School of Political Science and EconomicsWaseda University

For Prospective Students

Admissions FAQ

Changes in the 2021 AO Admissions

Q: When is the first admissions period?

A: From the 2021 Admissions onwards, the School of Political Science and Economics will reduce the number of application periods from two to one. The application period for AO Admissions for September 2021 Entry is February 1-25, 2021. But the online application system and screening fee payment system will open from 10:00 a.m. on January 8, 2021.

Please refer to the Application Guidelines, which are available at:

Q: Will Admissions for 2021 be “test-optional” in response to the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic?

A: We are aware that some universities and some schools at Waseda University have made admissions “test-optional” in response to the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). At SPSE, however, we continue to recommend that students submit test scores if at all possible. For English-language proficiency tests, we have expanded the options to include many tests you can take at home. SPSE has established special provisions for applicants who are unable to submit university entrance exams/standardized tests and English-language proficiency tests as a consequence of the pandemic.

Please refer to the following announcement for more details:

[Prospective Students] Response to the COVID-19 for 2021 Admissions (Updated on July 31)

Q: Will classes at Waseda University be online or in person in 2021 ?

A: Some or all classes may be provided online in 2021 depending on the circumstances, including the influence of Covid-19. SPSE will announce how we will provide classes through our website (or by other means) once it is determined.
SPSE will continue to update our website in accordance with the decisions taken by Waseda University. The University is committed to providing high-quality education in consideration for those students who are unable to come to our campus.

For updates, please refer to our website:

Q: I’m from Taiwan and the GSAT scores will not be available until after the application period. Will SPSE accept late standardized test scores?

A: For standardized tests that are conducted only once a year, such as the GSAT in Taiwan, SPSE allows for a grace period. Please refer to the 2021 Application Guidelines and the List of Application Documents by Education System, which are available at:

Overview of SPSE

Q: Where can I find information in English about the programs taught in English at SPSE?

A: Thank you for your interest in our programs! We offer a synthesis of the study of political science and economics in a fully bilingual program. While most courses are offered both in English and in Japanese, you are not required to take courses in Japanese. Please refer to the following link for information about our English-based Degree Programs, or “EDP” for short:

We also have an e-brochure that you can look through on-line and share with your family and friends:

Q: Where can I find information about the professors and the curriculum?

A: For information about our professors, please refer to the Faculty page, where you can refer to each faulty member’s educational background, research fields and courses. For information about our curriculum, please refer to our Curriculum Table.

Q: What is the difference between the Global Political Economy program and the other programs?

A: Irrespective of a student’s major, studying at SPSE requires a global perspective. While the Political Science major and the Economics major allow students to specialize in their respective fields, the Global Political Economy (GPE) major offers a unique and balanced mix of the two disciplines to its students.  You can read more about the three degree programs that we offer at SPSE on our website:

Q: How is the SPSE Global Political Economy program different from the School of International Liberal Studies (SILS)?

A: SILS aims to equip students with a well-rounded, broad-ranging education without any specialization in a particular professional field, whereas SPSE, including the degree program of Global Political Economy, offers a focused and systematic education in political science and economics, from the fundamentals to advanced topics, with the aim of developing skills that are necessary to offer policy solutions to global issues.

Q: What is the difference between majoring in Economics at SPSE and attending the School of Commerce at Waseda?

A: In the School of Commerce, students learn Management and Business Administration (e.g., they analyze corporate activity). In SPSE, however, students focus on economic theory and move systematically from there towards economic applications. This process gives them a solid foundation for studying management, marketing, and other related fields in the future. Studying at SPSE also offers the opportunity to explore the relationship between economics and politics.

Q: I’ve heard about “seminars” at SPSE, but how are they different from other classes at SPSE?

A: Students at SPSE take discussion-based courses (“seminars”) throughout their studies. The seminars are organized in small groups, typically with 5 to 15 students, in which students collaborate with their peers and discuss their ideas with their professor. Some professors organize a dinner party or seminar trip once or twice a year, in order to provide informal and relaxed opportunities to interact with students. Developing a life-long relationship with a professor is not rare at Waseda. Students have the option of writing a thesis in their final year under the supervision of their seminar professor.

Q: Can I take SPSE courses in Japanese?

A: Yes. First of all, we should emphasize that EDP students are able to obtain all credits for degree completion by taking courses entirely in English. So, Japanese language ability is not necessary. At the same time, we believe that one of the greatest benefits of studying at SPSE comes from our offering Japanese-based degree programs alongside our English-based degree programs. In other words, we offer most political science and economics courses at all levels of study (introductory, intermediate, and advanced) in both English and Japanese, and these courses are open to all students at SPSE. Taking courses in Japanese may be particularly beneficial for EDP students who are proficient in both languages and seek careers in or related to Japanese companies or organizations.

Q: Can I learn Japanese while studying at the English-based degree program?

A: Yes, and many EDP students do. If you are interested in learning Japanese, please visit the webpage of Waseda University’s Center for Japanese Language. At SPSE, it is also possible to count Japanese Language courses toward graduation, although there are limitations on the number of credits.

Q: Can I change my major/degree program once I am enrolled at SPSE?

A: During the first semester of your first year, you can apply to transfer from one of our three degree programs to another one. Current students who wish to transfer programs should refer to the section about the Departmental Transfer Examination on our website.

Q: I would like to know more about the employment status and post-graduate studies of SPSE graduates.

A: SPSE graduates enter careers or post-graduate programs not only in Japan but also in many other countries. Our graduates have found employment in a wide range of positions in finance, manufacturing, mass communications, international organizations and public offices. Some of our graduates advance to prestigious postgraduate programs. On our website, we provide further information on our students’ paths after graduation and how we support Career Development.

Applying to SPSE

Q: Can I apply for both the English-based degree programs and the Japanese-based degree programs at SPSE?

A: Yes, you can apply for both of the programs. For information on applying to the Japanese-based degree programs, please refer to the admissions website in Japanese.

Q: Can I apply to other schools at Waseda in the same year?

A: Yes, you can apply to programs at multiple schools in the same year. However, please note that requirements for admissions vary among schools.

Q: I am currently studying at another university, can I transfer to the English-based degree program at SPSE?

A: Yes. We accept a small number of transfer students each year, both from universities in Japan and abroad. Please refer to the section about Admission by Transfer on our website.

Q: I am a student at another school at Waseda University, can I transfer to the English-based degree program at SPSE?

A: Yes. Please refer to the section about Admission by Change of Affiliation on our website.


Q: Are there any restrictions on nationality to apply to SPSE?

A: No, individuals of all nationalities are welcome to apply.

Q: How can I confirm my eligibility for application?

A: In general terms, eligibility refers to primary and secondary education requirements. For the specific requirements, please refer to the “Applicant Eligibility” section of the Application Guidelines. Do not hesitate to contact the International Admissions Office if you have questions about your eligibility: [email protected].

Q: Does SPSE conduct an “entrance examination” for the EDP admissions?

A: No, we do not conduct any entrance examination for EDP admissions. For an overview of EDP admissions, please visit this page:

Q: Is an interview part of the EDP admissions process?

A: Most applicants to the EDP are admitted without an interview. Interviews are conducted only if necessary, at the discretion of the admissions committee. Interviews are conducted via a Web Interview System. For more information on how this web-based system works, please refer to the Web Interview System Guidelines.

Q: Are there any requirements on minimum scores for standardized tests or university entrance qualifications?

A: There are no requirements for minimum scores but you may want to refer to the average scores of standardized tests for those admitted over the past few years, which we provide on the following webpage:

Q: I read that SPSE requests scores for the subject area of mathematics in the university entrance qualification examinations, but my examination subjects do not include mathematics. Can I still apply?

A: Yes, you can still apply. However, in order for your application to be competitive, you must submit test scores for the subject of mathematics. If your examination subjects do not include mathematics, we recommend that you take mathematics in the SAT Subject Test or the ACT Test and submit the scores to us.

Q: I am fluent in English. Do I need to take an English Language Proficiency test?

A: It depends. If you submit a certificate of a standardized test or a university entrance qualification that is administered for an educational system in which the first language is English (such as SAT, ACT, GCE, or IBDP taught entirely in English), you are not required to submit the score of an English language proficiency test. Otherwise, you are required to submit a score from one of the English-language proficiency tests accepted by SPSE. To be competitive for admission to the English-based Degree Program, you must demonstrate proficiency in the English language. So, even if it is not required for your application, you may still choose to demonstrate proficiency through the submission of English Language Proficiency tests.

Q: Can I submit IB predicted scores with my application and what are the requirements for IB scores?

A: Yes, you can submit IB predicted scores with your application, but final scores must be submitted eventually, during the enrollment procedure. If your final scores are available at the time of application, please submit them directly to Waseda University (the Waseda University code is 00549). As for IB requirements, you can find them in the “IB” section (page 4) of this document: List of Application Documents for Education System.

Q: How can I check the status of delivery of my application documents?

A: We advise you to first contact the post office or the courier using the provided tracking number. You can also find out whether your application has been received by the IAO at Waseda University by checking the “Application Status” page in the “Review/Update/Print Your Application” section of the online application System. When the IAO receives your application documents, your application status will change from “Application Form Completed” to “Application Documents Received.” This indicates that the application documents sent by you have been received by the International Admissions Office but it does not mean that your application is complete or that you have been accepted.

Q: Can I request that my English proficiency test scores, SAT scores or ACT scores be delivered from the testing organization directly to the university?

A: Yes. In fact, this is required in order for us to accept your scores as valid. Please ensure that the scores arrive before the application deadline. The SPSE codes for each test are as follows:

    TOEFL: 9342

    SAT: 0837

    ACT: 5473

For IELTS and Duolingo, please select the School of Political Science and Economics at Waseda University.

Q: Does SPSE accept compound scores of SAT and ACT results?

A: No. Only scores obtained on the same testing date will be considered. If you have scores from multiple testing dates, please fill in scores from the date on which you scored the highest total score.

Q: Except for SAT and ACT, can I submit other university entrance examination scores?

A: Yes, we accept most standardized tests from all over the world. You can search the university entrance examination scores that you can submit by “Education System” in the “List of Application Documents for Education System”.

After Acceptance and Registration

Q: Are scholarships available at Waseda University?

A: Yes. SPSE offers pre-enrollment scholarships, which are merit-based, to successful applicants who meet the conditions for the specific scholarships. We will contact you individually if you have been selected to receive a scholarship offer. In addition, there are numerous opportunities for students at Waseda University to apply for after-enrollment scholarships. For information on scholarships, please refer to the Center for International Education.

Q: What is a CoE and how can I apply for CoE?

A: International students without resident status in Japan are required to first apply for a Certificate of Eligibility (COE), which then allows them to apply for a student visa to enter and reside in Japan. In most cases, Waseda University can act as a proxy (on behalf of you) and apply for your COE. If you would like to apply for a student visa by proxy, you need to submit documents for the CoE application during the admission period. For more information on the CoE, please refer to the Center for International Education.

After Enrollment

Q: Can I apply for exchange programs or double-degree programs after I am enrolled at SPSE?

A: Yes, after your enrollment, you can apply for exchange and double-degree programs offered specifically by SPSE or for the programs organized by Waseda University at large. For information on double-degree programs and exchange programs by SPSE, please refer to the Study Abroad page on our website. Thanks to our equal partnerships, our students only need to pay SPSE’s standard tuition fee to Waseda while they study at universities under our exchange agreements. For information on the programs by Waseda University, please refer to the Center for International Education.

Q: Where can I find information about dormitories?

A: Please refer to the Residence Life Center for information on Waseda University student dormitories and several other dormitories affiliated with the University. Dormitories are open to Waseda students from all corners of Japan and around the world.

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