Department of Society and Regional Culture

Learn all about Okinawa and the human condition, so you can lead Okinawa and Japan into Asia’s global future!

In the Department of Society and Regional Culture, students learn all about the history and current situation of the Ryukyu Islands, while also paying attention to connections to the surrounding area, especially East Asia. The department trains professionals who will lead Okinawa in its dealings with Japan, Asia, and the world, while being sensitive to the needs of Okinawa and human beings.

Department Characteristics

The department trains professionals who will use their thorough global perspectives and knowledge of Okinawa’s history, culture, and society, in order to discover new possibilities for the future.
  1. Students become specialists who understand Okinawa’s history, culture, and society.
  2. Fieldwork is emphasized.
  3. Students acquire a wide range of knowledge concerning the structure of human society and civilization.
  4. Students develop an international outlook, ranging from Okinawa to Asia and the world.
  5. Students acquire practical English skills.
  6. Students participate in small-group seminars throughout their four years of study.
  7. Students become professionals who can detect and solve problems.

    Admission Policy(Acceptance of New Students)

    The Department of Society and Regional Culture, in accord with Okinawa International University’s admission policy, seeks applicants who are interested in learning about human beings and Okinawa, who strive to improve as individuals and human beings, and who possess the following qualities:
    1. Applicants who have the intellectual curiosity and sense of adventure needed to understand Okinawa.
    2. Applicants with a deep interest in the workings of global societies and cultures that concern Okinawa.
    3. Applicants with the basic academic abilities needed for facing the global problems that concern Okinawa.
    4. Applicants who can act independently in discerning problems on their own, going out into the field, and actively gathering and interpreting information.
    5. Applicants who possess the independence and cooperative nature needed to engage in activities related to the local community, international exchange, volunteering, culture, and sports, both inside and outside of school.

    Curriculum Summary

    The most important aspect of the curriculum is its holistic approach to teaching about the Ryukyu Islands (Amami, Okinawa, Miyako, and Yaeyama), including how people have lived through history, what kind of society and culture they have formed, and the current social realities of living on the islands today. To this end, the department has established four divisions (archeology and prehistory, history, folk culture and anthropology, and sociology and peace studies) with seven specialized seminars. A second important characteristic of the curriculum is its emphasis on education through specialized seminars, which students take for each of their four years. In their freshman seminars, students learn the proper ways and methods for learning and pursuing research at university. In the sophomore, junior, and senior seminars, students progressively deepen their specialized knowledge in one of the department’s divisions. Especially during their junior seminars, students carry out field work in various regions of Okinawa (in some cases, outside the prefecture or overseas), so that they can acquire an understanding of Okinawa based on actual experience—and become leaders of an Okinawa and a Japan rooted in Asia and the world.
    Career Options
    TeacherNational GovernmentLocal GovernmentMuseum Curator
    International OrganizationsTourismMass MediaPrinting and Publishing
    NPOs and NGOs