Waseda University’s Graduate School of Letters, Arts and Sciences—comprising a two-year master’s program and a three-year doctoral program—is Japan’s largest graduate program in the humanities, consisting of a wide range of specialties including philosophy, psychology, sociology, literature, history and the arts. Since its reorganization as a graduate school over a half century ago, it has continued unceasing efforts in academic studies and in sending out the results of its research.
Based on flexible, extensive fields of research, involved in developing new spheres of scholarship
Progress within the humanities is remarkable these days, and more than ever before, the times call for graduate education and research to continue the traditional disciplines while at the same time making ever-greater innovations within established scholarship.
Our graduate school is actively responding to the rise of new fields of scholarship, as exemplified by the creation, in the academic year 2010, of the new Studies of Media, Body and Image course. Furthermore, while strengthening ties with undergraduate education we are working to promote the acquisition of the doctoral degree by those who choose a career in the field of research.
Merit 1: Flexible, broad research fields based on the merits of scale
In addition to more than 160 full-time faculty members, we draw on a large number of prominent researchers from other institutions in offering a wide variety of lecture courses, making full use of the merits of scale that can be offered only by the largest graduate program in Japan. Because it is possible to take lectures in other fields of specialization, it is possible to conduct interdisciplinary research. More than 140 professors provide research guidance (kenkyu shido) within the master’s and doctoral programs, and through them we conduct substantial guidance toward the preparation of the degree thesis.
Merit 2: A graduate course with a tradition and record of achievement
With more than a half-century of tradition dating from its establishment as a graduate school under the new educational system, it has turned out a great many researchers and educators. The Bulletin of the Graduate Division of Letters, Arts and Sciences of Waseda University, which publishes papers resulting from graduate research, is rated quite highly.
Merit 3: Active exchange agreements with other graduate schools
We have established exchange programs with the graduate schools of Gakushuin University, Gakushuin Women’s College, Kyoto University, Keio University, Chuo University, University of Tsukuba, University of Tokyo, and Japan Women’s University. While registered in our master’s program, it is possible to take courses at these universities for credit.
Merit 4: Many students study overseas
Under the concept of “progressive spirit,” a large number of our graduate students conduct research overseas. The overseas universities with which our university has concluded agreement put Waseda in the top rank, in terms of both numbers and quality. The graduate school is outstanding for its breadth of study abroad options and the substantiality of its overseas study programs. It is our hope that as researchers who participate in international congresses they will play an active role in international society.
Merit 5: Substantial scholarships, career and employment search support
In addition to scholarships from the Japan Student Services Organization (JASSO), the university offers a large number of scholarships, including both grants and student loans. In regard to careers and job placement, the university’s Career Center, in addition to providing an abundant assortment of information, offers guidance, workshops, and special lectures as part of a proactive career support program.