Get ready for your MISTI experience! MISTI training sessions and resources are designed to familiarize you with Japanese culture, society and workplace norms.

Country Prep Subpages

Culture Courses

Course No. Course Name
Japan and East Asian Security (G) - Fall
Visualizing Japan in the Modern World (UG) - Fall
Gender and Japanese Popular Culture (UG) - Fall
Anime: Transnational Media and Culture (UG) - Fall
Pre-modern Japan: Earliest Times to 1868(UG) - Fall
Modern Japan: 1868 to Present (UG)- Fall
International Relations of East Asia (UG) - Spring
International Relations of East Asia (G) - Spring
The Rise of Asia (UG) - Spring
Introduction to Japanese Culture (UG) -Spring
Japanese Literature and Cinema (UG) - Spring

Language Courses

Course No. Course Name
Japanese language courses

Additional Resources

Training Sessions

February 27, 2015 6:00pm - 8:00pm View Event Details
Rakugo is a 400-year-old tradition of storytelling in Japan. Yanagiya Sankyo will present this ancient art of comedy at Boston University for free!
March 6, 2015 2:30pm - 4:30pm View Event Details
This is part of the MIT Seminar on Environmental and Agricultural History. This optional seminar for MIT-Japan Program participants.
March 10, 2015 6:00pm - 7:30pm View Event Details
Communicating across Cultures
March 16, 2015 5:00pm - 7:00pm View Event Details
Professor Nagahara will take you on a historical musical journey from the Meiji Era onward, touching on key Japanese themes such as culture, identity, social class, and war. We might be lucky enough to even get referece as far back as the Edo Era! (p.s. the last 15 minutes (from 6:45pm onward) to briefly go over logistics of obtaining visa and brining medications into Japan; a more detail session is set aside for April 9th)
March 24, 2015 12:30pm - 2:00pm View Event Details
This optional lecture is sponsored by Harvard's Program on US-Japan Relations/Weatherhead Center for International Affairs: Wei-hsin Yu, Professor, Department of Sociology, University of Maryland, College Park will give a talk on "Employment Characteristics and Family Intentions in Japan" at Harvard Univeristy's Bowie-Vernon Room (K262), CGIS Knafel Building, 1737 Cambridge Street
April 1, 2015 6:00pm - 7:30pm View Event Details
MISTI Health & Safety
April 9, 2015 5:00pm - 6:30pm View Event Details
April 27, 2015 5:00pm - 6:45pm View Event Details
Professor Miho Mazereeuw will speak about her post-Triple Disaster relief efforts and the current state of the people along the Sanriku Coast.
May 2, 2015 10:30am - 7:00pm View Event Details
Start off the day with a brunch with those who will be going to Japan this summer for a reserach/internship expereince. We will have a day of learning how to maneuver in Japan, getting tips from past interns and doing some group work. We'll end the day with a Japanese-style dinner (dinner is optional but the retreat part is mandatory)!


Every student needs a valid passport. If you are a US citizen and need to apply, please contact the passport division of the State Department. Routine service requires 4-6 weeks.


Visa for Japan

Program managers can advise students about the application process, timeline and documents required.

If you are a U.S. citizen and will be returning to MIT in the fall (e.g. not graduating this year), and will be staying in Japan for less than 90 days, a visa might not be necessary.  If you are not a U.S. citizen, will be graduating before going to Japan, or will be staying in Japan for longer than 90 days, you most likely will need a visa.  See if your country requires a visa here:

If you will require a visa, please consult with the Program Manager on how to apply.



If your airfare will be paid for by the host, you will need to discuss the details of how to book your flight with them. If the flight will be paid for by the MIT-Japan Program, students must purchase tickets themselves, and the MIT-Japan Program will add the cost of the ticket to their stipend (up to a maximum amount based on average round-trip Boston to Tokyo economy class tickets at the time. If the ticket price exceeds that amount, the student will be responsible for the extra cost).

For summer internships, most students book flights in April/May after they have confirmed their summer internships dates.

If your total stay is fewer than 90 days and you do not require an entry visa, you may be able to stay in Japan to travel after your internship ends (at your expense).


Renting an apartment in Japan for a short-term stay can be tricky, as most landlords require guarantors, large deposits and “gift money.”  However, there are several solutions to this problem, and the MIT-Japan Program provides resources and advice for housing.  The MIT-Japan Program promises up to 80,000 yen/month for housing, and rent rarely exceeds this amount.  (As with airfare, however, you are welcome to rent a more expensive apartment, but you will only be given up to 80,000 yen/month.)


1. Dormitories

Many Japanese companies, universities, and research institutes have dormitories for their employees, and if your host has a dorm, it should be your first choice.  Contact your host to ask if they have a dormitory, and if so, whether they will have an opening.  Even if your host does not have a dorm, they will often help you find housing, so you should first discuss your options with them.

2. “Share houses”

These can be large houses with rooms for rent and shared kitchen and living space, or they could simply be short-term apartment rentals.  Because they do not require large deposits, guarantors, or “gift money,” they are popular among foreign visitors and exchange students.  Some of the better known share houses are:


Shared Apartments