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13 April 2021University Applications (Introduction on Cambridge International-④)

Read this article in Japanese.

Previous articles in this series:

・Introduction on Cambridge International-① English/Japanese

・Cambridge Pathway (Introduction on Cambridge International-②) English/Japanese

・Cambridge International and IB (Introduction on Cambridge International-③) English/Japanese


Entering a university from an international school is broadly divided into either going to a university in Japan or going to a university overseas. Most international schools do not fall under the educational institution category (such as Japanese kindergartens, elementary schools, junior high schools, high schools) written in Article 1 of School Education Law. Therefore, instead of being certified by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT) in Japan, students need to obtain an international certification as a high school diploma in order to be accepted by universities in Japan and around the world.

Entering Japanese Universities

Most international school students apply to universities using the September entry. However, since most programs start from April in Japanese universities, some international school students take the university entrance exams to enter in April.

MEXT states that just like the CIS school students, applicants with Cambridge International A Levels are also eligible for university admission. Please also refer to the MEXT Q & A (Q6 for Cambridge).

In addition, some universities offer English-based programs that accept direct application with A Level results.

Overseas Universities

Well recognized by higher education institutions and employers around the world, Cambridge International qualifications offer students a passport to success in the global stage. We have listed a few examples for your reference and you can find more details of world university recognitions at the database of Cambridge International.


Cambridge International AS & A Levels are equivalent to the AS & A Levels taken by students in the UK, and are accepted for entrance to UK universities in the same way as the UK A Levels. Most UK universities require a minimum of three A Levels for admission. Many courses require certain grades and particular subjects in order for students to apply. 


Universities and colleges across the USA, including all Ivy League universities, welcome students with Cambridge qualifications. Colleges and universities generally require a minimum of AS or A Levels for admission, but some colleges will accept Cambridge IGCSEs as meeting entry requirements. Some institutions and credential evaluators may consider five Cambridge IGCSE qualifications with passes at Grade C or higher to be equivalent to a high school diploma.


Universities and colleges across Canada welcome students with Cambridge qualifications. If you possess at least four AS Levels and/or at least two A Level qualifications you are eligible to apply to Canadian universities. More competitive courses may require additional qualifications at higher grades. Colleges may accept Cambridge IGCSE as meeting entry requirements. You may be eligible for advanced standing credit.


Singapore remains an important destination for higher education, particularly with students from the Asia-Pacific region. Cambridge qualifications are widely accepted in Singapore.


Universities across Australia welcome applications from Cambridge students. Cambridge International A Levels are widely accepted for direct entry to undergraduate degree courses.


  1. Cambridge Assessment International Education, University recognition worldwide: Guide to the recognition and acceptance of Cambridge qualifications, July 2018



・Introduction on Cambridge International-① English/Japanese

・Cambridge Pathway (Introduction on Cambridge International-②) English/Japanese

・Cambridge International and IB (Introduction on Cambridge International-③) English/Japanese