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All Japan High School Forum 2021 (2021年度全国高校生フォーラム出場記)


On the 19th of December, two of our second year high school students took part in the All Japan High School Forum. This is a prestigious event run by the Ministry of Education and the University of Tsukuba in conjunction with the World Wide Learning consortium. It was a wonderful chance for our students to work as a team, present their project based research in English, and engage in English with students from across Japan.

Ms. Kanazawa (Study Abroad Class 17th intake) and Ms. Taniguchi (Super Global Class 6th intake) contributed their research on the theme: How does gender affect the life choices of student loan borrowers in Japan? Ms. Taniguchi chose this theme after reading about studies conducted in New Zealand, and realizing that there was little research related to this topic being carried out in Japan. This, along with the importance of their research, became even more apparent as they carried out interviews with a representative from JASSO and a number of student loan borrowers.

The students made the most of the research process. They worked hard to investigate their theme from a wide range of angles, and to hear as many different perspectives as possible. In order to answer their research question, they analyzed each piece of information in detail. They worked well together, constantly challenging each other’s assumptions. Furthermore, they were able to engage in constructive debates and discussions with their teachers in both English and Japanese.

The final presentation was a four minute long poster session in English. As the event was online this year, the presentation was recorded and uploaded for other students to view in advance. On the day, the students were able to receive detailed feedback from university professors and Ministry of Education staff. They also had the opportunity to discuss issues related to their own theme, other students’ themes and the SDGs with international students and a professor from the University of Tsukuba.

While the students did not receive a prize this year, they were praised for their theme and the logical development of their research thesis. Both students were able to develop their research and critical thinking skills, as well as their English and team work skills, through this experience. They were also thrilled to discuss their ideas with other students from across Japan, and commented that this experience opened their minds to different perspectives. Furthermore, the knowledge that they gained regarding the student loan system and the life choices that people make in their twenties and beyond will surely help them as young women moving on to higher education. As a teacher, I couldn’t ask for more!

Here are their comments:

This time, we couldn’t get a prize. However, we could learn different ways of carrying out research and about global issues. The other school students’ opinions and viewpoints were very stimulating for us.  We have never had the opportunity to discuss social issues with people around my age from different schools before, so this was a great place to exchange ideas. We hope a lot of students can participate in contests like this in future.



谷口さん(スーパーグローバルクラス6期生)と金澤さん(留学クラス17期生)は、「How does gender affect the life choices of student loan borrowers in Japan?(ジェンダーが日本の奨学金受給者の人生選択に及ぼす影響)」というテーマで研究発表しました。谷口さんは、ニュージーランドの奨学金制度に関する論考を読んだ後、同様の視点からの研究が日本ではほとんど行われていないことに気づき、上記のテーマを設定しました。日本学生支援機構および多くの奨学金受給者にインタビューを実施することで、この研究の独自性と重要性がさらに明らかになりました。