One of the distinctive characteristics of the Meiji Gakuin Department of Psychology is that its focus is on psychology and its relationship with people and with society. The Department instills in its students analytical and practical abilities based firmly in psychology: An analytical ability that derives knowledge from a scientific understanding of the mechanisms of the mind, and a practical ability to respond to any type of person or situation in an increasingly complex society. We welcome students who have an interest in the scientific interpretation of the mind, and who hope to contribute to society using the psychological knowledge and research methodologies that they will acquire through study in the Department.
As the Department of Psychology within the Faculty of Psychology, we offer students a broader and more specialized study of psychology. Under 14 full-time faculty members, students of the Department are able to study a wide range of fields of psychology, from fundamental fields, in which we elucidate the workings of the mind using the scientific method, to clinical fields, in which students learn about methods of providing support to families, groups, and communities in addition to individuals.
Foundation Seminar 1, taken immediately after students enter the Department, offers a grounding in methods of studying psychology. Following this, over the course of their four-year program, students engage in the study of practical psychology in small workshops that focus on psychological experiments and seminars. Vigorous discussions between students and teaching staff promote the development of communication skills and problem-solving abilities.
In addition to a full range of lecture-based courses, the Department of Psychology offers workshop-based courses in both its foundation domain and clinical domain. These courses emphasize practical learning and the acquisition of skills that will be useful in the real world through a variety of experience-based learning programs.
The Department of Psychology boasts a wide selection of test equipment and observational instruments to promote the acquisition of advanced specialized knowledge and the training of skills. In addition, against the background of the increasing importance of statistical methods to private enterprise, we have introduced computers able to handle big data, which are proving useful in conducting surveys and analyses.
In the third year, we offer Psychology and Career, a class in which students hear from guest speakers from a variety of fields. Students gain practical skills and knowledge about how to best use their psychological training in their careers. Students are also able to attend events held by the Shirokane Psychology Association, at which they can hear from students who have advanced to graduate school and students who have completed their postgraduate degrees.
We offer a variety of subjects to assist students in understanding advanced foreign psychological literature and overseas trends in psychology, including English Readings in Psychology A and B and Intercultural Psychology. We also provide support for students who actively wish to pursue study overseas.
To ensure that new university entrants are able to smoothly adapt to university life, we offer a Freshman Training program and Department of Psychology networking events. We have also put into place a variety of measures that enable us to respond individually to our students throughout their four years of study, including a class advisor system, an interactive study room, and study support interviews.
Foundation courses such as Mental Health and Outline of Psychology A and B offer students a wide-ranging overview of psychological theory. By taking Statistical Methods for Psychology, Fundamental Statistics, and Psychological Research Methods, students acquire a foundation in the scientific and empirical clarification of the mind. In the small class Foundation Seminar 1, students develop the abilities in logical thinking, writing, and discussion that are essential to university study.
Students deepen their understanding of psychology in five “outline” courses, including Outline of Social Psychology. In the subjects Fundamental Psychological Experiments and Survey Methods, students plan and conduct experiments and surveys, and organize the results in reports. These subjects enable students to learn the basic methods of understanding the mind scientifically. In the small class Foundation Seminar 2, students cultivate the ability to read and interpret specialist literature closely and accurately, in addition to developing skills in making presentations. In English Readings in Psychology A and B, students develop the ability to read English-language psychological literature.
Six workshops are available to students in the third year, including Workshop in Observation and Interview Methods and Workshop in Clinical Psychology. Students are able to freely choose specialized courses from among five specialized areas, including School Psychology, Industrial and Organizational Psychology, and Criminal Psychology. In Psychology Seminar 1A and 1B, students receive seminar-style instruction from faculty members specializing in a range of fields of psychology, and begin more specialized research based on their specific interests and awareness of particular issues.
In Psychology Seminar 2A and 2B, students select topics for their graduate research project based on their interests and awareness of specific issues. Through the writing of their graduation theses, they develop the ability to think and conduct analyses logically, as well as presentation skills, communication skills, and the ability to solve problems, all of which will serve them in good stead in their later working lives.
Career options abound for graduates of the Department of Psychology. Around 70% of our graduates find employment in education or with established companies, while others begin careers in such fields as medical care and welfare, government service, and teaching. Careers in a wide variety of areas involve a focus on human psychology, offering a wide range of opportunities for our graduates to excel. For students who wish to conduct more specialized research in psychology, or who wish to become specialists (clinical psychologists, etc.), we have a graduate school offering master’s and doctoral programs. The Department of Psychology graduate school offers two courses in its master’s program: Psychology and Clinical Psychology (the school is designated as a Type 1 School for the Training of Clinical Psychologists).