Modes of Training

Our program is composed of various modes of training: lectures, individual supervision, practicum, and field trips. We believe that a mix of different modes of training helps enhance our program by helping students learn by themselves and from each other.

- Lectures: Most courses are given in the form of lectures. Our lecture classes (modules) run with an average of five students – small enough to encourage questions and discussions.

- Individual Supervision: This is an essential training mode for thesis preparation, with required Thesis 1 (A) and (B) courses, as well as optional meetings held outside regular classroom hours by appointment.

- Practicum: The customs practicum features lectures, workshops, and seminars, and involves visits to regional customs, policy implementation/enforcement, examination, and other management issues. The practicum also involves the presentation of a paper and an additional opportunity to attend workshops led by the Japanese Customs Administration teaching staff. AGU houses the WTO Research Center (WRS) for international trade and WTO issues, which was established in 2003 and is located on Aoyama Campus. WRS studies the benefits of trade as it relates to safety, environment, and cost/price issues in the context of the world economy. This center is open to scholars pursuing WTO, FTA/EPA, or other related issues to enhance their research work.

- Field Trips: During the field trips, scholars visit private firms, public offices, and cultural sites to acquire practical knowledge and a feeling for the Japanese economy and society. In the program, we try to present scholars with the contrasting realities of the Japanese economy.

Academic Curriculum and Courses in 2020

The following courses are offered during 2020-2021. Please bear the notes in mind as follows;
1. A minimum of 30 credits is required to graduate.
2. Master's Thesis I (A) & I (B) are compulsory to write the thesis under a supervisor whom students are required to choose from the full-time faculty members (Hiroshi Yasuda / Jiro Usugami / Sean M Hackett / Chie Yorozu) upon respective research themes.
3. Japanese language courses (non-credit) are offered both in Spring and Autumn semesters.

Course Title Credit Semester Instructor
Strategic Management
Competitive Strategy Ⅰ 2 Spring Takao Nomakuchi
Competitive Strategy Ⅱ 2 Autumn Takao Nomakuchi
Management Ⅰ 2 Spring Jiro Usugami
Management Ⅱ 2 Autumn Jiro Usugami
Organizational Management Ⅰ 2 Spring Chie Yorozu
Organizational Management Ⅱ 2 Autumn Chie Yorozu
Multinational Financial Management Ⅰ 2 Autumn Akinori Tomohara
Innovation Management I 2 Spring Sean M Hackett
Innovation Management II 2 Autumn Sean M Hackett
Intellectual Property Rights
Intellectual Property Rights Ⅰ 2 Spring Tatsuya Saito/Tomoyuki Kanai/Yuichiro Shinma
Intellectual Property Rights Ⅱ 2 Autumn Tatsuya Saito/Tomoyuki Kanai/Yuichiro Shinma
IPR Enforcement at the Border 2 Spring Kazunori Umekado
Copyright Law 2 Spring Hiroko Yamamoto/Atsushi Okada
Customs Administration
Practicum in Customs Administration 2 Autumn Takashi Matsumoto
Customs Law 2 Spring Hiroshi Imagawa
Customs Tariff Law 2 Spring Hiroshi Imagawa
Customs Reforms & Modernization 2 Autumn Tomonori Nakamura/Hiroyuki Kobayashi
Research Methodology
Master's Thesis Ⅰ (A) *Required 2 Spring Yasuda/Usugami/Hackett/Yorozu
Master's Thesis Ⅰ (B) *Required 2 Autumn Yasuda/Usugami/Hackett/Yorozu
Statistical Analysis 2 Spring Michiko Miyamoto
Academic Writing 2 Spring Hitomi Ametani
Japanese language No credit Spring & Autumn Yuko Takami

Academic Calendar

2020-2021 Academic Year


April 1
Academic Orientation/Master Thesis Orientation (Entrance ceremony: cancelled in the 2020-2021 academic year)
Japanese Class/Medical Check-up/Fitness Center Orientation (Cancelled in the 2020-2021 academic year)
May 1
Spring Semester Begins
May 18
Course Registration of the First Semester ends
August 13
Spring Semester Ends
August 14 - September 12
Summer Break


September 14
Autumn Semester Begins
September 23
Course Registration of the Second Semester ends
Early October
Interim Presentation
October 30 - November 1
Aoyama Campus Festival
December 23 - January 7
Winter Break
January 8
Autumn Semester Resumes
January 10(TBA)
Submission of Master's Thesis
February 2
Autumn Semester Ends
February 3
Spring Break Begins
Late February
Final Presentation and Defense
March (Tentative)
Farewell Party
March 27
Graduation Ceremony

Thesis titles of the academic year 2018-2019 graduates

For your reference, the following is a list of thesis titles during the academic year 2018-2019.

  1. Improvement of the Strategic Management of Intellectual Property Rights Protection and Border Enforcement: The Case of Azerbaijan Customs
  2. A Holistic Approach for Strengthening IPR Border Enforcement in Bhutan
  3. Strengthening the IPR Border Enforcement by the General Department of Customs and Excise of Cambodia (GDCE)
  4. Implementation of Institutional Approach, Utilizing Key Performance Indicators Towards Enhancing Motivation in Directorate General of Customs and Excise
  5. Lao Customs Officers and the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC): Information gap and its staff’s level of readiness
  6. Effect of Knowledge Culture on Maldives Customs Service’s Performance
  7. Exploring the Technology Acceptance Model (TAM): Measuring the Intention of Customs Officers to Adopt Blockchain Technology to Help Combat Counterfeits and Facilitate Legitimate Trade
  8. Employee Engagement and Organizational Performance In The Public Sector: The Case Of The Namibia Ministry of Finance
  9. Modern Management of Intellectual Property in Internal Organisation and External Exploitation
  10. Factors Hindering Female Representation in Top Management Positions in Tanzania: A Study of Cultural, Organisational and Behavioural Issues and their Interplay in Creating Barriers

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