Course of Human Life Studies

Course of Human Life Studies Course Chair, Professor Kiyoko Sugita


Creating a “Welfare Society,” a Nation Actively Making Efforts to Maintain Its Stable Provision of Welfare Services, to Respond to Japan’s Era of a Decreasing Number of Children and an Aging Population

Message from theCourse Chair

Cultivating researchers and professionals able to mitigate the effects of Japan’s cycle of a decreasing number of children and an aging population

With the aim of passing on Toyo University's traditional style of conducting research and providing education on social welfare—and expanding its range of research possibilities into social welfare—the Course of Human Life Studies was developed as a Doctoral Program for the following Master’s Programs offered by the Graduate School of Human Life Design established in 2018: the Human Care and Support Course; and the Course of Health Care and Sports.

Japan's aged population rate climbed to 26% in 2014, while its population has been decreasing since 2010, thereby aggravating the country's declining birth rate and aging population issues. The issues of decreasing population and population drain in rural farming regions are particularly serious, and it is safe to say that such regions already stand at the crossroads determining their future existence. Urban areas also face this aging population issue but, in such areas, there are a number of other burning issues including the number of children on preschool waiting lists and the need to create more employment opportunities for women. In addition, there are increasing disparities in people's incomes and level of health.

What kinds of collaborative relationships between citizens and communities do these critical situations that Japan faces today require us to develop? While a desperate need for the development of a comprehensive community care system is currently expressed, I believe that it is extremely important that the various practices employed in “human life” be compiled at the community level. In addition, I believe that it is the Course's mission to develop, through research into “human life” and community practices, a new blueprint for how community development ideally needs to be shaped.

The Course of Human Life Studies primarily aims to cultivate students able to formulate new theories for problem-solving and engage in both research and clinical practice for developing the country’s communities by adopting interdisciplinary perspectives to conduct research into “human life” issues including ones relating to welfare, medical services, care welfare, childcare, and health and sports in present day Japan’s depopulating society with a decreasing number of children and an aging population.

I sincerely look forward to assisting you in obtaining a doctoral degree from the Course of Human Life Studies by conducting research and putting your findings into practice so that you can carve your path to a brighter future.

Summary and additional details on the Course

Built on a foundation of diverse academic disciplines related to “human life,” the Course aims at enhancing students’ abilities to adopt interdisciplinary perspectives and conduct research into issues under the themes of health, welfare, medical services, the elderly, the physically challenged, children, and communities, in order for them to contribute their findings to society in ways including assisting community revitalization and practice development.

Admission Capacity: 5 students (Doctoral Program)
Lecture Times: Daytime & evening courses (lectures held mainly in the daytime)
Campus: Asaka
Degree: Doctor of Social Welfare or Doctor of Health Care and Sports

Faculty Members of the Course of Human Life Studies (in Japanese)