Biology Program Overview

Philosophy and Objectives of the Biology Program

《Philosophy of the Biology Program》


The subtropical islands of Okinawa are surrounded by coral reefs, ringed with white sandy beaches, and graced with deep green shadows cast by laurel forests. This arc of beautiful islands known as the Ryukyus boasts a complex geological history and the special characteristics of a subtropical marine climate—making it home to a truly diverse array of living organisms from land to sea. Amongst these islands, there are many species endemic to the Ryukyu Archipelago as well as tropical species that can be found nowhere else in Japan. For this reason this region is known for its extremely rich biodiversity.

In modern times, human existence has had a significant impact on the irreplaceable natural setting of the Ryukyu Archipelago, causing rapid change in the environment of the region’s living organisms. Now, when the concept of “coexisting with nature” is garnering much attention as a topic for all humanity, there are numerous issues that we need to consider in how to protect and coexist with the natural environment of the Ryukyu Archipelago. In light of this situation, society’s interest in and expectations of the field of biology are intensifying dramatically.

We in the Biology Program draw on the special characteristics of the rich natural environment of the Ryukyu Archipelago—keeping in mind the role of biological sciences in both the regional and international communities—to implement education and research with a view to understanding diverse living organisms and the basic principles behind them.

《Educational Objectives》

The objective of the Biology Program is to give students a systematic overview of basic knowledge in biology, and to train students in the major academic disciplines of the field. We offer opportunities for our students to gain cutting-edge knowledge in the study of biology, providing a unique education that answers to students’ diverse demands and sense of purpose. In particular, we work to deepen understanding of the behavior of living organisms and to raise awareness of the importance of our natural environment. To achieve this, we collaborate with institutions inside and outside of our university, providing hands-on training in the rich natural environment of the Ryukyu Archipelago. Through this type of experiential education, we train students of biology who can actively demonstrate their originality in various fields, from the regional to the global level, drawing on the base of the study of biology that they have acquired from our program.

《Research Objectives》

The Biology Program utilizes the natural environment of the Ryukyu Archipelago to the greatest possible extent. In addition to shedding light on the behavior of the various living organisms that inhabit a broad range of environments, ranging from the tropical laurel forests on land to the rivers, mangrove forests, and wetlands, and to the coral reefs of the seas, in our research we consider the coral reef/island ecosystem surrounding these environments, striving to understand it in a comprehensive way and working to preserve it. In addition, with a view to understanding the basic principles behind biodiversity and life phenomena, our research is conducted in a comprehensive manner from a variety of viewpoints spanning the macro to the micro, including ecosystems, association, species, individual organisms, cells, and genes.

《Our Objectives on Contributing to the Region》

As educators and researchers drawing on a base of the great biodiversity of the Ryukyu Archipelago, we have a responsibility to educate people on the importance of the biodiversity of the natural environment to society. We at the Biology Program keep this social responsibility in mind as we work to publicize research information through student activities, publications, and more. We also provide recommendations to public institutions from the perspective of the field of biology. In addition, in order to share with all generations the ethical aspects of maintaining biodiversity, we offer classes and public lectures to educate the general public on this subject.

《Our Acceptance Policy》

At the Biology Program, we are looking for students that meet the following criteria, based on the above philosophy and objectives:

  • Individuals with an interest in and the desire to learn deeply about diverse life phenomena and the natural environment surrounding these phenomena
  • Individuals who take initiative in moving toward their goals and who take an active approach
  • Individuals who have the knowledge base required to learn biology
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