Japanese Translation Service

Professional Translation Services for the Japanese Language

Interesting Reading: Translation Blog

Education in Japan

The current education system in Japan closely models that of the United States. Prior to World War II, the influences of Western European countries were largely seen in the education system. Once the Edo period ended, and the Meiji reign began, Japan was now open to influences from the rest of the world. The Japanese government felt that it had to pursue education as a means of catching up with the rest of the world (particularly the West) in the areas of science and education. After the Second World War, America would begin the process of modeling the Japanese education system after its’ own. Beginning at the age of six, children enter into an elementary program and follow along the guideline of a 6-3-3-4 education system.

This system begins with an elementary education for six years. Following elementary school, children move on to three years of middle school, then three years of high school. College or Junior College is an option at the end of this term. Prior to the World War, Japanese schools held single gender classes. Now, the co-ed classes are found in both public and private schools.

Beginning early in elementary school, students learn curriculum in Japanese, math, science, music, social studies, and art. Students also cover physical education and homemaking. Additionally, curriculum in elementary school focuses on music and fine arts. Children at this stage also being to learn punctuality, manners, responsibility and stewardship on a daily basis. Japanese students are responsible for daily chores in the classroom including things such as cleaning their desks and scrubbing the classroom floors. Uniforms are also common for children in public elementary school.

Teachers are required to also introduce and maintain the development of ‘holistic’ matters. Some of the teacher tasks include teaching personal hygiene, good sleep habits, nutrition, and manners. Students must address adults properly, and speak to their peers appropriately.

Once in middle school, the academic structure becomes much more intense and very routine. In addition, once the student enters high school, the student begins a college-like lecture series. High school, and the program of academic structure, is praised for high ranks of achievement in math and science. However, this same system of structure is criticized for a lack of imagination. Students are expected to achieve through a process of examinations and gear up for an intensive selection process which will culminate in a college education.

But there are different levels of high school, all such schools ranked on the basis of performance of the students. It is clear that some high schools rank high as well, for the wealth and privilege of families that attend. Thus, these higher ranking schools require difficult admission tests. In essence, the high school remains then the selective guide in determining the ultimate college destination.

The competition thusly in the area of academics is highly competitive. While practically 95% of elementary schools are public, nearly a quarter of high schools are private. Recognizing the highly competitive nature of high schools, parents are more willing to pay high amounts for a high school education in Japan. By the time that a student is twelve years old or at least by the time that they enter high school, much of their future college career is already decided upon. Since the performance in high school is key to entrance into a prestigious college, many students are subject to intense competition and academic scrutiny.

Another form of schooling in Japan is called the “cram” school, or Juku. Due to the increased level of pressure to perform at earlier ages, and because a child’s future professional career depends upon their college education, parents are increasingly sending their children to cram schools. These schools operate after the normal public school day ends. If children are enrolled in any extra-curricular activities (such as piano lessons or sports), juku begins even after this. Juku provides opportunities for children to further their learning, or opportunities for some students to play ‘catch-up.’ All juku classes run late into the night, and it is not abnormal for a student to have a 12 hour school day, and that is before homework is taken into consideration.

Still, more than 90% of all high school students graduate, and nearly 40% of all students graduate from college. Nearly 100% of students complete elementary school, and the literacy rate is also almost 100%. Japan is considered to have the highest literacy rate in the world. Japan has long been considered to have a successful education system. However, in recent years (primarily after the economic bubble and recession) the Japanese education system has been criticized for the youth delinquency problems and the increase of such problems in the schools. And, while Japan has been recognized for its impressive level of education, and high literacy rate, the nature of competition and pressure that flows from that competition is scrutinized by many around the world. Many around the world are questioning the impact that these rigorous and intense academic standards are having upon the children in Japan.

The university system in Japan sees over half a million students graduating each year. But the number of foreign students is very low in proportion to the total number of students that attend university, and in relation to Western European countries, and the United States. Less than 2% of all students in Japanese universities or colleges in the year 1999 were not Japanese. In the United States, nearly 62% of foreign students enrolled in the U.S. were Asian, and almost 20 percent of all students enrolled in U.S. colleges were foreign, and that number is on the rise each year. Becoming a student in Japan requires that the student know the Japanese language. Setting aside time to study Japanese may be a discouraging factor in terms of the number of foreign students enrolled in Japanese schools. While English is taught in many of the Japanese schools as a language, Japanese is not widely taught as a language in either the United States or many Western European colleges. The Japanese government is currently trying to revamp their application process and offer more scholarships in order to make it easier for foreign students to enroll in Japanese universities.

Contrary to the education system and requirements for teachers in the United States, teachers in Japan face a much more daunting path in order to maintain their teaching certification. Once a teacher has graduated from college with a bachelor’s degree in teaching, they are awarded a teaching certificate. However, even after they have received that certificate, teachers have to pass an examination in the prefecture in which they wish to teach. Upon passing this examination, the teacher is allowed to work in any school in that prefecture. But, their license is only good for one year, and if that teacher is unable to find employment in a school in that year time period, they are required by law to take the exam again.

Acadian French | Accented English | African French | Afrikaans | Albanian | Amharic | Angolan French | Angolan Portuguese | Algerian Arabic | Algerian Arabic | Arabic Bahrain | Arabic | Egyptian Arabic | Jordanian Arabic | Arabic Lebanaon | Moroccan Arabic | Arabic Oman | Palestinian Arabic | Arabic Qatar | Saudi Arabian Arabic | Syrian Arabic | Tunisian Arabic | Arabic (UAE) | Armenian | Assamese | Azerbaijani | Azeri | Bambara | Basque | Bemba | Bengali | Berber | Bosnian | Bulgarian | Burmese | Burundi | Cajun French | Cambodian | Cantonese (Guangdong) | Catalan | Cebuano | Chin | Cantonese (China) | Mandarin | Traditional Mandarin | Chinese (Singapore) | Chinese (Taiwan) | Chuukese | Croatian | Czech | Dagbani | Danish | Dari | Dinka | Dutch | Dzongkha | English | African English | Australian English | British English... | Canadian English | Indian English | Irish English | New Zealand English | Scottish English | South African English | American English | Estonian | Ewe | Fante | Farsi | Finnish | Flemish | French Belgian | Canadian French | French Congo | French | Moroccan French | Swiss French | Tunisian French | Fula | Ga | Galician | Garo | Georgian | Austrian German | German | Swiss German | Greek | Greek Cyprus | Guarani | Gujarati | Haitian Creole | Hausa | Hawaiian | Hebrew | Hindi | Hmong | Hungarian | Icelandic | Igbo | Ilocano | Indonesian | Italian | Swiss Italian | Jamaican | Japanese | Kannada | Karen | Kashmiri | Kazakh | Khasi | Khmer | Kinyarwanda | Kirundi | Konkani | Korean | Krio | Kurdish | Kyrgyz | Laotian | Latvian | Lebanese | Lingala Congo | Lithuanian | Luganda | Luxembourgish | Maasai | Macedonian | Malagasy | Malay | Malayalam | Maltese | Manipuri | Maori | Marathi | Marshallese | Mende | Mizo | Mongolian | Nagamese | Navajo | Ndebele | Nepali | Nigerian Pidgin | Norwegian | Nuer | Oriya | Oromo | Papiamento | Papiamentu | Pashto | Polish | Angolan Portuguese | Brazilian Portuguese | European Portuguese | Portuguese Mozambique | Punjabi | Rohingya | Romanian | Russian | Rwanda | Rwandan | Serbian | Sesotho | Shona | Sinhala | Slovak | Slovenian | Somali | Sotho | Spanish | Argentinian Spanish | Chilean Spanish | Colombian Spanish | Costa Rican Spanish | Cuban Spanish | Dominican Republic Spanish | Ecuadorian Spanish | Salvadorian Spanish | Guatemalan Spanish | Spanish Honduras | Mexican Spanish | Neutral Spanish | Paraguayan Spanish | Peruvian Spanish | Puerto Rican Spanish | Spanish (Spain) | Uruguayan Spanish | Venezuelan Spanish | Swahili | Swazi | Swedish | Tagalog | Taiwanese | Tajik | Tamazight | Tamil | Telugu | Temne | Thai | Tibetan | Tigrinya | Tsonga | Tswana | Turkish | Turkish Cyprus | Twi | Tz'utujil | Ukrainian | Urdu | Uzbek | North Vietnamese | South Vietnamese | Welsh | Wolof | Xhosa | Yiddish | Yoruba | ZuluShow more [+]
Voice Talents
Acadian French Speakers | Accented English Speakers | African French Speakers | Afrikaans Speakers | Albanian Speakers | Amharic Speakers | Angolan Portuguese Speakers | Algerian Arabic Speakers | Arabic Bahrain Speakers | Arabic Speakers | Egyptian Arabic Speakers | Jordanian Arabic Speakers | Arabic Lebanaon Speakers | Moroccan Arabic Speakers | Arabic Oman Speakers | Palestinian Arabic Speakers | Arabic Qatar Speakers | Saudi Arabian Arabic Speakers | Syrian Arabic Speakers | Tunisian Arabic Speakers | Arabic (UAE) Speakers | Armenian Speakers | Assamese Speakers | Azeri Speakers | Bambara Speakers | Basque Speakers | Bemba Speakers | Bengali Speakers | Bosnian Speakers | Bulgarian Speakers | Burmese Speakers | Cajun French Speakers | Cambodian Speakers | Cantonese (Guangdong) Speakers | Catalan Speakers | Chin Speakers | Cantonese (China) Speakers | Mandarin Speakers | Traditional Mandarin Speakers | Chinese (Singapore) Speakers... | Chinese (Taiwan) Speakers | Chuukese Speakers | Croatian Speakers | Czech Speakers | Dagbani Speakers | Danish Speakers | Dari Speakers | Dinka Speakers | Dutch Speakers | Dzongkha Speakers | African English Speakers | Australian English Speakers | British English Speakers | Canadian English Speakers | Indian English Speakers | Irish English Speakers | New Zealand English Speakers | Scottish English Speakers | South African English Speakers | American English Speakers | Estonian Speakers | Ewe Speakers | Farsi Speakers | Finnish Speakers | Flemish Speakers | French Belgian Speakers | Canadian French Speakers | French Congo Speakers | French Speakers | Moroccan French Speakers | Swiss French Speakers | Tunisian French Speakers | Ga Speakers | Galician Speakers | Georgian Speakers | Austrian German Speakers | German Speakers | Swiss German Speakers | Greek Speakers | Gujarati Speakers | Haitian Creole Speakers | Hausa Speakers | Hawaiian Speakers | Hebrew Speakers | Hindi Speakers | Hmong Speakers | Hungarian Speakers | Icelandic Speakers | Igbo Speakers | Ilocano Speakers | Indonesian Speakers | Italian Speakers | Swiss Italian Speakers | Jamaican Speakers | Japanese Speakers | Kannada Speakers | Karen Speakers | Kashmiri Speakers | Kazakh Speakers | Khasi Speakers | Khmer Speakers | Kinyarwanda Speakers | Kirundi Speakers | Konkani Speakers | Korean Speakers | Krio Speakers | Kurdish Speakers | Kyrgyz Speakers | Laotian Speakers | Latvian Speakers | Lebanese Speakers | Lingala Congo Speakers | Lithuanian Speakers | Luxembourgish Speakers | Macedonian Speakers | Malagasy Speakers | Malay Speakers | Malayalam Speakers | Maltese Speakers | Manipuri Speakers | Maori Speakers | Marathi Speakers | Marshallese Speakers | Mizo Speakers | Mongolian Speakers | Nagamese Speakers | Navajo Speakers | Nepali Speakers | Nigerian Pidgin Speakers | Norwegian Speakers | Nuer Speakers | Oriya Speakers | Oromo Speakers | Papiamento Speakers | Pashto Speakers | Polish Speakers | Angolan Portuguese Speakers | Brazilian Portuguese Speakers | European Portuguese Speakers | Portuguese Mozambique Speakers | Punjabi Speakers | Rohingya Speakers | Romanian Speakers | Russian Speakers | Serbian Speakers | Sesotho Speakers | Shona Speakers | Sinhala Speakers | Slovak Speakers | Slovenian Speakers | Somali Speakers | Sotho Speakers | Argentinian Spanish Speakers | Chilean Spanish Speakers | Colombian Spanish Speakers | Costa Rican Spanish Speakers | Cuban Spanish Speakers | Dominican Republic Spanish Speakers | Ecuadorian Spanish Speakers | Salvadorian Spanish Speakers | Guatemalan Spanish Speakers | Mexican Spanish Speakers | Neutral Spanish Speakers | Puerto Rican Spanish Speakers | Spanish (Spain) Speakers | Uruguayan Spanish Speakers | Venezuelan Spanish Speakers | Swahili Speakers | Swedish Speakers | Tagalog Speakers | Taiwanese Speakers | Tajik Speakers | Tamazight Speakers | Tamil Speakers | Telugu Speakers | Thai Speakers | Tibetan Speakers | Tigrinya Speakers | Turkish Speakers | Twi Speakers | Ukrainian Speakers | Urdu Speakers | Uzbek Speakers | North Vietnamese Speakers | South Vietnamese Speakers | Welsh Speakers | Xhosa Speakers | Yoruba Speakers | Zulu SpeakersShow more [+]