How to apply

Before you begin

To qualify for consideration, you must have:

  • A Master’s, MBA, or higher degree from a recognized institution, or exemption from the DBA Program Committee. Inquire by early February if you plan to seek this exemption. For specifics, see “Qualification of Applications” in the Hitotsubashi ICS DBA Application Package
  • Full-time work experience of 2 years or longer, or exemption from the DBA Program Committee for full-time students

Key admission criteria include:

  • Sound knowledge of and interest in business scholarship, as demonstrated by the research proposal described in your application
  • English test scores: Above 109 in TOEFL iBT, 7.5 in IELTS Academic or equivalent
  • An expected GMAT score of 600 or higher
  • An expected GRE score of 160 or higher on Quantitative Reasoning and 150 or higher on Verbal Reasoning

The DBA admission period starts in March. Application deadlines and interview dates differ slightly with the calendar, but the table below shows general guidelines. At the latest, the application package is available for download in January.

For inquiries, e-mail to:

The application process

Our admissions process entails both an application and an interview. We encourage you to submit your application as early as possible during the application period.

STEP 1Application period
(March 22, 2021 - April 2, 2021)
By post only, with payment of application fee during application period:
STEP 2First Screening
(April 16, 2021)
First screening based on written application documents.
STEP 3Interview
(April 23, 2021)
30-minute discussion based on written application documents if selected in the first screening.
Location: Hitotsubashi ICS, Chiyoda, Tokyo (National Center of Sciences)
The interview method is subject to change depending on circumstances.
STEP 4Announcement of final result
(May 20, 2021)
By email and/or post.
Decisions will not be communicated by phone or fax.
STEP 5Period for completion of enrollment
(May 24, 2021 - May 28, 2021)
Pay your matriculation fee to be officially enrolled and registered.


  • See the Hitotsubashi ICS DBA Application Package 2021-2022 for more detailed information.
  • Submit all application documents in English. If your original documents or certificates are written in other languages, please attach a certified English translation.
  • We will consider only complete applications. If your applications is incomplete upon the application deadline, it will not be considered.
  • We will not return application documents to applicants.
  • All official documents must be originals; photocopies are not acceptable.
  • Please fill in your application forms using an electronic device.
Application Form A Your personal details
Master’s degree certificate and official transcript Must be issued by the registrar of the university or college and signed by the President or the Dean of the university
Career accomplishments Description of your business background and major business accomplishments to date (Maximum length: 3 pages, double-spaced)
Personal statement to include: (1) Intended field of specialization (e.g. marketing, organization, strategy, etc.) and specific topics of interest within that field
(2) Research proposal (i.e., title, intended topic of dissertation and intended research method)
(3) Explanation of how a doctoral degree from Hitotsubashi ICS will assist achievement of career goals (Maximum length of personal statement: 10 pages, double-spaced)
Two letters of reference
(Application Form B)
(1) From persons who have been directly responsible for assessing the candidate’s work and/or academic performance
(2) Preferably one from an employer, and one from an academic supervisor
Official GMAT or GRE score report Applicants must demonstrate general aptitude for business studies, as indicated by their scores in the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) or Graduate Record Examination (GRE).
We strongly recommend that candidates take the GMAT or GRE at least one month before submitting their application. Applicants are to have officials send Hitotsubashi ICS the official score report directly.
GMAT: University Code No.: F6R-Q5-52
GRE: University Code No.: 1617
You are required to ask GMAT officials to send us a paper-based official scores in case of having taking it 5+ years ago. Hitotsubashi ICS does not accept unofficial scores, photocopies, or faxed score reports that are more than ten years old.
Official TOEFL or IELTS score report We strongly recommend taking the TOEFL/IELTS at least one month before submitting their application. If English is the applicant’s native language, or if the applicant earned a Bachelor’s or higher degree from a program conducted entirely in English, or worked for more than three years in an English-speaking country s/he is not required to submit a TOEFL/IELTS score.
Have TOEFL/IELTS send official scores directly to:
TOEFL: University Code No.: 8682
IELTS: Department: Hitotsubashi ICS Admissions Office
University: Hitotsubashi University
Address: National Center of Sciences, 2-1-2 Hitotsubashi, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 101-8439, Japan
Proof of paid application feeA non-refundable application fee of JPY 30,000.
For further details, please see the Application Package and the webpage of Hitotsubashi University.
Copy of passport A photocopy of the details page(s) of your passport, indicating applicant’s name, photo, passport number, date of birth, and dates of issuance/expiry. ** If you do not require a student visa, you need not submit this item.

How and where to send your application

All application documents must be sent in one envelope to the following address by either registered mail or courier service. Please write “DBA Application Documents” in red on the envelope.

Send only full and complete applications to:
Administrations Office
Hitotsubashi University Business School
School of International Corporate Strategy
National Center of Sciences, 5th Floor 2-1-2 Hitotsubashi, Chiyoda-ku Tokyo 101-8439, Japan


Applicants who have disabilities or special needs that require accommodating in the application process and/or once they start their program at Hitotsubashi ICS should notify the Hitotsubashi ICS Admissions Office by email to <> two months prior to the starting date of application period. (If you do not know the application period, please contact us as well. Although the Hitotsubashi ICS Admissions Office will accept such notifications after this date, it may not be able to make arrangements necessary to accommodate disabilities/special needs in time for the screening and/or the program starting date.) Requesting such type of accommodation in the application process does not obligate you to apply to Hitotsubashi ICS. Even if you are undecided about whether or not to apply to Hitotsubashi ICS, you may still make such requests.
NB: Depending on the nature of the accommodation requested, it may take some time for the Hitotsubashi ICS Admissions Office to respond.