Founding philosophy and basic educational goals

Founding philosophy

The Three Founding Principles

  1. To produce individuals dedicated to our nation’s ideal of incorporating the cultural values of East and West
  2. To produce individuals equal to the challenge of acting on the world stage
  3. To produce individuals capable of independent thought and research

Rooted in the first seven-year high school in Japan

The roots of Musashi University can be traced back to Musashi High School, the first seven-year high school in Japan under the nation’s prewar educational system, founded in 1922 by the early 20th-century financier Kaichiro Nezu I.
 
Following subsequent reforms to the educational system, in 1949 Musashi High School—with its philosophy of “fostering, through the building of character, the exceptional graduates who will take up the reins of tomorrow’s Japan”—became Musashi University. Even amid the dramatically changing social conditions of the time, the three founding principles of the former High School became the starting points for the University’s education.

Musashi University's basic educational goals

Based on the spirit expressed in the Musashi Academy’s three founding principles, Musashi University aims to train students, through the common courses open to all the students (i.e., general education courses, foreign language courses, and common specialized courses) and specialized courses of each faculty and the individual educational programs of each of its graduate schools, with the basic educational goals of cultivating comprehensive and profound knowledge, specialized knowledge, the ability to work together with others and practical skills, in accordance with the philosophy of ‛liberal arts & sciences ’ Musashi University's liberal arts mean comprehensive, cross-disciplinary education that goes beyond classical distinction between general and specialized education. The sciences include mathematical sciences such as mathematics and statistics, natural sciences such as physics, chemistry, and biology, and social sciences such as economics, sociology, and politics. Because of humanities are also occasionally categorized as sciences. Because liberal arts and sciences overlap, Musashi University uses the expression ‛liberal arts and sciences’. The spirit of the integration of arts and sciences is also expressed here. We aim to utilize scientific information and data in every academic discipline including humanities. The ability to work together with others and practical skills are cultivated in seminars and practical training courses, which belong to a long tradition of Musashi University. The ultimate goal of our liberal arts & science education is to cultivate global leaders who can contribute to promoting people-to-people exchange across the world and to resolving organizational, regional and global issues, and work on intellectual exploration and practical activities in their own immediate surroundings, equipped with well-balanced comprehensive and specialized knowledge, the ability to work together with others, and practical skills.

Background of the University’s philosophy, and its vision for the future

At the University’s first entrance ceremony for new students (in 1949), the first President of Musashi University, Wakichi Miyamoto, advocated an educational philosophy built on small class sizes based on seminars and enriched foreign-language education, inheriting the Musashi Academy’s three founding principles the former Musashi High School. He stated that the University would “train Japanese students with broad-ranging worldviews, who are capable of original research and independent thinking as members of the world community while never losing their critical spirit.”

Later, the Musashi Academy Future Vision formulated in 2006 amid dramatically changing social conditions of the world and Japan, set the university's vision to "integrate knowledge and practice" in education that emphasized the importance liberal arts, based on the three ideals.
 

Later amid the accelerated process of globalization, the Board of Directors meeting held in March 2014 adopted as the management strategy of the Musashi Academy as it marks the centennial of its establishment the following Chairman’s Doctrine: “Directing our gaze outward toward the world, we aim to be a school that fosters internationally-oriented graduates able to take on the challenges of the 21st century.” Then, in October of that year the Board established an Academy Chancellor’s Plan entitled “Becoming a Liberal Arts Academy Open to the World.” In response, Musashi University established in its Third Medium-term Plan (2016–2021) a new vision for the run-up to the centennial of the Academy’s founding in 2022: “Training global citizens with the educational grounding to understand different cultures and build a new future: Revisiting the Academy’s three founding principles on our centennial anniversary, we aim to pass these on to the next generation as we implement reforms for the future.” 

Based on this vision, the Third Medium-term Plan identifies the strategic theme of “training global citizens with a firm grounding in liberal arts education,” under which the University has decided both to steadily implement new programs and courses in each faculty geared toward an age of globalization and to enrich its liberal arts education even further. At the same time, We have reviewed the three policies of each faculty and graduate school and formulated the Musashi University Global Education Policy.

In March 2021, the Board of Directors decided to establish the school of Liberal Arts and Sciences (set up in April 2022) based on the new global courses in existing faculties and to shift to a four-faculty system, which resulted in a considerable degree of change. In addition, the Board adopted a new "Chairman’s Doctrine" entitled "School that Cultivate Intellectual who Exercise Leadership in Finding Solutions to the Challenging Problems Facing Mankind together with Diverse People around the World: Management Policy of Musashi Academy for the Next 100 Years" and a new "Chancellor’s Plan" which calls for the goal of becoming an "Academy of Liberal Arts and Sciences Open to the World." Based on this, the Fourth Medium-Term Management Plan (2022-27) was formulated at the Board of Directors meeting in October 2021, which looks ahead to the next hundred years. In line with the above-mentioned documents, Musashi University set up new education and research objectives  to "cultivate global leaders who can contribute to promoting people-to-people exchanges across the world and resolving organizational, regional, and global issues, and work on intellectual exploration and practical activities in their own immediate surroundings, equipped with well-balanced comprehensive and specialized knowledge, the ability to work together with others, and practical skills acquired through liberal arts and sciences education". These objectives were established based on the recognition that we are all expected to be global citizens without exception even if we never live outside Japan, which requires us more active visions and goals than ever before. In conjunction with this change, we revised the three policies of all faculties and graduate schools, and the Global Education Policy.

The Musashi University Global Education Policy

The Musashi University Global Education Policy has been established for the purpose of “training global citizens with the educational grounding to understand different cultures and build a new future” identified in the University’s Future Vision.
  1. Promoting intercultural understanding as well as the communicative competence and empathy to contribute to society in cooperation with diverse other parties
  2. Fostering the ability to think globally and improve practical foreign-language competence
This policy is closely related to the following two campus-wide diploma policies regarding “the capacity for dialogue and empathy to understand those from other cultures and to cooperate with diverse others in contributing to society,” and “a global mind-set and the practical foreign-language proficiency to support it.”

Measures and numerical targets based on the Musashi University Global Education Policy

Global education as promoted by Musashi University comprises extracurricular support for learning advanced by the Global Education Center on a campus-wide basis as well as courses within the curricula of each faculty and graduate school. Measures being advanced as campus-wide initiatives and numerical targets for the final fiscal year of the Third Section of intermediate-term Plan (FY2021) are outlined below. Global education in each faculty and graduate school is prescribed in the various policies of each faculty or school.
  1. Together with enhancing long-term (one semester or longer) study-abroad programs and short-term language training as well as opportunities to experience life overseas through international volunteer and internship programs, enhancing scholarship programs for students who want to take advantage of these opportunities
    • Numerical targets: student exchange agreements concluded with at least 30 institutions, sending at least 60 students per year on long-term study-abroad programs
  2. Together with developing structures for acceptance of exchange students and interns from institutions with which exchange agreements have been concluded and promoting the university’s attractions as a destination for students from abroad, further expanding opportunities for interaction with students accepted from abroad
    • Numerical target: accepting at least 60 students per year from overseas on long-term study-abroad programs
  3. Together with deepening the partnership with the Temple University Japan Campus (TUJ) and encouraging active use of the system for transfer of credit units earned, seeking out opportunities to develop new programs with overseas institutions with which exchange agreements have been concluded, including double degrees and joint degrees
  4. Considering the Musashi Communication Village (MCV) to be a mainstay of extracurricular learning for foreign languages and intercultural understanding at the university, striving to maintain the MCV as an environment in which students motivated to improve their own practical English-language abilities can take steps to do so on their own, while also enhancing the support structures at MCV to meet the needs of students taking special courses and programs established by each faculty (Parallel Degree Programme [PDP] of the University of London and Musashi University, Global Studies Course [GSC], Global Data Science Course [GDS]). In addition, through various events planned and implemented at MCV, providing students with extracurricular opportunities to become more familiar with foreign languages other than English and with the cultures of individual countries and regions, and using MCV as a place where international students can receive extracurricular support for learning Japanese.
  5. Steadily improving the practical ability of students to use the English language. As part of doing so, encouraging students to take the TOEIC exam, providing opportunities to take the TOEIC® IP exam on campus, and developing and implementing programs to provide continual support for related learning, including a program to improve TOEIC scores
    • Numerical target: At least 20% of undergraduate students scoring higher than 700 points on TOEIC
One background point shared by these measures and numerical targets is the desire embodied in the fact that “Practice” has been identified as one of Musashi University’s basic educational goals (“Training global citizens who possess the independence and vitality needed to maintain a global outlook while turning knowledge into practice in their own immediate surroundings, to effect cultural exchange and to further practical cooperation around the world”), and students are expected to spend their student lives in meaningful ways as a period of preparation for succeeding in the real world after graduation.