Welcome to the JET Programme UK Website
The Official Website for UK Applicants

Eligibility FAQs

1. I don't hold a UK passport, can I still apply to the UK JET Programme?

Unfortunately no. The JET Programme can only accept applications from full UK passport holders. The JET Programme does accept participants from many countries across the world, however in order to apply for the JET Programme you must be a national of the country that you wish to represent. Therefore, please contact the Japanese embassy or consulate in the country of your nationality. For a full list of contacts for Japanese embassies and consulates around the world please see: http://www.mofa.go.jp/about/emb_cons/over/

2. I hold dual nationality with Japan / with another participating country. Can I still apply?

Those who hold dual nationality with Japan must renounce Japanese citizenship by the end of March before departure. If you hold dual nationality with any two participating countries, you can only apply through one of these countries. Candidates who apply in both countries will be automatically disqualified from the application process.

3. I don't have a degree, can I still apply?

Unfortunately, we are unable to consider applications from those who do not hold or expect to hold at least a Bachelor's degree by the summer of their departure to Japan. This requirement is imposed by the sponsors of the Programme and we regret that no exceptions can be made.

4. What type of degree do I need to be on the JET Programme?

Any type of Bachelor's degree from a recognised university is sufficient. JET participants hold degrees in a wide range of fields.

5. Are students from New Universities (Post-1992 universities) at a disadvantage?

Definitely not. The JET Programme warmly welcomes applicants from all universities and all fields of study.

6. I am currently studying for a Masters and my course won't finish until September, can I still apply?

Unfortunately not. You must be able to depart to Japan in late July / early August, at the same time as other participants.

7. I'm a mature graduate, can I still apply?

Yes. The JET Programme is essentially a youth exchange programme with young people from 40 countries* working in Japan, but there is no upper age limit. We ask, however, that potential applicants over the age of 39 contact the Programme Coordinator at the JET Desk. This is so we can discuss issues that might arise if they were to be accepted with them.

*participating countries vary from year to year.

8. I don't have a teaching qualification, can I still apply?

Yes. Although an interest in education and young people is an advantage when applying for the Programme, formal qualifications are not required.

9. I have a strong accent, can I still be accepted?

Of course. What is important is that you have clear pronunciation, good grammar and vocabulary and that your voice can reach the back of a classroom. The JET Programme is very keen to have participants representing as many areas of the UK as possible.

10. I am a single parent, can I still apply?

Yes. The Japanese Government will be happy to arrange visas for dependants, but financial responsibilities for flights, living costs etc. are borne by the participant. There is no problem enrolling younger children into Japanese schools - they are welcomed and will probably end up fluent in Japanese!

11. I am worried that a medical condition will prevent me from being accepted on the Programme. What should I do?

People with a wide variety of medical conditions have been accepted on to the Programme. Applications are judged on their individual merit. Provided that your doctor believes you are fit to live and work in Japan, your medical condition should not preclude you from participating. It is important that you disclose all medical conditions as required on the application form. If you declare any medical conditions, past or present, on the Self-Assessment Medical Report (except question 9), you must also have your GP fill out the Statement of Physician form stating whether you are fit to participate on the JET Programme and, as such, to live and work overseas. The Statement of Physician form will print at the same time as the application form. This information will be used to your benefit in deciding your placement as well as in serving as a quick reference should any medical emergencies arise while you are participating on the JET Programme.

12. I have applied for the JET Programme before, can I apply again?

Yes, former JET Programme applicants can reapply to the Programme provided they have not:

*Participated on the Programme in the last 3 years
*Previously participated on the Programme for more than 5 years
*Lived in Japan for more than a total of 6 out of the last 10 years
*Declined an offer of a position on the Programme without justifiable reasons (all applicants who have previously declined an offer of a position on the Programme should consult with the Programme Coordinator regarding their eligibility status)

If you have applied before and have been unsuccessful, you are welcome to re-apply but will have to complete a new application. Hopefully you will have gained more related experience in the last year: teaching experience, research of Japan, taking a TEFL course or studying Japanese. Therefore your personal statement and references will have developed. Strong, recent references will obviously strengthen your application.

13. I have lived in Japan before, can I apply?

You cannot apply if you have lived in Japan for more than six out of the past ten years. If you have further queries regarding living in Japan and eligibility, please contact the JET Desk.

14. I don't speak any Japanese, can I still apply?

Yes, for the ALT position many successful candidates apply with little or no Japanese knowledge. Although an interest in learning Japanese is an advantage when applying for the Programme, formal qualifications are not required. Please note that Japanese language ability is required if applying for the CIR position (see below).

15. What level of Japanese do I need to be a CIR (Coordinator for International Relations)?

Applicants for the CIR position must demonstrate an excellent grasp of written and spoken Japanese. CIR applicants in the past have typically studied Japanese for a minimum of two years at university level and have studied in Japan for at least six months. Interviews for CIRs are conducted in Japanese and include a comprehensive Japanese language ability test. If you are unsure whether your level of Japanese is suitable for the CIR position, please feel free to call the JET Desk on 020 7465 6668 and ask to speak to the Programme Coordinator who will be happy to evaluate your Japanese ability.

16. I have a number of tattoos / piercings. Will this affect my application?

Tattoos and body piercings are often viewed negatively in Japan. As a JET Programme participant, you would be an employee of the Japanese Government / Local Board of Education and hold a respected position in your community; therefore any obvious tattoos or piercings would most likely cause problems for your contracting organisation and may be disapproved of by your co-workers and the local population. Because of this, we suggest that applicants with tattoos and piercings think very carefully before applying. Piercings (except small earrings) would have to be removed during working hours and visible tattoos covered up using a plaster or bandage. Potential applicants with any concerns regarding these issues should call the JET Office and ask to speak to the Programme Coordinator.