Greetings, Overview and History
GreetingsThe Graduate School of Language and Culture was founded in 1989, the first of its kind in Japan. The first major reorganization was done in 2005. The next major event was the integration of Osaka University with Osaka University of Foreign Studies in October, 2007. Since then, the Language and Culture degree program has been one of the three degree programs of the Graduate School of Language and Culture, together with the Language and Society program and the Japanese Language and Culture program.
Changes in today’s world are devastatingly fast. Two transformative driving forces of modern societies are the drastic increase of immigration and the astounding progress of information technologies, by which people of different languages and cultures can live and work together in the same physical and/or cyber spaces. In this globalized world, universities, institutions for producing knowledge also need to be transformed into knowledge-creating spaces responding to a diversity of languages and cultures, and exploring various phenomena resulting from such diversity. The Studies in Language and Culture degree program provides inter- and cross-disciplinary spaces where students and researchers work together to create innovative boundary-crossing knowledge. Students can receive fulfilling education and be engaged in advanced research courses in fields such as Digital Humanities.
The Studies in Language and Culture degree program is comprised of Area I (Comparative Studies in Language and Culture, Systems in Language and Culture, and Contemporary Interdisciplinary Cultural Studies), Area II (Language and Communication, and Education in Language and Culture), and Area III (Linguistics and Language Informatics, and Language and Cognitive Sciences). While each area has several courses, they are not exclusively separated; rather, all courses of the Studies in Language and Culture degree program together form a cooperative educational and research system. All students and researchers closely interact in the educational and research fields and at various school events.
At the Studies in Language and Culture degree program, while students attend classes on research methods, presentation and ethics necessary for researchers, they are also encouraged to attend a variety of classes to gain wide knowledge. They can seek guidance from any academic staff in the Studies in Language and Culture program. We call this system the “group supervision system.”
Today, having reading ability of literature is not enough to become either an academic researcher or a professional in business. In accordance with the Diploma Policy of the Studies in Language and Culture degree program, we offer educational courses to train academics and advanced professionals to acquire language and communication skills, knowledge in Information Technology, and broad cultural perspectives as well as expert knowledge and talented research presentation ability.
Yoshio ISE, Program Chair
OverviewThe Department of Language and Culture consists of seven programs: Comparative Studies in Language and Culture, Systems in Language and Culture, Contemporary Interdisciplinary Cultural Studies, Language and Communication, Education in Language and Culture, Linguistics and Language Informatics, and Language and Cognitive Sciences.
Members of our program of education and research analyze the mechanisms of languages and linguistic codes that enable effective communication among the various traditions and cultures of the world. We endeavor to develop basic linguistic theory as well as advanced skills in the utilization of linguistic and cultural information, natural language processing, and language engineering based on mathematical models and grammatical theory. Our goal is to establish a system of education and research that transcends traditional frameworks, to provide the best possible training for future leaders in the field.
We welcome students from diverse academic backgrounds who demonstrate the potential to make a positive contribution to intercultural communication. While encouraging them to build on the foundations they have already established, we guide them in the acquisition of the necessary knowledge and skills with a view toward the development of a broad interdisciplinary vision. Our curriculum is basically divided into the following three areas of instruction.
- Area 1：Focus on Comparative Studies in Language and Culture, Systems in Language and Culture, and Contemporary Interdisciplinary Cultural Studies
- Area 2：Focus on Language and Communication and Education in Language and Culture
- Area 3：Focus on Linguistics and Language Informatics and Language and Cognitive Science
HistoryWhen the Graduate School of Language and Culture was first founded in April of 1989, it offered one master’s level course in Studies in Language and Culture. The doctoral program was founded in 1991. Since its inception, we have sought to develop a faculty of researchers with strong backgrounds in a broad range of disciplines, from humanities to social sciences to natural sciences, with the aim of establishing a collaborative interdisciplinary system of education and research to promote the development of a truly international information society.
The year 1991 further saw the formation of the Osaka University Society for the Study of Language and Culture, comprised of faculty and students of our School. The Society published its first journal in March of 1992. In 1994, our first cohort of doctoral students completed their course of study. In 2000, we launched our series of Collaborative Research Projects by faculty members working in teams with graduate students. Publication of the fruits of these joint research projects has now continued for over a decade.
In 2005, the School underwent a fundamental reorganization whereby the original Faculty of Language and Culture with its five programs was transformed into the current system with seven programs.
In October of 2007, Osaka University and Osaka University of Foreign Studies were integrated. The newly integrated Graduate School of Language and Culture now consists of two departments, the Department of Language and Culture and the Department of Language and Society.
In 2012, a third department was added as a result of integration with the World Language Center and named the Department of Japanese Language and Culture.