University of Tsukuba

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Japanese Linguistics


The study of Japanese linguistics is part of a variety of different fields of linguistics, but this course cultivates specialized researchers in Japanese linguistics itself.

We currently have 5 instructors, all of whom are active at the forefront of research in this field. Graduate students have come from many domestic and overseas universities, and their areas of research are also diverse, from the theoretical study of modern language, to the historical research based on literature and comparative research with other languages. Research is actively presented at various academic conferences such as The Society for Japanese Linguistics.

In addition to classes on Japanese grammar, phonology and philology, study groups are held on a weekly basis which are attended by all of the Japanese Language instructors, and similar study groups are held for graduate students themselves, and these study groups involve a scholarly level of debate. Many of these study groups evolve directly into presentations which are delivered at academic conferences. Our course also publishes a research periodical gTsukuba Japanese Linguisticsh which encourages graduate students to present their papers.

One of the features of this course is the fact that instruction is performed by the research center as a whole. Instruction is not performed merely by one instructor, but rather other instructors are also actively involved in taking classes, providing instruction from a variety of perspectives. Where one of our instructors becomes unable to offer direction due to travel overseas or some other reason, the entire research center stands ready to cover for that instructor. Also, opportunities are actively sought out to provide exchanges and discussions with others outside of the Japanese Linguistics Research Center, from other Japanese Language related instructors at the school to researchers outside of the university.

Further, in addition to direction from our instructors, one of the features of our program is that it creates an environment in which graduate students can stimulate each other, to lift the quality of their research. At the graduate research center, arguments between graduates about certain aspects of Japanese are common, and these are also frequently joined by instructors.

This course has a long history of success, and has produced a large number of fine researchers. Most of the graduates of this course are playing an active role as researchers at national and private universities and research institutes. Being blessed with connections to so many fine alumni is another merit of this course.

With a lot of hard work, the way will open up for you to become an independent researcher in the future.

If you have any queries, please send them to


OKURA Hiroshi History of Japanese
HASHIMOTO Osamu Japanese Grammar, Semantics
YAZAWA Makoto Syntax of Japanese
NASU Akio Japanese Phonology, Theoretical Linguistics
TAGAWA Takumi Japanese Morphology, Theoretical Linguistics