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FAQ

Q1. What is SDM's definition of "System"?
We define "System" as the interaction of multiple elements; from information, communication, media, hardware, and service, to human, organization, society, planet and environment.  Please refer our concept for further information.
Q2. What is SDM's definition of "Design"?
We define "Design" as the act of creating new structures and mechanisms of systems, from design of technological system, organization, and society to the grand design of management and political measures.
Q3. What is SDM's definition of "Management"?
We define "Management" as controlling, operating and running a wide variety of systems.  It could mean running businesses or projects (project management), managing supply chains and product lifecycles, or administrating organizations within a company.
Q4. What do you actually do in Design Project?
There is a Design Project course called "Design Project" (core subject) and Design Project research called "Research on System Design Management". Please refer to Design Project and Research pages for further details.
Q5. How many times a year are the information sessions held?
SDM Information sessions are held several times a year.  The details can be found on our website.
Q6. How can I get the Admission Application Guidelines?
You can download the from our website.
Q7. When is the admission exam held?
Please refer to our Admission Application Guidelines.
Q8. Are most applicants working?
More than half of the applicants have work experience (both young and experienced).  Some are sent by their companies, some leave their work, and some enroll and keep working.  There was a business manager who enrolled and turned over his responsibilities to his junior staff.  We also take in new university graduates with basic academic abilities and people who are interested in design and management of whole systems, to help us achieve a multicultural education and research environment.
Q9. I am working.  Can I enroll without reducing my workload?
Yes, we have 5th and 6th slots during the weekday and classes on Saturday.  You might be able to work flextime and come to the classes during weekdays.  Please note that there are some compulsory crash courses during weekdays, such as Design Project .  The research for the master's thesis is also compulsory.  Please bear in mind that the workload of preparing for the classes and the workload for the design project and research are larger than that of conventional graduate schools; you will need ingenuity, stamina, and time management skills to balance work and study.
Q10. Can you describe Keio SDM's ideal student?
SDM takes in both new university graduates and people (young and experienced) with professional experience.  The ideal student is ambitious; to better himself or herself, to change the country and to change the world.
Q11. Are there any university degrees that don't qualify an applicant for admission to SDM?
There are no restrictions on the type of degree an applicant holds; all majors and types of experience are welcome to apply, as long as he or she wishes to study design and management of systems in a broad sense.
Q12. Is there any age limit for admission?
No.  Our current students range in age from 20 to 60.
Q13. Are any language skills required?
Keio SDM provides courses in English, part of which are only available in English and research instructions in English upon request. Therefore, English speaking students can obtain degrees without good Japanese skills. However, it is highly recommended to learn Japanese if students want to make their student life more fruitful and fun by taking courses available only in Japanese and understanding Japanese cultures. Japanese language courses are available from the Center for Japanese Studies, Keio University.
Q14. Is it necessary to meet with the professors before admission?
It is not compulsory to meet with the professors before admission, but it is a good opportunity to learn about their specialties, the Keio SDM experience, and to make inquiries. Please don't hesitate to contact one of them.
Q15. Is it possible to conduct research in a field other than those engaged in by the 12 Keio SDM professors?
Our professors engage in such diverse research that we don't even attempt to list it all on our website.  You can also work with wide variety of organizations inside and outside of the university.  It is possible to do all kinds of research, as long as it relates to the design and management of systems.  Please contact one of our professors that you believe specializes in research that is the most closely related to your interest.
Q16. Can I do scientific research with experiments involved?
Yes, you can conduct experiments in our laboratory on the third floor of the Collaboration Complex.  Other laboratories are also available for experiments.
Q17. Does Keio SDM take in students who majored in art?
Yes.  We have more students who have degrees related to science (engineering, sciences, etc.) and social science (business administration, economics, political science, law, commerce, accounting, etc.) than students with degrees in the arts (psychology, art, philosophy, architecture etc.)  Anyone interested in designing any kinds of systems is welcome to apply.
Q18. Where is Keio SDM located?
Students meet on the 3rd and 6th floor of the Collaboration Complex right in front of Hiyoshi station in Yokohama, Kanagawa.  The complex was established in 2008.  The building also contains the Graduate School of Business Administration, the Graduate School of Media Design, a music hall, an event hall, the Incubation Center, training facilities, exercise facilities, a nursery, shops and restaurants.  It is a place to "collaborate" with society and the community.
Q19. What's the difference between Keio SDM and the Department of System Design Engineering of Keio University, Faculty of Science and Technology?
The Department of System Design Engineering, Faculty of Science and Technology, Keio University, was established in 1996 to specialize in education and research on system design engineering regardless of the framework of engineering disciplines such as mechanics, electricity, information or architecture.  SDM, on the other hand, was established as a graduate school in 2008, separately from the Faculty of Science and Technology or Graduate School of Science and Technology.  SDM specializes in education and research on System Design and Management, with crossover between engineering, business administration, social science, and others disciplines.
Q20. How is Keio SDM different from MIT's System Design and Management Program?
MIT's System Design and Management Program was established as a specialist graduate school under a coalition of the business school and engineering school, to develop human resources capable of designing and managing large scale and complex engineering systems. The Graduate School of System Design Management of Keio University, on the other hand, includes not only technological systems but social systems as research subjects.  We not only specialize in developing human resources, but in cutting edge research.  In other words, our scope is broader in terms of education, research, and human resource development.
Q21. How is SDM different from MOT?
MOT (Management of Technology) is comprehensive business administration, including technology, and making and implementing strategy to create economic value in a company or an organization.  The Graduate School of MOT is a specialist graduate school to study these methods.  The education and research undertaken in SDM include MOT elements, but our concept is wider.  You can systematically learn methods of designing, managing, and controlling all kinds of systems according to the theory of System Design and Management.
Q22. What will the entrance examination be like? Is it possible for me to apply for and take the examination outside of Japan?
Yes, we welcome applicants from overseas. Please find details in the Admission Application Guidelines.
Q23. Who is eligible to apply to this graduate school? (Master's Program)
Applicants must have completed a Bachelor's degree from a university with a minimum school education of 15 years, or have an academic capability equivalent to Bachelor's degree holders outside of Japan. There are no other restrictions on academic background or the field of the Bachelor's degree.
Q24. Am I required to have a specific level of proficiency in the Japanese language when I apply?
No, but it is desirable that you study the Japanese language and achieve some proficiency.