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Okay, So once you are done with your initial preparation, the actual thing begins.
And I forgot to mention, it is okay if you don't know Japanese (unless you are applying for Japanese studies )

Its not a complicated procedure. It just takes a LOT of time. You need to wait almost 8 months to get your final result, so be ready for a very very long wait!

I will keep referring to "Embassy's website", what I mean is the page for Research student scholarship .
( Embassy of Japan HOMEPAGE ~> Scholarships ~> Research student scholarship )


1) Mid-May or first week of May : Document submission + screening

Your documents, academic history and your research proposal AKA Study plan are checked and you are select for Interview and tests based on these 3 points.
We were asked to submit :
  • SSC certificate
  • Certified Grade transcripts for each semester from undergraduate to last acquired qualification (basically attested copies of marksheet, and convert grades into percentage )
  • Abstract of thesis ( Project work done at Bsc or Msc )
  • Application form (They will upload this on the website)
  • Study program (Uploaded on website)
Placement preference form (Uploaded on website, you can list 3 universities , this is why I mentioned in the last post that looking for a lab/university is important )
*Last date was end of may , we sent all these documents via post to the Embassy.
*Criteria for eligibility will be mentioned on the website. This year the criteria was minimum 65% marks and a Bsc/Msc degree. PhD applicants : 65% in Msc and work or research experience.


2) June : Call for Interview
  • Lists of applicants called for interview and tests will be displayed on the Embassy's website.
  • Keep checking the website regularly. You wont get a notification or email from the Embassy.


3) July : Interview and tests
Interview and tests took place at the Embassy, in Delhi.
Tests :
  • You have to attempt two tests or papers if you will. An English test and a Japanese test
  • Dont panic if they give you the Japanese paper. If you dont know Japanese, you just have to write your name and hand in the paper blank.
  • You need to carry ID proof. They said dont carry anything else , but I took my documents with me, just in case.
  • The English Exam/test is easy, if your medium of instruction, throughout your academic history, was English. If you remember basic grammar stuff, you will ace this test. If you use english (not hinglish or any other version of english ) you will be fine. If you are not sure, go back to your wren and martin books and brush up your grammar!
  • The Japanese paper will be divided into sections and the difficulty goes on increasing section to section. The first section will be of roughly N4-N5 level , second of N3-N4 and so on. You have to write Kanjis in one question, so be prepared for that.
  • Past papers
Interview:
  • If you pass the English test, you will be chosen for the interview, else told to go home.
  • Interview questions vary from Study program related questions to why did you chose Japan questions.


4) July : Result of the primary screening
We were informed about our results after 3-4 days. The Embassy called and emailed us the results along with a fresh set of forms which we needed to fill and submit.
  • After passing this stage, you will get a "Passing certificate" . It will be sent to you later along with a letter conveying your result and copies of your documents.
  • So the copies of documents I mentioned above, are what you have to send after you get the result. As in the embassy will email you fresh set of forms and you have to make 3 SETS of documents mentioned in the GUIDELINES.
  • All the copies of documents you attached need to be attested.
  • Once you send the sets of documents, the embassy will return ONE SET to you, duly stamped by the Embassy, along with the Passing certificate.
  • Now, you have to use these (STAMPED) documents + passing certificates to apply to universities for a "Letter of Acceptance (LoA)"


5) July - September : Letter of acceptance
  • Once you receive your documents, you need to start contacting professors and universities for a Letter of acceptance.
  • Its basically a letter saying the university will accept you as a student IF you pass the selection for this particular scholarship.
  • To get a LoA, you need approval from a professor. If he/she has agreed to accept you as a student then you just need to submit your documents to the university and they will send the LoA to you or the Embassy , depending on your last date for sending in the LoA and the university's schedule.
  • If you had contacted a professor beforehand, then this process will go considerably faster.
  • If not, then send Email and In short , clear sentences explain your reason for contacting, area of interest , research experience etc. Attach a CV if possible. Keep the mail short and simple. DONT mail all the professors in the same department, if they find out you are spamming everyone, it will give a bad impression.
  • Some professors will ask for a SKYPE interview. Read their research ( I assume you already have, before applying) and brush up on basic stuff related to your field of study.
  • If the professor does not reply, send a backup email after a week. Try sending Emails early in the morning (JAPAN TIME) so that your mail will be the first in the inbox.
  • After you get approval from a professor, you will need to contact the university's office which deals with admission or with foreign students.
  • Some universities will ask you to email the documents (keep a scanner ready) , some will ask you to POST a copy of the documents (I recommend DHL, fast and good tracking service)
  • After submitting the documents, you will have to wait for the university to contact you.
  • They will send you an PDF of your LoA and the hard copy will follow later on the address you specified.
  • if the hard copy of the LoA gets delayed, you can send the scanned copy to the Embassy.
  • If you approach more than 3 universities, you have to arrange/list them according to your priority in the "Placement Preference" form and submit it to the Embassy.
  • LAST DATE FOR CONTACTING UNIVERSITIES : 30th August
  • LAST DATE FOR SUBMITTING PLACEMENT PREF FORM AND LoA : End of september


6) November - December : Second screening

  • Your documents will be sent to the Japanese govt (MEXT) and will undergo another screening
  • The results of this screening will be announced by the end of December (another letter sent via post).
  • If you pass this step, you will be provisionally selected for the scholarship.
  • Chances of getting the scholarship are pretty high !

7) January - February : Final selection
  • Your university will be decided in the last step.
  • Based on the placement preference form (priority list) the MEXT will start contacting your universities.
  • By mid January, some universities will start ending out Emails about accommodation and stuff, so do not worry if you have not received any confirmation from the embassy, just go ahead with the application for dorms.
  • Do not panic if you do not get notification or hints from your professor. Its okay!
  • We received the final result in late January.
  • It was sent via post and contained a letter confirming our selection as a recipient of this scholarship , A placement detail page and a Pledge from which we have to fill and send back to the Embassy.
  • The ticket information will be conveyed by the Embassy by Mid-march for April departure and by Mid September for October departure (I hope you guys know the two departure periods we can select, April / October )
  • Visa can be obtained at any consulate. Details will be given by the Embassy ( Will update about this when I apply for the Visa )
Thats it! That is the basic procedure for application in India. I hope this helped!
Good luck guys!:geek::geek::geek::geek:
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I have a question regarding the research topic , I have a pretty unique topic and I don't think there is any kind of research going in universities over there , however I have contacted a professor whose field of study is close to my research.
Would it work
 
I have a question regarding the research topic , I have a pretty unique topic and I don't think there is any kind of research going in universities over there , however I have contacted a professor whose field of study is close to my research.
Would it work
Sorry, I didnot get the notification for some reason.
Yes it should work as long as some professor is willing to supervise your research. You might have to change your research a bit later (or now if the professor replies) to fit your professor's current research.

Try asking http://www.transenzjapan.com/blog/embassy-recommended-mext-scholarship-2018/ here too. He used to work at a Japanese university so he might be able to help you too.
 
Thanks ANSHULNAGI,

It indeed a helpful info !
I'm from India and following the same steps and now I'm at the stage 6) November - December : Second screening.
My field is Mathematical Sciences and I'm the only guy who qualified the interview in this filed.
I got two LOA and my preferences are 1. University of Tsukuba and 2. Tohoku University.
In this step you have mentioned a line "The results of this screening will be announced by the end of December (another letter sent via post)."
My question is who will send the Letter (Embassy/University) ?
I know one guy from India who is at Tohoku Uni, according to him, he only got the final result at the end of January.

It will be great if you please clear my doubt.

Thanks in advance.
 

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