as their first choice.  If first choice professors are not interested in accepting, the applications are sent to the second choice laboratories.  Professors interested in accept the applicants will conduct telephone interview, then submit his recommendation to the admission committee.  

What criteria are used in the selection by the admission committee?

Various items are taken into account.  They include academic achievements through grades and publications, research potentials through research proposal (especially for Ph.D. applicants), recommendation from referees, recommendation from accepting professors. 

Grading system and standard differ from university to university, applicants who graduated from universities with strict grading may be disadvantaged.

We keep a statistical data that provide us a reliable reference on academic performance of graduates of different universities.   For example, students with a GPA of 3.1 from A university are better than students with a GPA of 3.9 from B university.

I understand that after the final selection, the university has to submit a list of nominated candidates and their scholarship application to MEXT for approval.

Correct.  This step can be regarded as for formality sake.  It is also meant for MEXT to make sure that the same candidate is not nominated by another Japanese university.  

What happens if the same candidate is nominated by more than one university?

MEXT will disqualify his/her application entirely.

When does MEXT send its confirmation to the universities?

In early July.  

It is a fact that applicants did not only apply to e3, during this long wait (from offer to confirmation) they may receive confirmed offers from other university.  When is the last day an applicant can decline e3 offer?

If the applicant chooses to go to other university and declines our offer after the university submits the nomination list to MEXT, e3 will lose the scholarship.   As a result e3 will be more careful in checking whether the applicants come from the universities it had encountered regrettable experiences and who provided the reference letters.