At 1954, Professor Yoshihiro SHIMIZU of Tokyo University emphasized that the Educational Population Study could be a major topic in the field of the sociology of education. He was well informed regarding contemporary research trends in French sociology, and was very aware of the importance of the Population Study. Since then,several students in the sociology of education have engaged themselves in the study of educational populations. Governments have compiled statistics on education like student population, number of teachers and educational expenditure. In some countries these statistical data can be traced back to the middle of the 19th century. The first scholar who attempted a systematic analysis of such governmental educational statistics was Friedrich Edding in Germany. In 1957, he published International Trends in Educational Expenditures. In this book he compared trends of educational expenditures in several countries since the middle of the 19th century. From this time-series comparative study he drew the conclusion that countries which had attained a similar level of economic development should have similar sizes of educational systems and similar sizes of investment in education.
In 1961,he presented a keynote paper to the OECD conference on “Economic Growth and the Investment in Education” along with Svennilson and Elvin, pointing out the existence of a strong correlation between the enrolment ratio and per capita GNP of OECD member countries. At the same time, they examined the ratio of educational expenditures to GNP, and they broke down 5 components which determine the ratio of educational expenditure among GNP, like proportion of school age population among total population, enrollment ratio, ratio of average teacher salary against GNP p. c. and per-teacher student ratio. This formulation has made possible international comparison of those educational indicators. Furthermore this formulation has made possible the simulation of educational expenditure allocation. This simulation model is now used by various international cooperation agencies to make clear trade-off relationship between various educational indicators.
Stimulated with these research trends overseas, several Japanese students of educational population has started to analyze the trends of Japanese educational population based on modified models which have been developed in oversea countries. The author, who studied with Friedrich Edding since 1968, forecasted required numbers of high school and educational expenditure necessary for this expansion in 1974. Since then, various research outputs have been produced in the field of educational population studies.
One major task facing this field of study is to extend the research perspective beyond the borders of one country. With globalization, movements of educational populations should no longer be confined within one country’s borders. A second task is to encourage follow-up studies to ensure the quality of research outcomes in the field of educational population studies. Japanese scholars of sociology of education produce a large research output every year. However, most lack connections with the outputs of their colleagues. Outside people are much interested with those research outcomes, but most of the outcomes are not verified objectively by colleagues. Therefore, outside people are skeptical about whether these findings of particular experts are reliable because of the lack of follow-up studies. Recently, there have been strong opinions in factor of “Evidence-based policy.” To put this into reality, we need to vitalize the cross-check studies, follow-up studies on research output done by our colleague researchers in the field of educational population studies.
As we look into the future of Japan from the viewpoint of education policy, one critical issue is the changing composition of the countryʼs population. The advent of an aging society combined with a low birthrate has had a prolonged and serious impact on Japanʼs entire education system. This paper, based on a full reflection on the history of the reorganization of school districts carried out throughout Japan in the postwar period, aims to provide a comprehensive analysis of the relationship between education policy and the population issue.
The main body of this paper consists of the following five parts. The first introduces the background of the study. The second depicts changes in the school-age population and projections into the future. The three phases of the reorganization of school districts, namely the municipal reorganization (cho-son gappei) phase, the phase of extreme population decline (kasoka) and the low birthrate phase, are described, and detailed analyses are conducted regarding these three phases. The fourth part, using Chiyoda Ward, Tokyo as an example, analyzes conflicts concerning the reorganization of school districts in central urban areas. The fifth part is an analysis of the “school selection system” and school districts.
Based on the analyses, the following conclusions are drawn. The school institution, as one of the most popular and high-quality forms of social capital, has since the Meiji era become a symbol connecting individual residents living in local communities. However, many school districts have been destroyed during the process of reorganization and the only criteria for closing a particular school is the lack of financial efficiency. The education policy and population issue are closely interrelated, and the decision to close schools has caused great damage to local communities.
In considering the relation between population change and educational reform, investment in extra-school education can be a focal problem. In the 1990s, Japanese educational reform, and in particular cutbacks in the school curriculum, increased the need for investment in extra-school education, imposing a considerable burden on households. Also in this period, the advancement rate to higher education increased but the recession after the “bubble economy” may have led to an increased economic gap in educational achievement. Some researchers have pointed out that in spite of the declining birthrate in post-war Japan, the number of siblings was still a restrictive condition of educational achievement after controlling for social origin.
In this paper, we first examined the relationship between the number of siblings and educational investment and achievement, using 2005 SSM (Social Stratification and Mobility) survey data. We found that for nearly all cohorts, both male and female, the number of siblings tended to be associated with a decrease in the experience rate of extra-school education. The number of siblings had a negative effect on investment in extra-school education. In spite of the popularization of investment into extra-school education and the declining birthrate, it seems that this negative effect of number of siblings on educational investment had endured in post-war Japan.
We also found that educational investment had a stronger effect on educational achievement for the youngest cohort (born 1971-1985) than for previous cohorts. For the youngest male cohort, in particular, experience of extra-school education had a strong effect on academic achievement in junior high school, which in turn affected educational achievement. In this respect, it seems that investment to extra-school education has recently come to strengthen the “amplifying effect of meritocracy.”
We then investigated the determinants of parents’ intention to make educational investment, and investment per month to their children. We found that parents’ experience of extra-school education had a major influence on their intention to make educational investments into their children after controlling for their educational levels and family income. However, educational investment per month was not determined by parents’ experience of extra-school education, but by family income and intention. We thus found that parents’ experience of extra-school education had an indirect influence on investment into extra-school education for their children through intention to provide educational investment.
It has been pointed out that especially in metropolitan areas, academic achievements of children are affected by the level of monthly educational investment, which based on parent’s educational expectation and family income. This may mean that under the marketization of education, it may be that meritocracy is being substituted by “parentocracy,” i. e., a mechanisms under which parental wealth and educational expectations determine the educational achievement of children. It has also been pointed out that Japanese public expenditures on education are low by international standards and that this has imposed a heavy burden on households and accelerated the decline of the birthrate. In order to reduce both inequality in educational achievement and declining birthrate, increasing public expenditures on education may be a critical task.
In Japan, the period from the early 1990s to the early 2000s is known as the lost decade. It is said that the economic recession, aging of society, declining birth rate, downsizing of enterprises and new gender role attitudes changed the patterns of oneʼs life. During that period, women born in the early 1970s, who belong to the second generation of the postwar Baby Boomers, completed their education and entered into the labor market. Using work history data from SSM surveys, this paper clarifies how Japanese womenʼs life course has changed from the cohort born in 1970-74. Although the M-shaped pattern of womenʼs labor force participation still characterizes womenʼs life course, the work life patterns of women in their twenties and early thirties has changed from the 1970-74 birth cohort. Fulltime employment is declining and the number of part-time and other irregular employees is growing. Mobility between workplaces has become increasingly frequent. Few women follow the pattern of transition from clerical workers to homemakers. The link between university education and work careers for women has strengthened. Using a graphic presentation, this paper demonstrates the differentiation of womenʼs life courses in Japan.
This paper explores the demographic and economic background behind the recent increase in the number of Japanese women advancing to four-year universities. The factors behind the change include declining family size, changes in the labor market structure leading to a fall in the market value of the “female capital” of junior college graduates, and changes in womenʼs employment behavior across their life course. A multinomial logistic regression analysis using NFRJ03 revealed weakening effects of sibship size and increasing odds of women advancing to four-year universities among younger cohorts. The changes in the return rates of educational investment also gave parents incentives to invest more equally among their sons and daughters. Women with four-year university diplomas, particularly those who had graduated after the enactment of the Equal Employment Opportunity Law in 1986, had an increased probability of staying in the labor market. A discrete-time logit model hazard analysis estimating the effect of marriage and childbirth, however, revealed that the change is mainly due to changes in the timing of family formation, and particularly childbirth. The results suggest that gender equality in intra-family resource transfers for educational attainment involves a serious dilemma between equity between men and women and the reproductive success of the offspring for highly educated women.
In 1985, an interesting report that helps understand the relation between the population and the labor market was published. This report, 21 Seiki no Sarari-man Shakai, made forecasts on changes in the Japanese employment system toward the year 2000 by forecasting the manpower requirements in various occupations and analyzing the impact of the baby boomers on the labor market.
Looking back over this past forecast and learning from its experience, this paper makes projections in the following two areas.
The first is a forecast of the manpower requirements by industry and occupation in 2015. The report, based on a consideration of both the change of population by age and structural changes in industry, makes clear that there will be a large mismatch of supply and demand in the labor force. In particular, the service industry sector will experience a shortage of 2.34 million workers and the there will be a shortage of 1.67 million professionals. Conversely there will be too many manufacturing and technical workers. These dramatic changes will accelerate mobility in employment, it projects, to a level above the figure projected in the report in 1985.
The second is an analysis of the relation between the number of workers and wages, an indicator of the quality of labor, during three decades of 1976-2006. The main results are as follows.
1) Based on an analysis of relative wages by age group, the ratio of wages of the group in their fifties divided by that of those in their twenties, and of the number of workers in same age groups, it is possible to conclude that the shock of increasing numbers of seniors has been absorbed and that the seniority management system has been maintained through a decline in the wages of seniors relative to the young.
2) Based on the same approach, looking at the relative wages and number of workers by educational background, the relative wage of university graduates to high school graduates has been rising among workers in their thirties and forties even as the number of university educated graduates has increased. This suggests the important policy implication that university is never an over-investment in education because the labor demand for university graduates is rising compared to that for high school graduates within the changing labor market.
With globalization, the number of people migrating internationally has increased considerably. This phenomenon is also evident in Japan. For example, in the past five to six years the number of newcomer migrants to areas such as Aichi prefecture has surpassed the number of foreign residents living in areas such as Osaka that have long traditions of attracting migrants. These changes in migration patterns have created new challenges for Japanʼs education system. This paper considers these challenges by addressing the following questions: Has the Japanese Ministry of Education developed an adequate education policy to accommodate children of different ethnic backgrounds? While it appears evident that the Fundamental Law of Education must be revised, does the Japanese government comprehend the changes that have occurred in local environments, the household, and schools to the extent needed to enact useful change? In this paper, the author addresses these issues by considering various educational challenges that global migration has brought to Japan.
The entry rate into the elite of university graduates who graduated with honor was higher than that of other graduates in Japan in the pre World War II period. What kinds of effects can explain this phenomenon? Three possibilities can be considered to explain it: first, honor graduates may be more successful in any job, so that there would naturally be a correlation between the university adaptability indicated by high grades and vocational success; second, they might have found it easy to gain sponsorship from established elite groups because of their honor grades, even if there were no necessary correlation between college grades and vocational success through severe competition; third, they may have found it easier to enter vocational sectors which were more accessible to the elite. The aim of this paper is to clarify how these three possibilities worked to create elites in the pre-war period, sampling mainly Summa Cum Laude graduates from Tokyo Imperial University.
The main findings are as follows: (1) it is clear that Summa Cum Laude graduates entered jobs which were more accessible to the elite, such as Imperial University professorships or prestigious government positions; (2) they were more successful in whatever job they entered; (3) however, it is obvious that the Summa Cum Laude graduates received some special treatment in becoming Imperial University professors and were sometimes given advantageous positions and experiences as government officers, despite the fact that the competition for high elite positions in private companies was based on merit.
Children’s academic achievements differ by social class. Today, many researchers investigate schools that effectively reduce these differences. They have pointed out that in schools that are successful in this endeavor, there are many practices aimed at raising the academic achievements of children from lower classes. In this paper, I attempt to clarify the effects of these practices from the viewpoint of added value. This study aims to compare the actual achievement levels of children of each region with those estimated based on their socio-economic conditions and to clarify the educational conditions in the regions in which the actual levels are higher than expectations.
For my method, I analyzed the data of academic achievement tests. I clarified children’s achievement levels in 49 cities and wards in the Tokyo metropolitan area and in school districts in Adachi Ward (73 primary school districts, 38 junior high school districts). I examined the relations between the achievement levels and the socio-economic conditions of each region. Using this data, I estimated achievement levels using regression analysis. Regions were then divided into types by comparing the expected levels and actual ones. I named regions whose achievement levels were higher than expected “Effort types.” The opposites are named, “Problem types.” I then investigated the differences of educational conditions between these two types. It was found that in Effort types, the numbers of children per school, class and teacher are relatively small. School size, class size and teacher’s burden are small in these regions. In Problem types, they are relatively large. These differences are significant in the data from school districts in Adachi Ward.
Based on the findings, I concluded as follows:
1. The influence of social background on children’s academic achievement can be reduced by the improvement of educational conditions such as reducing class size, which is the task of educational administrations.
2. The improvement of educational conditions is less effective for raising the absolute level of academic achievement. It is effective for the reduction of the social determinants of children’s academic abilities.
3. Evaluations of schools from the viewpoint of added value are needed.
Recently, the active acceptance of psychological knowledge has progressed in Japanese schools. The institutionalization of school counselors is a typical feature of this movement. Generally this movement has been understood as one aspect of the psychologization of Japanese society as a whole. The psychologization of Japanese society has been conceptualized as a trinity of the following three components. The first is the acceptance of psychological knowledge. The second is an enlargement of the value of psychological reductionism, which is regarded as encouraged by the spread of psychological knowledge. And the third component is an enlargement of the value of emotivism, which signifies attaching great importance to taking care of the minds of oneself and others. Psychologization is a phenomenon under which these components progress simultaneously.
The purpose of this paper is to reexamine the general presupposition that the active acceptance of psychological knowledge in Japanese schools is one aspect of psychologization of Japanese society, using analyses from nationwide survey data. It is certain that all the three components of psychologization are commonly observed in Japanese schools today. However, we lack sufficient evidence to believe that there is correlationality between the components and that they have a meaningful association.
Data from JGSS-2005 were used for the analyses. Although the units of the data are individuals, the data contain variables that can be used as indices for all three components of psychologization. Can it be said that the more psychological knowledge one has, the more psychological reductionism and emotivism one adopts when considering the child’s education? The author examined this question using loglinear models and logistic regression analyses.
The results of the analyses made it clear that people with psychological knowledge showed a tendency toward emotivism, but did not show a tendency toward psychological reductionism. From an additional analysis, it was found that the cause of the spurious correlation between psychological knowledge and psychological reductionism is educational background. This finding has some implications. The active acceptance of psychological knowledge in Japanese schools should not be perceived as one aspect of the trinity of psychologization. Rather, it should be interpreted as a diffusion of a child-centered perspective, which is affinitive with emotivism.
It is generally pointed out that some children with autistic spectrum disorder have problems in language acquisition and operation. Many of these children receive clinical care at special facilities. If we tried to understand their linguistic competence from a psychological, medical viewpoint, we could deal with their competences objectively as measurable and appraisable ones. We may discover a relationship between their linguistic competence and cognitive function defects. As long as we follow this perspective, we would say that “the linguistic problems of some children with autistic spectrum disorder” exist objectively. However, first of all, it is thought that managing the way of competences is the problems for the participants in the setting. On the basis of this kind of concern, this article explores how participants focus and manage the linguistic competences of such children, paying special attention to interactional sequences during the clinical care.
This article consists of four parts. In the first, I present the aim of the article and some advanced researches. In the second chapter I give a summary of the investigation, and make a preliminary examination of the interactional sequences in clinical care. Further developing the IRE (initiation-reply-evaluation) sequence described by H. Mehan, I present those special sequences as an IRQAE (initiation-reply-question-answer-evaluation) sequence.
In the third part I present a concrete analysis. I describe a setting in which a therapist tries to help a child with autistic spectrum disorder with language acquisition. The child, a 7-year-old boy, has an intellectual disability and has difficulty understanding conversation smoothly. He is unable to answer properly the therapist’s questions. The therapist gives a negative evaluation to that answer, and asks the same thing repeatedly. In this interaction, IRQAE sequences recur many times.
The analysis clarifies the following things. (1) Participants (especially therapists) regard the IRQAE sequence as a kind of procedure for instructing new methods of language operation. By using such sequence, the therapist tries to improve the child’s understanding capacity. (2) In the setting, the therapist commits two failures. One is that he is wrong about the child’s competence. The task which the therapist assigns to the child is too difficult. Another is related to their participation frames. This has been pointed out by other therapists during data-sessions. During the session, many therapists claim that the participant’s body arrangement makes it difficult for that child to understand the situation. (3) By examining conversational sequences in detail, it becomes clear that the therapist uses various devices. Through such devices, he somehow tries to instruct appropriate word usage to the child.
In the fourth chapter I discuss the meaning of the setting for language acquisition by children with autistic spectrum disorder and clinical care. In this article I conclude that the reason why the therapist requires the child to be “able” to answer appropriately is related to three factors: (1) the situational organization for the participants (i. e. , the place is meant for training), (2) the therapist has some instructions for improving the child’s competence, and (3) the therapist believes in the child’s future developmental potential.
This study, using data from field surveys conducted by the author at primary schools in a highland indigenous people’s (Mixe) zone in Oaxaca, Mexico, in 1991 and 1998, analyzes the level of pupils’ inclination toward the national education system. By doing so, it aims to grasp how well the government’s national integration policy has been achieved. First, the educational aspirations of the children are analyzed. As a whole, they are found to be very high: the majority wished to complete at least high school. Moreover, this aspiration level is found to be increasing rapidly. Differences are found within and between localities, reflecting the socioeconomic statuses of localities and families. Second, pupils’ rationales for learning Spanish are analyzed. A hypothesis that the degree of “Spanish learning for school life” is an inversed-U-shape function of the socioeconomic level is proposed and tested. This hypothesis is supported: in the stage where children’s Spanish ability is low, the increasing expectations among parents for children’s school achievement is reflected in an increased desire to learn Spanish for school life. However, as children attain more advanced Spanish ability, the degree of “Spanish learning for school life” falls. Children in the second stage seem to have relative freedom from the confinement of the significance of Spanish for school life. The finding that the hypothesis is correct means that the subject pupils in this study were, as a whole, estimated to be entering the second stage.
The analyses show that the children had high aspirations counting the national educational system for their future. The objective of the government to integrate indigenous peoples into the nation, which the government has pursued since the 1910 Revolution, seems to be now being achieved. However, as education has spread among the indigenous peoples, there has been a strengthening of indigenous peoples’ movements that criticize the government’s integration policies and claim autonomy. Arguments regarding bilingual and bicultural education, intercultural education, and community-based education, which are oriented by the indigenous people’s world view, are also creating the need for a new direction for national integration. They focus on the cultural aspects. However, other aspects such as those dealt with by this paper, as well as the challenge of low academic ability in indigenous peoples’ areas, need to be given increased attention.