1994 年 20 巻 p. 38-49
The college age population past its peak recently and is now decreasing in number. Japanese colleges and universities are now confronted with their first difficulty after the war concerning student recruitment. How are they struggling against this challenge? Will they survive the Nineties and this notable decrease? The purpose of this paper is to answer these questions with regard to the future of Japanese colleges and universities. Both public and private agencies have published forecasts based on various survey research. Therefore, this paper focuses on the study of the context of today's population trend in Japan. It consist of three parts as follows: The first part examines Mombusho's policy and statistical inferences concerning Japanese Higher Education. In the second part, two experiences in higher education concerning this college age population decrease in numbers were reviewed. One was the Japanese experience in the sixties after the baby boom. The other was the U.S. experience in the eighties. The features of each experience have been identified. At last, as an extension of the above studies, the third part discusses the direction of Japanese higher education in the nineties. Population trends inevitably affect the admission policy of colleges and universities. They will either have to decrease the student intake or they will have to make efforts to establish new departments/schools to take the students if they wish to maintain the present level of their student capacity and quality. The contraction of the student intake directly affects the income of private colleges and universities and generally meets with objections from faculty members who feel their jobs are threatened. Since Monbusho has officially notified universities of the contraction of the student intake of colleges and universities, Japanese colleges and universities have inevitably undergone reforms and renovation in this context.