Letters and Education

02.04.2018 Update

Liberal Arts and Humanities

Philosophy, Ethics, and Art History

Each of these fields extends beyond the confines of the conventional framework of studies to connect directly with a variety of issues that we face today. The Eastern and Western philosophies and art history covered in this course cultivate the fundamental capabilities essential to living in society: the ability to feel, think, make appropriate judgments,
communicate in a flexible manner, and accurately comprehend the visual information that surrounds us everyday.

Comparative History

The program focuses on three major areas—Japanese history, Asian history, and Western history—with an aim to foster specialized knowledge about each area while making various comparisons across regions and time periods to explore the world of history vertically, horizontally, and even diagonally. The course also focuses on collaboration with related fields such as geography, archaeology, cultural anthropology, and literature to encourage students to pursue a new view of world history.


Knowing where we are in the world inspires curiosity about that place. Thence our interest grows into a desire to discover the character of the natural and social environments of which we are a part, how those environments have been formed, and what principles shape them. The program approaches all this from the standpoints of both physical and human geography to foster the intellectual ability to live in the real world.

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Languages and Culture

There are four courses in the Languages and Culture Department for learning the Japanese, Chinese, English, and French languages as well as the cultures of the societies speaking those respective languages. Students (1) steadily enhance their command of the relevant languages while (2) training their ability to comprehend and process written materials, (3) acquire basic knowledge, and furthermore become exposed to the latest research on language culture by way of the language of their studies, and (4) accumulate specialist knowledge. Classes are small in size, and students learn in depth about the language and culture while developing their capacity to think, communicate, and express themselves.

Japanese Language and Literature

The Japanese language is the basis of the Japanese people’s thoughts and expression; classical and modern Japanese literature are the essence of Japanese culture. The course revisits the origins of this language and literature in classics and works up to modern works to offer a comprehensive view of the country’s cultural issues. The course is a compass that takes students on a journey of unraveling mysteries, and enables them to form a clear picture of the intrinsic nature and current state of Japanese culture.

Chinese Language and Culture

Chinese is one of the most important languages in today’s international community. There are many faces of China. There is the China that is rapidly growing as a global presence both politically and economically, albeit with many internal contradictions. There is also the China that has 3,000 years of literary history as well as the China whose network of people is expanding worldwide. The course delves into the riches of Chinese culture from a variety of angles through the Chinese language.

English Language and Culture

As a language that is widely understood around the world, English has become entrusted with the very future of growing internationalization. The course offers insight into the linguistic characteristics of English and the nature of its use and study. At the same time, it provides an opportunity to learn the multitude of literary and cultural representation of the language as an expression of the thoughts, emotions, and imagination of native speakers.

French Language and Culture

The course aims to equip students with the following kinds of abilities and knowledge—to acquire specialized knowledge and proficiency in the French language; gain a deep understanding of the linguistic cultures that are based on the French language and the social circumstances of French-speaking societies; and extend their view to German- and other European languagespeaking cultures, or French speaking cultures around the world, and develop an interest in interaction with other cultures.

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Human and Social Sciences


The programrovides excellent opportunities for developing research initiatives on the social aspects of human consciousness, and social structure and its transformation. We offer programs across many fields including social theory, gender, media, culture, aging society, social policy, social welfare, sexualities, criminology and research methods. These programs reflect the intellectual backgrounds of our staff members and can prepare our students for good careers across many professions. The sociology course is committed to the pursuit of academic excellence and to fostering imaginative approaches to sociology.

Educational Sciences

What qualities make us human? The human development can only be understood outside the confines of a single discipline, by combining the fruits and methods of all areas of science. The program aims to be an integrated field of human science that takes both a theoretical and a practical approach to the process of human development—the ultimate mystery of mankind. It utilizes a variety of research methods to tackle the process of human emergence and provide insight into the mystery of human development.

Child Studies

Whether it is a society dealing with declining birth rate, poverty, bullying, parental anxiety or otherwise, the issues of children in the modern age reflect the problems of society as a whole. The child studies involves the study of people’s diverse livelihoods and the formation and structure of society and culture within the context of children. By collaborating with the childcare facilities located on campus—including Ochanomizu University Kindergarten, the Center for Early Childhood Education and Care and Izumi nursery—we provide students with a curriculum that includes an environment in which they can regularly interact with children. Our goal is to advance the field of child studies in a way that focuses on the realities of children and maintains a balance between theory, practice and dialogue.


The field of psychology strives to understand mechanisms and functions of the psychological processes of human beings, using empirical methodologies to observe and analyze human behaviors. Our curriculum enables students to gain a wide range of knowledge in psychology and research skills required in the field, as well as a deep understanding and a scientific view of human behaviors and the abilities to approach a variety of issues in a theoretical and analytical manner.

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Performing Arts

Dance and Dance Education

The program takes a multifaceted and comprehensive approach in pursuing the meaning and nature of human physical activity and expression, incorporating actual practice from sports to daily actions with a focus on dance. Of Japan’s four-year national universities, Ochanomizu is the only one with a specialized major program titled “Dance.” Because this is a field with such a short history, students of the program have the chance of pioneering new performances and areas of scholarship.

Music Expression

The study of music is not merely about acquiring performance techniques and theoretical knowledge. To gain a deep understanding of music, it is crucial to apprehend the richness of human behavior that produces it. The program provides a rare opportunity in Japan to engage in the specialized study of music at a university. It emphasizes academic research and actual musical performance in the context of its relationship to a variety of other research fields such as the humanities and the social and natural sciences to offer insight into the music of today from a cutting-edge perspective.

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Global Studies for Intercultural Cooperation

A flood of cross-border items and information exist in our daily lives, and we frequently see people from overseas countries walking in the streets. What types of knowledge, sensibilities, and attitudes are we required to cultivate in this era of globalization? Global Studies for Intercultural Cooperation is an interdisciplinary program that undergraduate students in any of the three departments (Languages and Culture; Liberal Arts and Humanities; and Human and Social Sciences) can take from their second year. The program, composed of area studies, multi-cultural communication, and international cooperation, focuses on the three Cs (Comprehension, Communication, and Collaboration) as keywords with which to think about and act. Based on fieldwork and participatory discussions, the program provides a new space of knowledge and practice, where students and faculty join hands to discover answers.

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