- 東京大学教育学部紀要 (ISSN:04957849)
- vol.30, pp.105-115, 1991-03-30
The Japanese people show remarkable adherance to their academic achievement, though it does not have so strong influence on their socio-economic status as in other societies. This paper attempts to explain why academic achievement has such symbolic and mental prestige in Japan. This prestige is not only seen in the educational system, but also in various scenes outside the educational sphere. Therefore it is possible to regard the prestige of academic achievement in Japan as one of the linkage-patterns of the educational system to its environment. I show an alternative theoretical framework after examining how the possibility of education-outer linkage has been explained by pre- dominant theories. I contend that the highly symbolic and mental prestige of academic achievement in Japanese society derives from that function as a medium linking the educational system to its environment. Unlike Euro-American societies, the Japanese educational system links to its outer society almost only through the academic achievement as a symbolic medium.