News & Event Application Enquiry


Culture and Society Course (taught in English)




  • Lecture: 15 (Mon.) - 20 (Sat.) June, 2020
  • Project Work: 15 (Mon.) - 28 (Sun.) June, 2020


  • For sub-course 1 and 2 attendants, all lectures are basically introductory level, so previous experiences of the subject is not required.
  • For sub-course 3 attendants, the university-level knowledge of natural sciences is required.
  • Up to 60 students for Sub-course 1, up to 20 students for Sub-corse 2, and up to 30 students for Sub-course 3 are accepted.

Course contents

【Lectures】 Choose ONE sub-course from the below (two credits)

Sub-course 1: Trans-Border Issues in Japan

Sub-course2: Lifestyle in Japan

Sub-course 3: Natural Science and Technology

  • Each course has 90 minutes x 12 classes, a field study, and a workshop. 
  • Each course is taught by several lecturers in an omnibus style and from interdisciplinary perspectives.
  • More than 75 % attendance and submission of a final report are required for getting credits.


Sub-course 1: Trans-Border Issues in Japan

  We can regard that Japan today is located in a whirlpool of globalization. Many people come in and go out, various goods and information are exported and imported, and the fundamental constitution of Japanese societies is transformed drastically, keeping some traditional dimensions. Now let's learn the contemporary Japan on the viewpoint of trans-border issues: you will study various aspect such as culture and sub-culture, human movements, language, fine arts, international education, leadership etc.

Lecturer Topics

Satoshi Tanahashi

"Border-Crossing Cultures in/out of Japan"

Through two sessions, we will discuss about characteristics of contemporary Japanese cultures (not of Japanese Culture) from perspectives of hibridity, conflation, appropriation and mobility. Topics to be discussed will range widely from traditional cultures to 'subcultures' today such as Hello Kitty, cosplay, manga complex, and so forth.

Mayumi Mizumura

"Dance as Human Movement"

Human movements are affected by cultural backgrounds such as lifestyles. Japanese people has been changing their lifestyle during several decades from Japanese traditional ways to more westernized ways which would also affect our health status.  Dance is artistic human movement originated from deep into cultural origins of each area or country. Let's learn about Japanese dance as human movements and enjoy Japanese culture through dancing.   


Satomi Ito

"Invitation to Linguistics: Seeking a Framework to Analyze any Language in the World"

Are you struggling to master a foreign language?  If you are, then you've already found that the language variety is intriguing yet cumbersome. In this lecture, I will introduce a framework to interpret and compose any language in the world: formal semantics. The talk covers Japanese, English, Chinese and hopefully, your native language!


Mami Tsuchiya

"The Inside and the Outside of the Japanese Fine Arts"

Japanese fine arts often seem to have strong originality. Of course, on the other hand they are also influenced and developed by images brought from the surrounding areas. In this class, I introduce several cases in Japanese fine arts, and the participants do with time to exchange views with other members about such cases.

Yusuke Sakurai

"Trans-Border Issues in Education: Student Mobility"

This seminar lays out some major trends in student mobility, in particular, in higher education. It provides students an opportunity to develop their awareness and understanding of meanings and significances of student mobility. The seminar takes as its "object" students' experiences as those crossing border(s) to critically examine what student mobility means in the era of globalisation.

"Trans-Border Issues in Education: Short-Term Intensive International Programs"

This seminar, following the previous class discussion, narrows down students' focus to their experiences in intensive summer/winter program(s), one of major pedagogical formats of short-term international courses. This seminar poses the enduring question,  "how do we provide high-impact educational experiences in short-term international courses?". This seminar invites students' active and reflective analyses on their own experiences as course participants of short-term international courses.

Rie Okamura

"Japanese Working Women in Leadership Positions from the Viewpoints of Integrating Work, Family and Education"

The Japanese government has set a goal to fill 30% of leadership positions with women by 2020. In this class, we will discuss how we can achieve this goal referring results of the survey conducted by Institute for Global Leadership in 2019.

The details of "Field Study" is not confirmed. It will be announced here later.

Sub-course2: Lifestyle in Japan

There are various lifestyles in the world. To know the diversity of lifestyles leads to understand others and rethink you. In this lecture course, lectures explain the Japanese lifestyle, and are given in English by teaching staff. And students will learn about Japanese culture and tradition, social problem from various viewpoints.

Date Lecturer/Topics
15 June Shoka Utsumi (Research Assistant Professor, Institute for Education and Human Development, Ochanomizu University)

テーマ:日本の幼児教育/保育の歴史と新しい潮流 The history and new trends of child education and care in Japan


Japan's first and oldest kindergarten, Ochanomizu university kindergarten opened in 1876 (F. Froebel had founded the world’s first kindergarten in 1837). The class focuses on the history of early childhood education in Japan, the education and childcare philosophy of Ochanomizu University, and the recent efforts and activities at Bunkyo-ku municipal Ochanomizu university kodomo-en, providing opportunities for learning early childhood education and childcare through facility tours and group dialogues.


Participants are encouraged to review their preschool education system and their own experiences in ECEC facilities.

16 June Akie Naito  (Project Research Fellow, Institute for Global Leadership, Ochanomizu University)

テーマ:日本の伝統手芸について Traditional handicrafts in Japan


This class focuses on traditional handicrafts in Japan. Participants will learn about the history, techniques and works of traditional Japanese handicrafts. Participants can make accessories using traditional Japanese handicrafts.

17 June Junko Nishimura (Associate Professor, Faculty of Human Life and Environmental Sciences: Human Life Studies, Ochanomizu University)

テーマ:日本における仕事と家族 Work and Family Lives in Japan


This class focuses on the changes in work and family lives in Japan since the mid-20th century, and how these changes are interacted with labor market, social policy, and demographic factors. Issues such as gendered division of labor, childcare, housing, and aging population and declining fertility will be covered.

18 June Midori Kasai (Professor, Faculty of Human Life and Environmental Science: Food and Nutrition, Ochanomizu University)

テーマ:日本食におけるだしとうまみ Dashi and umami in Japanese food


Umami is one of the basic, or primary tastes and it is the fifth taste, joining sweet, sour, salty and bitter. Especially in Japan, umami substances are extracted by making dashi. Three major umami substances were discovered in Japan about 100 years ago and play an important role in Japanese food. The class will lecture about the discovery of umami, how to make dashi, and typical Japanse food washoku using dashi. Participants will also taste and exprerience the effect of umami synergy by combining two types of dashi that were made from katsuobushi and kombu.

19 June  Shu Imaizumi (Assistant Professor, Faculty of Human Life and Environmental Sciences: Psychology, Ochanomizu University)

テーマ:身体化された認知と感情:比較文化的視点 Embodied cognition and emotion: A cross-cultural perspective


Sensory signals from one’s own body modulate cognition and emotion; for example, motor action modulates creative thinking and emotional states. This lecture introduces the concept of “embodied cognition” through recent findings from psychology and neuroscience. Group discussions will focus on everyday experiences and cross-cultural characteristics of embodied cognition.

20 June Miki Kozaki (Assistant Professor, Faculty of Human Life and Environmental Sciences: Human-Environmental Sciences, Ochanomizu University)

テーマ:ライフスタイルの具現化としての建築 Architecture as an embodiment of lifestyle


Materials, shapes and building construction method differ by region. These could be results of climate, values and lifestyle differences. This class introduces architecture in general, and focuses on architectural differences in region and its reasons. It includes group discussion and small presentation.

The details of "Field Study" is not confirmed. It will be announced here later. 

Sub-course 3: Natural Science and Technology 

Nature is filled with structurally diverse substrates and living creatures, which are altered in spatio-temporal manners.
The physical nature of form (structure or assembly) and its change are figured out by the scieces, especially mathematics, physics, chemistry, biology and information science, with technology. The lectures examine and explain natural science and technology and are given in English by teaching staff in Faculty of Science. The lecturers will present, in simple terms, the areas of interest in their own field of expertise. This will ensure an overall comprehensive approach.

Lecturer  Topics
Takanori KONO Experimental techniques to atomic and subatomic structures
Toshihiro KONDO Nanoworld: Behaviors and functionalities of atoms and molecules.
Takayuki ITO Computer Graphics: From Data To Visual Messages
Masayuki HATTA A quest for the Principle of Animal Body Plan
Kei YURA Protein structure: From its folding through static and dynamic structures.
Masahiro MORIKAWA All – Formation, evolution, and activity

The details of "Field Study" is not confirmed. It will be announced here later. 

【Project Works】 (2 credits)

PW2This class is for conducting project works by collaboration of Ochanomizu University students and overseas partner university students. In groups, students discuss to fix the project topic of the group, schedule the research work, and make an oral presentation and a report on the group collaboration. Through the work, students experience and are trained of project planning, proceeding, and synthesizing the results to present, through multi-cultural opinion exchanges, to gain necessary skills to develop their career in the globalizing world. One part of the classes is going to be done virtually using IT tools.
There are going to be special lectures from leaders in order to give a tip to proceed with participants work in group.PW

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