教育学科 / 「人」が「育つ」、「人」を「育てる」ことを学び「人間の尊厳」への洞察を深めていく

Exploring and Seeking Ways to Develop Human Potentials in the Global Era

Educational science (kyoiku-gaku in Japanese) is a comprehensive field of inquiries addressing complex dimensions of human growth and development. It examines educational phenomena from various perspectives and disciplines, including philosophy, history, sociology, political science, and psychology. One of the strengths of our department lies in its approach to compare policies and practices across different times and locations in order to gain meaningful insights into the nature of education.

Students in our program enjoy a cozy, yet stimulating, environment that challenges them to think critically about issues pertinent to education. A small but very diverse group of approximately 20 students are studying in our Graduate Programs. Our graduate students come from different regions of Japan and from abroad including Taiwan, China, Vietnam, Laos, and from other parts of the world. Our students come with various backgrounds. Some do not have previous experience in educational fields. Everyone’s unique experience is valued in our Programs.

Our Programs are essentially Japanese-language based. However, we accept students who wish to pursue their studies in English in one of the three fields: International Education, Education and International Development, and Comparative Education. These three fields complement each other. Students in this track take English-medium courses in and outside our Graduate Programs, and write their Master's theses or Ph.D. dissertations in English.

International Education

International Education is a field that aims to clarify the rationales and relationships of educational affairs and policies in the various contexts of international relations. In the era of migration, there are more actors of educational activities besides the governments of nations-states, and the cross-border/transnational activities have also been developed. We analyze these educational phenomena from various comparative perspectives and explore ways to co-exist in a multicultural society in the context of internationalism for human dignity and peace-building.

Education and International Development

Education and International Development is a field that aims to enhance our understanding of educational issues in the context of developing nations often characterized by extreme poverty, large income gaps and cultural diversity. We explore the ways in which these issues can be addressed by domestic and international policy and program interventions. Students typically seek their jobs in international/governmental/non-governmental organizations engaged in the improvement of education in the developing world.

Comparative Education

Comparative Education is a field that applies historical, philosophical, and social science theories and methods to international issues in education. We explore educational issues in different parts of the world, and thus acquire a broader understanding of the dynamic process of education and its relationship with cultural and socio-political factors, as well as a critical appreciation of their own educational traditions. Students will learn a globally inclusive history of comparative education, and the scholars, theories and comparative tools that guide its work.

The courses offered may vary each year. Following courses were available in English in our graduate program during the academic year 2019-2020.

In addition, our students take courses from other graduate programs such as in Sociology, Global Studies, and TESOL at Sophia to enrich their learning and supplement credits required for graduation. Students are also allowed to take a course from graduate programs offered at the United Nations University located in Tokyo.

For detailed information about the admission procedure, please visit the following link.

Our Principles and Approaches

Explore the Nature of Education

Sophia University upholds the principle of respecting and enhancing human dignity. This principle guides us in our approach to teaching and researching. We are striving to understand the fundamental nature of education and its contributions to the enhancement of human dignity. These goals are vigorously pursued by examining philosophical and historical debates around the purposes and approaches of education, as well as evaluating actual policies and practices of education.

Adopt International Perspectives

In our approach to education and research, we value international perspectives. In our classroom discussion and research activities, we often allude to and incorporate the experiences of other countries, not only industrialized countries but also from developing nations. By adopting international perspectives, we attempt to answer both normative and empirical questions around education within increasingly globalizing and multicultural contexts.

Bridge Research and Practice

We believe that research and practice should inform each other. Many of our faculty members are engaged in practice as counselors and consultants in government agencies, non-governmental organizations and industries, as well as trainers for school personnel, education administrators and international development practitioners. We welcome practitioners in our Programs and encourage them to share their experiences with us and their fellow classmates.

Outline of Our Master's and Doctoral Graduate Programs in Education

Master’s Program

The Master’s Program aims to train professionals and researchers who can contribute to the improvement of educational policies and practices. We accept students of diverse backgrounds, including those whose undergraduate major was not in the field of education.

We encourage students to acquire holistic views of education and learn about the basics of various research methods by taking courses across different sub-disciplines of education within our Program and related courses outside our Program.

During the mid-second year, students have opportunity to present their research progress orally and receive feedback from the faculty members. This occasion serves as an occasion to help students assess their progress status and continue working towards the completion of a Master’s thesis.

The graduate students in our Master’s Program are required to attain 30 credits (1 course normally equals to 2 credits). The courses are not limited to those offered by the faculty members of Sophia, but may also be offered by invited lecturers from other universities and institutions, some of which are given in English. All courses are conducted with a small group of students, enabling them to interact actively among themselves and with the instructors. Students can also acquire credits from other Master’s programs in the Graduate School of Human Sciences, such as those in the Graduate School of Sociology or Psychology. In addition, students can acquire up to 8 credits from other graduate schools outside the Graduate School of Human Sciences at Sophia University upon the approval of their advisors. In some cases, students are allowed to transfer credits up to 10 credits obtained from foreign higher education institutions. These systems enable students to fulfill their various needs.

The Master’s Program in Education aims to contribute to human resources development in the globalizing era. Beginning in 2016, students can attend a course (for example, about poverty and environmental issues) offered by the United Nations University. Students can also benefit from the Sophia’s study abroad program for further improving their language skills, intercultural experience and/or collection of research data. Moreover, in order to offer diverse learning opportunities, we occasionally invite professors from foreign universities; in spring 2016, we host a lecturer who specializes in intercultural education and peace education from Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Doctoral Program

Our Doctoral Program aims to train education researchers who can independently design research proposals, undertake data collection & analysis, and write quality academic papers, as well as train professionals who can exercise leadership in educational policies and practices in a wide range of settings.

In order to achieve the above goals, our Doctoral Program in Education has the following features from which students can benefit:

  1. 1) At the onset of the Doctoral Program, students prepare a three-year research schedule leading up to the completion of a doctoral dissertation, with the support of advisors.
  2. 2) For each doctoral student, three faculty members in our department form an advisory committee and provide advice to the student throughout his/her studies.
  3. 3) We assist students to write academic papers for publication in leading journals and in presenting their research outcomes at academic conferences, both within and outside Japan.

Faculty Members

Many of our faculty members are bilingual or trilingual. Each faculty member specializes in a different sub-field of education, as shown in the following list (Faculty profiles are found further below).

[Language] indicates the language(s) that a faculty uses to teach courses and/or supervise thesis/dissertation papers. Some faculty members who teach/supervise only Japanese-speaking students can communicate orally in English.

Contact Information

Office of the Department of Education
Chiyoda-ku, Kioi-cho 7-1
102-8554 Tokyo, Japan

Tel:+81 3-3238-3650 (in Japanese) *If you call from within Japan, please dial 03-3238-3650
E-mail:sophiagraduateeducation-co@sophia.ac.jp (in Japanese or English)

Thank you for vising our Program website!