History of Osaka University
Academic traditions of the university reach back to Kaitokudō (懐徳堂), an Edo-period school for local citizens founded in 1724, and Tekijuku (適塾), a school of Rangaku for samurai founded by Ogata Kōan in 1838. The spirit of the university's human sciences is believed to be intimately rooted in Kaitokudo, whereas that of the natural and applied sciences, including medicine, is widely believed to be based on Tekijuku.
Osaka University traces its origin back to 1869 when Osaka Prefectural Medical School was founded in downtown Osaka. The school was later transformed into the Osaka Prefectural Medical College with university status by the University Ordinance (Imperial Ordinance No. 388 of 1918) in 1919. The college merged with the newly founded College of Science to form Osaka Imperial University（大阪帝國大学） in 1931. Osaka Imperial University was inaugurated as the sixth imperial university in Japan. As part of the University, Osaka Technical College was later included to form the school of Engineering two years later. The university was eventually renamed Osaka University in 1947.
Merging with Naniwa High School and Osaka High School as a result of the government's education system reform in 1949, Osaka University started its postwar era with five faculties: Science, Medicine, Engineering, Letters, and Law. After that, faculties, graduate schools, and research institutes have been successively established. Among these are the School of Engineering Science, the first of its kind among Japanese national universities, which draws upon the excellence of both sciences and engineering disciplines, and the School of Human Sciences, which covers its cross-disciplinary research interest as broadly as psychology, sociology, and education. Built on the then-existing faculties, 10 graduate schools were set up as part of the government's education system reform program in 1953. Two graduate schools, the Graduate School of Language and Culture and the cross-disciplinary and cross-institutional Osaka School of International Public Policy, add to the list, making the number of graduate schools reach 12 in 1994.
In 1993, Osaka University Hospital was relocated from the Nakanoshima campus in downtown Osaka to the Suita campus, completing the implementation of the university's plan to integrate the scattered facilities into the Suita and Toyonaka campuses. In October 2007, a merger between Osaka University and Osaka University of Foreign Studies was completed. The merger made Osaka University one of two national universities in the country with a School of Foreign Studies (with Tokyo University of Foreign Studies). In addition, the merger made the university the largest national university in the country.
In 2009, Osaka University implemented a major revision of its website. The result is a website much more accessible and informative to persons not versed in the Japanese language — a site much more user-friendly to international exchange students, international researchers, and expatriates living in the Osaka area. Currently, thanks to the work of the "Creative Unit," virtually all Osaka University's web pages come in pairs — a Japanese page and the same page in English. These pairings include frequent updates on symposiums, seminars, and other events open to staff, students and, often, the general public.