4 years, 2 countries, 2 degrees.

What is the dual degree program and why participate? 

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St. Edward’s students have the opportunity to participate in a unique dual degree program earning two degrees, from two institutions, in two countries, in just four years. Students spend their first and fourth year at St. Edward's in Austin, Texas earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in Global Studies. They spend their second and third year at our partner university, Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University (APU) in Beppu, Japan, earning a Bachelor of Social Science degree. The dual degrees, along with the cultural understanding, language skills, and international perspective gained in the program, make students more competitive and desirable on the job market and when applying to graduate school. 

Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University (APU) and Beppu, Japan

Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University (APU) is a multi-cultural campus with students from approximately 98 different countries. APU offers dual language instruction, with most classes offered in Japanese and English, as well as language instruction for non-Japanese speakers. Course offerings focus on Asia Pacific studies and business, making a study abroad experience at APU especially well-suited for students majoring in business, behavioral and social sciences, and global studies. Beppu, Japan is located between the sea and the mountains, providing beautiful scenery. Beppu is famous for its hot springs – with over 40 million tourists a year - and has the second largest volume of hot water in the world after Yellowstone National Park. Beppu boasts many activities for nature lovers including Beppu Park, a beautiful park located in the heart of the city, as well as plenty of mountains for the avid hiker.

APU campus with drummers          APU Campus


Bachelor of Arts in Global Studies from SEU
Global Studies at St. Edward’s is an interdisciplinary major based in the social sciences and it introduces multiple subjects studied through the international perspective, such as geography, world history, and international politics. Students will debate key issues facing the global community today and explore the social, political, cultural and economic changes shaping our world. The BA in Global Studies includes a combination of geography, global studies, history, and political studies. Students choose both a regional and a thematic concentration. Students take a minimum of 120 credits at SEU. 

Bachelor of Social Science from APU
In Asia Pacific Studies (APS), students are challenged to tackle a vast array of global issues and develop new ways of thinking to face these obstacles head on. Students combine study from different fields to gain a broad understanding of the diverse political systems, economies, societies and cultures of the Asia Pacific while gathering advanced skills in language, information technology, and research. APS prepares students for a wide variety of careers in government, international organizations, media, the travel industry, and multinational corporations. Dual degree students mainly study International Relations. Students take a minimum of 124 credits at APU. 

APS Areas of Study 

Review the full Asia Pacific Studies subject list on the APU website

Japanese Language 

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Three first-year students talk about their classes, friends, extra-curricular activities, goals, challenges and personal development at APU.

There is no language requirement to be admitted to the dual degree program, however, students are strongly encouraged to enroll in Japanese in fall and spring of their first year at SEU. While at APU, students must enroll in Japanese language courses for a minimum of 16 credits. Students will take a Japanese language placement test upon arrival at APU to determine which level of language courses they will enroll in. Students with sufficient language abilities may require fewer Japanese language credits. 


Students must apply by March 1 (of their freshman year) to be considered. Admission offers will go out by mid-March.  

Students spend their first and fourth year at St. Edward's and earn a Bachelor of Arts degree in Global Studies. They spend their second and third year at our partner university, APU in Beppu, Japan, earning a Bachelor of Social Science degree.

Year Freshman Sophomore Junior Senior
Location At SEU (in Austin)  At APU (in Japan) At APU (in Japan) At SEU (in Austin) 

APU’s Calendar
Semesters at APU are made up of two quarters. Some classes run for the duration of the semesters while other classes are usually taught in one of the two quarters. 1 semester is 14 weeks (plus 2 weeks of exams) and students must register for a minimum of 14 credits per semester.  

APU Fall Semester
1st Quarter = October and November
2nd Quarter = December and January
Winter Session = February and March

APU Spring Semester
1st Quarter = April and May
2nd Quarter = June and July
Summer Session = August and September

Cost and Funding 

Students pay SEU tuition all four years in the program and can use financial aid and scholarships both at SEU and during their time at APU. Tuition, deposit, tech fee, and international insurance will be billed by St. Edward’s and aid will apply as it usually does in other semesters on campus. Housing and other expenses will be billed externally. Aid might support these costs, but consult your financial aid advisor.  

Scholarships available for study abroad include, but are not limited to: 

APU on Instagram

APU on Instagram

Follow @ritsumeikanapu on Instagram to learn more about student life at APU.

  • SEU Study Abroad Scholarship: Scholarship offered to SEU students with financial need. Students will receive an email from Study Abroad after admission regarding applying to this scholarship. 
  • SEU Ayako Isami Lawson Study Abroad Memorial Endowed Scholarship (Lawson Scholarship): Scholarship offered to SEU students studying abroad in Japan. Students will receive an email from Study Abroad after admission regarding applying to this scholarship.
  • Freeman Asia: Scholarship for students studying abroad in Asia. Fellowships Office on campus will co-advise on this application.
  • Bridging Scholarships: Scholarship for American undergraduates studying abroad in Japan. Scholarships are $2,500 - $4,000.
  • Tanaka & Green Scholarship: Supports 1 semester ($4,000) or one academic year ($5,000) of study in Japan. 
  • Toshizo Watanabe Study Abroad Scholarship Program: Scholarship for one semester or one year of study in Japan. 
  • Gilman Scholarship: U.S. State Department scholarship offered to Pell Grant recipients. Study abroad and Fellowships Office on campus will co-advise on this application.
  • Diversity Abroad: Diversity Abroad has partnered with several organizations to offer study abroad grants and scholarships for minority/low-income students.
  • Fund for Education Abroad: Scholarships of up to $10,000 and ongoing support to minority and first-generation college students.
  • Boren Awards: U.S. State Department Scholarship offered to those interested in National Security work post-grad. Fellowships Office on campus will co-advise on this application.

Requirements and Application

  • Application details available on the program page in the Study Abroad Portal.
  • Minimum 2.75 GPA
  • Students must apply in their first year at SEU
  • Students must currently be, or change to, Global Studies majors
  • Understanding of the timeline: 
    • Students must attend SEU the first and fourth years of the program and attend APU the second and third years of the program. There is no option to graduate in less than four years or to NOT return to SEU for the final year (2 semesters) as all SEU students must complete 30 of their final 50 credits in residence at SEU.

Interested students, please contact Study Abroad at studyabroad [at] stedwards.edu

Learn More and Apply Now (by March 1) in our Study Abroad Portal