Doctoral Program

The main purpose of graduate education is to foster university teachers and researchers, and this goal has been assigned top priority for many years. Constant effort has been devoted to ensure the highest level of professional educational research, and the result is a country with the strong social foundation and vigorous development that we see today. Even so, with the recent dramatic advances in technical innovations, modern society is becoming highly information-based, and changes in social needs are prompting a reform of graduate education. Having said that, I think the core mission of graduate education is still to foster researchers and educators. Indeed, this mission has become even more important at the present moment, because we need personnel that have the vision to lead people through complex modern society in the days to come.

The Department of Kansei, Behavioral, and Brain Sciences was launched as an integrated 5-year doctoral program in 2001. Since then, our faculty members have investigated the human mind, including kansei. Because research on the core of human beings is virtually impossible to achieve within the traditional vertically structured academic framework, we adopted a revolutionary interdisciplinary structure and promote interdisciplinary educational research by faculty members from different research areas, including Arts, Psychology, Disability Science, and Medicine. In 2003, our program “Promotion of Kansei Science for Understanding the Mechanism of Mind and Heart” was selected as a 21st century COE Program. We have been playing a leading role as one of the organizations that practices the educational content of graduate study defined by the Graduate School of Comprehensive Human Sciences.

Against this historical background, we reorganized the system and transformed our curriculum into two segments in 2008, when we launched the new Doctoral program in Kansei, Behavioral, and Brain Science. The program constitutes the last 3 years of the segmented program, and is characterized as an educational system specialized for fostering researchers and educators. The Doctoral program carries on the educational philosophy that was developed through the COE program, and also inherits the benefits of the former integrated 5-year system. The educational curriculum has been enriched in order to empower internationalism and cultivate the students’ qualities as researchers and educators who can play an active role both nationally and internationally.

The Doctoral program has eight research areas. Based on the broad range of cross-disciplinary knowledge and methodology learned in the Master’s program, students will deepen their expertise while receiving thesis research guidance on various complex issues related to human beings. Unlike the previous integrated program, under the new system associate professors can also provide research guidance, so that various needs of research and education can be addressed. I hope all students who have received education in the Doctoral program acquire high-level communication skills, are trusted anywhere in the world, and become international researchers who actively promote research on kansei and kokoro (mind) from a panoramic perspective.

Kansei Information Science

In this field, students will study fundamentals and applications of research on kansei, a tacit process of humans that is usually activated by interacting with other humans, artifacts, the environment, or design processes.

Kansei Design Studies

We develop a foundation for communication between artifacts and humans and use it to develop a better society.

Kansei Ergonomics

Knowledge about the user’s perception and cognition is fundamentally important to improve usability of products or environments.

Comparative Cognitive Science

Our main research focus is to study the neuroendocrine basis of various behaviors, including emotions, socio-sexual activities, and learning.

Behavioral Neuroscience

This field of study seeks to clarify the biological and neural mechanisms underlying various behaviors in humans and animals.

Science of Mental Disorders

This field of study focuses on the developmental and mental disabilities during the development term (child term) and mental disability of an adult age term.

Brain Science

Brain Science consists of the Takei & Nogami Lab, the Matsumoto Lab, and the Shidara Lab.


This division, which is coordinates with the Neuroscience Research Institute (AIST, Tsukuba), is working toward understanding the molecular biological, psychological, physiological, and anatomical aspects of cognitive brain function, including cognition, behavior, and learning.