Dean of Waseda Graduate School of Applied Japanese Linguistics
Waseda University’s Graduate School of Japanese Applied Linguistics (GSJAL), known as Nikken, was founded in 2001 as an independent graduate program that specializes in Japanese-language education. Since its founding, it has been the only graduate program in Japan with a Japanese-language education major. Nikken has produced 766 Master’s graduates and 68 doctoral graduates in Japanese-language education to date, who have pursued careers and contributed to educational institutions and various other fields, both in Japan and across the world. Additionally, Nikken has established a global network to connect graduates, so that they can continue to learn from one another.
Nikken aims to cultivate specialists in Japanese-language education. However, this is not necessarily limited to Japanese-language teachers. By gaining knowledge and practical experience in Japanese-language studies, these specialists can overcome language and cultural barriers, deepen mutual understanding and respect, and contribute their expertise to the betterment of society.
As such, Nikken provides a diverse set of courses that cover Japanese-language education broadly, combining theory and practice and revolving around the three pillars of “Japanese language,” “learning/ education,” and “community.” Since Nikken is an independent graduate school without an undergraduate program in the same academic discipline, students admitted to Nikken have diverse backgrounds, and their Japanese-language educational experiences differ from one another. Nikken offers a wide range of opportunities for learning and social interaction (including academic and research conferences), so that students with diverse backgrounds can design a self-tailored learning system and have a fulfilling graduate studies experience.
With people’s mobility and communications going beyond countries and regions and expanding on a global scale, the role of language and language education in connecting people is becoming increasingly significant in society today. Nikken welcomes those who are passionate about creating the future with a broad perspective on the Japanese language and Japanese-language education.