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I have never studied at the Yamasa institute, so I can't help you on that front, but I have read a lot about it and I have only heard good things.
I am spending 5 weeks in Japan this summer too, and I was wanting to study at somewhere like Yamasa/SILAC. In the end, I decided to go with the GENKI JACs school in Fukuoka, mainly just because the dates that the SILAC course was running were not convenient for me.
I will probably do a detailed write up when I get back. I would be interested in hearing more about your experience at Yamasa too, as I might possibly do that or something similar next year.
Are you doing 3 weeks is Sapporo and 3 in Okazaki, or all 6 in Okazaki?
Another thing I liked about the GENKI JACs course is just the location. Fukuoka is a major city, and one of my favorite places in Japan. It is still a big city, but not such a sprawling metropolis like Tokyo. They can also arrange homestays.