Sophia University

Academics Faculty of Liberal Arts

A Message from the Dean to All FLA Students

A Message from the Dean to All FLA Students

Welcome and welcome back to new and returning students of the FLA in Japan and the rest of the world! And warm greetings to all the parents and guardians who made it possible for our students to start the spring semester as we enter the second year of the pandemic.

The pandemic has revealed to us that humanity is weak and strong at the same time. We are weak because an invisible virus has disrupted the lives and livelihood of the entire humanity and made us feel lonely, isolated, scared, frustrated, and anxious. Yet we are also strong and resilient because we find ways to learn and bond and show that we care. Physical distancing may keep us apart for now, but it emphasizes the importance for us to keep our hearts and minds together.

We are still in the immediate stage of the pandemic with cases rising and falling and the threats of variants, rebounds, and new waves. The FLA will start the semester with quality online learning and will gradually phase in a combination of in-class and HyFlex learning when the overall situation with regards to public health significantly improves and stabilizes. We assure you that all FLA students will be able to learn online in the entire spring semester, no matter where you are. Campus facilities such as the gym, library, and cafeterias are open for you to use, and please be mindful of the need for physical distancing and preventative measures. It is advisable for you to enter campus when you DO NOT have to access online classes and materials. Avoid coming when you are unwell, or when you have been in close contact with anyone who shows symptoms of Covid-19.
When you protect yourself, you protect others, and together we will learn to live with Covid-19 as responsible and caring citizens of the world.

Yes, I can feel deeply your frustration and sense of isolation, as well as your wish to experience campus life. We are humans, and we want to be with others in a social environment. We will be planning some campus and classroom experience when the semester starts. While we all wait for this dark night to pass, I encourage you to concentrate on what you can do and learn instead of what you cannot. Start with yourself and your immediate surroundings. What can you do to make your home and community a better place? What communication and IT skills can you polish to prepare for the “New Normal” in the making? How do we support one another in times of need and anxiety? And most importantly, how do you find and share happiness with others in this challenging moment in human history?

There is a time for everything, and the pandemic is a time for patience, trust, and hope. Be patient and know that the dark night will pass. Trust that the FLA is doing everything to ensure quality education, safety, and equal opportunities for learning for our global community of students, because this is who we are. And the most important of all is hope. We will come through this together stronger, more caring, more ready to face all the challenges that come our way in the years to come. This is what a liberal arts education prepares you to do—to find a way to contribute to a changing world,
for others, with others.

Now, start your spring semester with confidence and a smile!

Angela Yiu, PhD
Dean
Faculty of Liberal Arts

Important notice for students and guarantors

<IMPORTANT> To Present and Incoming FLA Students:

The FLA Office is open from 10 am to 3:30 pm (except for the lunch hour 11:30 - 12:30) Monday though Friday. You can contact us via telephone (03-3238-4004) from 10:30 to 11:30 and from 12:30 to 15:30 on these days, in addition to e-mail to fla-co<at>sophia.ac.jp.

For complicated questions about course registration and graduation requirements etc., inquiries via face-to-face or e-mail are preferable in order to avoid misunderstanding and miscommunication.Your understanding will be highly appreciated.

A Frontrunner in International and Liberal Arts Education in a Global Age

The Faculty of Liberal Arts has been offering quality international education in English in Japan for over fifty years. We are a diverse and cosmopolitan community of scholars and students brought together in Yotsuya to pursue knowledge and skills that go beyond the confines of a single country or language. The spirit of our education lies in a holistic approach to training the hearts and minds of our students. In the FLA, students begin their college career with vital training in critical thinking and writing in the Core Program before they select one of the three majors: Comparative Culture, Social Studies, and International Business and Economics. We believe that a firm foundation and a diversity of disciplinary training and thinking will foster a deep understanding of the self in connection to the world we inhabit and share.
In addition to encouraging our students to develop advanced language skills and proficiency in intercultural communication, we nurture individuals with global competency to play active roles in international organizations, multinational enterprises, and other globally and locally active organizations. Above all, we encourage students to think about what it means to be a socially responsible and caring citizen in a global age by reflecting on the Sophia motto, “Men and Women for Others, with Others.” We are all interconnected and interdependent in this world, and the FLA endeavors to instill in our global education the hope and spirit of sharing our knowledge and skills with others to make this world a better place for all.

Professors

Comparative Culture Major

 
Name
Field
Religion
Art History
Literature
Art History
Religion
Religion
STRECHER Matthew
Literature
Literature
Literature
 

International Business and Economics Major

Name
Fields
Economics
Marketing
FUENTES CORDOBA Gabriel Economics
Business
Economics
Finance
Business and Management
Economics
Business
 

Social Studies

 
Name
Field
Political Science
Political Science
Anthropology
Sociology
History
History
Political Science
Political Science
History
Anthropology
Sociology
Sociology
Anthropology
 

Core Program

 
Name
Field
English
HARWOOD Chris English
KOYAMA Dennis English
English
 

Student Voices

Our Alumni

Students Sought After

By the time of graduation, FLA students have acquired many of the skills and attributes highly sought after by potential employers and graduate schools. Such attributes include: full communication skills in English, multicultural communication competence, critical and analytical thinking ability, a passion for knowledge, an appreciation of the global environment, and in-depth knowledge in major subject areas. Hence FLA students readily find employment in Japanese and foreign firms, as well as entrance into some of the best graduate programs in the world.

Interview

Research Related to FLA

FLA professors participate in a wide variety of research projects in their areas of expertise and publish widely in international research journals.

For a full list of publications, search for Faculty names in the University Researcher Database.

Journal Publications

Monumenta Nipponica

Monumenta Nipponica (MN), a biannual journal on Japanese culture and society, was founded in 1938, making it one of the oldest English-language academic journals in the field of Asian studies. Published by Sophia, MN provides a fully refereed platform for Japan scholars from around the world to present research. It carries original scholarship and translations in the fields of history, literature, art history, religion, philosophy, and anthropology. Monumenta is edited by a member of the FLA.
Monumenta Nipponica

AGLOS: Journal of Area-Based Global Studies

AGLOS Journal of Area-Based Global Studies is a refereed online journal published by
the Sophia University Graduate School of Global Studies (GSGS)The journal publishes submissions, in English or Japanese, from current graduate students and alumni of the GSGS in a range of disciplines and from the diverse intellectual perspectives embodied in the three graduate programs: Global Studies, Area Studies and International Relations. It aims to encourage rigorous research activities and serve as a forum for intellectual exchange among students and scholars. Many GSGS professors are also members of the FLA.
AGLOS Journal of Area-Based Global Studies

Project

Reacting to the Past

Contributions to educational innovation have been made by bringing the “Reacting to the Past” (RTTP) pedagogy to higher education in Japan. RTTP is an innovative approach to Liberal Arts Education consisting of interactive classroom activities that promote student engagement in big ideas and improve critical thinking skills. In SophiaUniversity’s Liberal Arts program, since 2012 every semester approximately 100 students–every degree student in the faculty–are learning important, lifelong skills by experiencing RTTP in the core program’s required public speaking course. RTTP-style materials have also been developed and tested that explore important moments in Japanese history (e.g. the arrival of Commodore Perry and the Akō incident) for use in the FLA core, history, and literature programs. This research project includes a plan to publish a series of RTTP textbooks and manuals that will make the RTTP method widely available for use in classes relating to Japanese history or critical thinking not only at Sophia but other Japanese and Western universities as well.

Research Institutes

Institute of Comparative Culture

The Institute of Comparative Culture (ICC), established in 1981, is a research organization for developing and promoting interdisciplinary studies in social sciences and humanities from a comparative perspective. The Institute promotes and assists the research activities of ICC members, hosts guest speakers, holds conferences and workshops, and supports the research activities of visiting researchers. ICC members’ areas of specialization include business, economics, history, literature, art history, political science, sociology and anthropology, focusing strongly on Asia, especially Japan. Because the ICC supports research activities in English, its membership is based largely in the FLA.
Institute of Comparative Culture