What are Human Sciences?

The School of Human Sciences, Osaka University, is the first such school established in Japan. Its origin dates back to 1972 when a separate school comprising the departments of psychology, sociology, and education was formed, becoming independent from the School of Letters, Osaka University. Today, the School currently offers an undergraduate program that includes four divisions—the Division of Behavioral Sciences; the Division of Sociology, Philosophy, and Anthropology; the Division of Education; and the Division of Kyosei Studies—as well as the All-English Undergraduate Program and a graduate program that includes the Division of Behavioral Sciences, the Division of Sociology, the Division of Education, and the Division of Kyosei Studies.

The Graduate School of Human Sciences/School of Human Sciences engages in education and research by valuing "an open mind to tackle reality based on understanding of human beings by believing in scientific methods and responding interdisciplinarily to new challenges posed by the present era." Guided by this mindset, our goals are to develop students' capabilities to examine and solve various problems of contemporary society from broad perspectives that are informed by theories, experiments, research data, and diverse academic disciplines and to nurture individuals who can contribute to Japan and the global society in the 21st century.

We uphold three principles. "Being practical" helps us solve various problems, such as those related to an aging society with fewer children, problems of our minds and interpersonal relations unique to contemporary society, problems of inequality and poverty, multiple disasters, and threats of terrorism and international conflicts. "Being interdisciplinary" allows us to examine various problems of contemporary society from broad academic perspectives that include scientific disciplines. "Being global" enables us to examine issues from a universal perspective, which is indispensable in contemporary society.

The Graduate School of Human Sciences/School of Human Sciences has flourished and will commemorate its 50th anniversary in 2022. We must admit, however, that the academic field of "human sciences" has not been widely recognized as a specialized area of study. By upholding "being practical," "being interdisciplinary," and "being global" as our principles, we seek to advance our scholarly understanding of human beings while also aiming to solve various problems by creating "Kyoso Chi" (co-created knowledge), which will be built on scholarly knowledge and through cooperation with local communities, governments, nonprofit organizations, and private companies. By working with young people newly entering the field of human sciences, we will explore new knowledge that will help us contribute to human activities in the 21st century.