Department of Art Studies

Department of English
Department of French Literature
Department of Art Studies

Students in the Department study the scope, theory, and history of art, learn to appreciate the role of tradition and transformation, and explore a range of other topics such as arts communication. Faculty value and nurture students’ interest in the arts, responding to their commitment to learn with a high level of specialized knowledge. We seek students with a strong and consistent fascination with the subject.

Department of Art Studies

Key Features of the Department of Art Studies

With its focus on teaching not the practice of art but rather its relationship to human existence, culture, and society, as well as its historical context, the Department is a pioneer among Japanese universities.


1 year of general study followed by focus on a specialized field

In their 2nd year, students choose from the following 6 programs:

Musicology Program

Students explore the components of music from multiple perspectives rooted in history and theory. Through exposure to a wide range of genres spanning folk and pop music from around the world in both ancient and modern times, they develop their own musical worldview.


Film and Art Studies Program

Students develop their ability to interpret the meaning of films by viewing and discussing a carefully chosen library of 100 works. In other classes, they shoot their own videos and critique one another’s work.


Art History Program

Students explore art from around the world in depth and from multiple perspectives. The program is appropriate both for those pursuing an academic or curatorial career and those who simply wish to interpret the images surrounding them in everyday life.


Art Media Program

Approaching their subjects from the perspectives of media communication and cultural sociology, students explore a variety of cultural phenomena that do not fit within the conventional boundaries of “the arts.” Workshops and other hands-on learning opportunities develop their ability to think flexibly.


Physical Expression in Performance Program

Students investigate all facets of the performing arts, including the history, theory, potential, and meaning of genres both old and new from around the world, such as drama, ballet, modern dance, musical theatre, and traditional performing arts. Classes on body techniques and the practice of performance are also offered.


General Art Program

Students develop their understanding of the arts by taking courses in all 5 of the specialized programs (Musicology, Film Studies, Art History, Art Media, and Theatre and Performance). By doing so, they emerge with a broad perspective on creative expression.


Museum Curator Certification

By completing courses on curation, students can obtain national certification as a curator. Becoming a curator requires not only specialized knowledge in fields such as art history, but also a broad range of other knowledge and skills related to topics such as the mission and administration of museums, the management and conservation of collections, and the planning and implementation of safe, effective exhibits.


The 4-Year Program

Year 1: Gain a broad understanding of the arts through classes in many fields

Introductory classes in all 6 of the Department’s programs provide a foundation in the arts and help students determine the areas in which they are interested.


Year 2: Choose one of six programs and begin in-depth studies

Students choose to join either the Musicology, Film Studies, Art History, Art Media, and Theatre and Performance or General Art Program. A range of class styles are offered, from small, intensive reading classes to hands-on classes to seminars in which students select a theme and prepare a presentation.

*The Department also provides many other opportunities to engage with the arts, including events outside the university, university symposiums and lectures featuring artists and academics, concerts, and theatrical performances.


Years 3 and 4: Develop specialized knowledge and write a graduation thesis or enhance overall understanding of the arts

Students in the 5 specialized programs receive closer and more detailed instruction as they prepare to write their graduation thesis, which is required in these programs. Students in the General Art Program pursue interdisciplinary studies in line with their own interests, selecting from classes offered in the 5 specialized programs.

Where Our Graduates Are Now

Graduates of the Department of Art Studies tend to pursue careers in creative fields. An increasing number are finding work as music managers, curators, film event producers, cartoonists, and similar professions, or in the publishing, broadcasting, advertising, entertainment, IT, or fashion industries. Many others put the planning and communication skills they developed in the Department to use in unique roles at corporations or government agencies. The deep insight they gain during their time at university into human expression and its reception by society is useful in many different situations after graduation.

Job placement rate by field, 2015–2017 (%)