This study investigates the characteristics which are considered outstanding qualities for a teacher of Japanese from Vietnamese university students' point of view. Data in the form of questionnaires were collected from 742 students studying at 4 Vietnamese universities. The results show that characteristics considered desirable in a teacher of Japanese consist of four factors 1) competence in giving instruction 2) personality 3) qualification and foreign language ability, and 4) the ability to control a course. The comparison of four academic year levels show that students of different levels desire different characteristics from Japanese teachers. Factor 1 decreased for the second-year students and increased for the third-year and fourth-year students. The averages for factor (2) were rather low for first- and fourth-year students and there were no significant differences between them. Factor (3) increased for the second-year students while factor (4) decreased as we progress up the academic year levels.