Shirayuri University

Graduate Programs

Graduate School

Graduate School of Liberal Arts

The Shirayuri University Graduate School is home to five Master’s Programs and three Doctoral Programs, all of which work in close coordination with their corresponding faculties and departments.

Centered on a core educational policy of helping students develop as individuals in the Christian spirit, the Graduate School builds on the academic research foundation of the university’s undergraduate programs to give students deeper knowledge of their respective fields, nurture students’ research skills, elevate the cultural sphere, and contribute to the welfare of humankind.

Department of Developmental Psychology (Master’s Program/Doctoral Program)

Building on an impressive track record
The graduate programs in the Department of Developmental Psychology aim to develop students’ research skills and professional abilities through the study of the human mind and human behavior in all stages of life—from infancy and childhood to adolescence, adulthood, and old age—from the perspectives of lifelong development, comparative culture, and clinical approaches. The Department also operates the Clinical Center for Developmental Disorders, a facility where students can learn about and practice developmental and clinical techniques. Grounded in theoretical and empirical research, the center has a long history in counseling and diagnosing a wide variety of disorders, offering treatment-related education, and providing counseling for parents.
While the Developmental and Clinical Center provides graduate students with a place to get valuable clinical training experience, the Research and Education Center for Lifespan Development serves as a hub for basic research into lifelong developmental psychology, actively sponsors opportunities for research exchange, and engages in a variety of practical training activities. By taking part in center projects, graduate students can enhance their skills in researching and practicing developmental psychology.

Training students to become certified clinical psychologists and clinical developmental psychologists
The Master’s Program has two courses: the Course of Developmental Psychology and the Course of Clinical Developmental Psychology.
The Course of Clinical Developmental Psychology, which focuses specifically on clinical psychology, has received official recognition as a Category-1 graduate school from the Foundation of the Japanese Certification Board for Clinical Psychologists. Upon graduating from the Master’s Program, students in the Course are eligible to take the qualifying examination for clinical psychologists. The Course of Developmental Psychology, meanwhile, not only opens doors to specialized research but also provides beneficial opportunities for clinical training and features a curriculum that prepares learners for taking qualifying examinations for clinical developmental psychologists and other related professions.

Department of Children’s Literature (Master’s Program/Doctoral Program)

Establishing unique critical and scholarly approaches to children’s literature
The graduate programs in the Department of Children’s Literature aim to delineate the significance of children’s literature, which has an enormous impact on children’s growth, in the broader context of literature in general.
Recognizing that recent research into the field of children’s literature is growing into an increasingly interdisciplinary pursuit, the department focuses on analyzing works from Japan and around the world, conducting both bibliographic and historical research, and establishing critical and scholarly approaches unique to children’s literature.

Encompassing the full range of media
One of the most distinctive features of the Department of Children’s Literature is its emphasis on including theater, manga, animation, and other crucial forms of modern media within the scope of children’s literature studies. Students can also take advantage of Shirayuri University’s many unique strengths in the field. In addition to boasting a far-reaching education and research structure covering everything from modern and contemporary children’s literature to folklore and narrative literature in Japan, the United Kingdom, the United States, and Germany, the university also operates the active, content-rich Research Center for Children’s Literature and Culture.

Department of Japanese Language and Literature (Master’s Program)

Enriching students’ specialties
Using their undergraduate studies as a springboard for further research, students in the Department of Japanese Language and Literature Master’s Program expand and improve their specialized knowledge in the field. The program welcomes students hoping to become researchers and educators, students motivated to study Japanese language, Japanese literature, Japanese culture, and Japanese language education in a full-fledged, advanced academic setting, and people who want to resume their studies after spending time in the professional world, as well. In addition to offering courses on different themes and periods in the realms of Japanese language, literature, and language education, the program curriculum also features an “Integrated Practicum in Japanese Literature” and other classes that transcend the boundaries of time and thematic content to provide a more comprehensive view of Japanese literature.
If the current trends continue, an aspiring teacher will likely need to have a master’s degree to find employment at a high school in the future. A graduate education is thus gradually becoming an increasingly essential asset for people who want to use their university studies in their future vocations.

Department of French Language and Literature (Master’s Program)

Small-group education, tailored to the individual learner
There are three key features that define the Department of French Language and Literature: its emphasis on the pluralistic, multi-layered relationships linking language and literature with thought, history, art, and other cultural components, its focus on intercultural negotiations, acceptance, and understanding, and its stress on cultivating advanced language skills. In order to meet these objectives, the department and its faculty of experienced educators provide students with meticulous, individualized guidance and cover the full expanses of language, literature, and culture by providing dedicated instruction and utilizing a wide array of materials and equipment.
To complete the program, students can write a Master’s Thesis or submit a research project on a specific theme in areas ranging from translation studies to fieldwork in French language education and teaching material development. Another unique opportunity available to students in the department is the exchange program with Paris Diderot University (for students with DELF B2 proficiency).

Department of English Language and Literature (Master’s Program)

Exploring language, literature, and culture
In the Department of English Language and Literature, students research the diverse language cultures of the English-speaking world by engaging with three main areas of study: the English language, British and American literature, and Western culture. In the English language field, research projects and courses tackle English from a diachronic perspective—examining Old and Middle English, for example—and a synchronic perspective—exploring elements like Modern English, English education, and cross-cultural understanding. The literature component of the Master’s Program draws mainly on British and American literature, building courses around a large selection of authors and works from the Middle Ages to the present day.

Taking knowledge, logical thinking, and research capabilities to the next level
With globalization and informatization increasing, people need to have a strong command of English and flexible, sophisticated research abilities in order to perceive, analyze, and explain multidimensional issues. The Department of English Language and Literature extends what students have learned in their undergraduate studies to help learners develop refined knowledge, analytical skills, and critical thinking capabilities and develop human resources capable of making positive contributions to research and education in their fields of choice.

Department of Language and Literature (Doctoral Program)

Helping students build on their Master’s Program achievements
Students in the Department of Language and Literature Doctoral Program choose a specific field to research (Japanese language/literature, French language/literature, or English language/British and American literature) and then focus on their “specialized courses” of independent, specialized study and “related courses,” which serve to facilitate interdisciplinary research.
Since the late 20th century, researchers in the field of language and literature have been actively quoting sources from neighboring disciplines like history, thought, and art. The Department of Language and Literature seeks to define the historical and structural relationships of interdisciplinary research, encourage students to expand the scopes of their specialized research, and promote the development of new research horizons.

Crafting new ideas and propelling research
“Omnibus” courses, which introduce topics from all three areas of specialization, unite faculty members and graduate students (in the Master’s and Doctoral Programs) from various fields for lively, eye-opening discussions driven by interdisciplinary research. Linked by the common thread of language and literature, students can build on their diverse encounters to forge their own ways of thinking, find their own unique approaches, and tap into new dimensions of knowledge.
The omnibus-style courses in the Department reflect the hope of reconfiguring the patterns of language-specific literary research and improving the current standing of the discipline. Although efforts to transcend the boundaries of academic spheres occasionally take place in undergraduate settings, the graduate school environment is the ideal place for making interdisciplinary research even more extensive and rigorous.

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