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Studying in Japan

2000-level Special Topics: Intersection of Art and Culture in Japan

Prerequisites: EDU1001/1011, WRT1011, and 1000-level Art or Art History course, and special considerations below (or permission of instructor)

Dates: May 25 to June 15, 2019

2019 Program Documents:

Check out the 2019 Japan Study Abroad blog.

Program Overview

  • Establish a working understanding of Japanese geography, culture and history, and how it has shaped its art and aesthetics.
  • Immerse yourself in Japanese culture by living in Tokyo. Take a two-night excursion to the small city of Nikko in mountainous Tochigi Prefecture, a day trip to Kamakura, and numerous other outings in and around Tokyo.
  • Explore how Japanese cultural values and norms have been shaped by its geography and history and are reflected in its language, food, and religious and social practices.
  • Study historical and contemporary Japanese art forms through observation and interactions in locations such as museums, galleries, and studio demonstrations.
  • Study how Japanese aesthetics and fundamental notions of design permeate its culture and art, and the art and culture of Japan intersect.
  • Choose and explore an art form for a final, in-depth study, in subjects such as ceramics, woodblock printing, work in bamboo, and contemporary Japanese art.

Program Map

Map of Japan with stars for program destinations Tokyo and Nikko

Program Leaders

photo of Ruth Wilmot
Program Director: Ruth Wilmot
photo of Christie Herbert
Academic Director: Christie Herbert

Special Considerations

  • The flights to and from Japan are l-o-n-g (the whole process of getting to Japan can take 24 hours or so). Your program will start while you are still experiencing jet lag.
  • Housing for most of the program is in (very small) single rooms. For three nights (the first night near the airport after arrival as well as the two nights in Nikko), students will share rooms.
  • Food options may be limited, or different from what one finds in the U.S. (e.g., soup for breakfast), so dietary flexibility is necessary.  There will be meals when the program will not be able to accommodate individual dietary needs.
  • Amphetamine stimulant drugs are strictly prohibited in Japan. Adderall, in particular, cannot be prescribed, purchased, or brought into Japan.

The following abilities are prerequisites for this program:

  • Ability to function independently in a large city without direct faculty guidance
  • Ability to respect cultural expectations of group conformity
  • Ability to draw and reflect on connections between experiences and class concepts

Program Cost

Cost for the trip is $6,500* and includes:

  • 3-credit course
  • Group flights
  • In-country transportation
  • Field trips and housing
  • Health insurance for the duration of the program
  • Three breakfasts and four group dinners

Estimated additional costs: about $800 – $1,000.

Student spending can vary depending on the individual student. Additional costs include:

  • Most meals: 17 breakfasts, 20 lunches, and 16 dinners. Meal costs per day are usually between $16 and $20. In addition to restaurant options there is an on-campus cafeteria at the group’s housing, as well as a convenience store nearby, for inexpensive meals
  • Free time activities
  • Cell phone costs, if students plan to activate a roaming plan or purchase a local SIM card
  • Laundry: about $6 for wash and dry
  • Souvenirs, gifts, etc.
  • Additional luggage fees beyond the first checked bag

Flights for this program will depart from a New York area airport. A shuttle bus will be provided from Landmark campus. Some students may incur additional costs to get to the departure airport to meet the group.

Limited financial aid is available; contact Michael Mertes, Director of Financial Aid.

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