Tohoku Imperial University
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Tohoku Imperial University
Tohoku University
Tohoku University logo.svg
Motto (Research First Principle)
TypePublic (National)
EstablishedJune 22, 1907
EndowmentUS$1.3 billion
(JP¥120,138 billion)
PresidentHideo Ohno
Administrative staff
Other students
1,346 (international students)
Location, ,
2.5 km²
Colors  Purple
AthleticsTCAA, SEN6 [ja]
AffiliationsAPRU, AEARU, HeKKSaGOn, T.I.M.E., RENKEI

Tohoku University (?, T?hoku daigaku), or Tohokudai (, T?hokudai), located in Sendai, Miyagi in the T?hoku Region, Japan, is a Japanese national university. It was the third Imperial University in Japan, the top three Designated National University along with the University of Tokyo and Kyoto University[1] and selected as a Top Type university of Top Global University Project by the Japanese government. In 2020, the Times Higher Education ranked Tohoku University the top university in Japan.[2][3]

In 2016, Tohoku University had 10 faculties, 16 graduate schools and 6 research institutes, with a total enrollment of 17,885 students.[4] The university's three core values are "Research First ()," "Open-Doors (?)," and "Practice-Oriented Research and Education (?)."


Albert Einstein visit Tohoku Imperial University in 1922.
Tohoku University (Katahira campus Main Gate)

On June 22, 1907, the university was established under the name Tohoku Imperial University (, T?hoku teikoku daigaku) by the Meiji government as the third Imperial University of Japan, following the Tokyo Imperial University (1877) and the Kyoto Imperial University (1897). From its start, it has advocated "Open-door" policies—it was the first university in Japan to accept female students (in 1913)[5] and foreign students.

In September 1907, it set up the faculty of Agriculture in Sapporo; the Sapporo Agricultural College (, Sapporo n? gakk?).

It set up the Science Department in 1911, and the Medical Department (formerly the Sendai Medical College) in 1915. In 1918 it ceded the Faculty of Agriculture to Hokkaido Imperial University. It subsequently launched Faculties of Engineering in 1919, and Law and Literature in 1922.[6]

In 1947 the university assumed its current name, Tohoku University, acquired a new Faculty of Agriculture. In 1949, the Faculty of Law and Literature was split to form new faculties of Law, Literature, and Economics. A Faculty of Education was added in 1949, Dentistry in 1965, and Pharmacy in 1972. Tohoku has been a national university corporation since April 2004.[6]

2011 T?hoku earthquake

Subsequent to the 2011 T?hoku earthquake and tsunami, the university was declared closed until further notice, but with a tentative re-opening date of the end of the following April.[7]

The Aobayama, Katahira, Amamiya, and Kawauchi campuses are all at least 12 kilometers (7.5 mi) from the ocean, towards the mountains, and therefore suffered no damage resulting from the tsunami. No deaths or serious injuries within the faculty and student body were reported on campus grounds. However, earthquake damage lead to the closure of 27 buildings and caused millions of dollars of damage to equipment. Classes have resumed normally since early May 2011 and plans for restoring, reinforcing or replacing damaged buildings are underway.

The radiology department has been actively measuring radiation levels throughout the city of Sendai since the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant meltdown, which is about 100 kilometers south. So far no alarming levels of radiation have been detected.


City locator 14.svg Campus locations

Principal four campuses are in the Sendai City, Japan;

  • Katahira (, Katahira)
Administration Unit. and Principal institutes
  • Kawauchi (, Kawauchi)
North-Kawauchi; The freshmen and sophomore of all undergraduates
South-Kawauchi; Law, Education, Economics, Letters
  • Seiryo (, Seiry?)
Medicine, Dentistry
  • Aobayama (, Aobayama)
Science, Engineering, Pharmacy, Agriculture

Amamiya campus and some institutes transferred to the new extension at Aobayama campus in April 2017 [1].


Graduate School of Engineering (Research Lab Complex)

Faculties (10)

  • Arts and Letters
  • Education
  • Law
  • Economics
  • Science
  • Medicine
  • Dentistry
  • Pharmaceutical Sciences
  • Engineering
    • Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
    • Information and Intelligent Systems
    • Applied Chemistry, Chemical Engineering and Bio molecular Engineering
    • Materials Science and Engineering
    • Civil Engineering and Architecture
  • Agriculture

Graduate Schools (15)

  • Arts and Letters
  • Education
  • Law
  • Economics and Management
  • Science
  • Medicine
  • Dentistry
  • Pharmaceutical Sciences
  • Engineering
  • Agricultural Sciences
  • International Cultural Studies
  • Information Sciences
  • Life Sciences
  • Environmental Studies
  • Educational Informatics Research Division / Education Division

Professional graduate schools (3)

  • Law School
  • School of Public Policy
  • Accounting School

The University's Research Center for Prediction of Earthquakes and Volcanic Eruptions is represented on the national Coordinating Committee for Earthquake Prediction.[8]

Research institutes

National Collaborative Research Institute
  • Institute of Multidisciplinary Research for Advanced Materials (, Tagen Busshitsu Kagaku Kenky?jo)[13]
  • International Research Institute of Disaster Science (, Saigai Kagaku Kokusai Kenky?jo)[14]

Centers and facilities

University library

  • Tohoku University Library
  • Medical Library
  • Kita-Aobayama Library
  • Engineering Library
  • Agricultural Library

University hospital

  • Tohoku University Hospital Seiryo

Inter-Department Institutes for Education and Research (9)

  • Center for Northeast Asian Studies
  • Center for the Advancement of Higher Education
    • Health Administration Center
    • University Counseling Center
    • Admission Center
    • Center for Career Support
  • The Center for Academic Resources and Archives
  • Institute for International Advanced Research and Education Organization
  • Cyclotron and Radioisotope Center
  • New Industry Creation Hatchery Center(NICHe)
  • Center for Interdisciplinary Research
  • Technology Center for Research and Education Activities
    • Center for Low Temperature Science
    • High-Voltage Electron Microscope Laboratory
  • Information Synergy Organization
    • Information Synergy Center (National Collaboration Institution)

Collaborating Institutions (8)

  • Office of Cooperative Research and Development
  • Office for Strategic Promotion of Basic Research
  • Center for Research Strategy and Support(CRESS)
  • Environment Conservation Research Institute
  • Center for International Exchange
  • Archaeological Research office on the Campus
  • Global Operations center
  • Campus Planning office

Administration Unit

Tohoku University Overseas Office

Tohoku University US Office
Tohoku University China Office

Biomedical Engineering Research Organization

e-learning system

  • Internet School of Tohoku University (ISTU)


  • Ibun-ryo (, Ibun ry?)
  • Josyun-ryo (, Josyun ry?)
  • Seifu-ryo (, Seif? ry?)
  • Nissyu-ryo (, Nissy? ry?)
  • Meizen-ryo (, Meizen ry?)
  • Matsukaze-ryo (, Matsukaze ry?)
  • University House Sanjo (?, University House Sanjo)
  • International House (, Kokusai k?ry? kaikan)

The 21st Century Center Of Excellence Programs

Fiscal Year Field Program Title
2002 Life Sciences Future Medical Engineering based on Bio-nanotechnology
Chemistry, material sciences International Center of Research & Education for Unexplored Chemistry
International Center of Research & Education for Materials
Information sciences, electrical and electronic engineering System Construction of Global-Network Oriented Information Electronics
Humanities A Strategic and Education Center for an Integrated Approach to Language and Cognition
2003 Medical sciences Center for Innovative Therapeutic Development for Common Diseases
Mathematics, physics, earth sciences Exploring New Science by Bridging Particle-Matter Hierarchy
Advanced Science and Technology Center for the Dynamic Earth
Mechanical, civil, architectural and other fields of engineering The Exploration of the Frontiers of Mechanical Science Based on Nanotechnology
International COE of Flow Dynamics
Social sciences Center for the Study of Social Stratification and Inequality
Gender Law and Policy Center
2004 New scientific fields Comprehensive Research and Education Center for Planning of Drug Development and Clinical Evaluation

Academic rankings

University rankings
Toyo Keizai National[15] General 7
Kawaijuku National[16] General 5
T. Reuters National[17] Research 4
WE National[18] Employment 21
Shimano National[19] Selectivity SA
QS Asia
(Asian Ranking version)[20]
General 9
ARWU Asia[21] Research 8
THE World[22] General 132
QS World[23] General 77
ARWU World[21] Research 101-150
ENSMP World[3] Alumni 13
Program rankings
Social Sciences & Humanities


Asahi National[24]Research 8
BE Success National[25]Qualification 10
BE Pass rate National[26]Qualification 9


Eduni MBA National[27]General 15
Eduni MBA World[28]General 536
Natural Sciences & Technology


Kawaijuku National[29]General 5
QS World[30]General 56


T.Reuters National[31]Research 1
T.Reuters World[31]Research 3


T.Reuters National[31]Research 2
T.Reuters World[31]Research 10


T.Reuters National[31]Research 4
T.Reuters World[31]Research 20


T.Reuters National[31]Research 7
T.Reuters World[31]Research 113


ARE Success National[32]Qualification 17
Life Sciences


T.Reuters National[31]Research 6
T.Reuters World[31]Research 142


T.Reuters National[31]Research 3
T.Reuters World[31]Research 64
* T. Reuters World rankings include non-educational institutions
The university ranking of the ratio of "president and chief executive officer of listed company"
all universities in Japan 16th[33] out of all the 744[34] universities which existed as of 2006
Source 2006 Survey[33] by Weekly Diamond ?ja? on the ranking of the universities which produced the high ratio of the graduates who hold the position of "president and chief executive officer of listed company" to all the graduates of each university

Tohoku University is one of the most prestigious universities in Japan. It can be seen in the several rankings such as shown below.

General rankings

Tohoku university has been ranked 1st in the 2020 Times Higher Education Japan University Rankings.[35]

According to 2011 QS World University Rankings[36] the university rose to 70th having dropped out of the top 100 in 2010 to 102nd, and having been 97th in the 2009 THE-QS World University Rankings (in 2010 Times Higher Education World University Rankings and QS World University Rankings parted ways to produce separate rankings).

It was also ranked 49th worldwide according to the Global University Ranking in 2009.[37]

Research performance

Tohoku is one of the top research institutions in Japan. According to Thomson Reuters, Tohoku is the 4th best research university in Japan.[17] Its research excellence is especially distinctive in Materials Science (1st in Japan, 3rd in the world), Physics (2nd in Japan, 10th in the world), Pharmacology & Toxicology (3rd in Japan, 64th in the world) and Chemistry (6th in Japan, 20th in the world).[38]

Weekly Diamond also reported that Tohoku has the 11th highest research standard in Japan in terms of research funding per researchers in COE Program.[39] In the same article, it's also ranked 9th in terms of the quality of education by GP funds per student.

In addition, Nikkei Shimbun on 2004/2/16 surveyed about the research standards in Engineering studies based on Thomson Reuters, Grants in Aid for Scientific Research and questionnaires to heads of 93 leading Japanese Research Centers, and Tohoku was placed 3rd (research planning ability 9th//informative ability of research outcome 2nd/ability of business-academia collaboration 2nd) in this ranking.[40]

According to the Qs World university rankings on 2012/9 surveyed about the general standards in Engineering&Technology field, Tohoku university was placed 56th (world), 5th(national).[41]

As Tohoku University has been emphasizing 'practical' research, Tohoku received the top place for its number of patents accepted (324) during 2009 among Japanese Universities.[42]

Graduate school rankings

Tohoku Law School is one of the most famous Law schools in Japan, as it was ranked 9th in the passing rate of Japanese Bar Examination in 2010.[43]

Eduniversal ranked Tohoku Business school as 6th in the rankings of "Excellent Business Schools nationally strong and/or with continental links " in Japan.[44]

Alumni rankings

According to the Weekly Economist's 2010 rankings, graduates from Tohoku have the 21st best employment rate in 400 major companies in Japan.[45]

Mines ParisTech : Professional Ranking World Universities ranks Tohoku University as 13th in the world in 2011 in terms of the number of alumni listed among CEOs in the 500 largest worldwide companies.[3]

Popularity and selectivity

Tohoku is one of the most selective universities in Japan. Its entrance difficulty is usually considered as one of the top in Japan.[46][47]


Successive presidents

Akihisa Inoue (left) talked with James P. Zumwalt (chargé d'affaires) and Ann Kambara at Tohoku University in 2009.

Notable people associated with Tohoku University

Many world-class celebrities have attended or served at Tohoku University.



Literature and Art

Mathematic, Economics and Business


See also


  1. ^ Designated National University | Tohoku University Global Site
  2. ^!/page/0/length/25/sort_by/rank/sort_order/asc/cols/stats
  3. ^ a b c "ENSMP World University Rankings" (PDF). École nationale supérieure des mines de Paris. 2011. Retrieved 2011.
  4. ^ Tohoku University Annual Review Tohoku University's official website accessed June 2018
  5. ^ on castle grounds,, Retrieved 17 August 2016
  6. ^ a b "History of Tohoku University Campus". Tohoku University. Retrieved 2012.
  7. ^ "Important notices from Tohoku University (11:00 AM, March 14th, 2011)".
  8. ^ Organizations with ties to CCEP CCEP, accessed 2011-03-19
  9. ^ Research Institute of Electrical Communication On Tohoku University's official website accessed at December 15, 2008
  10. ^ Institute of Development Aging and Cancer On Tohoku University's official website accessed at December 15, 2008
  11. ^ Institute of Fluid Science On Tohoku University's official website accessed at December 15, 2008
  12. ^ Institute for Material Research Archived 2007-08-17 at the Wayback Machine On Tohoku University's official website accessed at December 15, 2008
  13. ^ Institute of Multidisciplinary Research for Advanced Materials On Tohoku University's official website accessed at December 15, 2008
  14. ^ "IRIDeS - International Research Institute of Disaster Science". Retrieved 2015.
  15. ^ "Truly Strong Universities" (in Japanese). Toyo Keizai. 2010. Retrieved 2011.
  16. ^ "Kawai 30 Top Japanese Universities". Kawaijuku. 2001. Retrieved 2011.
  17. ^ a b "Thomson Reuters 20 Top research institutions in Japan". Thomson Reuters. 2011. Retrieved 2011. (this raking includes 5 non-educational institutions)
  18. ^ "Employment rate in 400 major companies rankings" (in Japanese). Weekly Economist. 2011. Retrieved 2011.
  19. ^ "GBUDU University Rankings" (in Japanese). YELL books. 2009. Retrieved 2011.
  20. ^ "QS Asian University Rankings". QS Quacquarelli Symonds Limited. 2016. Retrieved 2017.
  21. ^ a b "Academic Ranking of World Universities". Institute of Higher Education, Shanghai Jiao Tong University. 2017. Retrieved 2017.
  22. ^ "THE World University Rankings". Times Higher Education. 2018. Retrieved 2017.
  23. ^ "QS World University Rankings". QS Quacquarelli Symonds Limited. 2018. Retrieved 2017.
  24. ^ Asahi Shimbun University rankings 2010 "Publification rankings in Law (Page 4)" (PDF) (in Japanese). Asahi Shimbun. 2010. Retrieved 2011.
  25. ^ "Bar Exam Successful Applicants rankings" (in Japanese). Shikaku Seek. 2010. Retrieved 2011.
  26. ^ "Bar Exam Pass rate rankings" (in Japanese). Shikaku Seek. 2010. Retrieved 2011.
  27. ^ "Business School Ranking in Japan". Eduniversal. 2010. Retrieved 2011.
  28. ^ "University and business school ranking in 5 palms (Top100)". Eduniversal. 2010. Retrieved 2011.
    "University and business school ranking in 4 palms (Top101-300)". Eduniversal. 2010. Retrieved 2011.
    "University and business school ranking in 3 palms (Top301-696)". Eduniversal. 2010. Retrieved 2011.
    "University and business school ranking in 2 palms (Top697-896)". Eduniversal. 2010. Retrieved 2011.
  29. ^ "Kawaijuku japanese universities rankings in Engineering field" (in Japanese). Kawaijuku. 2012. Retrieved 2012.
  30. ^ "QS topuniversities world rankings in Engineering field". Topuniversities. 2012. Retrieved 2012.
  31. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l "Thomson Reuters 10 Top research institutions by subject in Japan" (in Japanese). Thomson Reuters. 2010. Retrieved 2011.
  32. ^ "Architects Registration Exam Successful Applicants rankings" (in Japanese). Shikaku Seek. 2010. Retrieved 2011.
  33. ^ a b Weekly Diamond The ranking of the universities which produced the high ratio of the graduates who hold the position of "president and chief executive officer of listed company" to all the graduates of each university(in Japanese)
  34. ^ The number of universities and students|National Universities Association(in Japanese)
  35. ^ ?THE2020|THE
  36. ^ "QS World University Rankings 2011/12". Quacquarelli Symonds Limited. Archived from the original on 1 October 2011. Retrieved 2012.
  37. ^
  38. ^ "Thomson Reuters 20 Top research institutions in Japan" (in Japanese). Thomson Reuters. Archived from the original on 2011-06-13. (this raking includes non-educational institutions)
  39. ^ "" ? 2010/2/27
  40. ^ "wHw?i04.2.22j". Archived from the original on 7 May 2015. Retrieved 2015.
  41. ^ "QS world university ranking(2012)". Retrieved 2012.
  42. ^ (in Japanese)2009, Japanese patent office, accessed May 3rd 2011
  43. ^ "2010?(22?)? -seek-". Retrieved 2015.
  44. ^ "University and business school ranking in Japan". Retrieved 2015.
  45. ^ "Employment rate in 400 major companies rankings" (in Japanese). Weekly Economist. 2011. Retrieved 2011.
  46. ^ e.g. Yoyogi seminar published Hensachi (the indication showing the entrance difficulties by prep schools) rankings "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2011-04-22. Retrieved .CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  47. ^ Japanese journalist Kiyoshi Shimano ranks its entrance difficulty as SA (most selective/out of 11 scales) in Japan. 2012 (in Japanese). YELL books. 2011.
  48. ^ Garcia, Alejandro V.; Cowles, Robert A.; Kato, Tomoaki; Hardy, Mark A. (2012-05-01). "Morio Kasai: a remarkable impact beyond the Kasai procedure". Journal of Pediatric Surgery. 47 (5): 1023-1027. doi:10.1016/j.jpedsurg.2012.01.065. ISSN 1531-5037. PMC 3356564. PMID 22595595.
  49. ^ CNN rebroadcasting NHK, 13 March 2011.
  50. ^ "?: (zh) C?oyuán míngrén: K?ichuàng méngg? y?yán yánji? huángj?n shíqí de q?ng gé ?r tài [Famous man of the steppe: Chinggaltai, who pioneered the golden age of Mongolian language research]". People's Daily. 2007-07-19. Retrieved .

External links

Coordinates: 38°15?15?N 140°52?25?E / 38.25417°N 140.87361°E / 38.25417; 140.87361

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