Kyoto Institute of

Why Kyoto?

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A leading city of traditional Japanese culture, rich with history and traditional industries.

Kyoto is a leading city of traditional Japanese culture. With its 1,200-year history, Kyoto is home to 14 World Heritage sites, over 2,000 shrines and temples, and 74 traditional industries, including Nishijin weaving, Kyo Yuzen dyeing, Kiyomizuyaki pottery, and Kyoto cuisine. Its myriad attractions draw large numbers of tourists from all over the world. Kyoto offers the opportunity to learn about these kinds of traditional culture with a hands-on approach. Although close to the city center, Kyoto Institute of Technology is placed at north of the ancient city of Heian-kyo, surrounded by the green foothills of Mt. Hiei and many historical sites,

A city of universities and students and a center of learning and knowledge

With many universities and two-year colleges located in Kyoto, it is known as “a city of universities” and “a city of students.” Around 140,000 students live in Kyoto, accounting for a tenth of the city’s population.
As the capital of Japan for hundreds of years, culture and traditional crafts flourished in Kyoto. That rich history and the accumulation of traditional skills have given rise to state-of-the-art technologies, and the city is now home to many companies whose technologies lead the world. It is a city rich with the stimulus of learning.
The city features many student-run activities, such as the Kyoto Student Festival and the Kyoto International Student Film&Video Festival, and many opportunities to interact with students from other institutions. Excellent public transport networks and a low crime rate make Kyoto a popular destination for international students from many countries, and there are a variety of public support programs to assist them.

Institute of

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Kyoto Institute of Technology, although small in size, offers an extensive range of curricula, including science and technology, engineering and liberal arts.

Kyoto Institute of Technology has only a single school, the School of Science and Technology. This compact school, with just 600-700 students in each year level, is comprised of three academic fields, namely Materials and Life Science, Engineering Design, and Architecture and Design, which are in turn divided into nine programs. These programs range from advanced science and technology areas such as biosciences, materials, electronics, information, mechanics, and environment, to architecture and design. They are engaged in unique educational and research programs that aim to provide practical learning based on the concept of monozukuri or “making things.” No other university in Japan covers such a wide range of fields in a single school. Another of KIT’s strengths, which other, larger universities cannot offer, is its ability to focus on each individual student’s learning.

A place to learn beyond one’s own area of specialization

With its general academic subjects, KIT offers unique educational courses that transcend the boundaries of one’s own academic field. Subjects include cultural heritage such as traditional crafts, the convergence of science and art, sustainable design, and monozukuri internships. Students are also able to take specialist subjects in other fields if they wish to broaden their specialist studies.
Because students studying in a variety of fields are learning side-by-side on a single campus, they can stimulate each other with joint inter-disciplinary projects and extra-curricular activities. It is also a perfect learning environment for international students.

Small classes, careful attention from lecturers, practical instruction from designers and other professionals with industry experience.

With three times as many faculty members as required under the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT) criteria for tertiary institutions, KIT has one of the smallest lecturer-to-student ratios of any Japanese university. The careful attention from lecturers made possible by small class sizes, and the close proximity between students and lecturers that only a small university can provide are two of KIT’s greatest strengths.
In the design and architecture programs in particular, KIT has many lecturers who work as architects and designers at the forefront of their professions and who have a wealth of practical experience, having received world-authoritative awards. This gives KIT students the opportunity to receive a high standard of practical instruction.

Examples of Research

[Development of Low-Molecular-Weight Antibody High-Density Orientation and Immobilization Technology and its Application in Ultrasensitive Immunological Testing]

Yoichi Kumada, Associate Professor, Faculty of Molecular Chemistry and Engineering
This research involved the proprietary development of peptides that have high affinity with specific materials such as polystyrene and silicone nitride, and using them to establish technology for the immobilization of low-molecule antibodies in high-density, high-orientation, and high-activity states. Low-molecular-weight antibodies are artificial proteins consisting only of antibody antigen-recognition sites. Clustering them on the surfaces of materials has made it possible to conduct highly precise medical tests for a variety of serious diseases, such as influenza, cancer, and allergies, leading to early detection and prevention. Low-molecular-weight antibodies can be produced at low cost using genetically-modified E. coli, which it is expected to contribute to reduction in testing costs.

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[Research into Ultra-High-Speed Three-Dimensional Video Imaging Holography]

Yasuhiro Awatsuji, Professor, Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Electronics
We succeeded in the use of holography for high-speed three-dimensional video imaging, something that was not possible with conventional technologies. Holography solved the problem of the superimposition of unnecessary images over the required images, and we realized a world-record holographic image capture rate of 1 million frames per second. This is the world’s highest speed not only for holography but also for three-dimensional video imaging. We also achieved a rate of 150,000 frames per second, the world’s fastest, for three-dimensional video imaging microscopy for biological applications.
We were also the first in the world to observe, as a three-dimensional video image, an optical pulse (800 nm wavelength) of 200 femtoseconds’ duration travel across a space at the speed of light for 260 picoseconds. We also achieved three-dimensional video imaging of the world’s fastest temporal resolution of 96 femtoseconds.

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[Practical Research into Innovative Designs for Everyday Tools]

Sosuke Nakabo, Associate Professor, Faculty of Design and Architecture
In this increasingly complicated society, when bringing ideas to fruition, there has never been a greater need for design that fits effortlessly into the structure of that society. This research involves close observation and analysis of the elements that make up the design of the products around us, including their materials, functions, distribution, cultural background and emotional impact, to draw out the essence of those objects and reveal the relationship between them and society’s structure. Outcomes to date have included the research and development of innovative designs that can be effortlessly put into use in our daily lives. These include a new type of cordless vacuum cleaner that focused on ease of use down to the finest detail (* produced commercially by Plus Minus Zero), and robust, functional, and inexpensive cooking bowls and colanders that can withstand use in both the home and in commercial kitchens (*produced commercially by Mujirushi Ryohin).

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Research Facilities

KIT is well equipped with excellent facilities to support its educational and research endeavors.
In addition to facilities that form the foundation of education and research, including libraries, on-premises information and communication technology centers, and centers for the analysis and disposal of hazardous substances, KIT also has a wide range of equipment for the analysis of sophisticated substances and materials, and facilities that house leading-edge material processing equipment.
KIT is also one of only three national universities to have its own art museum, and it is a center for cutting-edge insect research, including a genetic resource center for the Drosophila, one of the largest insect families in the world.

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Support for

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KIT welcomes large numbers of international students every year from its more-than-90 partner universities in a variety of countries.

Kyoto Institute of Technology has international exchange partnership agreements with more than 90 universities around the world, primarily in Asia and Europe, and welcomes more than 450 international students every year. KIT also hosts a range of programs, such as workshops and summer schools, for students from these partner institutions.

Opportunities to interact with people of different cultures and disciplines through the traditional crafts of Kyoto.

KIT offers programs to develop people who will support the preservation and reactivation of Kyoto’s tangible and intangible cultural heritage. These programs include visits to traditional craft studios in Kyoto and hands-on experiences of those crafts, and studying about Japan’s and Kyoto’s administration of cultural preservation.
International and Japanese students from a wide variety of disciplines can visit the studios of traditional crafts (choosing from Yuzen dyeing, Kiyomizuyaki pottery, Kyogawara ceramic roof tiles, Kyo-kabe clay walls, Nishijin brocade and kumihimo cord braiding, ornamental brackets, Kyoto bow and arrow, shirabe-o drum cord, gold-leaf painting, and incense) in groups, and deepen their mutual interaction by debating the convergence of traditional crafts and state-of-the-art technologies.


An International Graduate Program (IGP), offering post-graduate degrees conducted in English

KIT’s Graduate School offers an International Graduate Program in which students can pursue a master’s or doctoral degree with all instruction in the English language. International students are welcomed into the program, no matter what their level of Japanese-language proficiency. A generous tutoring program and opportunities to learn the basics of the Japanese language are also provided in the program, which is offered in the kind of environment that can only be experienced at KIT. (IGP open only to partner institutions.)

Actively hosts symposiums and public lectures

Kyoto Institute of Technology has been appointed as a Top Global University, one of 37 tertiary institutions selected by MEXT to lead the globalization of Japanese society. As such, it often hosts symposiums and public lectures. Students can be inspired at these highly stimulating academic exchange and lecture events, to which leading corporate figures and researchers from Japan and overseas are invited to speak. KIT also hosts many international symposium and public lectures that are conducted in English.


The kind of careful and considerate support for international students that Japan is known for

International students who enroll at Kyoto Institute of Technology are partnered with a Japanese student “tutor,” to help them to get a good start on their daily life and studies in Kyoto. The careful and considerate support provided by supervising instructors, student volunteers, and our highly experienced administrative staff will surely make your life as a student in Kyoto a highly rewarding one. Study tours, exchange meetings, and a range of other enjoyable events will help you to make the most of your university life in Japan. We wish you an unforgettable study abroad in Japan at Kyoto Institute of Technology.