Engineer/Specialist of Humanities/International Services

This section explains the visa (status of residence) for “Engineer/Specialist of Humanities/International Services”.

What is it about?

The most common visas held by foreign nationals working in Japan are for “Engineer/Specialist of Humanities/International Services.

The following activities are eligible:

Activities that require technology or knowledge in the fields of science, engineering or other natural sciences, or in the fields of law, economics, sociology or other humanities, or that require thinking or sensitivity based on foreign culture, which are conducted under contract with public and private organizations in Japan

The following is a description of what specific jobs are covered.


Engineer is work that requires knowledge and skills in science, engineering, etc.


  • Technical development work at a manufacturer, etc.
  • system engineering work
  • Production control

Specialist of Humanities

Specialist of Humanities is work that requires knowledge and skills in law, economics, sociology, etc.


  • Marketing Research.
  • public relations work
  • accounting work
  • legal affairs

International Services

International Services is work that requires thinking or sensitivity based on foreign cultures.


  • Interpretation and translation services
  • Language teachers (for private language schools)
  • trade operations

Requirements for Engineer/Specialist of Humanities/International Services.

There are several requirements when applying for “Engineer/Specialist of Humanities/International Services”.

Education and work experience

You must have graduated from a university or vocational school.

The university you graduated from can be either the university in Japan or the one in foreign country.

You must have at least a bachelor’s degree.

If you are a graduate of a vocational school, you must have graduated from a school in Japan that grants “Professional Engineer” status.

If you cannot meet the educational requirements, you need to have 10 years of work experience.

(If you will work in International Services, you need 3 years or more of work experience)

The relevance of the content of the job to what was taken at the university or vocational school

The job description must be relevant to what you learned at university or other institutions.


A person who studied information processing in college works as a systems engineer.

A person who studied law in college works as a law clerk.

If you graduate from a vocational school, the relevance of your work and your course work will be checked more strictly.

If you are a graduate of a university and want to work as an interpreter/translator or as a teacher at a language school, you do not need to have any connection to your course of study.

However, this is limited to jobs where the native language is used.

If you have graduated from a vocational school, relevance is required even if the work is interpreting and translating.

The same or better treatment as the Japanese.

It is necessary to provide the same or better treatment as Japanese people with the same career and occupation.

Not only in terms of salary, but also in terms of opportunities for raises, etc. must be granted as well.

Even if you are a foreign employee, Japanese labor laws and regulations apply to.

Contracts with institutions in Japan

It can be a contract of employment as well as a delegated, commissioned contract.

The business continuity and stability of the employer is also required.

The need to hire foreign nationals

If there is no need to hire a foreign national, it may be disallowed.

For example, it may be difficult to hire a foreigner for interpreting and translation work where the foreigner has very few opportunities to use his or her native language.

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