Political literacy in Japan and England

Ian Davies, Mitsuharu Mizuyama, Norio Ikeno, Lynne Parmenter, Chiho Mori

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


The authors discuss findings from the project 'Political Literacy in Japan and England'. They do so to follow up on work published in this journal in 2011. The now completed project involved two schools in England and three schools in Japan, and had the aim of exploring what teachers would do in each country when asked to use the same approach to political literacy. That approach to political literacy was based on an attempt to promote discourse around a range of political concepts. Citizenship education in England, at the time of the project, was relatively secure as a National Curriculum subject established in schools since 2002. In Japan, there was a dynamic picture in which a variety of initiatives to promote understanding of and participation in contemporary society was embraced by individual teachers. In both countries, there was a focus on enhancing students' knowledge and skills in ways that were not always aligned very explicitly or precisely with particular political concepts or the promotion of specific types of discourse. The authors suggest that teachers in their sample espouse a commitment to concepts but actually emphasise content in their classroom work; they do not always help students to attain high levels of achievement in relation to ability to discuss; and the purpose of a positive classroom atmosphere may only be loosely attached to specific learning goals for political literacy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)163-173
Number of pages11
JournalCitizenship, Social and Economics Education
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Economics, Econometrics and Finance(all)

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