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04. Motivational Essay

The Motivational Essay (動機書) is where you explain why you want to become Japanese, and anything else you think the examiners need to know.

Only a single page form is given, however you can copy it and use it write as many pages as you like.  Unfortunately, very little advice is given as to what kind of things you should write or how long it should be.  

Although the official instructions only state that you should give your "specific reason", books on the topic more or less agree that your essay should touch on the following items:
1. Past
2. Present
3. Motivation
4. Current Living Status
5. Family's Living Status
6. Future
7. Goals and Dreams
8. Your place in Japanese Society
and of course
9. Strong Desire to be naturalized

Of course there is no recipie for success, but following the above list couldn't hurt - especially since you would have to touch on most factors that may be relevant to your decision.  In fact, while writing the essay, you may learn more about your reasons yourself, or even change your mind.

Note that the essay has to be written in Japanese, by hand, by you.

They may or may not read it when you hand it in - and they may or may not ask you ro read it out loud to make sure they you can read it - so using Google Translate or something is a very bad idea.  If the handwriting obviously isn't yours or the wording is obviously much more sophistocated than your speach because you had a friend write it for you, that's probably not going to reflect well on your application either.