Going broke universities – Disappearing universities

The Going broke universities – Disappearing universities (危ない大学・消える大学 Abunai Daigaku Kieru Daigaku) is a ranking book about Japanese Universities by Japanese journalist Kiyoshi Shimano [ja], published annually since 1993.

Although there are several university rankings in Japan, most of them rank universities by their entrance difficulties often called "Hensachi" or by alumni's successes. Especially, the Hensachi Rankings have been most commonly used for university ranking.[1] From this view point, GBUDU is a typical ranking book in Japan.

The GBUDU ranks Japanese Universities in terms of the entrance difficulty and selectivity. The author's main argument is that more selective universities have better quality, and generally guarantee students better future careers. Thus people should avoid least selective universities, and try to enter more selective ones as much as they can.[2][3][4]


The GBUDU rankings are made by the average scores of Hensachi estimated by Japanese major prep school Yoyogi seminar.[2] Consequently, it can be regarded as a summary of the selectivity of Japanese universities.[5][6][7]

He prepared the following 10 scales to measure universities' entrance difficulties.

Selectivity of SA, A1, A2, and B groups.[8][9][10][11][12]
SA Most selective 15
A1 Very selective (Upper 1st class) 46
A2 Very selective (Lower 1st class) 149
B Selective (Almost equivalent to 1st class) 22
C Upper middle class
D Middle class
E Lower middle class / He defined it as the minimum level of universities that student should enter
F Lower class
G Lower class
N Least selective / The candidate universities for "Going broke universities" or "Disappearing universities"
Total [13] 778

2010 rankingsEdit

The following data is the 2010 ranking table only in Rank SA, Rank A1, Rank A2 and Rank B even though there are additionally Rank C, Rank D, Rank E, Rank F, Rank G, Rank N, Rank "on hold" and others.[14][15]

Overall Rank 2010 Region
National Universities (Alphabetical order) Public Universities (Alphabetical order) Private Universities (Alphabetical order)
SA Hokkaido Hokkaido University
Tohoku Tohoku University

Hitotsubashi University / Ochanomizu University / Tokyo Institute of Technology / Tokyo University of Foreign Studies / University of Tokyo

International Christian University / Keio University / Sophia University / Waseda University
Chubu Nagoya University
Kansai Kyoto University / Osaka University
Kyushu Kyushu University
A1 Hokkaido
Tohoku Akita International University
Kanto Chiba University / Gunma University / Saitama University / Tokyo Gakugei University / Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology / University of Tsukuba / Yokohama National University Gunma Prefectural Women's University / Kanagawa University of Human Services / Saitama Prefectural University / Takasaki City University of Economics / Tokyo Metropolitan University / Yokohama City University Aoyama Gakuin University / Hosei University / Chuo University / Gakushuin University / Meiji University / Rikkyo University / Tokyo University of Science / Tsuda College
Chubu Aichi University of Education / Gifu University / Kanazawa University / Nagoya Institute of Technology / Shinshu University Aichi Prefectural University / Nagoya City University / Tsuru University
Kansai Kobe University / Kyoto University of Education / Nara Women's University / Osaka Kyoiku University / Shiga University Kyoto Prefectural University / Nara Prefectural University / Osaka City University / Osaka Prefecture University Doshisha University / Kwansei Gakuin University / Ritsumeikan University
Chugoku Hiroshima University
Shikoku Kagawa University
Kyushu Kumamoto University / Miyazaki University / Nagasaki University
A2 Hokkaido All of the other National Universities All of the other Public Universities
Tohoku All of the other National Universities All of the other Public Universities
Kanto All of the other National Universities All of the other Public Universities Gakushuin Women's College / Japan Women's University / Meiji Gakuin University / Seijo University / St. Luke's College of Nursing / Tokyo Woman's Christian University / University of the Sacred Heart
Chubu All of the other National Universities All of the other Public Universities Nanzan University
Kansai All of the other National Universities All of the other Public Universities Doshisha Women's College of Liberal Arts / Kansai University / Kyoto University of Foreign Studies / Kyoto Women's University
Chugoku All of the other National Universities All of the other Public Universities Notre Dame Seishin University
Shikoku All of the other National Universities All of the other Public Universities
Kyushu All of the other National Universities All of the other Public Universities Seinan Gakuin University
B Hokkaido

Dokkyo University / Ferris University / Japanese Red Cross College of Nursing / Kagawa Nutrition University / Kanda University of International Studies / Kokugakuin University / Komazawa University / Mukogawa Women's University / Musashino University / Musashi University / Seikei University / Seisen University / Shibaura Institute of Technology / Shirayuri Women's University / Soka University / Tokyo University of Agriculture

Kansai Bukkyo University / Kansai Gaidai University / Kobe College / Konan University / Ryukoku University
Chugoku The Japanese Red Cross Hiroshima College of Nursing


  1. ^ 増田 晶文 "大学は学生に何ができるか" 2003
  2. ^ a b "危ない大学・消える大学 2012年版" (in Japanese). YELL books. 2011.
  3. ^ However, it is not always true that more selective universities are better for job hunting (e.g. universities in big cities such as Greater Tokyo and Greater Osaka are more competitive in Japanese job market). In fact, Shimano also regularly publishes another ranking book from this perspective (see the reference below).
  4. ^ "就職でトクする大学・損する大学ランキング 2012年版" (in Japanese). YELL books. 2011.
  5. ^ Usually prep schools provide rankings in each subject, but rarely do the whole university rankings. From this point of view, GBUDU is one of few publications which provide this data.
  6. ^ However this ranking system doesn't include several small specialist universities. For example, all of the independent medical schools are not considered, although their entrance difficulties are highly competitive. Therefore, this ranking system only includes major universities.
  7. ^ Normally, National/Public Universities and Private Universities use different sort of exams, so it's not easily comparable. Hensachi scores have a tendency to be higher with Private Universities. Shimano applies his own measurement to fix this tendency to make it more realistic.
  8. ^ This data is computed from the cumulative number of students in each group per Japanese population at 18(1,220,000 [1][permanent dead link]), and all Japanese university students at 18(60% of the population, i.e. 732,000 [2][permanent dead link]).
  9. ^ The number of undergraduate students in the same year in SA is 47,353, in A1 is 82,970, in A2 is 91,938, and in B is 37,781.
  10. ^ This counted number includes international students, so rigorously, the national selectivity would be smaller than these numbers. For example, The selectivity of SA without international students is 3.8% and 6.4% (originally 3.9% and 6.5%).
  11. ^ Hensachi is a statistic indicator which represents a position of a sample group. The 50 of Hensachi means average, above 50 means higher than average, and below 50 means lower than average.
    It is estimated by using the following equation.
    Hensachi = [z-score] x 10 + 50.
    The Hensachi in this diagram is calculated from the selectivity percentage (i.e. one-tailed P-value).
  12. ^ some vocational schools are reasonably selective. Thus it doesn't mean all university students are academically more talented than non-university students. Plus, the academic ability also depends on the subject and field of study. Therefore, we have to see the diagram as a rough indication.
  13. ^ According to MEXT, there are 86 national universities, 95 public universities, and 597 private universities in 2010.[3] Archived 2011-03-23 at the Wayback Machine In addition, there are also 26 public 2 year colleges and 369 private 2 year colleges, thus we often also count this number in the total number of universities (i.e. 1173 universities). However this ranking book doesn't contain 2 year colleges.
  14. ^ Going broke universities-Disappearing universities|2020 version(in Japanese)
  15. ^ "危ない大学・消える大学 2010年版" (in Japanese). YELL books. 2009.

External linksEdit