The Essential Elements of Japan Super Science High School Projects: A Case Study of Shizuoka Prefecture


To support the enhancement of science and technology, the Japanese government established the Super Science High School in 2002. However, there is a lack of information about this school for international scholars. We addressed this problem by observing and working with SSH in Shizuoka Prefecture and understanding their intended school models. The context of Shizuoka prefecture is interesting because it is well-known for its high-technology manufacturing company. Our “bottom-up” approach was mainly based on observation, in contrasts with other studies using a literaturebased method to define SSH schools. We identified four elements that represent the common goals and strategies employed by SSH: Independence scientific research, Scientific English, courses related to STEM, and international collaboration. This framework offers a clear picture of what exactly SSH schools are. Findings suggest that SSH identity is rooted in pedagogy, school culture, and rigorous instruction, especially in science and technology, including support from scientists and researchers from the surrounding universities as invited speakers, teacher assistance, and opportunities to conduct research in university-level laboratories.

Keywords: essential elements, Japan Super Science High School, Projects, Case Study

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