Japan is an island country in East Asia, located in the northwest Pacific Ocean. It is bordered on the west by the Sea of Japan and extends from the Sea of Okhotsk in the north toward the East China Sea and Taiwan in the south. Japan is the eleventh-most populous country in the world, as well as one of the most densely populated and urbanized. About three-fourths of the country's terrain is mountainous, concentrating its population of 125.48 million on narrow coastal plains. Japan is divided into 47 administrative prefectures and eight traditional regions. The Greater Tokyo Area is the most populous metropolitan area in the world, with more than 37.4 million residents. Japan has been inhabited since the Upper Paleolithic period (30,000 BC), though the first mentions of the archipelago appear in Chinese chronicles from the 1st century AD. Between the 4th and 9th centuries, the kingdoms of Japan became unified under an emperor and his imperial court based in Heian-kyō. Beginning in the 12th century, political power was held by a series of military dictators (shōgun) and feudal lords (daimyō), and enforced by a class of warrior nobility (samurai). After a century-long period of civil war, the country was reunified in 1603 under the Tokugawa shogunate, which enacted an isolationist foreign policy. In 1854, a United States fleet forced Japan to open trade to the West, which led to the end of the shogunate and the restoration of imperial power in 1868. In the Meiji period, the Empire of Japan adopted a Western-styled constitution and pursued a program of industrialization and modernization. In 1937, Japan invaded China; in 1941, it entered World War II as an Axis power. After suffering defeat in the Pacific War and two atomic bombings, Japan surrendered in 1945 and came under a seven-year Allied occupation, during which it adopted a new constitution. Since 1947, Japan has maintained a unitary parliamentary constitutional monarchy with a bicameral legislature, the National Diet.
Education in Japan
Education in Japan is compulsory at the elementary and lower secondary levels. Most students attend public schools through the lower secondary level, but private education is popular at the upper secondary and university levels. Education prior to elementary school is provided at kindergartens and day-care centers. The programmes for those children aged 3–5 resemble those at kindergartens. The educational approach at kindergartens varies greatly from unstructured environments that emphasize play to highly structured environments that are focused on having the child pass the entrance exam at a private elementary school. The academic year starts from April and ends in March, having summer vacation in August and winter vacation in the end of December to the beginning of January.
Japanese students consistently rank highly among OECD students in terms of quality and performance in reading literacy, mathematics, and sciences. It is one of the top-performing OECD countries in reading literacy, mathematics and sciences on Programme for International Student Assessment tests with the average student scoring 528.7, compared with the OECD average of 493, placing it third in the world in the 2015 ranking. Japan's populace is well educated and its society highly values education as a platform for socioeconomic mobility and for gaining employment in the country's high-tech economy. The country's large pool of highly educated and skilled individuals is largely responsible for ushering Japan's post-war economic growth. Tertiary-educated adults in Japan, particularly graduates in sciences and engineering, benefit economically and socially from their education and skills in the country's high tech economy.
Spending on education as a proportion of GDP is 4.1 percent, which is below the OECD average of 5 percent. Although expenditure per student is comparatively high in Japan, total expenditure relative to GDP remains small. In 2017, the country ranked third for the percentage of 25 to 64 year-olds that have attained tertiary education with 51 percent. In addition, 60.4 percent of Japanese aged 25 to 34 have attained some form tertiary education and bachelor's degrees are held by 30.2 percent of Japanese aged 25 to 64, the second most in the OECD after South Korea. As the Japanese economy is largely scientific and technological based, the labor market demands people who have achieved some form of higher education, particularly related to science and engineering in order to gain a competitive edge when searching for employment opportunities. According to the MEXT, the percentage of Japanese going on to any higher education institution in the eighteen-year-old cohort was 80.6 percent, with 52.6 percent of students going on to a university, 4.7 percent to a junior college, 0.9 percent to a college of technology and the remaining 22.4 percent attending a correspondence school, the University of the Air or a specialized training college. Japan's education system played a central part in Japan's recovery and rapid economic growth in the decades following the end of World War II.
Although Japan ranks highly on the PISA tests, its educational system has been criticized in the US for its focus on standardized testing and conformity; bullying problems;[better source needed][better source needed] and its strong academic pressure on students.[better source needed] According to data from PISA 2018 and TIMSS 2015, incidents of bullying in pre-tertiary education were lower than in most OECD countries, and the total time spent studying inside and outside school was below the OECD average.
Universities in Japan
|Akita International University||Official Web Page||Okutsubakidai 193-2, Yuwa Tsubakigawa, Akita-shi 010-1292, Japan|
|Doshisha University||Official Web Page||Karasuma Higashi-iru Imadegawa-dori, Kamigyo-Ku, Kyoto 602-8580, Japan|
|Hiroshima Jogakuin University||Official Web Page||4-13-1, Ushita-higashi, Higashi-ku, Hiroshima, Japan|
|Hiroshima University||Official Web Page||1-3-2, Kagamiyama, Higashi-Hiroshima, Hiroshima 739-8511, Japan|
|Hokkaido University||Official Web Page||Kita 8, Nishi 5, Kita-ku, Sapporo, Hokkaido 060-0808, Japan|
|Hosei University||Official Web Page||2-17-1 Fujimi, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 102-8160, Japan|
|International Christian University (ICU)||Official Web Page||3-10-2, Osawa, Mitaka-shi, Tokyo 181-8585, Japan|
|Kyoto University||Official Web Page||Yoshida Campus, Yoshida-honmachi, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto 606-8501, Japan|
|Kyushu University||Official Web Page||744 Motooka Nishi-ku, Fukuoka 819-0395, Japan|
|Meiji Gakuin University||Official Web Page||1-2-37 Shirokanedai, Minato-ku, Tokyo 108-8636, Japan|
|Meiji University||Official Web Page||1-1 Kanda-Surugadai, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 101-8301, Japan|
|Miyazaki International College||Official Web Page||1405 Kano Kiyotake-cho, Miyazaki-city Miyazaki. Japan. 889-1605|
|Nagoya University||Official Web Page||Furo-cho, Chikusa-ku, Nagoya, 464-8601, Japan|
|Nagoya University of Commerce & Business (NUCB)||Official Web Page||4-4 Sagamine Komenoki-cho Nisshin-shi, Aichi 470-0193, Japan|
|Okayama University||Official Web Page||1-1-1 Tsushima-naka, Kita-ku, Okayama 700-8530, Japan|
|Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University (APU)||Official Web Page||1-1, Jumonjibaru, Beppu, Oita 874-8577, Japan|
|Ritsumeikan University||Official Web Page||1 Nishinokyo-Suzaku-cho, Nakagyo-ku, Kyoto 604-8520, Japan|
|Sophia University||Official Web Page||7-1 Kioi-cho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 102-8554, Japan|
|Tama University||Official Web Page||4-1-1 Hijirigaoka, Tama-city, Tokyo 206-0022, Japan|
|Temple University, Japan Campus||Official Web Page||2-8-12 Minami-azabu, Minato-ku, Tokyo|
|The University of Tokyo||Official Web Page||7-3-1, Hongo, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-0033, Japan|
|Tohoku University||Official Web Page||2-1-1 Katahira, Aoba-ku, Sendai 980-8577, Japan|
|Tokyo Christian University||Official Web Page||3-301-5-1 Uchino, Inzai City, Chiba 270-1347, Japan|
|Tokyo International University||Official Web Page||1-13-1 Matoba-Kita, Kawagoe-shi, Saitama 350-1197, Japan|
|Toyo University||Official Web Page||5-28-20 Hakusan, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 112-8606, Japan|
|University of Tsukuba||Official Web Page||1-1-1 Tennodai Tsukuba, Ibaraki 305-8577 Japan|
|Waseda University||Official Web Page||1-104 Totsukamachi Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo 169-8050 Japan|
|Yamanashi Gakuin University||Official Web Page||2-4-5 Sakaori, Kofu-city, Yamanashi-ken 400-8575, Japan|
|Yokohama National University||Official Web Page||79-1 Tokiwadai, Hodogaya-ku, Yokohama 240-8501, Japan|