Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 80.djvu/257

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morals, geography and history and is given in Japanese. At present 96 per cent, of the children of school age are in school, and the records for attendance and proficiency are enviable. Beyond the age of twelve the boys and girls separate, but, contrary to American experience, it is the girl rather than the boy who drops out or is kept at home. The demand for instruction has from the first far outrun the financial ability of the Japanese government to provide and from the elementary school up there are more applicants than can be admitted. In general selection is made on the basis of efficiency, and competitive examinations are the usual means. The boy who, therefore, at the age of 23 or 23 finally reaches the university after passing through middle and higher schools, is the one left by a long process of elimination. It would be interesting to follow the boy through this course, but the limits of this article forbid. Those interested will find the elementary, middle and higher schools, excellently described by Baron Kikuchi, in his most instructive and readable book "Japanese Education."[1] It is sufficient to state that the student comes to the university with long training in English and one or more other languages and with about the mental training and culture that American students have when they enter the junior year of a first-class university. He is ready to specialize, has in fact prepared to specialize, and has received his training in how to study. The university course is therefore concerned more with subject matter than with method. The course is three years long and at its completion the student is entitled to assume the title of gakushi in law, medicine, science, engineering, or whatever line he may have followed. This, it may be noted, is not a degree conferred by the university, though roughly equivalent to our own bachelor's degree. Upon attaining to this rank the student is ready to study for the doctorate, for which five years work in University Hall is required. During the last two of these years he may under certain restrictions, engage in practise away from the university, and before becoming gakushi he must, in engineering at least, spend six to eighteen months in practical work. In the latter case he is sent to a mine, smelter, or other works, and required to follow a prearranged course, reporting to the university on each piece of work as completed and receiving meanwhile help from the university, much like that given to students in correspondence courses in the United States. While in this preliminary practise he is not allowed, except by special agreement, to receive pay; the object not being to put the student into regular work on a money-making basis, but to permit him to learn practise in a commercial plant. The university reserves for its own field the teaching of principles.

Degrees are not given by the university, but by the Minister of Education upon proper recommendation. This may come either from the university or by a two thirds vote of the assembly of Hakushi, those

  1. John Murray, London, 1909.