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2021 Survey of Japanese Language Education

About the 2021 “Survey of Japanese Language Education”

The understanding and tolerance for diverse cultures nurtured through the study of foreign languages and cultures are now more important than ever. Japanese language education also serves a critical role in connecting Japan with the rest of the world. We would like to express our profound respect for the instructors and related persons active in Japanese-language educational organisations throughout the world, who have undertaken this vital activity. The Japan Foundation conducts a survey of Japanese-language educational organisations once every three years. The 2021 survey is a continuation of the previous survey conducted in 2018, and we are contacting your organisation to request your kind cooperation. In the previous survey, we confirmed that 3.85 million people are studying the Japanese language at 19,000 organizations in 142 countries and regions around the world. Comparing the results from 1979 survey, for which The Japan Foundation consistently used the same survey method, we can see that the number of organizations providing Japanese language education has increased 16 times, and the number of students studying Japanese has grown 30 times. In addition to publicising a survey report in Japanese and English based on the 2021 survey in the same manner as the 2018 survey, we will also publicise the information of organisations conducting Japanese-language education in a database on The Japan Foundation website to disseminate the survey results widely throughout society. There is no other globally conducted survey of a similar nature, and the results of this survey are used in the activities of researchers, international exchange organisations, and Japanese-language educational organisations throughout the world. We also hope that the results of this survey can be utilized in the educational activities of all the organisations participating in the survey.

If you have any comments or questions regarding this survey, please contact the local survey implementing organisation or The Japan Foundation, Japanese-Language Department, Planning and Coordination Section Survey Team ( In order for a greater number of people to gain an understanding of the state of Japanese-language education, and for the results of our survey to reflect the most up-to-date information with as many organisations as possible, we sincerely request your kind cooperation.

September 2021
The Japan Foundation

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