The College of Liberal Arts follows Umeko Tsuda’s philosophy for nurturing ‘all-round’ individuals. Students study a wide variety of disciplines. Students of the Department of English study literature, linguistics, culture and communication. While students in the Department of International and Cultural Studies work towards attaining an integrated understanding of our contemporary society, students in the Department of Mathematics and in the Department of Computer Science learn pure and applied mathematics and computer science. All students may take classes offered by departments other than their own, resulting in an educational system which helps them develop into well-rounded individuals.
In her address at the school’s opening ceremony in 1900, Umeko Tsuda stated the importance of a capable, devoted faculties and students with an intense desire to learn. We take great pride in our dedicated teachers and students who are eager to learn. We intend to maintain this academic atmosphere. The Tsuda tradition of intensive language learning is reflected in the curricula of the four departments. Our students learn the importance of international awareness as well as a head start in their various disciplines through our courses in English and other foreign languages. This extra attention paid to language learning which help students access to more career opportunities in the long term and have many other positive results as well.
Department of English
Department of International and Cultural Studies
Department of Mathematics
Department of Computer Science
Developing English Proficiency and a Deeper Understanding of Other Cultures
The Department of English takes a comprehensive approach to language, literature, culture and communication. The programs offered by the Department not only developing students’ English language proficiency, which is required in all fields for interaction with the international community, but also enable them to further their research into particular areas like British and American literature, British and American studies, English linguistics and communication studies. Students graduate with specialized expertise in the English language and culture.
Since April 2005, the Department has been offering English majors a choice of minors in Translation or Interpretation. Taken by third-year students, these courses comprise theoretical and practical studies in three subjects aimed at cultivating a high-level ability in both English and Japanese. The courses utilize base texts selected from an extensive list of genres including international relations, politics, business, the environment, information technology, literature, and movies, among others. Beside serring those students aiming to pursue careers in the specialized fields of translation or interpretation, these courses are also invaluable for students hoping to work in the international community.
In their first and second years, students work on improving their English-language skills and acquiring general background knowledge of the English language. In small classes, they take part in discussions and make presentations, and also work on composition and reading. They undergo special training designed to polish their speaking, listening, reading and writing skills. Students are thus taught the fundamentals for their later study in their chosen field. We offer a variety of courses to ensure a balanced curriculum.
From their third year, students (excepting those in the Multicultural Studies/International Cooperation Course, which commences from the second year) select one of the following courses of study: British and American Literature, British Studies, American Studies, Linguistics, Communication Studies or English Education. The courses of study are different for students majoring in the Multicultural Studies/International Cooperation Course. For descriptions of these courses, please see the relevant pages on our website. Third-year students attend a seminar in their chosen field. Assignments and discussions follow the seminar’s main theme. Each semester, students are required to write a paper of 2,000-3,000 words in length. Seniors make full use of the English language skills they have developed during their first and second years by participating in a fourth-year seminar or by writing a graduation thesis in English (5,000-8,000 words) after undertaking extensive research on a topic pertaining to their area of specialization.
Each year we offer more than 40 interesting lectures in the fields of literature, culture, linguistics, English-language education and communication.
Analyzing the World’s Issues from a Global Perspective
The Department of International and Cultural Studies aims to cultivate student’s ability to research the various issues that are occurring in the world today. We prepare our students to make contributions to international exchanges, peace, and economic and social development from their respective areas of specialization. Our highly motivated students do not limit themselves to studying on the college campus—they apply for internships overseas or with international NGOs. From a social and cultural studies approach encompassing politics, law, sociology, culture, and area studies, we delve deeply into various problems. In this way, we provide a wealth of knowledge about international affairs while simultaneously fostering the students’ ability to express themselves with confidence in international settings.
This department offers the following five courses: International Politics and Law, International Economy, Comparative Social Studies, Comparative Culture, and Area Studies.
A main feature of this program is our use of the seminar format for students during their four years of undergraduate study. Participation is limited to small groups, and all students are required to enroll in a seminar. The topics covered in the first-year seminar are chosen by the presiding faculty members and they cover various areas including social science and humanities. As a group, students investigate various problems facing modern society. Students are given reading assignments, and learn how to make presentations. In the second-year seminar, students read articles in English on selected topics to develop a specialized working vocabulary, and are also taught methodologies for conducting research in their areas of interest. In the third- and fourth-year seminars, students are separated into groups of 15 members (maximum), according to the topics of their graduation theses.
An emphasis on teaching in small groups is also reflected in foreign language education at Tsuda. During their first and second years, students must study English as a required subject and take one foreign language course as an elective from French, German, Spanish, Russian, Chinese or Korean. For their third-year compulsory language class, students select either English or another language from the above six.
Developing Logical Thinking and Studying Phenomena from the Mathematical Point of View
Mathematics is not only an academic discipline distinguished by the sublime beauty of its theoretical framework, but is also an invaluable tool for the analysis and clarification of multifarious phenomena in the natural world and in society. As mathematics consists of the search for truths that all must acknowledge, it demands extremely logical thought. For these reasons, faculties of the Department of Mathematics endeavor to educate their students an understanding of mathematics as an integrated system and to cultivate a mathematical mode of thought.
In their first and second years, through repeated exercises, students study the essential, core areas such as Sets & Logic, Differential Calculus and Integrals, and Linear Algebra, in addition to taking courses in the fundamentals of abstract algebra and general topology.
In their third and fourth years, students apply the basic knowledge they have acquired during the first two years to explore and do in-depth research in the areas of mathematics of primary interest to them. For this reason, we offer teaching for third- and fourth-year students in a wide range of specialist fields, from classical mathematics to the most advanced theory. We also place emphasis on applied mathematics so as to utilize the discipline to inculcate an understanding of phenomena in the natural world and in society.
One of the most notable features of the curriculum is the use of seminars in which the number of students is kept to a minimum, thereby realizing an informal teaching atmosphere that allows the students to relax and absorb information more effectively. Students attend one seminar each year. In the first year seminar, they learn how to interpret and make optimum use of the knowledge in mathematics and information theory that they will acquire in their subsequent years at the university. In the second and the third year seminars, students study specific areas of particular interest to them. They then put the finishing touches to this groundwork of knowledge in the fourth year seminar by writing their graduation theses.
The department also emphasizes studies in computer science and the English language. Regarding computer science, we offer classes in Information Theory that combine theoretical work on the structure and operation of computers, and on the organization and utilization of the Internet with practical work on basic applications of software for making presentations. In the field of English teaching, we focus on fostering students’ ability in English by giving them opportunities to practice the language. In addition to English classes, English-language texts are employed in the mathematics seminars. In this way, students gain considerable experiences in the use of English, which, like other European languages, is well-suited to the written expression of logical arguments.
Computer Science at Tsuda: A Tradition of Women in Information Technology
Computer science education at Tsuda University has evolved since its beginnings in 1949 in the Department of Mathematics (later the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science) to its present incarnation as a full-fledged department in its own right with the introduction of the Department of Computer Science in 2006. The goal of the Department of Computer Science is to provide students with both a solid theoretical grounding in informatics and the necessary practical skills to pursue a high-level career in information technology. Throughout the years, Tsuda has had a proud record of placing graduates in positions as computer professionals.
To ensure that students receive a solid mathematical and theoretical foundation, we offer courses covering the basics in areas such as statistics, probability, mathematical modelling, discrete mathematics, and cryptography. On the more practical side, fundamental course topics include programming, networking, object-oriented design, and application design, among others.
In addition to regular required classes, students have opportanitions to focus on a single area of practical computer science in seminars. The goal of the first year seminar is to acclimate the students to college level computer science. In the second year seminar, students learn the principles of programming and receive an overview of a variety of disparate programming languages and paradigms. In the third year, students get a full year of hands-on experience with a specific programming language. In the fourth year seminar, working alone or in small groups, students must bring together a variety of practical resources including programming, scripting and query languages, management tools, and applications to realize a fully developed, working piece of original software.
The department also offers elective courses on cutting edge topics in IT such as computer graphics, content creation and management, multimedia communication, computer-aided education, interactive systems, image processing, web applications, natural language processing, and mathematical finance.
At Tsuda University, we believe that one of the necessary skills for our students in the IT world today is fluency in English. As the world becomes rapidly more interconnected, and as the flow of information increases in speed and volume, we believe that those who cannot take full advantage of the wealth of information and resources available in English will be quickly left behind in the world of technology. We believe that it is crucial to give the students the knowledge, skills and confidence to seek answers from the Internet and the global community, and to understand the information available to them. It is in this area that Tsuda University’s renowned strength in English education truly sets the Department of Computer Science apart from other computer science curricula in Japan. In addition to required technical English courses, we also provide some advanced computer science elective courses taught entirely in English and encourage students to make use of English language resources both inside and outside of the department to gain a global perspective on information technology.
Cultivating Broad-Minded Specialist
Advances in globalization create numerous problems due to industrial as well as cultural differences between countries around the world, including Japan. The objectives of this course are to examine the various problems that arise due to contemporary globalization, to suggest approaches for creating a society with a deeper understanding of the outside world, and to propose solutions to emergent problems. The course consists of three units: Multiculturalism and Language Education, International Cooperation, and International Wellness. Specialized study begins from the second year.
In addition to broadening the students’ perspectives and developing a wealth of expertise, we aim to produce graduates who will make a substantial contribution to society. Students who complete this course will be well prepared to work for international institutions, such as the United Nations, and public organizations in Japan. Other possibilities are to work as Japanese or English-language instructors in Japan or overseas, as staff members of NGOs, NPOs, and multinational corporations, or to become researchers at think tanks. We expect the graduates of this course to find employment as specialists.
The core elements of this curriculum are the course-specific English language education program, the computer and media literacy component, and fieldwork requirements.
In the Multicultural Studies/International Cooperation Course, English is understood to be an essential and indispensable tool for conducting research and surveys. Therefore, in the English language education program emphasis is placed on improving students’ abilities to use English in their daily work. In addition to English, students are required to study a second foreign language, and may choose from among French, German, Spanish, Russian, Chinese and Korean.
In the computer and media literacy component, students are taught not only how to collect and analyze data, but also how to publicize their findings. They also learn about the various forms of media available today and the means for communicating news and information worldwide.
The fieldwork segment, conducted during the third and fourth years, is undertaken either in Japan or overseas in the students’ particular area of interest. Students gain first-hand experience in contributing to multicultural exchange programs and facilitating international cooperation, and they also learn to deal with the problematic features of such activities.
During their second year in this program, all students are required to attend seminars that feature debating and discussion conducted in a round-table format. Students clarify the direction of their own research by interviewing professionals who are active in a broad range of fields. In their third and fourth years, students participate in their seminars and undertake fieldwork to obtain first-hand experience in the field. Afterward, they devise effective methods for implementing multicultural exchanges and international cooperation, and point out the difficulties involved. These results are eventually presented in an academic report or graduation thesis.
The Multicultural Studies/International Cooperation Course is designed for students in the Department of English and students in the Department of International and Cultural Studies, but is also open to students in the Department of Mathematics and in the Department of Computer Science who wish to study this field systematically.