INSNET, Spring 1998
composed of practitioners from various fields; psychiatry, neurology, neurosurgery, psychology, speech pathology, speech therapy, rehabilitation medicine, etc. About 1700 members belong to the Society, but there are many practitioners who do not belong to it. The Japan Aphasia Society has also contributed to the work of neuropsychology.
One interest area in Japanese neuropsychology is the administration of various tests because the main work of a clinical psychologist and a neuropsychologist in Japan is to give tests to patients. We have many neuropsychological tests, most of which are based on those developed in European and American. Examples are: The Wisconsin Card Sorting Test, the Mini Mental State Test, the Raven's Colored Progressive Matrices, and the Benton Visual Retention Test. These are frequently used. As for intelligence tests, we use the Tanaka Binet and the Suzuki Binet Intelligence Tests for infants and children, and the Suzuki Binet Test for demented patients. Although these tests are based on the Stanford Binet Test , their reliability has been fully tested in Japan. Among the tests originated and developed in Japan are the Hasegawa Dementia Scale-Revised, the Meaningful and Meaningless Syllable Memory Test, and the Standard Language Test of Aphasia.
Japan does not demand or issue an official license for the practice of clinical psychology or neuropsychology. Currently there are some colleges where one can major in clinical psychology, but neuropsychology is not a part of the curriculum in these colleges. Students are only exposed to a general view of various tests for neuropsychology. Medical students have a few lessons of neuropsychology in some of the schools of medicine. A clinical psychologist who wants to study neuropsychology has to study on their own, or join a group of neuropsychology in the school of medicine. We have no systematic courses of anatomy or pathology for psychologists.
The present population in Japan is 125,570,246, and it is estimated that about 15% of the population is are elderly (over 65 years). There are about 1.5 million demented patients suffering from various types of dementia (e.g. Alzheimer's disease, diffuse Lewy body disease, Pick's disease, vascular, etc.). These patients are predicted to increase with the increase in the number of the aged. We need more specialists in the field of neuropsychology for the analysis of cerebral functions, and the development of therapies and rehabilitation. They will a more important role in these areas in the future.
I am a clinical psychologist with a great interest in the study of dementia. I have recently become very interested in neuropsychology. As a research fellow of Yokohama City University School of Medicine I'm studying and working in neuropsychology and geriatric psychiatry. Fortunately my professor is Dr. Kenji Kosaka, who discovered Diffuse Lewy Body Disease. He is the vice- president of The 3rd International Congress of Neuropsychiatry to be held in Kyoto, Japan in 2000. He gives me every opportunity to study neuropsychology. There are some other psychologists like me, who are engaged in clinical studies of neuropsychology and clinical psychology.
I hope that in Japan, as in the USA, the time will come in the near future when even non- medical students can study neuroanatomy, neuropathology, neurophysiology and other neurosciences.
BOOK AND JOURNAL DEPOSITORY UPDATE
By Bernice Marcopulos
The Book and Journal Depository inventory has grown considerably this past quarter. Cambridge University Press and Lawrence Erlbaum Associates donated several boxes of new books. We are very grateful to Cambridge University Press and Lawrence Erlbaum and Associates for their generous support of this program. The family of the late Dr. Nelson Butters donated a large portion of his personal library to the depository. Thanks to the Butters family we now have a very impressive inventory for donations.