About AIU

About AIU

University Overview

  • Akita International University, AIU, is a four-year liberal arts university located in Akita prefecture in the Tohoku region of northern Japan.
  • Public university corporation established in April 2004 by the local prefectural government.
  • Offers bachelor’s degrees in Global Business, Global Studies, and Global Connectivity Program, and master’s degrees in Japanese Language Teaching, English Language Teaching, and Global Communication Practices.
  • The undergraduate program at AIU offers all subject matter courses taught in English, only, the first program in Japan to do so. Foreign language courses in five languages as well as Japanese for speakers of other languages are offered in part in the target language.
  • Non-native English speaking students are prepared for use of English in the classroom through our intensive English for Academic Purposes (EAP) Program.
  • Available student activities include 48 student clubs (as of AY 2021), community outreach, and local immersion activities.
  • 88% on-campus housing for Japanese and international students (as of ordinary times: pre-COVID 19 pandemic) bringing students from various backgrounds into direct contact and maximizing the benefit of international living as well as studying.
  • See our "Quick Facts" to learn more about AIU.

Our Location

  • AIU is located in Akita city, the capital of Akita prefecture (population about 933,000), an ideally-sized city to provide the opportunity to get immersed in the friendly, local culture while also offering convenient access to international goods and services.
  • A state-of-the-art sports facility, hiking, cycling, golf courses, and a large shopping mall, are all in the vicinity of our campus. The university organizes various events, activities, and field trips providing students with hands-on experience in Japanese culture.
  • Akita prefecture is known for its natural beauty and resources. The university is located close to ski areas, scenic hiking opportunities, and the Sea of Japan coastline. Akita is particularly famous in Japan for producing the country's most delicious rice and sake, as well as for the beauty of its people.
  • Easily accessible from Akita International Airport, with flights to Tokyo, Osaka, Hokkaido, and Aichi.

International Approach

  • All AIU degree-seeking students are required to spend one year abroad at one of our Partner Universities around the world. A significant portion of the international students studying here are exchange students from our partner institutions, who participate in our Japanese Language and Japan Studies courses, or take any of the other courses offered in our undergraduate program.
  • In Fall 2019, AIU welcomed 187 international students from 31 countries and regions, a strong indication of its commitment to inter-cultural education.

Rankings and Recognition

  • Top Global University
    Leading Internationalization Category (Japanese Ministry of Education)
  • #1 Engagement
    THE Japan University Rankings 2022
  • #6 Environment
    THE Japan University Rankings 2022
  • #17 Best University in Japan
    THE Japan University Rankings 2022
  • #1 Small University
    Daigaku Tsushin, 2022
  • #1 Global University
    Daigaku Tsushin, 2021

Akita International University (AIU) has been recognized as one of the top universities in Japan for its uniqueness and innovative approach. Since its establishment in 2004, the university has been highly regarded and received constant attention from the public.

As a leading Liberal Arts University in Japan, we place emphasis on well-rounded humanities education. As a result, the university is also known for the high employment rate of its graduates.