Program Fee Information for Independent Students

Even if you attend a non-partner school, you are welcome to participate in TCU’s short-term program if you are currently enrolled at, or have graduated from, an accredited college or university anywhere in the world. (Click here to see our program fee for independent students.)

Program Fees for 2024–2025

Fall Program (2024)

The Fall program fee includes tuition, room and board, five field trips, Japanese language textbooks, rental bedding, national health insurance (see the section on insurance below), and other required fees.

One-Year Program (Fall 2024–Spring 2025)

The one-year program fee includes tuition, room and board, five field trips, Japanese language textbooks, rental bedding, national health insurance (see the section on insurance below), and other required fees.

Winter/Spring Semester Fee

The 2024–2025 Winter/Spring semester fee includes tuition, room and board, Japanese language textbooks, rental bedding, national health insurance (see the section on insurance below), and other required fees. The Winter/Spring semester begins in late November / early December and runs to late June / early July.

Winter and Spring Block Options

In addition to the above options, it is also possible for a student to come for only the Winter block or only the Spring block. The Winter block runs from late November / early December to late February / early March. The Spring block runs from April to late June / early July. The block fee includes tuition, room and board, rental bedding, national health insurance (see the section on insurance below), and other required fees.

Students may also decide to come to TCU during any two of TCU’s three trimesters (Fall, Winter, Spring). In that event, the fee will be recalculated. Either way, this is another cost-effective way of studying at TCU.


  • The semester and one–year program fees all include three meals a day on weekdays (except holidays). For students enrolled in the Fall Semester program, the program fees also include meal expenses during fall break in late November, at which time the dining hall will be closed. For students enrolled in the Winter/Spring Semester, it does not include meal expenses for a two-week winter break in late December, and a three-week spring break in March, at which times the dining hall will be closed. The room fee for fall, winter, and spring breaks is included in the program fees. Textbooks are not included for any of the terms (except for selected Japanese language texts), but textbook costs are typically lower than at American universities. Program fees do not include money for personal spending, and transportation costs. (See below regarding additional costs.)
  • Field trips and the EAI Primary Courses are available only in the Fall Semester. It is to be further noted that, while the Winter/Spring semester can be broken into blocks (or halves), the Fall Semester is a unified package for EAI students and cannot be split into blocks.

Application Fee

The application fee is US$60.

Program Fee for Students from Biola University

Biola University and TCU have a special accord regarding EAI program fees. Biola students should contact the EAI Admissions Office for more information.

Additional Costs

Airfare To and From Japan

The cost of airfare to and from Japan varies considerably depending on the city of departure and return, dates of travel, time of purchase, airline, and so on. Ordinarily, students should purchase tickets to and from Narita International Airport. (Haneda Airport is also an option for experienced travelers who can find their own way to TCU’s campus.) Some students, however, may wish to make private arrangements to visit other cities in Japan before and/or after their semester at TCU. All such arrangements will be each student’s responsibility.

Personal Travel Within Japan

Though there are churches near TCU on the outskirts of Tokyo, our students often attend Sunday church services closer to downtown Tokyo. Some students also enjoy trips into the city on Saturdays. Roundtrip train fare between TCU and downtown Tokyo costs approximately 3,000 yen. Students who wish to make private trips to other parts of Japan are advised to search the Internet for estimated costs.

Meals Taken Outside the Dining Hall

The dining hall is closed on Saturdays, on Sundays, and on national holidays. It is also closed for a two-week fall break in late November, a two-week winter break in late December, and a four-week spring break in March. Students may prepare their own meals in the dorm when on campus. The cost of food is comparable to that in major cities in the U.S. and Europe.

Extra Spending Money

TCU recommends that students plan on approximately 5,000 yen (approx. 35 USD) per week for extra spending money. However, the amount will certainly vary from person to person, so students who tend to spend more conservatively may wish to wait about exchanging all of their money until they can reassess their spending needs (for example, after the first or second month).


Except for Japanese language textbooks, which are included in the program fee, students should prepare to bring any required textbooks. Once accepted, short-term students will have access to TCU’s syllabi online, where they can find the required texts for the courses they intend to take. Students are advised to purchase textbooks before coming to Japan, but it is also possible to order any necessary texts from within Japan.


TCU will help each EAI student join Japan’s National Health Insurance upon arrival. The National Health Insurance will cover 70% of medical costs, and the student bears only the remaining 30% of the cost of doctor’s fees, hospital fees, prescribed medicines, etc. (note that, generally speaking, these fees in Japan are significantly less than in the U.S.). The EAI program fee automatically covers the premium for this National Health Insurance plan, and TCU will pay this premium so that the student need not worry about enrolling in the National Health Insurance policy on their own. (Joining the Japanese National Health Insurance plan is a condition of participation in EAI. Japanese law requires students to join this plan regardless of any other insurance plan in which they may be enrolled in their home country.)

In  addition to the National Health Insurance, all EAI students will be enrolled in a supplemental insurance plan that is included in the EAI program fee. This plan relates to the student’s 30% share of the bill under the following restrictions.

  1. The supplemental insurance plan is a reimbursement plan. That is, the student must first pay their 30% share out-of-pocket, and then the supplemental insurance will reimburse them the entire 30%. TCU does not provide money to cover their 30% share of the medical bill, although TCU will help them obtain the necessary documentation and then help them submit that documentation to the insurance company to obtain the reimbursement. In the event of a serious illness or accident, therefore, the student and/or the student’s family may have to come up with a rather significant amount of money. That money would be reimbursed, but students should be aware that they might have to pay a substantial amount of money up-front.
  2. The supplemental insurance plan does not cover dental work.
  3. The supplemental insurance plan does not cover pre-existing conditions. This means that the supplemental insurance will not apply to any health problem that students have before coming to Japan.
  4. The supplemental insurance plan does not cover chronic diseases or conditions. Even for a medical issue that begins in Japan, the supplemental insurance will cover that illness only for sixty days. On the 61st day, the supplemental insurance ceases to cover that illness or condition.

The national insurance begins coverage only when students apply for the coverage at Inzai City Hall. TCU helps students make the application, normally within two days of arrival. This time could be longer if students do not arrive on the “greeting” date at Narita Airport or if the city hall is not open for one reason or another. The supplemental insurance begins coverage from September 1. Thus, the student would be without the national insurance for about two days after arrival and without the supplemental insurance until September 1.
Students may wish to consider obtaining traveler’s insurance for the brief period between landing in Japan and September 1.

Payment and Refund Policy for the East Asia Institute

Payment for the EAI program is due by the following dates:

  • Fall: June 14, 2024
  • Winter and Spring Block: September 13, 2024
  • Spring Block: January 17, 2025
The Policy:

If a student cancels participation in, or withdraws from, the EAI Program:

  • From Aug. 1 (Fall Program), Nov. 1 (Winter Block), and Mar. 1 (Spring Block) until the first day of classes: 100% refund of the EAI fee except for a $350 cancellation charge. *
  • From the first day of classes until 14 days into the EAI Program: 75% refund of the EAI fee. *
  • From the first day of classes until 28 days into the EAI Program: 50% refund of the EAI fee. *
  • After 28 days from the first day of classes: No refund.

If an applicant decides not to participate in the EAI Program before arriving at TCU, it will be treated as “cancellation.” If an EAI student decides to end participation in the EAI Program after arriving at TCU, it will be treated as “withdrawal.” An EAI student who withdraws from the program will be expected to move out of the dorm within 7 days of withdrawal. The student will be required to pay any room and board expenses incurred after the withdrawal deadline they select. 

If an applicant’s visa application is denied, 100% of the EAI fee will be refunded. *

* In the case of any refund, bank transfer fees will be deducted from the amount to be refunded. This includes fees incurred when receiving payment in Japan as well as fees incurred when sending the refund back to the student or his/her home institution. Also, the amount refunded may be adjusted depending on fluctuations in the exchange rate.