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Education policy: Mapping the landscape and scope

Edited By Sandra Bohlinger, Thi Kim Anh Dang and Malgorzata Klatt

This book maps recent developments in the landscape of education policy in higher and vocational education, the returns of education, curriculum design and education reforms, driven by social, economic, political and cultural factors. Contributed by over twenty authors from five continents, this collection provides diverse, innovative and useful perspectives on the ways education policy is researched, implemented and enacted. It helps researchers, policy makers, students and practitioners to better understand processes of policy making, its theory, practice and outcomes. Despite national differences, many shared features and challenges emerge from this book as education systems face the common need to reinvent their existing systems and processes.

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Faculty development in Japanese universities

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This chapter reviews the history of, and emergent issues associated with, the introduction of ‘Faculty Development’ to Japanese universities. It clarifies how Faculty Development has been introduced to Japanese universities and how universities and faculties have responded, while also offering insights into its future prospects. Faculty Development, with its activities and practices designed to improve the performance of university faculty members, was imported into Japan in the 1980s. Since Faculty Development (FD) was institutionalised by way of government-level policy a decade ago, FD has become an established component of Japanese university culture. However, it has been suggested that FD has entered a second phase which requires reflection on its form and situation. For example, the working definition of ‘Faculty Development’ in Japan is both narrow and limited. Faculty Development in the United States has evolved from an initial focus on the improvement of teaching towards a more holistic approach concerned with development across the entire professional and academic career, thus taking a more holistic view of faculty members within higher education institutions. In contrast, Faculty Development in Japan focuses too greatly on advancing teaching skills. Faculty Development was introduced to Japanese universities by way of top-down processes. Now, these universities face the next stage which supports staff to recognise FD as a standard function to be taken for granted. The next big challenge for Japanese universities will be the embedding of such programs and training into daily faculty life and university systems.

1.  Introduction

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