Note: This course listing is for informational purposes only and does not constitute a contract between CIEE and any applicant, student, institution, or other party. The courses, as described, may be subject to change as a result of ongoing curricular revisions, assignment of lecturers and teaching staff, and program development. Courses may be canceled due to insufficient enrollment.
CIEE Study Center Syllabi
To view the most recent syllabi for courses taught by CIEE at our Study Centers, visit our syllabi site.
Sophia University Summer Session Courses
The following is a sample list of available courses. Actual courses for the upcoming session are listed in the CIEE enrollment materials.
Development Issues: Asia and the World
This is a course on development issues comparing experiences in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. The issues examined will include economic policies, relations between public and private sector, governance, role of small and medium enterprises, information technology, environment and sustainable development, and cultural impact of development.
Contemporary Japanese Economy
The aim of this course is to help students understand the Japanese economy by using standard economic theory. Several aspects of the development and characteristics of the modem Japanese economy are analyzed and discussed. Major themes include Japan’s economic growth and development, integration with the world economy, and government policies.
Contemporary Japanese Politics
This course invites students to consider the impact of electoral, administrative, and economic reforms on contemporary patterns of communication between masses, political elites, and powerful interest groups.
Contemporary Japanese Society
In addition to providing a general overview of contemporary Japanese culture and society, this course presents a more in-depth examination of specific issues and problems (such as the role of education, status of women, place of religion, influence of popular culture, and so on). As much as possible, these special topics are linked to the study of Japanese culture and society. Special attention is also given to the basic issues involved in interpreting and teaching about Japan.
Foundations of East Asian Culture
This course presents an overview of cultural formation in East Asia, beginning with the emergence of civilization in continental East Asia. It gives students an opportunity to examine important achievements of classical East Asian traditional thought about society. Reviewing characteristic patterns of East Asian social life as studied through social sciences, the class prepares students to analyze features of social organization pertinent to understanding contemporary transformations of East Asian culture.
Japanese 1 (A or B: Morning or Afternoon Section)
Although Japanese 1 is a basic introductory course designed for students with little or no background in Japanese, CIEE recommends that students interested in enrolling it, have some previous familiarity with Japanese characters and learning approaches to Japanese language. As the Japanese 1 course is very intensive, students not prepared to memorize vocabulary and grammar four to six hours each evening following their classes may find passing it to be very difficult. The goal of the course is to help students acquire daily survival skills in Japanese by integrating speaking, listening, reading, and writing. Emphasis is put on the thorough mastery of basic functional grammar of Japanese through oral practice. By the end of this course, students are able to handle various daily conversational situations and read and write simple texts with Hiragana and Katakana, as well as approximately 50 Kanji (Chinese characters) for production and recognition.
Japanese 2 (A or B: Morning or Afternoon Section)
This course is designed for students who have already acquired basic communication skills in Japanese and are familiar with Hiragana, Katakana, and some Kanji. It aims to help students further build their basic functional Japanese grammar, and develop communicative abilities by integrating speaking, listening, reading, and writing.
The course covers the history of Japanese art from the early Neolithic period to the end of the Edo period. Some aspects of the Meiji era are introduced. The emphasis is on sculpture and painting. Classes are designed to let students obtain an overall understanding of the major trends in Japanese art and be able to identify the important works. Lectures consist primarily of discussions of stylistic evolutions and technical developments, as well as foreign, social, and historical influences. Slides accompany the lectures to illustrate the topics.
Japanese Business and Management
After introducing students to the structure and organization of the Japanese industry, this course covers distinctive Japanese managerial practices and how they relate to strengths and weaknesses of Japanese businesses in recent years. A recurring theme is the debate whether Japanese business practices are converging to a more “Western” business model. Each class deals with a different subject matter through lectures, student presentations, and group discussions. During the course, each student is required to give one short presentation based on assigned reading materials.
Japanese History: Edo and Tokyo
This course provides a general overview of Japanese history. Particular attention is given to the Edo and Modern periods, especially in terms of how Japanese history can be studied by making use of resources, sites, and museums.
Japanese Literature and the City
This course provides an introduction to the study of Japanese literature, exploring the ways in which the city and its social life have been shaped by and portrayed in literature.
Japanese Popular Culture
This course explores contemporary Japanese popular culture from an anthropological perspective. To approach these questions we will want to understand how emblematic media forms such as anime, television programs, idols, anime, etc. constitute and participate in some particular ‘culture’ in distinctive ways, and how these cultures relate to existing socio-historical conditions and aesthetic traditions. We take the following questions as a general guide: What makes particular materials Japanese popular culture. How is popular culture constituted more generally? And finally what underlies the term “culture” in the first place?
The Kabuki theater and Bunraku puppet theater, both developed during the Edo period, were famous around the world as sophisticated and entertaining forms of theater. This course examines the history of these two genres by focusing on a number of plays in detail, and comparing them with the classical Noh theater. Students also watch videos of stage performances.
Survey of Japanese Religions
This course provides an historical overview of various religious traditions in Japan and assesses their significance in contemporary Japanese culture and society. Throughout the course, a simple, yet problematic question—What is Japanese religion?—is continually raised, with discussions centering around such important themes as religion and nature, religion and politics, belief and practice, syncretism, and religion and community.