A Master's degree is awarded to students who fulfill the requirements for completion of the Master's program. To fulfill these requirements, students must have been registered for at least the prescribed period, earned the prescribed number of credits, given an intermediate presentation, and passed their thesis defense and final examination. There is also a non-thesis track by which students can complete their degrees without writing a Master's thesis. Students who fulfill the specific requirements for each program or course additionally receive a certificate of completion.
Doctoral students are expected to translate the original results of development of new concepts, pursuit of specialized research activities, and application of new methodologies into the integrated domain of media and governance by formulating, planning, and pursuing their own projects. To be awarded a doctoral degree, they must satisfy requirements regarding, among other things, the ability to use a foreign language, development of an original syllabus, earning of credits for skill-building courses, presentation of a doctoral dissertation research proposal, and teaching a course appropriate to their degree. Students pursuing a career professional track may be exempt from certain requirements provided that they have appropriate professional experience. Once a student has been awarded Ph.D. candidate status, a dissertation hearing and final examination by the Academic Degree Evaluation Committee are held to determine whether the presented dissertation merits award of a doctoral degree. If both the hearing and final examination are passed, a decision on whether to award a degree is then made by the Graduate School Committee.
The principal objective of the Master's program is to produce professionals with the expertise and practical skills to detect and resolve problems required to meet the needs of society. The everyday locus of research activity for the Master's student is the "Project." Projects are research groups led by several faculty members, and represent subdivisions of the Programs covering the main research domains into specific themes of research. Through their involvement in these Project groups, students can pursue practical research and study, field work, and internships, as well as take lectures in the conventional classroom format.
The aim of the doctoral program is to train researchers, educators, and other specialists in advanced expertise, accurate reasoning skills, and ample originality. The curriculum is built around a core of research and dissertation supervision. Like the Master's program, the everyday locus of research and learning activity is the Project. Following their own research plans, students receive advice and supervision on how to pursue their research and write their doctoral dissertation from an advisory group made up of faculty members in the Graduate School of Media and Governance and other researchers and a research supervision group, which is formed once a student has become a Ph.D. candidate. In certain courses, the research supervision group always includes a foreign professor from an overseas institute.
The Graduate School of Media and Governance strives to identify and solve the problems faced by our modern society and design the future by engaging with a wide range of academic fields. To accomplish this, it does not limit itself to specific fields of study. The graduate school’s mission is to advance the research at SFC by allowing the multiple fields of study to coexist and cooperate, whether it is science, social studies, humanities, or art. By using an interdisciplinary perspective and collaborative approach, the graduate school aims to develop true professionals who will explore new frontiers and identify and solve new complex issues. The student body is made up of not only those from domestic universities, but also international students and career professionals, making it a diverse home to intellectual discourse and collaboration. Without placing limitations on undergraduate fields of study or individual academic areas, we welcome students who wish to challenge themselves by identifying diverse problems in an increasing complex society and by employing original methods to find solutions through various projects. Admission to the Graduate School is possible in either April or September, and entrance examinations are held twice a year. The entrance examination consists of a first-round evaluation (document screening and essay test), and a second-round evaluation (interview), where applicants are comprehensively evaluated for their academic aptitudes, research motivations, research competencies, and other qualities. Those applying to doctoral programs and career professionals applying to master's programs are exempt from the essay test. Applications from overseas will be evaluated only by document screening.