Division of Educational Psychology

Course Description

Graduate Programs

This division offers four areas of study: Psychology of Learning and Instructional Psychology, Developmental Psychology, Educational Cognitive Sciences, and Educational Information Sciences. In the first area, we examine how knowledge is gained and used at schools and kindergartens. In Developmental Psychology, we focus on children’s emotional and cognitive development. Educational Cognitive Sciences deals with people’s cognitive activities outside school. In Educational Information Sciences, we explore how to measure and analyze human behavior by using statistics. We aim to foster researchers who share these broad perspectives and specialized techniques.

Undergraduate Programs

Educational psychology focuses on the areas of development, learning, cognition, personality, clinical practice, social behavior, assessment, measurement and disorder. The lectures and seminars are designed to cover these areas.

Other than those mentioned above, we offer “Experiments in Educational Psychology,” which every student is required to take. In this seminar, students learn various methods for conducting research in educational psychology, such as experiments, tests, observation, interviews and data analysis. For this purpose, visits to correctional, welfare and medical facilities are also organized. After completing these basic studies, students choose their specialized fields according to their interests, and pursue specific research.

In addition to these lectures and seminars, the students receive guidance for their graduation theses during their fourth year. They are free to choose their own themes. In writing theses, students are encouraged to collect and analyze data through experiments, observations, tests and other techniques, as empirical evidence is emphasized in research on educational psychology. (Titles of recent theses can be found in the following pages.)

Since 2004, the graduate school has been divided into the divisions of Educational Psychology and Clinical Psychology, allowing students to delve further into specialized fields. Lectures for the undergraduate school’s educational psychology course are taught by the faculty members of both divisions of the graduate school.

Staff

Masato SASAKI

Professor (Educational Cognitive Sciences)

Among the educational cognitive sciences, I specialize in ecological psychology, dealing with the interaction between the behavior of the body and the affordance of the environment that restricts it. My method is to go out and watch closely the encounter of the body and the environment and study the results in the development of action. I also interact with the fields of the development of infants’ actions, robotics, and architecture and design from the perspective of environmental design.

Shin,ichi ICHIKAWA

Professor (Psychology of Learning, Instructional Psychology)

My theme is to link cognitive theory and education practices by focusing on the problems of learning, understanding, reasoning and motivation as the core. Along with basic study involving experiments and research, I am directly involved in lesson improvement and the practice of social education. I advocate “educational psychology that examines education through creating it.” We welcome students who hope to utilize their own learning or teaching experience in psychological studies.

Tomokazu HAEBARA

Professor (Educational Information Sciences)

My interest lies in methodological problems such as the relation between psychological research and statistical methods. In other words, what is the meaning of statistical indexes derived from group data when we are trying to understand the individual? I am also interested in the statistical analysis of tests, and hope to focus on problems concerning practical measurements or assessments like school entrance exams.

Kiyomi AKITA

Professor (Research on Classroom Lessons)
Faculty member of Educational Psychology

My major is to research on children’s learning and developmental processes embedded in the sociocultural environment of schools, kindergartens and nurseries. By focusing on classroom discourse and inscription systems in the classroom, I examine how children learn and study literacy, subject matter knowledge and reasoning skills, and how teachers design, carry out and reflect on their lessons.

Publications
  • “Study of Classroom Instruction and the Learning Process” (Society for Promotion of the Open University of Japan)
  • “Designing Lessons that Encourage Children’s Development” (Iwanami Shoten)
  • “Lesson Study, Teachers’ Learning process”(Akashi Shoten)

Takeshi OKADA

Professor (Educational Cognitive Sciences)

I am interested in the process of how ideas are born and developed. Focusing on the creative activities of artists and scientists, I aim to answer such questions as: “How do artists create?” and “How are original ideas born?” To do so, I use a multi-method approach — first, creating a hypothesis on cognitive activities in creative processes based on fieldwork, and then verifying the hypothesis through psychological experiments.

Toshihiko ENDO

Professor (Developmental Psychology)

I am concerned about the factors that influence the attachment relationships formed between children and their caregivers in early life, and investigate how individual differences of the quality of early attachment affect children’s later socio-emotional development. I also study how a variety of emotions emerge and develop in early childhood and what impacts they have on children’s physical and psychological functioning from evolutionary and cultural perspectives.

Nobuyuki FUJIMURA

Professor (Mathematics and Science Education)
Faculty member of the Division of Educational Psychology

I am interested in the processes by which children understand mathematical and (natural and social) scientific concepts, and also in planning lessons that encourage those processes. I use an educational psychology approach to conduct research in collaboration with elementary, junior high and high school teachers using individual experiments, interviews, written questionnaires, and analysis of remarks made by students during lessons and of worksheets. I plan to integrate psychological research such as, cognitive development research, and learning-and-instruction research from the viewpoint of the changes that occur in children through the learning processes.

Publications
  • “Psychology of Mathematical and Scientific Literacy — How do children improve their learning —” (Yuhikaku)
  • “Developmental Psychology—How individuals grow up through interaction with other people—“(ed.) (Minerva Shobo)

Etsuko HARYU

Professor (Developmental Psychology)

A child who seems truly powerless when born will eventually learn how to speak, behave compassionately, and cope with new problems. I hope to find out how this seemingly natural change occurs. I am particularly interested in how children acquire languages and how their view of the world is structured as they acquire languages.

Yuri UESAKA

Assistant Professor (Psychology of Learning, Instructional Psychology)

I am interested in the development of effective instructional environments for enhancing the quality of student learning, particularly through the promotion of effective learning strategies use. I am engaged in a broad range of educational research studies, from those employing psychological methods to those that are more focused on practical applications in real school settings. I am also actively engaging in international collaborative research.