- For foreign students [Admissions Policy]
Policy on Graduate Student Education
Designated members of each graduate school faculty, (eg. Medicine, Science, Agricultural and Life Sciences, Pharmaceutical Sciences, Information Science and Technology, Frontier Sciences, and Arts and Sciences) are in charge of accepting graduate students. There are already many alumni of our Master’s and Ph.D. programs, and these graduates are active in a wide variety of fields. Particularly within the University of Tokyo’s newly organized Graduate School of Frontier Sciences, which pursues interdisciplinary investigations, the Medical Genome Sciences program was launched in fiscal year 2004 with the cooperation of the Institute of Medical Science. The three key chairs of this program also have laboratories on the Shirokanedai campus that houses the Institute, and based on strong cooperation with the Institute of Medical Science, the program is expanding interdisciplinary education and research. A feature of this educational institution is that with very few undergraduate teaching obligations, the teaching staff are able to focus their attention on the graduate students, and devote themselves to laboratory level guidance. Furthermore, the diverse academic backgrounds and interests of both the students and faculty members enable a lively cross-pollination of academic disciplines, overcoming the traditional confines of individual laboratories. These human interactions create an unsurpassed research environment and an educational system and facility with the characteristics outlined below.
The Institute of Medical Science-specific aspects of the training course that have been instituted include hands-on training, graduate school seminars (Japanese), and a seminar that allows undergraduates to gain first-hand experience (Japanese). The hands-on training involves a system whereby each laboratory sends a few (1~4) students to rotate through other laboratories for 1~2 weeks each of guided experimentation. For graduate students, this is the ideal opportunity to acquire techniques and learn the assorted ways of thinking of scientists from a variety of research disciplines. The graduate school seminar targets graduate students with a weekly seminar series whose theme is selected each year, with lectures given by scientists invited from throughout Japan. The choice of each year’s theme is influenced by students’ wishes, and official course credit is given for participation. Furthermore, it is possible to attend course lectures of the Graduate School of Frontier Sciences’ Medical Genome program directly within the Institute of Medical Sciences. Data processing facilities are a strong point of the institute. Within the Human Genome Center’s Laboratory of Genome Database and elsewhere, the teaching staff includes computer specialists, and a short course is held periodically. Aside from these formal graduate school courses, there are frequent Alumni Association Seminars as well as informal seminars by both domestic and overseas scientists from whom students can hear directly about the latest scientific developments.
Apart from the student counseling that each graduate program offers, the Institute of Medical Science has established its own counseling system to help students cope with severe stress and troubles that may arise during their studies.
Applying to Graduate School
The Institute of Medical Science has no distinct graduate school of its own, and so to accept students, individual faculty members within the institute must be affiliated with one or more graduate school programs of the University of Tokyo. Therefore, it is necessary to find out the graduate school affiliation of the professor under whom a prospective applicant hopes to study in order to apply to the correct graduate school program and take the correct entrance examination. The graduate school affiliations of the individual faculty members can be checked here (Japanese). Furthermore, prospective applicants would be highly advised to ascertain the graduate school affiliation of the professor in whom they have interest by contacting that professor directly by e-mail. The graduate schools also hold informational events (Japanese) for prospective applicants at which it is possible to speak with many of the faculty members directly. It is also possible to arrange to visit the laboratory of interest.