Graduate School of Human-Environment Studies Faculty of Human-Environment Studies Kyushu University

Vision and Objectives

What is Human-Environment Studies?

The Graduate School of Human-Environment Studies was established in 1998 with the aim of developing interdisciplinary research that takes a cross-sectional approach to both the humanities and sciences. When Kyushu University was reorganized in 2000, the Graduate School of Human-Environment Studies became what we know it as today. In addition, since 2005 we have offered the Professional Degree Program of Applied Clinical Psychology, which was the first program of its kind in Japan.

Vision of the Graduate School of Human-Environment Studies

If the twentieth century was a remarkable period of growth and development for the human race, the twenty-first century represents a time when we ask how humans should live, both in terms of “environment” and “coexistence”. Recognizing the dramatically changing times that we inhabit, the Graduate School of Human-Environment Studies is working on research to establish a new academic field which contributes to the precise understanding of issues of culture, society, education, psychology, and space that surround human-environment.

The Graduate School of Human-Environment Studies is comprised of various disciplines including the fields of psychology, sociology, cultural anthropology, education, health science, and architecture. Therefore, our vision of Human-Environment studies is multifaceted; while mastering the existing disciplines, we seek to develop the Human-Environment studies as a means of integrating the aforementioned disciplines.

Objectives of the Graduate School of Human-Environment Studies

The Graduate School of Human-Environment Studies aims to cultivate each student’s ability to scientifically analyze various issues surrounding the human-environment, which tend to be more complex and diverse on a global scale. Also, we seek the necessary conditions suitable for humans and the direction to create them, and play a leading role in a coexistent society for the challenging new era. To achieve this aim, we believe that it is necessary to research and teach sciences of humans, their environment, and the relation between the two from a unified perspective, whilst maintaining an organic coupling between the disciplines. The following skills such as advanced knowledge of this field and creative problem solving abilities are required of prospective students:

  • * Rigorous expertise and highly interdisciplinary knowledge and skills.
  • * Broad and well-developed interdisciplinary knowledge and skills, ranging from engineering technology to the humanities.
  • * A balanced set of values and sensitivity towards “humanness”.
  • * The creative ability to create a comprehensive design concept using applied sciences and centered on action research
  • * Analytical, critical and creative skills that allow flexibility in investigating problems from several different perspectives
  • * Applied skills necessary to deal with diverse and complex issues.
  • *An ability to collaborate with people from different cultures, and those who hold different values and ways of thinking

The conventional education system lacks the flexibility to cultivate advanced professionals or researchers with the wide range of knowledge, skills and problem solving abilities that is required in the modern era; traditionally, learning has been subdivided into conventional, and restrictive, disciplines such as engineering or the social sciences. We strongly believe that these conventional academic fields should be reorganized in a cross-sectional manner, with the establishment of a cross-sectional education body that supports new interdisciplinary fields based on more comprehensive perspectives.

To address this need, the Graduate School of Human-Environment Studies has combined with other disciplines that, while closely related, had previously belonged to separate departments, such as psychology, clinical psychology, health sciences, sociology, anthropology, education, and architecture. In this new cross-sectional education body, we strive to develop researchers and professionals who will play a leading role in creating, and participating in a coexistent society for the modern era.

Based on the aforementioned vision, the Faculty of Human-Environment Studies is a research organization which was reorganized to create and develop an innovative paradigm of unified research on humans and their environment which integrates various fields of psychology, clinical psychology, sociology, anthropology, education, and architecture. Whilst these fields are closely related in academic terms, they previously had little contact to one another due to the vertically integrated organization of the university. Therefore, we are now able to create and develop fields for the science of humans that are composed of human-environment studies, the science of their environment, and the relationship between both, from new perspectives.

The Faculty of Human-Environment Studies will step ahead into new research areas, which a coexistent society in the twenty-first century is asking for, based on this new and reorganized research body, and we will play an important role in studies within Asia of course and further internationally. Such new research areas include, for example, “Cultivating people who are enriched in creativity with an international sensibility and balance sensibility”, “Fostering a lifelong learning environment that would guarantee a quality of life”, “Planning urban space which can coexist with the environment”, “Planning a support system of human society which aims at a coexistent society”, and “Planning an effective clinical interposition and its system for urban pathology”.

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