Tokyo Christian University
The English-degree program is administered under the "Asian Christian Theological Studies Program for English Speakers" (ACTS-ES), which integrates the liberal arts with Bible studies and theology, academic preparation with practical experience, the English language with Japanese studies, and the world's cultures with Japan and Asia. All courses are offered in English, though two years of Japanese language study is required, and advanced students have the option of doing some coursework entirely in Japanese together with Japanese undergraduates. Students who meet advanced requirements may obtain a minor in Japanese Studies. International students and Japanese students are not segregated, as often happens at Japanese universities, but live together in on-campus dorms.
TCU's history spans 125 years of Japan's 140-year Protestant history. The university emerged from a merger of three Christian schools. The oldest, founded in 1881 in Yokohama, focused on women's education at a time when Japan offered women few opportunities for higher education. In 1949 Tokyo Christian Theological Seminary came into existence, and 1950 saw the establishment of the Japan Domei Institute. The Domei Institute later offered both a three- and a four-year course, achieving accreditation as a junior college. These three schools merged in 1979, with the goal of upgrading the junior college into a university while maintaining the seminary as a distinct graduate program with its own identity.
In 1989, the merged school moved to its present location in Chiba New Town, a part of the greater Tokyo metropolitan area. Having achieved the approval of the Japanese Ministry of Education, the transition from the junior college to the university took place between 1990 and 1993. The university admitted its first group of students in 1990, when the junior college graduated its final class. In 1993, the university gained full recognition from the Japanese Ministry of Education, and it continues in this status until today.