Since its establishment, the School of Human Sciences has utilized the broad scope and unique characteristics of Waseda University to pursue education and research in a way that emphasizes a comprehensive and interdisciplinary approach, with the goal of finding solutions to the many problems facing modern society and building a sustainable society, supported by an outstanding university-wide teaching environment and student life environment.
The objective of the School of Human Sciences is to pursue a multilateral and comprehensive understanding of society and reality by utilizing multifaceted methods to explore the human living environment, while adopting a cross-disciplinary approach to a variety of specialist fields of research from a basic standpoint of respect for humanity. What’s more, so that our students can find practical solutions to these problems through hands-on experiences, we aim to foster students with outstanding management and design skills across different job types and fields.
The problems tackled at each of the Departments (“Human Behavior and Environment Sciences”, “Health Science and Social Welfare” and “Human Informatics and Cognitive Sciences”) have unique characteristics and themes. However, they share a common mission of producing human resources for society in possession of a strong desire to create a better society in the earnest pursuit of human qualities, equipped with the basic skills needed to become a highly specialized professional or researcher.
In order to embody this mission, the School of Human Sciences and the Graduate School of Human Sciences have set out 17 items under the following 7 fields as a guarantee of the core skills that students need to acquire (the Diploma Policy): A – Literacy; B – Methodology and Specialization; C – Interdiscipline and Diversity; D – Design Capabilities; E – Collaboration; F – Reflection and Ethics; G – Self-Education. Acquiring these capabilities and being able to put them into practice in the real world are a requirement for recognizing graduation and conferring degrees. These capabilities will allow students to open up diverse career paths in various industries after graduation, both in Japan and overseas.
- A – Literacy
(1) The student has acquired “language skills” that combine application in Japanese and practical skills in foreign languages.
(2) The student has acquired “data literacy”, combining the ability to collect, analyze and express information and data
- B – Methodology and Specialization
(3) The student has acquired scientific and logical thinking skills, specialist knowledge and methodology.
(4) The student is able to use hermeneutic methodology to consider subjective experience and ethical questions.
(5) The student is able to carry out inductive and verifiable analysis in a specific “specialization”.
- C – Interdiscipline and Diversity
(6) The student has acquired an attitude of open interest in society and is capable of understanding and sympathizing with the diversity of society.
(7) The student is able to understand human phenomena from multiple perspectives and identify what problems need to be solved.
(8) The student is able to understanding reality from an interdisciplinary perspective across diverse specializations.
- D – Design Capabilities
(9) The student is able to manage projects when investigating problems (fieldwork and experiments).
(10) The student is able to design action plans for solving problems.
(11) The student is able to express the results of his or her research or his or her own ideas in tangible form.
- E – Collaboration
(12) The student is able to collaborate with people possessing different opinions, values, sensitivities, culture and language.
(13) The student has acquired the knowledge and skills needed to pursue an “inter-profession”, linking various specializations.
- F – Reflection and Ethics
(14) The student possesses an ethical viewpoint with respect for social justice and has acquired an attitude of wanting to contribute to society.
(15) The student understands the possibilities and limitations of science and is able to adopt a critical and reflective view on reality.
- G – Self-Education
(16) The student possesses self-discipline, enthusiasm and cooperation, and is capable of pursuing self-education.
(17) The student is able to design his or her own career plan.
As is indicated in our diploma policy, the School of Human Sciences sets out 17 items under the following seven fields as the core skills for students to achieve Literacy, Methodology and Specialization, Interdisciplinary skills and Diversity, Design Capabilities, Collaboration, Reflection and Ethics, and Self-Education Capabilities.
In order to nurture students endowed with the above skills, the School of Human Sciences provides small-group learning from the first year. In Basic Subjects, students acquire the mental approach, methodology, and self-educating skills required for university life via distinctive foundational education in such areas as Basic Seminars, Study Skills, Student Life and Self-management. In Introduction to Human Sciences, which considers the fundamental meaning of human sciences, and the Department-separate subjects of Introduction to Human Behavior and Environment Sciences, Introduction to Science and Social Welfare, and Introduction to Human Informatics and Cognitive Sciences, students learn how to practically apply and adopt multifaceted perspectives towards human sciences.
Literacy Subjects, which seeks to develop the range of skills required for investigating issues, is composed of courses such as Literacy Seminar and Japanese language, foreign languages. In Data Literacy I, II, and III, students acquire the skills for analyzing data as well as practical learning of basic statistics. In Japanese language, as well as learning writing skills via subjects such as Academic Writing and Japanese and Japanese Culture, students learn about the diversity of the Japanese language and related Japanese culture. Students are required to select two out of five foreign language subjects: English, German, French, Chinese, and Spanish. In addition to learning these languages, the students also discover the culture and history that underlie them and acquire the basic skills required to succeed on the international stage.
In Liberal Arts in Human Sciences, rather than simply acquiring general knowledge in liberal arts, the goal is to widely and profoundly understand the meaning behind the “human” part of “human sciences,” and to cultivate a diverse and cross-disciplinary perspective. To this end, students must select four subjects from among Human Studies, Scientific Theory, Logical and Mathematical Thinking, Language, Systems, Design and Ethics and Coexistence.
Specialist subjects are divided into three phased courses: in Electives I , students learn experimental and investigative research methodology and basic background theory through practical field activities both inside and outside of the university; Electives IIA is composed of specialist subjects for developing expertise; and Electives IIB aims to further hone expertise. Students are able to take diverse specialist subjects that cross the boundaries of “humanities” and “sciences” as traditionally established in such areas as the social sciences, humanities, and the natural sciences. It is anticipated that each student will autonomously set his or her goals while organically associating specialist subjects according to their respective interests and future careers.
From the third year onwards, all students join a small-group-based specialist seminar, which leads to with the fourth-year graduate research seminar. For two years, working under a professor, the students create a general plan of research in their specialist field and lead to their learning.