The Department’s curriculum on education and child development integrates three fields: psychology, pedagogy (primary education), and disability sciences. Through the study of these fields, students pursue solutions to problems related to the development of the young mind. The department’s objective is to train future teachers and other personnel capable of understanding the psychology of school-age children, supporting their mental and emotional development, and working to resolve the issues facing schools today.
In order to address the psychological issues that today’s children face, teachers need to both understand the mechanisms of development and disability and take comprehensive approach that considers all aspects of children’s lives. Through the Department’s integrated educational program, students deepen their understanding of children and learn how to support them. By developing competency in three areas — problem prevention and resolution, individual support and group education through the plan-do-check-act (PDCA) cycle, and instruction that integrates academic subjects with daily-life guidance — the Department aims to train teachers capable of supporting children’s mental and emotional development.
In their first year, all students focus on gaining a basic grasp of child development and psychology. Starting in their second year, they specialize in one of three programs depending on their interests or career goals. These programs give them the ability to respond to needs with a wide range of supportive methods, as schools currently require, opening up many career options.
*Students in all three programs are eligible to obtain a type 1 primary school teaching certificate, a school librarian certificate (see Note 1), or a social welfare officer certificate (see Note 3).
Participants study learning processes, learning difficulties, teaching and learning psychology, lifespan development psychology, academic education, preschool education, and school education. Most go on to careers as preschool or elementary school teachers or staff at childcare support facilities or private education-related companies. They are eligible for type 1 kindergarten teaching certification.
Participants study special-needs education, the psychology of children and adults with disabilities, medical care for children with disabilities, and methods of educational, career, and parental support. Most students pursue careers as teachers at special education schools, in regular or special-education classrooms at elementary schools, in resource rooms, or at rehabilitation centers. They are eligible for type 1 special needs education certification (see Note 1).
Participants study multicultural education, psychology for multicultural support services, multicultural educational planning, and English communication. Most pursue careers as elementary school teachers working with foreign children or returnees, as multicultural coordinators, or as staff with international exchange or study abroad programs. They are eligible for type 2 lower secondary school teaching certification (English) (see Notes 1 and 2) or social education supervisor certification (see Note 3).
Note 1: This certification must be obtained in conjunction with a type 1 primary school teaching certificate.
Note 2: Requires completion of courses in other departments. Approximately five to ten students are selected from each class for this certification program.
Note 3: Students in the other two programs may also obtain this certification by completing designated courses within and outside of their program.
Departmental facilities include a clinical psychology center, fieldwork support office, music room, piano practice room, arts and crafts room, home economics room, psychology lab, sculpture room, teaching material development room, and library.
Introductory classes teach the basics needed to understand children. Students learn about children’s education, psychology, development, and disabilities in Survey of Education and Development, and also study special education.
In their second year, students split into three programs to deepen specialized knowledge. All programs emphasize hands-on training at schools and other educational sites, integrating theoretical and practical study to ensure mastery of knowledge and thorough understanding.
From their third year on, the curriculum focuses on supporting children’s development through the study of specific theories and methods. Students develop practical skills through self-directed learning in seminars.
Students who wish to become teachers participate in student teaching. They also bring together all four years of learning in a graduation research project written in the Education and Development Seminar, which combines text-based and practical study.
Elementary schools: 35 Schools for special needs education: 7 Kindergartens: 11 Total: 53 (including fixed-term appointments, etc.)
Elementary schools: 30 Schools for special needs education: 8 Kindergartens: 7 Total: 45 (including fixed-term appointments, etc.)
*Since 2014, the Career Center has also offered a course on obtaining certification as a nursery school teacher. *Type 2 lower secondary school teaching certification (English) requires completion of courses in other departments. This certification must be obtained in conjunction with a type 1 primary school teaching certificate.