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3 Scientific and Technical Education
(3) Vocational Education in Secondary Schools
a Vocational Education in Japan

Lower Secondary School In lower secondary schools, technical and vocational education is offered through elective subjects which include agriculture, industry, commerce, fishery, domestic arts, etc. Those who are preparing to work in various occupations optionally learn these subjects two or three hours a week, aiming at the acquirement of fundamental knowledge and skills necessary either for vocational employment or for homemaking. Regardless of his future career, every pupil is required to study industrial arts or homemaking for practical reasons.

Upper Secondary School Vocational education in upper secondary schools is carried on mainly through such subjects as agriculture, industry, commerce, fishery, domestic arts, etc. To prepare middle-class industrial workers, vocational education at this level is designed to provide pupils with fundamental knowledge and skills which are directly related to the respective occupations, as well as to provide direct occupational training and creative ability. Instruction in experiments and practical exercises including home projects is emphasized in the school.

The recent trends observed in vocational education in Japan in the agricultural, industrial and commercial courses in upper secondary schools, are as follows.

In agricultural courses, such subjects as agriculture, horticulture and animal husbandry, etc. are so organized and conducted as to prepare the students to assume direct responsibility for modern agricultural management and the importance of experiments and practical projects has been accentuated for the expansion of productivity and also for the selective development of agriculture. Measures to improve the equipment installed in agricultural upper secondary schools were approved for the purpose of educating independent farmers. In fiscal 1964, a sum of about 2OO million yen was appropriated in the budget for five schools established for this purpose. In addition, preparations for providing such courses as agricultural manufacturing and agricultural engineering are being made to train technicians to be engaged in agricultural industry. Further, agricultural engineering, manufacturing, machinery, applied dynamics, and conservations, etc. have been included in the curriculum since 1963.

Concerning industrial courses, very careful examination has been made as to the contents of courses in machinery, electricity, industrial chemistry, architecture, civil engineering, etc. To meet the modern social needs to develop industrial engineering, the school curriculum today covers such new subjects as industrial metrology, electronics, automatic control, chemical engineering, and general study of nuclear engineering. The importance of experiments and exercises has been realized, and it has been urged, for example, to encourage practical exercise of handling automatic machine tools or precision machine tools, and also experimental work for scientific study of mechanical engineering.

In commercial courses, special emphasis is laid on the study of business management, especially scientific management of office work and effective use of office machines. In business accounting, for example, classes are equipped with electrical machines. Bookkeeping calculating and copying machines are now being installed as instructional equipment in appropriate classrooms.

Vocational courses are also provided in part-time and correspondence upper secondary schools. As these courses are provided mainly for working students, measures have been in effect since 1961 authorizing approval of education obtained in on-the-job training facilities approved by the Minister of Education as equal to specified number of credits offered by the upper secondary school. There are 34 such facilities and about 5000 students receiving the benefit of the cooperative program. Moreover, the certificate of graduation is granted to those successfully completing for a required period the machinery course or electrical course in the correspondence industrial upper secondary schools which were recently established.

Technical College Established in 1962 to train technicians. The technical colleges aim at providing a five year program of general and technical education for those who have completed their compulsory education. In 1964, there existed 46 technical colleges with 15,398 students.

Miscellaneous Schools, etc. In miscellaneous schools, youth classes, correspondence adult education courses, etc., vocational training is encourage to develop practical skills of the people.

On-the-job Training Centers There are two kinds of on-the-job training centers: public centers under the control of prefectures (To, Do, Fu and Ken) including centers located in commercial plants to promote employ-ment, anad privately controlled centers. The former imparts fundamental technical training to those who are preparing to work in various occupations, and specialized technical training to the people who are already at work. The latter, mostly gives technical training to those who have finished only lower secondary school education. In 1964, approximately 100,000 persons participated in those cooperative vocational programs.

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