The objective of the Faculty of Letters in terms of education is to impart basic and specialized knowledge across a variety of fields of human expression, as well as practical competence in them, to foster understanding of literature, arts, and culture in a variety of different languages, and to cultivate powers of expression in both spoken and written language. In doing so, our objective is to cultivate the capability and the individuality to contribute to society while thinking about what it is to be a human being, questioning what human beings should be and do, and dealing with the world’s diversity and change. Each department and academic program engages in this kind of development of human resources while upholding its own objectives and policies, without falling into unwanted uniformity, but all of them will place value on flexible thinking and they will guide students toward the ability to build human relationships between individuals. In this way we inherit the humanitarianism, the Christian spirit, and the concern for multiplicity of languages and cultures of J. C. Hepburn, and in this way we also share an attitude of openness to further expanding horizons.
Policy on Conferral of Degrees (Diploma Policy)
Students are to have a well-developed sensibility in language, literature, and the arts, and will have acquired the fundamental knowledge and practical competence in the specialized field of their department. Students are also to possess language skills and presentation skills based on a deep understanding of the thought, literature, culture, and various art genres of England, America, and France. Possessing such sensibility, understanding, and ability to express themselves, they will also be equipped to examine such fundamental questions as what the nature of a human being is, and who and what they themselves are in the world.
Academic Program Organization and Implementation Policy (Curriculum Policy)
Each department determines the curriculum policy for courses of study in that department’s basic field of specialization.
In addition to this basic and specialized curriculum, the Faculty of Letters has also established a core curriculum for the department, including Japanese literature, Chinese literature, German literature, Western literature, intercultural understanding, philosophy, Greek, Latin, cultural history, and ethnology. By enrolling in these courses, students can deepen their knowledge and understanding of a broader range of language, literature, and the arts without falling into overly limited specialization.
We are looking for students who are oriented to literature, language, and the arts. Students who have acquired basic academic competence demonstrated in general entrance examinations and National Center entrance examinations will be selected for admission. Apart from basic academic competence, applicants will also be screened for competence and suitability in the specialized field of each department concerned, using the examination for admission based on self-recommendation (the admission office (AO) examination) in accordance with the departmental field.
The educational objectives of the Department of English include deepening the student’s insight into human nature and understanding of the English-speaking cultures through the experience of literature and the arts in English. Another important objective is to conduct scientific research from various different aspects of the English language in order to gain a deeper understanding of the essence and functions of language, which is essential for exchange among human beings.
In coordination with the acquisition of this understanding, students will also aim to polish their competence in practical communication using the English language. English is widely considered to be the international language of our present era. Making the effort to acquire ability in English, to acquire scientific knowledge about language in general, and to have contact with the literatures and cultures of the English-speaking sphere, is to learn deeper understanding and insight into oneself and other people, and what it means to have contact with others and live together with others.
Students will have acquired competence in active use of the English language, which is widely considered an international language. They will have explored English literature and language as well as the cultures that form their context, and they will also have conducted linguistic research into the English language. In doing these things, students will have acquired deep understanding and insight into the conditions and possibilities of human beings, languages, and varying cultures.
In order to guide students to acquire general competence in English as an international language, they will be required in the first year to take courses in reading, writing, listening, and pronunciation; in the second year to take advanced courses in those subjects; and in the third year to acquire academic English skills. They are given instruction from basic to advanced levels, presented so as to convey the relationships among the various areas of language study. The requirements with regard to English and American literature and the English language are that students in the first and second years will take introductory and survey courses in those three fields, and in the third and fourth years must select seminars on Topics in British Culture, Topics in American Culture, and Topics in Linguistics. These specialized courses will be coordinated with English language development courses in Academic English Skills, Advanced Academic Writing, or other such areas, as well as with a variety of different elective courses in specialized subjects. Ultimately, however, students will be guided to write seminar papers and graduation theses that are one result and reflection of the understanding and insight into human beings, language, and varying cultures, into their conditions and their possibilities, that the students have acquired.
We are looking for students who study the English language with enthusiasm, who explore the cultures, literary works, and language of the English-speaking sphere as a means of deeper self-cultivation, but more than that, students who also break through the walls around them and seek to open the breadth of their beings to the outside world, and students who do not shrink from the steady effort to achieve this.
For that purpose, we place emphasis on the admission office (AO) examination based on self-recommendation, and particularly on the (B) program for that examination. Where the (A) program gives priority to applicants with relatively more advanced English-language ability, the (B) program assigns an essay written in the English language together with interviews in order to assess the applicant’s motivation and attitude toward university study.
The Department of French Literature seeks to cultivate talented people who have original perspectives and abundant creativity by means of research in the language, literature, arts, history, and philosophy of France. Students are brought into multifaceted contact with the treasure house of stimulating thoughts, feelings, and knowledge that is French culture, that cultivates their sensibilities and thinking, and they develop the powers of self-expression that enable them to communicate their own ideas to other people with certainty. Taking France as their reference point, students will at the same time expand their perspectives to include all of Europe, Africa, North and South America, and other places in the Francophone sphere, seeking to discern the modalities of a truly rich civilization. Our aim is to send out talented graduates with the rare ability to seek out unique thoughts and ideas and present them to Japanese society, which has a tendency toward uniformity.
After acquiring a foundation in the French language, students will develop the practical competence needed for reading, writing, and conversing in French. In specialized education courses, students will acquire more focused and more wide-ranging knowledge of language, cultures, literature, arts, history, and philosophies of the Francophone sphere based on their understanding of the characteristics of the French language. They will assimilate this knowledge, deepen their own thinking, and become able to relativize it. The third and fourth-year seminars will enable students to develop their communication skills by the experience they gain in expressing their own views, listening to other people’s opinions, and providing responses when discussing specific texts and works of art. Writing the graduation thesis is the culmination of the student’s academic work. Working under the guidance of their academic advisors, students will be required to search through and collect information resources, read documents, select the information that is necessary and effective in establishing their thesis, incorporate information sources, and make their own case logically and persuasively. After students undergo an oral examination, the originality of their thinking, analysis of their information sources, logical thinking, and ability to express themselves will be evaluated comprehensively, and the academic degree will be conferred.
The Department of French Literature has established required courses for the first and second years that are focused on imparting a foundation in the French language, with class-based instruction on grammar, reading, conversation, and composition. Native speakers are involved in the conversation classes so that students can learn living French as it is actually spoken. An elective course can also be taken to prepare for the French Language Proficiency Test, which provides a measure of achievement in language learning, and at the same time, basic courses (some of them electives) are provided as a preparatory stage for specialized education. These cover cultures and societies in the Francophone sphere and are offered as lecture, reading, and seminar courses. From the third year, a wide variety of specialized education courses are offered by instructors with specializations in a wide variety of historical periods, regions, and fields, so that the students’ individual interests cultivated in the preceding sequence of courses can be explored in greater depth. These courses are grouped under the four very general classifications of linguistic culture, literature, arts, and philosophy (including history). These are accompanied by intermediate French language courses taught primarily by native speakers, and these involve first confirming fundamental grammatical matters and then using living instructional materials from newspapers, magazines, the internet, and other such sources in repeated practice of conversation, composition, writing summaries, and so on. This training builds up practical competence in reading, listening, and speaking. Courses preparing for the French Language Proficiency Test continue to be available, as well. The greatest distinguishing characteristic of the Department of French Literature can be found in the required courses arranged through the third and fourth years. These are seminars conducted in small groups. The third-year seminars use discussion to develop the students’ ability to communicate their own views with assurance as well as the art of respecting the diverse views of other people. In the four-year seminars, students work under the guidance of the responsible faculty to focus in on their area of interest and decide on a topic for the graduation thesis. Guidance extends from the search for sources to creating an outline and on through every stage of thesis writing. Through presentations in seminars and meetings with their faculty advisors, students find workable topics and learn how to develop them logically and persuasively so that their own thoughts do not end up fading as no more than passing fancies. The curriculum in the Department of French Literature is designed to proceed in this way, building consistently from basics to specialization, nurturing the students’ interests continuously in stages and encouraging them to deepen.
We accept students who have the motivation for broad study of European cultures using the language, literature, history, arts, and philosophy of the Francophone sphere as a point of entry. In order to recruit talented people who are able to see beyond accepted wisdom and open themselves to a diversity of stimulating cultures that are different both from their own country’s culture and from cultures in the English-speaking sphere, we selectively accept students with original ideas and feelings who have passed the general written examinations and who have also taken the examination for admission based on self-recommendation (AO). We are also looking for students of varying backgrounds who have taken the specified school recommendation entrance examination, third-year admission entrance examination, or the entrance examination for applicants with full-time jobs. Regarding the examination for admission based on self-recommendation and the specified school recommendation entrance examination, a quota has been established for applicants who have already studied the French language, and we accept people who have already acquired a foundation in French and who have the motivation to further deepen their knowledge and understanding.
The Department of Art Studies has five sequences, the musicology sequence, art history sequence, film art studies sequence, art media sequence, and general art sequence. Their educational objective is, first of all, to carefully nurture the individual student’s interest in the arts. Preparing an intellectual environment in which can acquire both a breadth and depth of learning about the theory and history of art, as well as the conditions and modalities of communication that involves, and other related matters, we guide students to develop their abilities to think, to see, to hear, and to savor.
To that end, our program is formed from a vertical axis consisting of phased study from introductory to specialized knowledge, and a horizontal axis consisting of interdisciplinary study that spans different areas of study. We provide a creative and carefully worked-out curriculum to enable study from both these axes. One of the key educational objectives of the Department of Art Studies is to provide a variety of different lecture courses that not only convey specialized knowledge relating to the respective sequences, but also stimulate wide-ranging intellectual curiosity.
In their four years of education in the Department of Art Studies, students not only acquire specialized knowledge relating to their own majors and sequences, but also acquire the ability to feel, think, and understand the various objects of their study with a wide-ranging sense of intellectual curiosity. At the time of graduation, students will also possess the flexible intelligence and sensibility not only to maintain art as a tradition, but further to comprehend, in a professional and cultivated manner, art as the expressive behavior of the human being in its relationship to society and culture. They will have the ability to understand and analyze in depth the modalities of art in society. The knowledge and the various communication skills gained in the Department of Art Studies will also be of use in work and life in society after graduation, and the acquisition of an independent and active stance toward art is closely connected with the university’s educational principle, which is to develop a person rich in character and understanding of the diversity of values.
We implement a systematic specialized education that is organized on the basis of our diploma policy to deepen learning through stages, starting from the introductory. Moreover, we provide courses that cover both specialized education that is directed toward research and general education that is directed toward developing refinement in the arts in general. This enables students to acquire wide-ranging knowledge and to study art from a variety of perspectives, including history, specialized theory, and the traditions and innovations of art. The curriculum for each year is organized as follows.
In the first year, students take a wide range of introductory lecture courses, which are arranged so as to enable students to make an independent choice of their own sequence from those lectures. From the second year, when students decide their majors, they take an increasing number of specialized courses. In seminars and reading courses with small numbers of students, they will read texts with painstaking care, and many lecture courses are offered in a seminar format, in which students decide on a topic and make presentations. In the third year, lectures provide further specialized knowledge, and other courses, including research and seminar courses in each sequence, as well as special lectures that address various topics in a specialized manner, enable students to acquire specialized knowledge. In the fourth year, the graduation thesis is a requirement in the musicology sequence, art history sequence, film art studies sequence, and art media sequence. The year is therefore arranged so that students in these four specialized sequences can have close communication with their academic advisors as they work on their graduation theses. In the general art sequence, students further broaden their learning in general fields by taking courses in the general art sequence and the specialized four sequences in order to satisfy their graduation requirements.
The purpose is not to train skilled practitioners, but rather to carefully cultivate the growth of curiosity and interest in art. Based on this basic policy, our selection for admission places an emphasis on general entrance examinations while welcoming a wider range of students who have a variety of aptitudes and abilities. The department encourages development of students’ latent abilities and provides new perspectives on the arts, and therefore considers it important to support a variety of entrance examination subjects, including the admission office (AO) examination based on self-recommendation.
Our educational objective is to develop intellectual curiosity and critical perspective on society and culture by broadly heightening the human capabilities for thinking, seeing, hearing, and savoring by means of art. In order to realize this educational objective, the Department of Art Studies avoids placing excessive value on knowledge and skills gained in stages prior to admission, but instead provides a curriculum for education in the department that is organized to guide students carefully from their first year on. A curriculum of this kind can exert its maximum benefit precisely because our system for broad-based selection centered on general entrance examinations admits diverse individual students who share in their study of the arts in this new environment. The special entrance examinations focus on applicants’ independence and whether they are interested in learning. We also place emphasis on the interview and essay, which are focused on applicants’ latent abilities and student potential.