The predecessor of the School of Education was the Higher Normal School, which was established in 1903. The School of Education was established in 1949 (when Waseda University switched to the new university system) as the first school of education established at a private university in Japan. Since its establishment, the School of Education has implemented a so-called “open” education course, which does not require students to obtain a teaching license. This is a major difference from the schools of education at national universities that aim only to train teachers. One of the School of Education’s key characteristics is the fact that it respects individuality and guarantees academic freedom.
The School of Education is organized into seven departments across the arts and sciences, with two majors and seven specializations. There are five arts department, including the Department of Education, Department of Japanese Language and Literature, Department of English Language and Literature, Department of Social Studies, and Department of Cultural Sciences. The Department of Education also offers three specializations (Education, Adult and Community Education, and Educational Psychology) and one major (Primary Education), and the Department of Social Sciences offers two specializations (Geography and History, and Civil Society and Citizenship Studies). The science departments are the Department of Science (which offer two specializations: Biology and Earth Science) and the Department of Mathematics. In this way, the School of Education is characterized by its ability to offer numerous departmental specializations from the arts through to the sciences, and as a large general faculty it has built an educational environment brimming with diversity.
The School of Education has put together a detailed curriculum that respects the individuality of each student and has high expectations for its students’ potential, based on a broad and rich education of the individual. Consideration has been given to allow students who wish to do so sufficient opportunity to obtain a teaching license, librarian qualification or museum curator qualification. What’s more, each department offers numerous lessons in a small group seminar format and fosters talented human resources capable of working in a variety of fields in society.