School of Political Science and EconomicsWaseda University

About the School

Educational Policy

The Three Policies of the School of Political Science and Economics

Diploma Policy

School of Political Science and Economics

The School of Political Science and Economics makes full use of Waseda University’s comprehensiveness and unique and innovative characteristics to develop diverse interaction among academic fields, cultures, languages, and values. The School fosters human resources capable of making an independent contribution to global society based on the School’s systematic curriculum, the university-wide education environment, and the student life environment. Students are given specialized knowledge in the fields of political science and economics, the robust foreign language skills needed for international communication, and a broad liberal arts education to facilitate multifaceted awareness of themselves and others. Accordingly, graduates of the School of Political Science and Economics are capable of voluntarily participating in global society and particularly in Asian regional society, and displaying their capabilities to the full in international and other organizations. In order to ensure that students graduate in possession of these capabilities and to ensure the quality of graduates, the curriculum is operated using measures such as comparative assessment and GPA so that the acquisition of credits in itself is sufficient proof that a student has acquired the requisite capabilities.

Department of Political Science

For a degree to be conferred, students are required to have taken a good balance of foreign language courses, global literacy courses, and economics courses as well as political science courses. Particular emphasis is given to the acquisition of basic knowledge related to political science so that students are able to understand the globalized and complex political phenomena of modern times. In addition to learning English as a foreign language, it is necessary for students to take a total of six credits, including Basic English Readings in Political Science and Area-Specific Basic English Readings in Political Science (in any of five research areas), so that they acquire the ability to obtain and analyze specialized information in English. In response to recent developments in political science, students are obliged to take courses in analytical methods and mathematics with the aim of acquiring mathematical and empirical analytical methods. A minimum understanding of economics is required in order to foster an approach of seeking to understand political science in terms of its relationship with economic phenomena, rather than in isolation. Students are strongly encouraged to take seminar courses in a consistent manner from the first year through to the fourth year, and they are expected to master a certain level of skill in problem-identification, presentations, communication, and academic writing.

Department of Economics

The Department of Economics aims to foster human resources capable of taking independent action with a view to overcoming the challenges faced by modern society as it undergoes rapid globalization, by providing diverse but systematic courses with the study of economics at its core. Accordingly, students in the Department of Economics are offered lecture courses and seminar courses so that they graduate with an accurate understanding of the basics of economic theory and statistics, as well as advanced skills in the application of economic theory, data analysis, and communication. Students are strongly recommended to cultivate a broad liberal arts education and multilateral perspectives by taking courses offered in other departments and global literacy courses. Graduates of the Department of Economics are expected to continue developing the foundation skills acquired at the School of Political Science and Economics and to become outstanding leaders in a variety of fields in society, including global companies and international economic organizations (such as the World Bank and the IMF).

Department of Global Political Economy

The Department of Global Political Economy aims to provide comprehensive knowledge and application skills through its unique curriculum in order to produce human resources in possession of a thorough understanding of historical context and current conditions in an increasingly interactive modern world who are capable of analyzing real problems from global and multiple perspectives and proposing and executing solutions. Specifically, the Department aims to utilize the approach of respecting others and encouraging collaboration cultivated through its small-class-size seminars and interaction with international students in order to foster members of society who are capable of considering diverse perspectives, analyzing problems in a flexible and level-headed manner, and proposing solutions without over-reliance on particular theories or knowledge. Furthermore, it seeks to produce graduates with the dynamism to tackle problems patiently, with the self-confidence and long-term perspective that comes with a broad range of learning. By collaborating with the Global Political Economy Course in the Graduate School, the Department also aims to provide students with specialized analytical skills and to foster the ability to make a contribution to NGOs and international organizations.

Curriculum Policy

School of Political Science and Economics

In order to encourage the steady development of the skills described under its Diploma Policy, the School of Political Science and Economics has traditionally operated a core curriculum composed of systematically developed politics and economics courses, a well-developed range of foreign language courses, and a broad choice of liberal arts courses. In recent years, the Department has also implemented measures such as establishing small class sizes centered on seminar lessons covering all enrolled students from the first year through to the fourth year, tracking of classes by ability and compulsory sitting of regular proficiency tests in order to ensure acquisition of English language skills, offering classes in English with the aim of promoting the internationalization of students, systematization of a second-foreign-language curriculum with established milestones, and promoting the dispatch and acceptance of international exchange students through a double-degree program. A rich selection of opportunities to participate in extracurricular activities is also offered, including exchange with alumni associations and internships, in anticipation of students’ lives after graduation. Through this comprehensive curriculum, students of the School of Political Science and Economics are expected to acquire the multifaceted skills set out under the Diploma Policy.

Department of Political Science

Ever since its establishment, the Department of Political Science has sought to understand political phenomena from a scientific perspective. The Department has developed a phased and systematic curriculum that is appropriate for political science as a cross-disciplinary subject covering numerous fields, including systems and theories, history and thought, and international relations. By incorporating small-class-size education including seminars, it fosters human resources capable of thinking about political phenomena in a specialized and autonomous way.

In the introductory courses, students must take Introduction to Political Analysis and Introduction to Political Theory, both of which are composed of lectures and discussions. Among the basic courses, Basic English Readings in Political Science and Area-Specific Basic English Readings in Political Science (in any of five research areas) are required courses, while other courses focus on philosophy, systems, behaviors, and methods and facilitate a smooth transition to specialized study at university after graduation from senior high school. Specifically, in response to recent developments in political science, it is compulsory for students to take courses in analytical methods and mathematics so that they acquire mathematical and empirical political analysis methods. From the second year onwards, a five-research-field system is introduced, composed of the following core subjects: Contemporary Politics, Political Thought, Comparative Politics, International Relations, and Public Policy. This clarifies the subject matter and allows students individual control over the courses they take in each field of political science. Students are advised to take courses across the five fields so that they come into contact with diverse aspects of political science. Seminars are offered from the first year through to the fourth year so that students may deepen their knowledge of political science in stages. Students are also encouraged to understand political phenomena in relation to economic phenomena, and it is mandatory to take economics-related courses.

Department of Economics

The basic philosophy of the Department of Economics curriculum is as follows: Theoretical support and the ability to analyze data objectively are needed in order to understand and resolve the problems facing today’s global society. A curriculum is offered that allows students to learn economic theory and statistics in stages, from the basics to the first-year graduate level in both English and Japanese, with seminar classes for theory-related courses and practical training classes using statistical software for statistics-related courses. Moreover, from the well-developed courses of History of Economies and History of Economics, students can learn about the effectiveness and limitations of economic approaches and also about alternative approaches. Core and Specialized Courses are composed so that students can learn in detail about specific fields, while also studying a broad range of different fields. By taking courses from these groups in accordance with their individual areas of interest, students are able to deepen their knowledge in specific themes, while improving their skills in the application of economic theory and data analysis. The aim of small class sizes centered on seminars is to provide students with abundant opportunities for group work, presentations, and discussion in order to raise their analytical and communication skills.

Department of Global Political Economy

The curriculum at the Department of Global Political Economy has been built with the goal of fostering the ability to identify political and economic mechanisms in Japanese and international society and their relationship from a broad,  global perspective that goes beyond the constrictions of different countries or eras. Firstly, the Department is characterized by its combination of required courses in political science, economics, and public philosophy. Students are taught the methods of mathematics, game theory, statistics, and science on required courses, alongside the theory of international relations and approaches to area studies, in order to provide a shared platform from which to identify and analyze a diverse range of social problems. Similarly, students are offered a broad range of foreign language courses and global literacy courses, including required courses, to improve communication skills and broaden perspectives. Furthermore, they are taught the methods of area studies and history, and in order to tackle global social phenomena and the problems that arise when politics and economics intersect, students are offered courses on political science and economics, such as International Political Economy, and more specialized research courses, such as International Public Economics and International Sociology, thereby fostering their application skills and general capabilities. Students identify their own themes and develop the ability to carry out research on courses with small class sizes, including seminars in the first and second years and specialized seminars in the third and fourth years.

Admissions Policy

School of Political Science and Economics

The School of Political Science and Economics welcomes students from Japan and around the world under an educational philosophy of “Independence of Learning,” which is one of Waseda University’s stated missions. Students must possess a high level of academic skill, a strong intellectual curiosity, a rich enterprising spirit (one of the principles of Waseda University), and a passion for study. In order to ensure the highest quality and diversity of its students, the School of Political Science and Economics holds entrance examinations built on the following four examinations: the general entrance examination, the entrance examination using the test of the National Center for University Entrance Examinations test, a recommended admissions examination, and an Admissions Office examination. The recommended admissions examination and Admissions Office examination, in particular, are open to international students and provide the opportunity for students from both Japan and overseas to sit an entrance examination. Candidates for the Japanese Program are expected to possess language abilities centered on Japanese and English, in both of which they will be studying, in addition to logical thinking skills. Historical and cultural knowledge are required so that students are able to understand their own background, and dynamism is needed to tackle a variety of problems through interaction with different people from around the world. The above entrance examinations test these areas of knowledge and the skills of candidates from a variety of perspectives.

Department of Political Science

The Department of Political Science continues to uphold the University’s founding spirit of independence of learning and the establishment of autonomous civil society. This spirit is reflected in its lofty aspiration to analyze real political phenomena through close collaboration with economics and to produce academic results that can be communicated from Japan to the world. Successful candidates should be able to take on the mantle of these academic traditions in a progressive manner. The Department seeks students with the desire to pursue academic depth and maturity as a person through a spirit of friendly rivalry in the pursuit of political science as an academic discipline. Candidates will be from diverse backgrounds and in possession of academic skills appropriate to a high-quality senior high school level. Potential candidates include those with a strong interest in social phenomena, such as modern politics and economics. They will acquire the ability to understand, analyze, and act in a way that suits the needs of modern times, and possess the communication skills needed in a modern globalized society. They must be capable of expressing their opinions in a way that is backed up with accurate knowledge and a rich creativity, and possess the desire to promote the creative development of their region, Japan, and the world.

Department of Economics

The basic philosophy for the selection of students for entry to the Department of Economics is as follows: Select students in possession of a strong interest and grounding in theoretically understanding and explaining social phenomena, with a focus on economics. This means that students should have a broad interest in social conditions and history, in addition to politics and economics, and prioritize logical thinking. A certain level of mathematical ability is essential in order to understand economics to utilize it in comprehending social phenomena. Even if a student is not particularly confident in mathematics, an attitude of pursuing mathematical logic with perseverance is necessary. The ideal is for a mix of students with abundant knowledge about current and past politics and economics, outstanding mathematical thinking, and a strong interest in international relations to make the most of their respective strengths in a spirit of friendly rivalry as they set about acquiring the ability to carry out the logical analysis of socioeconomic phenomena. For this reason, every effort is made to attract students with a variety of strengths through multiple entrance examinations.

Department of Global Political Economy

The Department of Global Political Economy welcomes students with a strong interest in the political and economic phenomena of today’s international society and the links between these phenomena, who possess the determination to identify methods for solving global problems as problems personal to themselves, and who can make a contribution to the development of their region and the world. Students should possess the communication skills and logical thinking skills needed to handle an internationalized society and a broad sensitivity that allows them to consider the positions of a variety of different people, as well as the ability to act both proactively and introspectively. Priority is given to students with a sense of curiosity about a broad range of pursuits in the research fields of politics and economics and the desire to absorb new knowledge and diverse ways of thinking without being constrained by existing frameworks. At the same time, students should not be overwhelmed by the large number of required courses, and they must be ready to make the effort to acquire analytical and thinking skills and the ability to get things done in a way that meets the needs of a new era.

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