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Education System in Japan; What Makes Students Japanese


The education system in Japan is known for its rigorous standards and structured approach. Here's an explanation of the key features and their impact on students and society.

Compulsory Education

In Japan, education is compulsory for nine years, from elementary school to junior high school. This ensures that all children have access to a basic level of education and establishes a strong foundation for further learning. The Japanese education system places a high value on academic achievement and encourages students to strive for excellence. The curriculum is designed to provide a well-rounded education, covering a wide range of subjects, including mathematics, science, languages, social studies, and the arts.

Respect for Discipline and Order

Discipline and order are fundamental values in Japanese education. Students are expected to adhere to strict rules and regulations, including wearing uniforms and maintaining a respectful attitude towards teachers. The teacher-student relationship in Japan is characterized by respect and deference. Teachers hold a position of authority and are highly regarded as mentors and guides. They play a crucial role in shaping students' character, academic development, and values. You also might have seen or heard that students in Japan clean their school by themselves. By doing so, students learn to maintain waht they use by themselves. This emphasis on discipline fosters a sense of responsibility and respect for authority.

Is the Japanese Education System Aimed Too Much at Entrance Exams?

In spite of the things listed above, it is worth noting that the Japanese education system has also faced criticism for its focus on rote memorization, intense competition, and limited emphasis on creativity and critical thinking skills, and it is often said that the Japanese education is designed just to make students ready for entrance exams. Entrance examinations, which are called Juken in Japanese, play a significant role in the Japanese education system, particularly at the high school and university levels. These exams are highly competitive, and students invest considerable time and effort in preparing for them. This seems reasonable given that Japanese companies value the academic history of studemts when recruiting. If they can get admitted to a brilliant university, it means taht there is a higher possibility for them to get a better job.

In summary, the Japanese education system's emphasis on academic achievement, discipline, and teacher-student relationships has a significant impact on students' development. However, it is also true that it has faced criticism for its juken-centered system. In both a positive and negative sense, the Japanese education system makes students Japanese.

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