Graduate School of Arts and Sciences - Master's Course (MA)

The purpose of the Master of Arts Program shall be to impart deep and extensive knowledge grounded in a wide-ranging perspective and to develop the ability to carry out research in a specialized field of study, and/or the superior competencies needed for meaningful careers in professions demanding a high level of expertise.

Master's Course Program and Area of Concentrations

Program Area of Concentration Degree
Education
and
Psychology
Education Master of Arts
in Education
Psychology
Language Education
Public Policy
and
Social Research
Politics and International Studies Master of Arts
in Public Administration
or
Master of Arts
in International Relations
Social and Cultural Analysis Master of Arts
in Social and Cultural Analysis
Media and Language Master of Arts
in Media and Language
Public Economics Master of Arts
in Public Economics
Peace Studies Master of Arts
in Peace Studies
Comparative Culture Japanese Culture Studies Master of Arts
in Comparative Culture
Transcultural Studies
Natural Sciences Mathematics and Information Science Master of Arts
in Natural Sciences
Material Science
Life Science

Degree Requirements

To complete the Master's Course, a student must be enrolled in the degree program for a period of at least two years; complete at least 30 credits of the coursework; be granted master's degree candidacy; submit a master's thesis; and pass the thesis review and final examination carried out by the Graduate School. The standard period of enrollment is two years

Required Course and Units

School-wide
Interdisciplinary Course
Program Foundation Course Specialization Course Research Course Total
Min. 2 units in 1 subject Min. 4 units in 2 subjects Min. 8 units in 4 subjects in. 6 units in 3 subjects Min. 30 units
Min. 6 units in 3 subjects from Program Foundation, Specialization and Research Course
Min. 4 units in 2 subjects from all Graduate School courses

You can view our curriculum and syllabi on the following links.

List of Courses (select "Graduate School Courses")
Syllabi (under "Major," select "Graduate School Courses")

Procedure of Conferring Master's Degree

Year Term Procedure Remarks
1st year 1st term Matriculation ceremony, Orientation (Academic guidance) Completion of GS required courses
2nd term
3rd term Submission of [Application for Candidacy for the Degree of MA]
2nd year 1st term Approval of Candidacy for the Degree of MA
(Requirements: Residence of one year or more,
Completion of 18 units or more with a GPA* of 3.00 or above.)
Start writing Master's thesis
2nd term Submission of [Report on Outline of Master's Thesis] (Interim report / Interim presentation)
3rd term Submission of [Application for Submission of Master's thesis]
Submission of [Master's Thesis and summary]
The final examination for Master's Thesis
Completion of required courses with a grade point average of 3.00 or above for all grades received
Conferral of M.A. at the Commencement

※To know about GPA, please click here

You can view the list of master's thesis of past graduates.

AY2016 / AY2015 / AY2014

Education and Psychology Program

This program explores, in education-related disciplines, the educational conditions that nurture cooperative coexistence among creative and peace-loving peoples and trains its students to play a leading role in achieving these conditions in Japan and throughout the world.

Message from the Director

SATOYutakaweb.jpg
Program Director
Prof. SATO, Yutaka

Based on ICU's philosophy of liberal arts education, we offer international and interdisciplinary perspectives leading to rich and specialized knowledge regardless of areas of concentration. The three areas in our program, education, psychology, and language education, are crucially related disciplines all requiring expert knowledge of each field as a foundation and as an enlightenment for the pursuit of one's own area of concentration. In this sense, the program represents the strength and uniqueness of liberal arts education.

In the area of education, we probe into future educational policies by a comparative analysis of how we see the world and human beings, and of issues pertaining to curricula and education laws of the developed and developing countries. In educational technology, we explore the use and effectiveness of information technology in teaching and learning processes. In educational communication, we examine the characteristics, social function and efficacy of interpersonal and mass communication. Furthermore, in educational sociology, we look into the characteristics of the educational system, social structure, and cultural contexts in relation to function, meaning, and policy.

Pursuing the psychology discipline based on liberal arts education necessitates coverage of a wide range of fields including developmental, cognitive, social, and community psychology. In a group and cultural psychology course, for instance, topics such as community mental health, empowerment, and social change are discussed. In a family psychology course, family pathology, family life cycle and development, among others, are examined. Neurological and biological foundations of cognitive development, individual differences and clinical issues are included in the topics of discussion in a human development seminar. These are just a few examples of multi-faceted issues of psychology waiting to be explored in our program.

The area of language education equally requires an interdisciplinary approach. We offer instruction in linguistics, psychology and education that provide the foundation for theory and practice in English and Japanese language education. After deepening the linguistic knowledge of target languages, students proceed to the study of first and second language acquisition, foreign language teaching methods, materials and curriculum development, bilingual education and early language education, among others. To culminate the study for integrating theory and practice, practicum will follow in the target language classrooms.

In all three areas, students will also be trained in both qualitative and quantitative research methods required in respective areas as independent scholars, who are expected to maximally contribute to the advancement of academic research. We welcome enthusiastic, open-minded, and peace seeking individuals to the ICU community; the faculty will join the students in this endeavor.

Voice of Faculty

Prof.
JUNG, Insung

My current research interests at ICU include the quality assurance of distance education/e-learning, the interactive instructional design using various old and new technologies such as TV broadcasting, the Internet and Web 2.0 technologies, online collaboration and communication, the application of instructional theories to e-learning development, and competency-based learning and training.

There is an ancient Chinese proverb that urges 'keep on learning as long as you live'. I argue that everyone involved in our graduate program should be continually engaging the scholarship of discovery, integration, application and teaching. Only then can they truly claim to be professionals in the field. I also emphasize that research is essential for improving understanding and practice, assuring and improving quality, informing and influencing policy-making and ensuring that new types of learning (such as e-learning, media/technology use in education) is recognized as scholarly activity in its own right. And researchers need to turn a much more critical lens to what is occurring in educational and training systems.

I think the Graduate School offers open and interactive learning and research environment in which graduate students can closely communicate and interact with faculty members to decide their courses, develop seminar themes and explore research interests. In addition, students will be able to study other academic fields related to their own research areas across different majors.

Area of Concentrations

There are three "Area of Concentration" for Education and Psychology Program.

Based on liberal arts principles and the rigor of research methods, students will examine increasingly complex issues in education. Under close supervision of program faculty in diverse fields such as sociology of education, educational technology, development studies, psychology, and philosophy and history, students are expected to focus on one or more areas of research. The topics include international and domestic issues in education, applications of innovative computer and internet technology in instructional design and pedagogy, learning and teaching strategies in diverse contexts, societal and community structures and educational policies in Japan and developing countries, designing and implementing IB programs in higher education, and evaluating peace education.

Students graduate with a Master of Arts in Education.

We engage in research standing in a unique position, with an integrated perspective combining both scientific and human aspects. We work to cater to the needs of society for the training and development of highly specialized professionals.

Through specialized lectures, our team of professors--with specialties in cognitive, linguistic, developmental, educational, social, cultural and clinical branches of psychology, and neuroscience--train students in experimental and investigative techniques, statistical methods and qualitative research; as well as conducting proactive joint seminars involving all faculty members. A cosmopolitan mixture of students from a diverse range of backgrounds apply themselves and learn from one another as they engage in university educational activities.

Students graduate with a Master of Arts in Education.

Students in this concentration will be trained in the theory and practice of teaching English and teaching Japanese as a Foreign Language. Based on the interdisciplinary knowledge of linguistics, psychology and education, and of the target language, students will engage in the research of focused areas such as first language acquisition, second language acquisition, foreign language teaching methodology, bilingual education, early foreign language education, and the relationship between language and culture. Aiming at the integration of theory and practice, students will participate in teaching practice at respective classrooms.

Through specialized lectures, our team of professors--with specialties in cognitive, linguistic, developmental, educational, social, cultural and clinical branches of psychology, and neuroscience--train students in experimental and investigative techniques, statistical methods and qualitative research; as well as conducting proactive joint seminars involving all faculty members. A cosmopolitan mixture of students from a diverse range of backgrounds apply themselves and learn from one another as they engage in university educational activities.

Students graduate with a Master of Arts in Education.

Public Policy and Social Research Program

This program conducts advanced research in public policy and related social science disciplines, along with interdisciplinary studies encompassing a wide range of relevant subject areas, while preparing students to play key administrative roles in Japan or in international and other organizations by developing the keen analytical and planning skills needed to resolve issues flexibly and creatively.

Message from the Director

Program Director
Prof. MALARNEY,
Shaun K.

Equipping students with practical skills to solve problem from a global perspective

ICU's master's program in Public Policy and Social Research offers five areas of concentration. This program provides depth in each area of concentration, as well as width in academic disciplines. Thus, students may concentrate on one area while taking diverse courses from other concentration areas. For example, if a student's area of concentration is Peace Studies, the student may take not only core courses in Peace Studies, but also germane courses in Politics and International Studies. This flexibility allows students to explore different perspectives and approaches in regard to research topics. In addition, the program allows students to take courses from ICU's other master's programs such as Education and Psychology.
Most courses in Public Policy and Social Research are taught in English. Faculty members represent diverse nationalities and academic disciplines. An overwhelming majority of the students in the master's program are international students. Thus, students and faculty members create a global environment in which to discuss different ideas. This program will help students acquire in-depth knowledge and research skills needed in their chosen fields in order to succeed both professionally and/or academically. Consider pursuing a master's program in Public Policy and Social Research at ICU.

Voice of Faculty

JUNG JooYoung J.JPG
Prof.
Joo-Young J. Jung

I am a cultural anthropologist. My main geographical area of interest is Vietnam, though I have broader interests in mainland Southeast Asia and the United States. My theoretical interests include medical anthropology, ecological anthropology, violence, and inequality.
Graduate school education is a time when students must acquire more in-depth knowledge in their chosen field while simultaneously conducting a major research project related to their own interests. I believe that in doing this students must take the initiative and learn to think and work independently. In training my students in the classroom and for their theses, my goal is therefore to develop their analytical skills so they can learn to ask the proper questions to conduct their research and to establish the proper framework so they can acquire the knowledge they need.
The greatest advantage of the ICU Graduate School of Arts and Sciences for students interested in such disciplines as sociology and anthropology is that it provides a unique setting for the acquisition of the knowledge and analytical skills needed to move on to a career in either academia, non-governmental organizations, or public service.

Area of Concentrations

There are five "Area of Concentration" for Public Policy and Social Research Program.

Politics and International Studies covers international relations, politics, public administration, public policy, and law. Courses offered include International Relations and Diplomacy, International Relations Theory and the Asia-Pacific, Peace and Conflict Studies, Political Thought, Public Policy, Refugee Law, and Security and Conflict Resolution. The concentration in political and international studies is aimed at cohesive education and research in multidisciplinary fields: international relations, politics, public administration, and law. The concentration provides a unique combination of three distinct approaches, i.e., normative studies, empirical analyses, and policy studies. It aims to deepen understanding and further education and research in each multidisciplinary field.

Students graduate with a Master of Arts in Public Administration or International Relations.

Social and Cultural Analysis offers students the opportunity to examine contemporary global problems using the methodological tools and theoretical insights of Sociology and Anthropology. Faculty specialize in a broad range of relevant topics, including Gender & Sexuality, Science & Technology, Global Health, Population & Development, Violence, Contemporary Religions, Social Inequality and Globalization. Students in the program engage in multidisciplinary research projects that combine any of these specialties and work closely with our Faculty to pursue their individual interests. Social and Cultural Analysis helps students develop the skills necessary to interpret some the most pressing issues facing the world today.

Students graduate with a Master of Arts in Social and Cultural Analysis.

In the interdisciplinary Media and Language area of concentration, students can gain expertise in such fields as sociolinguistics, communication, media, and translation studies. Basic research skills are acquired and then applied in project-oriented courses, and students gain awareness and understanding of the important theoretical works in this interlocking range of disciplines. With this solid foundation of knowledge and methods, students will be able to engage in research that allows them to critically explore a wide range of topics related to the meanings, relationships and operations of media and language in contemporary society.

Students graduate with a Master of Arts in Media and Language.

Students in the Public Economics Concentration choose either economics or business administration as their field of specialization: Students in economics are required to take core courses in microeconomics, macroeconomics, econometric analysis, and advanced econometrics, while students in business administration choose relevant courses from business administration, accounting, and finance. Students in both economics and business may take 300-level and above courses offered in the College of Liberal Arts, according to their needs. Upon entering the Public Economics Concentration program, students are assigned a faculty adviser to counsel them regarding their research topic and start preparing for their master thesis, while taking more advanced courses.

Students graduate with a Master of Arts in Public Economics.

We offer a wide variety of courses relevant to peace, conflict and security. They range from foundation courses in peace and conflict studies, to more specialized courses on human rights, ideas and norms, gender, religion, conflict resolution, peace-building, development, traditional and post- traditional security threats, human security, the role of international organizations and international law. Graduates should then be able to analyze existing and potential conflicts, conduct empirical research, and should be able to work within national governments, international government or non-governmental institutions with a focus on peace and security issues.

Students graduate with a Master of Arts in Peace Studies.

Comparative Culture

While conducting intensive, problem-based comparative research into a wide spectrum of cultural phenomena, this program equips students with advanced training in the humanities wedded to the spirit of liberal arts, preparing them to play a role as responsible and far-sighted leaders in their chosen profession.

Message from the Director

CLA.SANO Yoshinori.JPG
Program Director
Prof. SANO, Yoshinori

TThe Comparative Culture Program of the ICU Graduate School has two major characteristics.

One is its interdisciplinary approach. The program offers two areas of concentration, Japanese Culture Studies and Transcultural Studies, which cover four fields: history, philosophy/religion, music/arts, and literature. Both provide comprehensive perspectives transcending traditional academic disciplines. Our multinational faculty offer a unique approach for each field: a Hungarian professor teaches medieval Japanese history, a Bulgarian professor lectures on Japanese literature and a Japanese professor specializes in modern French history. The Comparative Culture Program faculty members transcend national borders and language barriers in research and education.

The second is the learning environment. Small classes are crucial for scrupulous guidance in transdisciplinary studies at the graduate level. Faculty members heed the needs of students through discussion and individual consultation. Three faculty members specializing in different fields advise students writing a master's thesis. Students develop a deep understanding of the world by comparing their own culture with that of others. They learn to look at the world in relative terms. We pride ourselves in offering an environment where students and faculty from diverse backgrounds work together in new ways to study traditional academic disciplines. Some may say that the study of comparative culture may not be significant for the real world, but the relative perspective that students acquire through this program is an intellectual training that will benefit all in society. Students work in diverse fields after they acquire a master's in this program. Success in their respective fields shows how learning in this concentration benefits all. The variety of jobs they choose reflects the benefits of the liberal arts education at ICU.

Voice of Faculty

Prof.
KOJIMA, Yasunori

I specialize in the history of Japanese thought, especially that of the Edo Era. My research interests include systematized or doctrinal thought such as Confucianism, Buddhism, study of Japanese classical culture, as well as the commoners' view of life and death.

The university is a place to train the intellect, not an institution that provides prepackaged information for efficient learning. This is why I avoid overprotecting my students. The Comparative Culture Program enables students to study across various disciplines from a multi-lateral perspective. But this breadth should not lead us to resemble a continuing education center. We need to delve deeply into our specialty and use this foundation to cross borders into other fields. Join us in forming an exciting community of intellectuals.

Area of Concentrations

There are two "Area of Concentration" for Comparative Culture Program.

Students gain an understanding of various cultural structures and learn comparative research methods as they seek to deepen their knowledge in their area of specialization.

As they learn about various aspects of culture through discussions in small group seminars in basic subject modules such as Methods in Comparative Culture course (compulsory), specialized educational subject modules such as Japanese Culture course, and common cross-area subject modules such as Comparative Culture Research course, students also develop multidisciplinary approaches to their research themes.

For example, students can engage in cross-disciplinary research of the kind in which they gain an understanding of literature and the arts that includes historical, ideological and religious viewpoints.

Students graduate with a Master of Arts in Comparative Culture.

Students gain an understanding of various cultural structures and learn comparative research methods as they seek to deepen their knowledge in their area of specialization. As they learn about various aspects of culture through discussions in small group seminars in basic subject modules such as Methods in Comparative Culture course (compulsory), specialized educational subject modules such as Transcultural Studies course, and common cross-area subject modules such as Comparative Culture Research course, students also develop multidisciplinary approaches to their research themes.

For example, students can engage in cross-disciplinary research of the kind in which they gain an understanding of literature and the arts that includes historical, ideological and religious viewpoints.

Students graduate with a Master of Arts in Comparative Culture.

ICU Society for the Study of Comparative Culture

Faculty members, graduates and students in the Master's and Doctoral Course are the main members of the ICU Society for the Study of Comparative Culture. The Society supports members' research activities in various ways, including the publication of ICU Comparative Culture, an academic journal containing members'research papers, and the ICU Comparative Culture Series, which provides a medium for publishing outstanding yet unpublished doctoral theses on comparative culture. Through these efforts, the Society strives to promote the interaction and mutual development of members. Students are encouraged to join the Society at the time of their enrollment.

For detail: ICU Society for the Study of Comparative Culture website

Natural Sciences Program

This program carries out specialized specialized training and research in a variety of disciplines relating to the natural sciences, equipping students with the ability to understand their specialized fields in the broader context of science and to play a leading role by grasping the role of science in society.

Note to Prospective Applicants
We strongly recommend that all prospective applicants to the Natural Sciences Program communicate with our faculty members and visit the campus to ensure our facilities and laboratories meet their research needs. ICU facilities can be open to prospective applicants on a campus open day or by appointment.

Message from the Director

Program Director
Prof. KUBO, Kenya

Real education in small groups is the key to developing world class researchers

The high faculty/student ratio in the Natural Sciences Graduate School program at ICU is a great benefit for each graduate student in their study and research. Primarily led by the main advisor, with additional input from faculty members of the student's areas of concentration and by the academic staff of the wider natural sciences program, each student receives individual attention, enabling them to maximize their potential. Small research groups allow students to gain hands-on experience using modern and expensive experimental instruments and lab space with a considerable degree of freedom. Students also have abundant time for discussion with the main advisor and supporting teaching staff. Domestic and international joint research with other universities and research institutions is often conducted utilizing the academic networks of the teaching staff to fulfill the demands of students'research work.

In addition to the study of their focused science area, graduate students study ethics, the philosophy of science and science education, as well as methods of professional academic research work including a course in writing a grant application. Graduate students also have opportunities to take intensive academic writing courses in either Japanese or English - whichever is not their native language - to enhance their language ability required in their future work. Students also select courses in humanities and social sciences.

Fully fledged with the ability to carry out frontier scientific research and a wide view of nature and human society nurtured at a liberal arts graduate school, our alumni are equipped for a great variety of job opportunities beyond the scientific/academic in finance, education, engineering and much more.

Voice of Faculty

Prof. SHIMIZU, Yuji

Our strength lies in small groups, which facilitate close interaction between students and faculty.

The main field of my research is Algebraic Geometry. It is applied to various fields including String Theory which is deeply related to my studies. My research focuses on figures called algebraic varieties such as elliptic and hyperbolic curves defined by algebraic equations as well as related objects. I'm particularly interested in the derived categories of coherent sheaves from the perspective of noncommutative algebraic geometry.
When we provide instruction in advanced graduate school mathematics courses, we take full advantage of our small classes by helping students understand not just the technical aspect of the subject but also what motivated research in that topic and its future potential. The Graduate School of Arts and Sciences offers courses that emphasize an interdisciplinary approach, providing students with a flexible perspective regardless of their speciality. Our environment is ideal for science education and for obtaining viewpoints of science directed to the public in general.

Voice of Student

Mr. JOHN, Joshua Dumenkosi
Natural Sciences Program / Material Science

I am studying Material Science with emphasis on photoconductive and photovoltaic applications. This program involves extensive research, experimental work and critical analysis of results. I am researching on the applications of Amorphous Selenium as a material for photovoltaic and photoconductive devices. Recent advances have shown that Amorphous Selenium can be doped with impurity materials through a simple process of electrolysis. This has the effect of significantly improving the performance of the material in photovoltaic and photoconductive applications. My aim is to optimize the electrolysis driven doping process. If successful, the results will open doors to advanced uses of Amorphous Selenium in photovoltaic and photoconductive applications. Being able to study at the ICU Graduate School is a huge privilege. For me, it is a great opportunity to study in an international environment where I get to meet people from all over the world and share together in an exciting learning experience. The Graduate School is staffed by a team of highly qualified and experienced, yet approachable and friendly world class professors, teaching staff and administrators. This team is always available to provide guidance and support when I need it, making my studies enriching and enjoyable.

Area of Concentrations

There are three "Area of Concentration" for Natural Sciences Program.

In this area, students engage in complementary theoretical and applied or practical study, while at the same time advancing their research in close collaboration with their research supervisors, from classical themes to the latest cutting-edge areas of research drawn from both the Japanese and overseas research communities.

After completing the program, students aim to enter employment in corporate or educational fields, or progress to higher levels of study on doctoral programs in Japan and abroad, with the aim of becoming professional researchers.

In terms of background knowledge, it is desirable for students to have accumulated a wide range of knowledge up to the third year of undergraduate study and to have engaged in fundamental studies in their area of specialization. Students also require foreign language ability in order to read academic journals and dissertations written in foreign languages, including English.

Students graduate with a Master of Arts in Natural Sciences.

While scientific studies relating to physical matter are mainly classified into experimental and theoretical study, calculation from first principles using computers is becoming another important area. Experimental work requires fundamental experimental skills and logical thinking to arrive at an understanding of physical substances based on experimental result; while theoretical work involves explanation of facts and making prediction based on basic laws of material science and modelling of phenomena. In this way, we seek to interlink and integrate the experimental, theoretical and computational sciences

Students graduate with a Master of Arts in Natural Sciences.

In this area, we engage in research in the three areas of botany, zoology and microbiology, ranging from the molecular level to the individual organism or ecological level. In terms of specific themes, some examples include biological rhythms, metabolism, DNA repair, generation, reproductive behavior and ecological conservation.

In addition to specialized themes, we instruct students in scientific thinking and basic research methods. We also place importance on utilizing the unique features of ICU as a liberal arts university, thinking about connections between the life sciences and society, and developing scientific communication abilities.

Students graduate with a Master of Arts in Natural Sciences.

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