Japanese Educational Psychology in the 21st century

SATO, Tatsuya (Ritsumeikan University)

The Annual Report of Educational Psychology in Japan, Vol.41, 139-156,2002

The present paper offers a tentative view of the future of Japanese educational psychology in the 21st century. First, the history of educational psychology in Japan is briefly reviewed. The second part of the paper highlights the argument, which has ranged for more than 50 years, about the barren nature of Japanese educational psychology. The main cause of this supposed barrenness is said to be the discrepancy between the topics investigated by educational psychology researchers and actual problems of in the practice of education. Some commentators have contended that the argument about barren nature of Japanese educational psychology is itself barren. However a new movement in school psychology is expected to overcome this long-standing problem. In the third part of the paper, mode theory, a new style of knowledge-building systems, is induced. The fourth part of the paper points out the importance of discussing and constructing valid methodology for educational psychology. The author proposes that one of the best ways of Japanese educational psychology to develop is by espousing the concepts of education among researchers and practitioners.

Key words: educational psychology, barren nature of Japanese educational psychology, mode theory, transdisciplinarity between research and practice, history of educational psychology