Japanese education reform towards twenty-first century education

Shinichi Yamanaka, Kan Hiroshi Suzuki

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

15 Citations (Scopus)


This chapter describes an education reform towards twenty-first century education in Japan. The Ad Hoc Council on Education which was established in 1984 by Prime Minister was the starting point of the reform. Japanese society was also undertaking a transition from twentieth century industry to twenty-first century industry. Education reform was a part of it. That was the reason this education reform involved national wide debate including industry people, union people, mass media people, politicians as well as education people. This education reform covers all aspects of education, that is contents, teachers, facilities, school management system, education administration system and fundamental laws. At first this chapter focuses on reform of national standard curriculum from 1990 until 2020. The basic stance of this reform was that the teaching style must take the transition from cramming to help students acquiring the ability to learn and think on their own. And then other reforms such as introduction of national academic ability test, reform of teacher training system, reform of university entrance examination and reform of school management system are also described. This chapter describes the continuous efforts and challenges during this education reform.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAudacious Education Purposes
Subtitle of host publicationHow Governments Transform the Goals of Education Systems
PublisherSpringer International Publishing
Number of pages23
ISBN (Electronic)9783030418823
ISBN (Print)9783030418816
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Apr 23
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences(all)


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