- Annual Enrollment:
- 120 (MA), 30 (PhD)
- Degrees Offered:
- Master of Arts in International Relations, Doctor of Philosophy in International Studies
- # of Full-Time Faculty
- 22 (as of July 1, 2018)
- % International:
- Employment Sectors:
- International organizations, governments, business, academia and more
- Info Here
The Asia-Pacific region has been achieving high economic growth for more than half a century since the end of the World War II, contributing to global economic growth. The Asia-Pacific has come to have strong influence on not only economic but also political and social aspects of the world. As a result of rapid economic growth, people’s income has increased remarkably in the Asia-Pacific. However, there still remain a number of serious problems, such as poverty, the income gap, the gender gap, environmental problems, territorial problems, and national security problems, all of which have strong impacts on our daily lives.
The Graduate School of Asia-Pacific Studies (GSAPS) is providing education and training to the students interested in and concerned with understanding and finding solutions to the problems noted above. The problems we face result from various factors involving a number of different academic disciplines including economics, political science, international relations, history, sociology, and others. It is also important for us not only to realize but also to accept the diversity in the ways of understanding and dealing with the problems, because even the seemingly same problems are likely to have different historical and social backgrounds reflecting different regions and countries. At GSAPS, we offer a program that aims to achieve this objective, with many notable features, some of which will be explained below.
First, at GSAPS, you will find a bilingual learning environment. Almost all the lecture courses are offered both in English and Japanese.
Second, GSAPS is an intellectual community of more than 400 graduate students coming from more than 50 countries. Approximately 20% of the students are from Japan, while 80% are international students.
Third, our lecture courses fall within 3 categories: “Area Studies,” “International Relations,” and “International Development and Policy Studies.” In addition, there are several courses offered by lecturers who have experience in international cooperation, diplomacy, and journalism, which can help you translate the research into practice.
We truly hope that you join us to become a highly skilled talent of the future, who can solve or ameliorate the problems in the Asia-Pacific and other areas, through learning and conducting research at GSAPS.
To receive information directly from the Admissions Department, click here.
How do you train students at Waseda University’s Graduate School of Asia-Pacific Studies (GSAPS)?
At GSAPS, we train students interested in and concerned with understanding and finding solutions to the complex and diverse problems we face in the Asia-Pacific region and elsewhere, including poverty, economic inequality, gender equality challenges, environmental issues, territorial disputes, national security tensions, and others. GSAPS hopes that our graduates will contribute to building a peaceful, harmonious, and prosperous world. To nurture our students, GSAPS emphasizes not only the development of expertise in a core discipline—international politics, economics, sociology, history, and others—but also sensitivity to diverse disciplinary concerns to enhance interdisciplinary inquiry. With core competence and broad issue coverage, GSAPS alumni are encouraged to be both capable and flexible in dealing with problems in a rapidly changing world. Many move quickly into fulfilling careers in international organizations, government and government agencies, nongovernmental organizations, and the private sector.
How does GSAPS deal with the important issue of growing diversity in international studies?
Recognizing the importance of understanding diverse perspectives, GSAPS offers a variety of courses covering a wide range of thematic issues and disciplines. Our curriculum also spans the globe, from the Asia-Pacific to Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. Our international faculty, too, reflects this diversity: not only have they made significant contributions to and remained active experts in their respective fields of study, but their diverse backgrounds prior to GSAPS also include work in international organizations, foreign policy and development, journalism, and policy research.
To broaden their viewpoints, students are encouraged as well to take part in our many exchange programs with top graduate schools in other countries. One unique international program is the East Asian University Institute, a joint education program with four major universities in Asia. To support and encourage students to pursue these opportunities, GSAPS offers selected students funding for conducting research overseas.
What are the unique strengths of GSAPS?
Located in Japan at the center of Tokyo, a gateway to a rapidly growing Asia, GSAPS provides an ideal site for students interested in conducting research in regional and global issues and in gaining international experience. Our master’s degree students hail from over fifty different countries, and roughly 80 percent of the 120 students we take in each year are from outside of Japan. Also, the successful recruitment of top students to GSAPS has been buoyed by our ability to offer a number of scholarships to qualified applicants.
Another distinctive feature of our master’s degree program is project research. Carried out in faculty-led research seminars, project research allows students to prepare their Master of Arts research with faculty guidance and frequent discussion with classmates.
Furthermore, GSAPS enjoys the advantage of being a part of Waseda University, one of the oldest and best private universities in Japan and Asia and the alma mater of a number of Japan’s past prime ministers, as well as many private sector executives and academic leaders. Students and alumni of GSAPS have the opportunity to be a part of the broader global Waseda University network.
What innovative ways has your program found to prepare students for an age of uncertainty?
The election of Donald Trump as the President of the United States and Brexit are two recent examples of the age of uncertainty, as these events were totally unexpected for many people. Although unexpected—or because they were unexpected—these events have had significant effect on the global economy and on politics. Increased uncertainty makes it difficult for graduate students interested in international studies to identify an area of specialization. In order to prepare students for an age of uncertainty, the Graduate School of Asia-Pacific Studies (GSAPS) emphasizes not only the development of expertise in a core discipline from areas such as international politics, economics, cooperation, society and culture, history, and others but also an understanding of the foundations of multiple disciplines. Through effective education and training, GSAPS nurtures students with a core competence as well as broad issue coverage, so that they can be competitive and flexible in dealing with problems in an uncertain world.
The merit of learning from and understanding diverse perspectives now takes a more important role than ever. How is your school responding?
Recognizing the importance of understanding diverse perspectives, GSAPS offers a broad range of courses, from politics and economics to society and culture to history. Besides wide issue coverage, GSAPS’s curriculum spans regions, from the Asia-Pacific to Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. Our faculty members offer multiple, rich perspectives: not only do they have excellent academic achievements across different disciplines, but they also come from various countries and diverse backgrounds, including former officials in international organizations, journalists in mass media, and researchers in think-tanks. To broaden perspectives, students are encouraged to participate in exchange programs at graduate schools in foreign countries. One unique international program is the East Asian University Institute, a joint education program with four universities in Asia. As a way to encourage students to pursue high-level research, GSAPS offers selected students funds for conducting research in foreign countries.
What are the unique strengths of your program?
Situated in the center of Tokyo—a gateway to a rapidly growing Asia—GSAPS is an ideal location for students interested in conducting research in regional and global issues and in gaining experiences in international activities. Our MA program takes in approximately one hundred and twenty students annually, of whom 80 percent are from over fifty countries outside Japan. One unique feature of our MA program is project research: carried out in seminar style, the objective is for the students to prepare their MA thesis under the guidance of academic advisors. As well, GSAPS offers scholarships to qualified students, resulting in the successful recruitment of top students. Furthermore, the graduate school enjoys the advantage of being a part of Waseda University, one of the oldest and best private universities in Japan and Asia and the alma mater of a number of Japan’s former prime ministers. Students and alumni of GSAPS have the opportunity to be a part of the broader global Waseda University network.