Mikio Wakabayashi , Dean of the School of Education
The Waseda University School of Education belongs to the Waseda University Faculty of Education and Integrated Arts and Sciences, together with the Graduate School of Education, the Institute for Advanced Studies in Education, and the Teacher Education Center.
At the Faculty of Education and Integrated Arts and Sciences, we have academic staff who engage in education and research at the School of Education, and academic staff who do so at the Graduate School of Education, Specialization in Advanced Teacher Training. Some academic staff from our Department of Science and Department of Mathematics supervise research at the Graduate School of Fundamental Science and Engineering, the Graduate School of Advanced Science and Engineering, and the Graduate School of Creative Science and Engineering. Similarly, some of our academic staff in arts, humanities, and social sciences supervise research in the graduate schools of the university’s other faculties. The title “Faculty of Education and Integrated Arts and Sciences” is meant to express the faculty’s interdisciplinary nature in that we extend beyond education studies and are comprised of specialists from various departments and academic fields within the arts, humanities, and sciences. For details on the Graduate School of Education, the Institute for Advanced Studies in Education, or the Teacher Education Center, please see the individual webpages.
The Waseda University School of Education prides itself on being the university’s foremost school in terms of student population, number of academic staff, and the breadth of fields of education and research. Its predecessor, the Waseda University Higher Normal School, was established in 1903, and the school itself was founded in 1949 as the first school of education in a private university in Japan. Distinct from the schools of education at many other universities, the Waseda University School of Education adopts an “open system” curriculum in which acquiring a teaching license is not a requirement for graduation. Unlike the schools of education at the former imperial universities which were intended to teach and research pedagogy, the School of Education aims to foster knowledge unconfined by conventional frameworks to enable the study of various specialist subjects related to every primary and secondary education subject, language education, and cutting-edge research from various academic disciplines. The school is, therefore, composed of seven departments: the Department of Education (with programs in Education, Adult and Community Education, Educational Psychology, and Primary Education); the Departments of Japanese Language and Literature, English Language and Literature, Social Studies (with programs in Geography and History, and Civil Society and Citizenship Studies), Science (with programs in Biology and Earth Sciences), and Mathematics, each of which corresponds to the specialist fields of research and subject education in the arts, humanities, and sciences; and the Department of Cultural Sciences, which aims to create new knowledge not relying on existing frameworks.
Our school resembles a small comprehensive university where students can not only acquire a teaching license and become teachers, but also equip themselves with knowledge of “education” in the broader sense of inquiry, learning, thought, teaching, and communication and acquire an advanced level of specialist knowledge and skills to enable a contribution to society in general and to the development of academic learning.
Contemporary society is facing major and diverse challenges at both the micro and macro levels, such as global climate change; environmental destruction; problems inherent to our social system; threats to the international order based on nation-states as well as the search for new systems; new possibilities and issues generated by the migration of people, goods, and information across national borders; the transformation of the nature of locality and family; the diversification of the value of consciousnesses and lives of individuals; and the interventions of genetic engineering and information technology on the lives of individuals. We live to pursue the endeavor of education, which is to “cultivate better human beings, pass on the assets of the past, create new things, and build a better society,” and play our role to the best of our potential in this crucial era.
The School of Education at Waseda University has produced graduates who have played active roles not only in schools, but also in general corporations, publishing companies, the mass media, civil service, and research institutions such as universities, as well as graduates who have had remarkable achievements in the various fields of arts and sports. The open system of the School of Education is not dedicated solely to teacher training, but also to allowing our aspiring teachers and other students to study together and acquire diverse academic knowledge from specialized fields. It is precisely for this reason that the School of Education at Waseda University has been able to send graduates who possess a broad education, advanced academic knowledge, and rich human qualities into every domain of society to address the various challenges facing our world. Together with the Graduate School of Education, the Institute for Advanced Studies in Education, and the Teacher Education Center that belong to the Faculty of Education and Integrated Arts and Sciences, we wish to continue to fulfill this role in the future while also pursuing and developing new possibilities.
Mikio Wakabayashi: Civil Society and Citizenship Studies, Department of Social Studies. Specializes in Sociology