Admission Information

Examination Subjects and Instructions for Subject Choice
(Master's Program, Graduate School of Bioagricultural Sciences, Nagoya University, beginning in April 2018)

Title of Subject

  1. Applied Mathematics
  2. Strength of Materials
  3. Physical Chemistry
  4. Organic Chemistry
  5. Biological Chemistry
  6. Genetics
  7. Microbiology
  8. Cell Biology
  9. Plant Physiology
  10. Animal Physiology
  11. Animal Morphology
  12. Insect Science
  13. Ecology
  14. Hydrology
  15. Soil Science
  16. Forest Resources Management
  17. Biomass Sciences
  18. Natural Polymer Chemistry
  19. Plant Production Sciences
  20. Animal Production Sciences
  21. Fish Biology
  22. Plant Protection
  23. Agricultural Economics
  24. International Agricultural Sciences

Select any two subjects from Nos. 1 to 24.
Applicants who major in “Biofunctional Chemistry” (Applied Molecular Biosciences) are recommended to select two subjects from among Nos. 3, 4, 5, 7 and 18.

<Content and reference books>

The material covered in each subject area and examples of reference books for each subject are as follows.

Applied Mathematics
[Content] A basic knowledge of the applied mathematics used in bio-agricultural sciences is required. Mathematics items on the test include linear ordinary differential equations, Maclaurin expansions, Taylor expansions, Laplace transforms, matrices and Fourier series.
[References] The Higher Mathematics for the Engineer (separate volume) (Baifukan); The Differential Equation by the Illustration (Baifukan)
Strength of Materials
[Content] Basic understanding of the strength of materials is tested. Knowledge of the strength of wood is necessary for analyzing the mechanical behavior for using wood in architecture and civil engineering. Concepts covered include stress and strain, tensile and compressive stresses in materials, shearing force and bending moment of beams, stresses and deflection of the simple beam, torsion of a circular shaft, and buckling of a thin column. The principles and applications of stress-strain measurements are also included.
[Reference] Strength of Materials, Part 1, by S. Timoshenko, Krieger Pub. Co.; 3rd ed., 1983. (textbook)
Physical Chemistry
[Content] Basic knowledge of physical chemistry, specifically of the properties of gases, thermodynamics, phase equilibria of pure substances, the properties of mixtures, chemical equilibria, electrochemistry, reaction rates and absorbance measurements is required.
[Reference] Elements of Physical Chemistry, by Peter Atkins & Julio de Paula, (textbook)
Organic Chemistry
[Content] This subject covers physicochemical properties and structures of organic compounds, structural analysis, synthesis, and reactions and their mechanisms. Organic chemistry of biogenic substances such as amino acids, carbohydrates and lipids is also included.
[References] K. Peter C. Vollhardt and Neil E. Schore “Organic Chemistry, Structure and Function” 6th ed., 2011, W.H. Freeman; Groundwater, Paul W.; Taylor, Giles A. “Organic Chemistry for Students of Health and Life Sciences”, 4th ed., 1997, Longman Publishing Group
Biological Chemistry
[Content] Basic knowledge of biomolecules, metabolism, and enzymes is required; e.g., (1) structures, molecular natures, and functions of biomolecules such as sugars, lipids, amino acids, coenzymes, biomacromolecules (proteins, nucleic acids, and glycans), and properties of biomembranes, (2) biochemical principles of experimental methods used for separation and purification of such biomolecules, for structural analysis of the biomolecules, and for examining their molecular natures and functions, (3) biosynthesis and degradation pathways of sugars, lipids, amino acids, coenzymes, biomacromolecules, etc., together with energy metabolism and metabolic regulation, and (4) enzyme kinetics, regulation of enzyme activity, and post-translational modification of proteins (including enzymes).
[Reference] Lehninger Principles of Biochemistry (W. H. Freeman and Company)
[Content] Basic knowledge and understanding of the Mendelian rules of inheritance as the principle of genetics and the genetic mechanisms of various genetic phenomena observed in animals and plants at the levels of genes, genomes, chromosomes, cells, individuals and populations are required. This area also covers gene and chromosome mutations,  inheritance of quantitative traits, the non-Mendelian rules of inheritance known as epigenetics, population genetics, and the application of genetic engineering and genome science to animal and plant breeding.
[References] Biology (Campbell NA and Reece JB, Pearson Education, Inc.); Essential Genetics: A Genomics Perspective (Daniel H et al., Jones and Bartlett Publishers, Inc.)
[Content] This area covers classification, morphology, cell structure and function, physiology, ecology, metabolism, gene expression, DNA replication of prokaryotic (Bacteria and Archaea) and eukaryotic microorganisms.
[Reference] Brock Biology of Microorganisms (13th ed. International Edition, Pearson Education, Inc.) (study-aid) or similar reference
Cell Biology
[Content] All areas related to cell biology of eukaryotes are covered. Especially, methods for cellular analysis; basic cell structure; chromosomes; regulation of gene expression; cell cycle and cell division; membrane transport; intracellular compartments and transport; signal transduction; cytoskeleton, cell adhesion and extracellular matrix; formation of generative cells, fertilization, and differentiation; basic cellular functions in the immune system, neuronal system, and cancer.
[Reference] Essential Cell Biology (4th ed., Garland Publishing, Inc.) Molecular Biology of the Cell (5th ed, Garland Science)
Plant Physiology
[Content] Questions focus on various functions of plants and their mechanisms such as photosynthesis, nutrient uptake and assimilation, growth and development, and responses and adaptation to environments. More specifically, questions may include those on photosynthetic electron transport and carbon dioxide fixation, assimilation of inorganic nutrients such as nitrogen, functions and biogenesis of plastids, respiration, structures and functions of plant hormones, meristems, organ formation and differentiation, photomorphogenesis, tropisms, germination, flowering, substances important for plant functions, long range transport of substances in the plant body, and water relation and physiology.
[References] Plant Physiology 3rd or later editions, eds. Taiz, L. and Zeiger, Sinauer Associates, Inc.
Animal Physiology
[Content] These questions test the applicant’s basic knowledge of animal physiology. The major areas covered are the nervous system, sensory and motor systems, cardiovascular system, blood and immune system, respiratory system, endocrine system, renal system and gastrointestinal system.
[Reference] Berne, Levy “Principles of Physiology”
Animal Morphology
[Content] Basic structures of mammalian and avian bodies are covered, mainly focusing on domestic animals. The range of questions includes those on anatomical macrostructures and ultrastructures at the electron microscopic level, in all organs of the body. Cytology and histology are also covered.
[References] General textbooks for anatomy, histology, and cytology, used in animal science faculty lectures
Insect Science
[Contents] Basic knowledge of physiology, biochemistry and pathology of insects is required: e.g., growth/development, digestion/nutrition/ circulatory systems, metabolism/reproduction/embryonic development, endocrinology, pathogen/disease syndrome, and utilization/ applications of insect function/insect pathogen.
[References] Insect Molecular Genetics (2nd ed., by Marjorie A. Hoy; Academic Press); Insect Physiology and Biochemistry (2nd ed., by James L. Nation; CRC Press); Insect Pathogens (S. Patricia Stock, John Vanderberg, Itamar Glazer and Noel Boemare (eds); CABIntl)
[Content] An understanding of the essential elements of ecology is required; e.g., the structures and functions of biological populations, communities, and ecosystems; interactions among organisms and between organisms and abiotic factors; patterns and processes of evolution in diverse environments. A basic knowledge of biology, including genetics, physiology, and ethology, is also necessary.
[References] Introduction to Basic Ecology ,2nd ed. (in Japanese; The Ecological Society of Japan, ed., Tokyo-Kagaku-Dohjin, Tokyo, 2012); Ecology 6th ed. (in English; by Krebs CJ, Pearson Benjamin Cummings, CA, 2009)
[Content] With the biosphere as the main sphere constituting the Earth system, this area covers water, energy and material (e.g., carbon, nitrogen, soil) cycles and their related phenomena in the interactive relationships among the biome, soils and atmosphere, including the effects of human activities.
[Reference] Boundary Layer Climate. (2nd ed, by Oke TR. Routledge); Hillslope Hydrology (by Kirkby MJ. John Wiley & Sons).
Soil Science
[Content] Topics include: 1) Material and generation of soil, 2) Cation and anion holding powers of soils, 3) Composition and function of soil organic matter, 4) Soil microorganisms and their roles in nutrient cycles, 5) Soil structure and air and water in soil, 6) Forest soils, and 7) Soils under agriculture including paddy soils.
[References] Prestigious soil science textbooks from the applicant’s country.
Forest Resources Management
[Content] Basic knowledge regarding the measurement of forest resources as well as forest planning and utilization based these measurements is required. The range of subjects includes forest measurement, forest planning, remote sensing, forest road networks, forest machinery, forest operations, community forestry, and participatory forest management.
Biomass Sciences
[Content] Basic knowledge of biology, chemistry, and physics of wood and forest biomass, including the engineering properties of various wood-based materials and wood components is required.
[References] Tsoumis, G.: “Science and technology of wood - Structure, properties, utilization,” Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York, 1991; Fengel, D., Wegener, G.: “Wood: Chemistry, Ultrastructure, Reactions,” Walter de Gruyter, Berlin, 1984
Natural Polymer Chemistry
[Content] This area includes structures, biosyntheses, chemical exchanges, properties and functionalization of natural polymers such as chitin, chitosan and plant-derived polymers such as cellulose, hemicellulose and lignin. Material related to basic polymer chemistry is also included.
[References] Basic Polymer Science, Tokyokagakudozin; Secondary Xylem Formation, Kaiseisha Press;
Plant Production Sciences
[Content] Questions center on basic knowledge of crop science and horticultural science. Crop science covers crop physiology and ecology including management practices for production of food, industrial and forage crops that are cultivated on expansive farmland. Horticultural science covers pomology, vegetable crop science, floricultural science and postharvest biology. Applicants can choose questions related to either crop science or horticultural science.
[Reference] Introduction of Horticultural Science, 2nd Edition
Animal Production Sciences
[Content] Basic knowledge of animal reproduction or nutrition is required.  Animal reproduction covers physiology and technology of mammalian reproduction. Animal nutrition covers the physiological functions of nutrients and non-nutrients, and the metabolic characteristics of nutrients in mammals and birds. Applicants can choose questions related to either animal reproduction or nutrition.
[Reference] Reproductive Biology (in Japanese; edited by the Society for Reproduction and Development, Interzoo); Nutritional and Functional Chemistry, 3rd Edition (in Japanese; Asakura Shoten); Animal Nutrition(in Japanese; Asakura Shoten).
Fish Biology
[Content] Basic knowledge of the nervous system, sensory organs, and behavior of fish is required.
[Reference] Basic Physiology of Fishes (edited by Aida k and Kaneko T, Koseisha-koseikaku), Fish Neuroscience (edited by uematsu K, Oka Y, Ito H, Koseisha-Koseikaku), Encyclopedia of Fish Science (Asakura Shoten)
Plant Protection
[Content] Questions are related to basic knowledge of Plant Pathology and Applied Entomology. Major subjects include the classification of pathogens, virulence of pathogens, host plant resistance, the spread and control of plant diseases for Plant Pathology and characteristics of major pest insects, damages caused by insects and their control for Applied Entomology. Applicants must select several questions from among all questions.
[Reference] George N. Agrios “Plant Pathology” (Elsevier Academic Press)
Agricultural Economics

[Content] Economic theories of food systems and use of agricultural resource are covered, including farm management, agricultural marketing and trade, agricultural policy, agricultural organizations, food consumption, environment and agriculture, and agricultural history.

[References] Annual Report on Food, Agriculture and Rural Areas in Japan (Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries); textbooks of food and agricultural economics; textbooks of introductory micro-economics.
International Agricultural Sciences
[Contents] This subject deals with agriculture including forestry, animal husbandry and fisheries, and developments in agriculture and rural areas. Basic knowledge of agriculture, food and environments of the world, agricultural and rural development, international agricultural cooperation, will be tested. Questions concerning agricultural production and its related technologies of the world and developing countries, present status and problems in the use of agricultural products, and international cooperation for the agricultural and rural development are included. Applicants can select several questions from among all questions.
[References] Chapters 2 - 5 of General Outline of Tropical Agriculture (Written and edited by Akira Tanaka, Tsukiji Shokan); Parts 1, 3 – 5 of Economics of Agricultural Development: World Food Systems and Resource Use (George W. Norton, Jeffrey Alwang and William A. Masters, Routledge); The State of Food and Agriculture 2014 (FAO)