The Acceptance Rate of Keio University: All Important Things You Need to Know

The Acceptance Rate of Keio University: All Important Things You Need to Know - EDOPEN Japan

Keio University is not only famous for its high-quality education, but also for its famous alumni who are active in domestic politics, singing, and on the world stage. Those who enjoy J-POP may know Sho Sakurai, who is a member of Arashi. Former Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi, Ryutaro Hashimoto, and Inukai Tsuyoshi all graduated from Keio University.

Let’s take a look at the information about this prestigious university from the aspects of its history, founder, world ranking, acceptance rate, and admission information. In addition, if you are also looking for information about universities and other study programs in Japan, check out some of our articles below:

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Introduction to Keio University 

Introduction to Keio University  - EDOPEN Japan

Keio University, Japanese name 慶應義塾大学 (Keiō Gijuku Daigaku), is a private institution (Mita Campus) located about a 10 minute walk from Tokyo Tower. This university is part of a larger organization called Keio Gijuku, which also includes elementary and secondary schools in the system.

Basic Information

  • 6 main campuses in the Kanto region: Mita Campus, Hiyoshi Campus, Yagami Campus, Shinanomachi Campus, Shonan Fujisawa Campus, and Shiba-Kyoritsu Campus)
  • Over 33,400 students, including undergraduate and graduate students
  • 10 undergraduate faculties as follows:
Faculty of LettersHumanities and Social Science
Faculty of EconomicsEconomics
Faculty of LawLaw
Political Science
Faculty of Business and CommerceBusiness and Commerce
School of MedicineMedicine
Faculty of Science and TechnologyMechanical Engineering
Electronics and Electrical Engineering
Applied Chemistry
Applied Physics and Physico-Informatics
Industrial and Systems Engineering
System Design Engineering
Information and Computer Science
Faculty of Policy ManagementPolicy Management
Faculty of Environment and Information StudiesEnvironment and Information Studies
Faculty of Nursing and Medical CareNursing
Faculty of PharmacyPharmacy
Pharmaceutical Sciences
  • 14 graduate schools, as follows:
    (1) Graduate School of Letters
    (2) Graduate School of Economics
    (3) Graduate School of Law
    (4) Graduate School of Human Relations
    (5) Graduate School of Business and Commerce
    (6) Graduate School of Medicine
    (7) Graduate School of Science and Technology
    (8) Graduate School of Media and Governance
    (9) Graduate School of Health Management
    (10) Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences
    (11) Graduate School of Business Administration (KBS)
    (12) Graduate School of System Design and Management (SDM)
    (13) Graduate School of Media Design (KMD)
    (14) Law School

Founder of Keio University: 福澤 諭吉 Yukichi Fukuzawa 

Check the ten thousand yen bill in your wallet! The portrait on the Japanese ten thousand yen bill is none other than the founder of Keio University. As an educator, Yukichi Fukuzawa is not only the founder of Keio, but also a Japanese author and publisher.

Yukichi Fukuzawa (1835-1901) and Okuma Shigenobu, the founder of Waseda University, were both born in Kyushu and made great contributions to modern Japan.

Traced back to 1858, Fukuzawa established the school to promote Western education. In the early stages, the institution taught Dutch. A few years later, in 1863, Fukuzawa’s school switched its focus to English studies. The institution changed its name to “Keio Gijuku” in 1868, which came from “Keio era” and “Gijuku” as a translation of Private School.

The legacy of Yukichi Fukuzawa cannot be summarized in a few paragraphs. If you are interested in the history of Keio University or Yukichi Fukuzawa, I am sure you will find many fascinating facts on Keio’s official website.

Keio Logos

The symbol of a school or company most often implies the spirit, belief, and mission that it holds all the time. Keio University has three logos, which are the Pen Mark, the Keio Emblem, and the Sanshokuki (Keio’s school flag). The “Pen Mark” is the most common mark that can be found everywhere on the official website.

Moreover, it is said that Keio University started using the mark in 1900. Tracing back to 1885, students were inspired by a phrase in the textbook saying “the pen is mightier than the sword”. Since then, students have worn the pen emblem on their caps. After the emblem gained more approval from other students and faculties of Keio, the “Pen Mark” is still used today.

World Ranking 

As a university with a legendary history and proud achievements, Keio University’s performance in the world rankings is correspondingly outstanding. According to the QS Global World Ranking 2022, Keio University is ranked 201. In addition, according to Times Higher Education (2021), Keio University is ranked as the 12th best university in Japan.

Acceptance Rate and Admissions Information: All-English Programs

Acceptance Rate and Admissions Information: All-English Programs - EDOPEN Japan

The programs offered at Keio University are mainly taught in Japanese. It is necessary to be fluent in Japanese when applying for these programs. If you wish to take courses in full English, Keio offers two programs, which are presented below.

The Global Information and Governance Academic (GIGA) Program

Launched in 2011, the GIGA program is established under both the Faculty of Policy Management and the Faculty of Environment and Information Studies. The campus is located at Shonan Fujisawa Campus (SFC), a beautiful campus in Kanagawa. Focusing on education that integrates technology, science, design, and governance, GIGA promises students an environment with knowledge and skills that meet the needs of this era of rapid progress.

Admission Information 

Recently, Keio made an adjustment to the application period, which Keio named the process AO (Self-Recommended Admissions) Screening. There were four sets of application periods for the same admission, named Summer AO, Fall AO, Winter AO, and Spring AO. The change was announced to combine Summer AO and Fall AO into one application period.

Enrollment periodRelease of Application GuidebookApplication periodAnnouncement of results
Summer / Fall AO 2021April or September 2021Mid-May 2021Early September 2021Late November or early December 2021
Winter AO 2021September 2022 or April 2023November 2021December 2021 to mid-February 2022Around late March 2022
Spring AO 2022September 2022 or April 2023Mid-January 2022Early June 2022Mid-July 2022
Created based on

  • Admission quota: approximately 150 each for the Faculty of Policy Management and the Faculty of Environment and Information Studies
  • Students may not apply to both faculties in the same year

For more detailed admission information (requirements, application materials, tuition fees), please see the Winter AO 2021 (Global) [Admissions for the GIGA Program] Application Guide for those seeking admission in September 2022 or April 2023:

Acceptance Rate

Below are statistics derived from the Application Guidebook for those seeking admission in September 2022 or April 2023, with the acceptance rate calculated by the author of this article.

Faculty of Policy Management ApplicantsAcceptanceAcceptance Rate(approximately)
2019 entry925155.4%
2020 entry1175345.2%
2021 entry1654326%
Faculty of Environment and Information Studies 
2019 entry1157161.7%
2020 entry1557649%
2021 entry2053818.5%

The number of applicants to both faculties has shown remarkable growth year after year, especially between the 2020 entry and the 2021 entry, with about 50 more applicants. Since there is not much difference in the number of acceptances between the 2019 entry and the 2020 entry, the acceptance rate seems to be decreasing.

Further, it is even more obvious in the 2021 entry, the acceptance rate comes to the lowest, at the same time with the most applicants within the three years.

Programme in Economics for Alliances, Research and Leadership (PEARL)

Established in 2016, the program belongs to the Faculty of Economics. The beautiful name of this program PEARL also carries the image of pearl that everyone wants. The program is designed to provide international students with courses specialized in economics.

Admission Information 

Blow is the latest application schedule for September 2022 enrollment. The table refers to Japan Standard Time (JST) in this application timeline.

PEARLApplication PeriodAnnouncement  of  Results
first10:00 a.m.  on  October  22,  2021  –   
3:00  p.m. on  December  3,  2021
10:00 a.m.  on  January  28,  2022 
second10:00 a.m.  on  December  8,  2021  –   
3:00 p.m.  on  January  31,  2022
10:00 a.m.  on  February  25,  2022 
third10:00 a.m.  on  February 22, 2022  –  
3:00  p.m. on  April  5,  2022
10:00 a.m.  on  May  27,  2022
  • Admission is offered in three application periods.
  • Approximately 100 students will be admitted in total. 
  • Applicants who are not accepted in one application period may reapply in a subsequent period.

For detailed admission information (requirements, application materials, tuition fees), please see Admission Procedures for the PEARL Program:

Acceptance Rate

Below are the statistics derived from the Application Guidebook for September 2022 Entry, with the acceptance rate calculated by the author of this article.

PEARLApplicantsAcceptanceAcceptance Rate(approximately)
2019 entry – first period24510141.2%
2019 entry – second period1885830.8%
2019 entry – third period1272318.1%
2019 entry total56018232.5%
2020 entry – first period2199643.8%
2020 entry – second period1866333.8%
2020 entry – third period1003232%
2020 entry total50519137.8%
2021 entry – first period2569938.6%
2021 entry – second period2005326.5%
2021 entry – third period1192218.4%
2021 entry total57517430.2%

In general, the acceptance rate does not have a significant difference within the class of 2019 to 2021. There are about five to six hundred applicants per year, and about thirty percent of them are accepted. Something worth noting is that within the three application period, the number of being accepted goes lower and lower. So it would always be better for you to apply for the first period!


If you are still wondering which college to apply to, I suggest you better check and write down the admission information of all the colleges you are considering in your notebook. Important information such as the application period, the deadline for sending documents, the required documents, and so on. In many universities in Japan, they consider these application rules above all. Sometimes they do not accept incomplete applications and late applications.

Finally, we hope that the above information about Keio University’s background, world ranking, and acceptance rate will help you better understand the institution.

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Representative Director of Reboot Japan Co., Ltd., which operates EDOPEN JAPAN. Founded the company in 2018, which provides Japanese language education and assistance for studying in Japan. Started the company after living with international students at a Japanese language school. He enjoys learning about new people and cultures and has lived in Australia and Malaysia. Graduated from the Faculty of Economics, Sophia University.