Introduction to research in the 5 programs in the graduate school:
English Language and British /American Literature Program
The English Language and British /American Literature Program is likely to be of particular interest to English-speaking students and researchers as it offers an opportunity to study and conduct research through the medium of English while deepening one’s understanding of Japan and the Japanese language. It is extremely likely to suit graduates and educators who are interested in working in Japan in the future. Fees and accommodation at this municipal university are among the cheapest in the country. In addition, scholarships and fee reductions are available to eligible students while there will be ample opportunities for non-Japanese English-speaking students to help finance their studies, e.g. via involvement in a range of tutorial programs in the English Department.
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The program follows two main thrusts: the Language Program (focused on Linguistics, Applied Linguistics, Second Language acquisition, language education, particularly in the Japanese context), and British literature and American literature. The Language Program is likely to be of particular interest to English-speaking students who are thinking of forging a career in education in Japan. The goal of the program in general is to give students a global perspective to become leaders in education and beyond. English-speaking non-Japanese students are encouraged to take Japanese language classes or classes taught in Japanese, in accordance with their level of Japanese.
In English language studies, students study the essence of language based on modern linguistics and also look at the application of theory in specific educational context, in Japan in particular. Students cover the core subjects, including syntax, semantics, phonology, pragmatics and second language acquisition. Students will consider the consequences of theory to educational fields. They will also consider the psychology of culture and the application of theory in cultural context. They are expected to apply their results in real-life educational settings as well as conducting empirical research.
In British literature, students focus mainly on early modern and modern British literature studies, and use methodologies from cultural studies, post-colonialism, feminism, body theory and psychoanalysis to conduct research. In American literature, students primarily engage in studies that cover pieces from the 19th and 20th centuries up to the present day. Students can conduct in-depth research in American literature. In addition, the place of World Englishes, with the English-language domain considered in a wider sense, will be given a very robust treatment. In addition to the students who are admitted based on the general entrance exam, we also welcome working educators and actively admit them as graduate school students.
This program seeks candidates who have English language skills, who are interested in the various cultures in English speaking countries and who have basic knowledge in either English language studies (including English language educational studies), British literature or American literature. We admit candidates (including working educators and working professionals in society) who are enthusiastic about conducting in-depth research in a specialized field.
This program offers students a comprehensive curriculum with research courses, seminars and special investigation courses in English language studies (including English language educational studies), British literature and American literature, and allows them to explore specialised topics in the student’s chosen field or fields. In addition, there are a variety of related courses and lectures on the cultures of English speaking countries and on English thesis writing skills.
Students work with faculty advisors who support their chosen research fields, advising on the student’s masters thesis, the culmination of their masters course work. Working educators are also required to complete their master’s theses (working educators and working professionals in society can also choose to complete a master’s research report), using the opportunity to retrain and reinvestigate to further develop their skills. The program’s research and academic instruction cultivate advanced English language skills and provide the students with useful social skills to create leaders who take on an instructional role in the field of English education.
Recent developments in childrearing and education and various education-related issues (bullying, discipline problems, truancy, learning disabilities, etc.) require a new approach in which teachers with special qualifications and skills gain a fuller understanding of children and put that understanding into practice.Many of these practical problems require innovative, cross-disciplinary solutions . This program was set up to address these kinds of issues.
In particular, the program focuses on (1) developing new research fields related to a holistic understanding of children in order to help them grow and develop in a multifaceted environment that includes the school, home, community and society in general. The program (2) integrates a new standard of understanding children that was acquired through (1) with newly developed research related to educational practices. As a result, this program (3) strives to explore and develop newly required comprehensive principles and methods of educational practice.
The curriculum features two research fields: “Clinical pedagogy” and “Educational clinical psychology” for specialized courses (students select one of these two research fields as a focus), and the basic courses for “Research in education practices” are used for general courses. The class curriculum organically links lectures and seminars.
This program offers many classes in the evening and at night so that working educators and working professionals in society can also enroll. In addition, there are also classes offered on Saturdays and during summer vacation so that the working students can attend classes without taking time off.
If a professional already has first-class teacher’s credentials for elementary, junior high or high school levels, he or she can not only earn a master’s degree (in pedagogy), but also acquire a specialization certificate at the same time, regardless of the type of school or subject of the existing teacher’s credential.
In addition, the qualifications to become a “school psychologist” can be provided depending on the courses taken in this program and work experience, including student counseling, career counseling, etc. However, even if the person has no relevant work experience, qualifications can be provided to become a “school psychologist in training” when certain conditions are met. And after being qualified as a “school psychologist in training,” the person can become a “school psychologist” depending on his or her work experience.
The program seeks candidates with basic knowledge related to the specialty of the teacher and a strong awareness of problems related to children’s achievements, academic instruction and educational practices. In particular, candidates must be self-motivated to delve further into their research topics, holding both a practical and theoretical interest in children and potential threats.
This program offers specialized studies with a focus in either clinical pedagogy or educational clinical psychology, in order to cultivate the ability of the student to further their clinical understanding of children and explore the methods of academic instruction based on its mutual relationship with that understanding. The study of clinical pedagogy focuses on researching cases of children who have difficulties from a social or cultural point of view. On the other hand, the study of educational clinical psychology includes a curriculum in which the student can acquire the qualifications of a school psychologist. In addition, the program places emphasis on educational practices as part of the general studies so that the student can examine academic instruction in a practical classroom environment at the Tsuru University Elementary School, etc.
Students in this program must select a research topic in the general studies or two specialized fields of study in the Practical Studies of Clinical Education Program. Faculty members provide instruction and direction necessary for students to conduct their research, such as investigation and methodology, in order to complete their master’s thesis, which is a culmination of their masters course work. Working educators must also complete their master’s thesis and can objectify their own practical work experience and use it as an opportunity to retrain, reinvestigate and advance their skills. The program offers instruction and direction in the students’ research and education, thereby providing them with a specialty and skill set to work as an educator.
Students in the Japanese Program explore the intricacies of the Japanese language and literature, and therefore are more than able to handle an environment of higher learning from a broad perspective. In addition, the program strives to cultivate professionals in society that can contribute to the research and development of a more advanced language and literary culture. To achieve this, the primary objective of the Japanese program is to nurture the abilities of the student in 5 areas of study: classical literature, modern literature, Chinese literature, Japanese language studies and Japanese language educational studies. At the same time, the curriculum is designed so that students can select related courses such as a special investigation in Japanese culture, enabling them to create a richer and more profound specialty.
Classical literature covers periods from ancient times to early modern times. Modern literature studies includes genres such as novels, poetry and critical essays. In addition, the program offers research and lectures led by a diverse faculty who come from a broad range of specialties, which includes Chinese literature, ancient and modern languages in Japanese language studies and also Japanese language educational studies. Students in this program also have access to facilities such as graduate student research rooms and a library, as well as to equipment such as computer terminals and free copy machines. The library also features a collection of microfilm related to the Japanese language and literature, which has proven essential for students to conduct investigations in their fields of specialization and for their master’s theses.
Recently, there are more night classes available for working professionals in society, enrollment of working educators continues to become more active and admissions for foreign exchange students continue.
In addition, our graduate school alumni continue to be active in the field of education and in the corporate world.
Our candidates must have basic knowledge in Japanese literature, Japanese language studies, Chinese literature or Japanese language educational studies. They also must have a strong interest in and a broad understanding of Japanese culture. This program also seeks candidates who are motivated to do advanced research in a field of specialization.
This program offers a comprehensive and historical approach in ancient Japanese literature, medieval literature, middle age literature, early modern literature, modern literature, Japanese language studies, Chinese literature and Japanese language educational studies. This approach also orchestrates and implements the best curriculum for students to investigate individual topics in separate fields.
Students work with faculty advisors that support their chosen research fields and receive detailed instruction and specific direction necessary for research, such as on their topic, investigation, methodology, in order to complete their master’s theses, which is a culmination of their masters course work. Working educators must also complete their master’s theses, using the opportunity to retrain and reinvestigate to further develop their skills. The academic instruction and research in this program enhance the specialty of the student and offer them skills that can help them examine their field of research from multiple angles and adopt a flexible approach in both Japanese literature and language.
The Sociological Community Studies Program offered in the graduate school strives to further comprehensive and interdisciplinary research in community studies from a social sciences platform, and hopes to develop professionals with high level specialties that can tackle, primarily from a community studies point of view, the problems that face today’s communities and society.
As a central research field, the program offers core courses in two areas: structural research in community studies and environmental research in community studies. The former research area is further divided into <Political science and economics> and <Cultural studies>.
In addition to the basic courses that enhance the students’ basic theoretical knowledge, the program offers related courses to support learning and applying related scientific investigation and analysis methods as well as their results in order to give students a multi-faceted approach on specialized research topics in the core courses.
Based on the structure of the aforementioned research areas and the scientific approach, the program provides 3 courses of study: <Political science and economics>, <Cultural studies> and <Environmental research>, in order to create a curriculum that focuses on community studies research and fosters a more in-depth and organic approach. The curriculum is designed with these 3 courses as the core.
The program includes the study of both modern society and the environmental community, and seeks candidates who want to learn in a clear and systematic manner the structure and essence of modern society, which is not only globalizing but shows massive gaps.
The program covers two areas for the core courses: structural research in community studies and environmental research in community studies (former is subdivided into <Political science and economics> and <Cultural studies>), and links them with related courses. In addition, the program covers community studies theory and social sciences theory (basic courses) and community studies analysis methods (related courses) to enhance basic theoretical knowledge, while also offering a broad range of classes in philosophy, ethics, politics, law, economics, social sciences, labor and gender theory and lifelong learning theory so that students can learn using a systematic and three dimensional approach. The series of courses previously mentioned was designed to consider specialization certificates for junior high (social studies) and high school (geography, history and civics).
In this program, students analyze the status of problems in modern society under the direction of faculty advisors who support the students in their chosen research field. They actively complete the basic courses and courses in related fields while researching each field. The students must select a topic that can present a new social concept as an alternative to modern society and complete their theses. During their course of study, students also are able to actively participate in research seminars workshops in and outside of the university to develop critical thinking skills through academic discussion with fellow graduate students.
The Comparative Cultures Program covers 3 areas: Japanese culture and comparative studies of cultures from different regions in Asia and regions in Europe and North America. Graduate students then select one area to research under their chosen topic. Whichever area or region they chose, students are able to, and expected to go beyond the specified area and acquire knowledge on various cultures.
Regardless of the area of one’s cultural studies, it is important for students to consider and compare cultures with their own culture. In this comparison, the program encourages students to look at their own culture objectively and relatively (look at one’s culture as a different culture), and then reevaluate their own culture through its relationship with another culture. Ultimately, the program hopes to foster a new cultural perspective different from that which each student had previously had.
To achieve this, the program offers comparative culture as a general course, linking different areas of study to build basic knowledge for research. Students can study cultural theory and take cultural seminars in each area to further their specialized studies. Students can study in small groups, providing an environment in which the faculty can give individualized instruction to each student. In addition, there is also fieldwork investigation, which enables students to develop their investigative skills in the field abroad and in Japan. One advantage for students is engaging in multiple fieldwork activities in order to have a real reference to appreciate different cultures. The university receives many foreign exchange students from China and Korea, transforming the graduate school itself into a place that fosters international exchanges.
The goal of this program is to give students an understanding on different cultures so they can further their appreciation of modern society, as it becomes more diverse and complex, as well as develop the students to be more internationally-minded and active.
This program seeks candidates who wish to understand the world as it undergoes complex changes, and who wish to be active and embrace an international perspective by becoming not only familiar with their own country’s culture but other cultures as well.
This program covers not only Japanese culture but comparative studies of cultures from different regions in Asia, Europe and North America. Regardless of the chosen area and field of specialization, students can learn about Japanese culture and other cultures by being exposed to, confronting and engaging in cultural exchanges. In addition, the program features a variety of general courses to build a foundation for research, links different areas of studies and also matches the fieldwork activities with the needs of the graduate student.
Students must not only engage in literary research but also complete field investigation when possible in order to complete their master’s theses, which is a culmination of their masters course work. During their course work, students do not just uncover theoretical findings but gain a specific appreciation of various cultures and develop a skill set that enables them to practically approach to the coexistence of a multicultural environment.