This research investigates free response descriptive self-reflection for 64 beginners majoring in Japanese as a foreign language. Students are divided into three groups (top, middle and bottom) using final examination grades and the K.J. method is utilized to study the content of learners' self-reflections. The result shows: (1) Learners in top and middle groups focus on learning processes and adjust strategies to deepen their understanding. The bottom group focuses on learning results and strategies are simplistic. (2) Learners in the top and middle groups plan and schedule their Japanese learning comprehensively. (3) Learners in the bottom
group exhibit a certain level of meta-cognitive ability.
In the field of Japanese language education, information regarding what is done "in the classroom" such as creating educational tools or materials is actively shared. However, works for "outside the classroom" for improving learning environment has not been discussed in the academic or research communities. Creating class timetables is one of those "outside" works, and it requires skills to manage the information regarding names of the courses, names of the instructors, and locations of the classrooms, while maintaining consistency between those factors. In this paper, a timetable editing tool using MS Excel's VLOOKUP function is introduced for the purpose of reducing the amount of complicated work for creating class timetables.
This research investigates whether Content and Language Integrated Learning (CLIL) was effective in deepening a group of students' understanding of the learning content and improving their language ability. The students were taught Japanese through CLIL on the theme of National Socialism, war and peace and their essays on these topics submitted before and after the classes are analysed. The comparison between the first and second essays show that their awareness of the importance of current issues and peace education is deepened by the review of past historical facts and their use of vocabulary is more complex in the second essays. As a conclusion, this investigation shows the effectiveness of CLIL and its potential in the future development of Japanese language education.
I have been applying the sumo-themed gamification "Nihongo Banzuke" in my Japanese class since 2016 Fall Semester to motivate my students. This gamification allows students to level up as sumo wrestlers by earning points from tasks they complete inside and outside of the classroom. According to my survey, it succeeded in motivating a few students and making them more interested in Japanese culture. However, a significant gap remained between engaged students and disengaged students' level of commitment to the game. In 2017 Spring Semester, I modified some elements of the game and examined how it affected students' motivation and their learning strategies.
The purpose of this study is to investigate the fillers used by Japanese learners and consider how to teach them. On the basis of the dialogues between Korean learners of Japanese, Chinese learners of Japanese and native Japanese speakers, this study analyzed the fillers produced by learners comparing with natives. Unlike native Japanese speakers, learners of Japanese used several fillers in succession unnaturally because their usage of filler forms was limited even in case they used several fillers successively. The results suggest that it is necessary to teach how to combine several fillers and promote the use of derivative fillers.
This study reports on the value of presenting practical Japanese grammar in a Japanese teacher-training program. The goals of the class were 1) to encourage students to study grammar on their own initiative, and 2) to show how grammatical knowledge can be applied in classroom situations. Based on post-class questionnaires, students felt that seminar-style presentation was effective for deep understanding while calling out need for teacher explanations and daily preparation by all class participants, not only those giving presentations. Regarding practical classroom activities, study of example grammar problems and analysis of ambiguous sentences were also valued.
In my previous study (Saiki, 2017) it was observed that while the peer-evaluation task 'Best Speaker' was relatively effective in providing positive feedback and acknowledging learners' efforts, it did not seem to influence learners' future performance or establish a model which learners could aspire. Based on the results of the previous study the task was revised to encourage learners to assign a purpose for the peer evaluation task and then later reflect on how effectively they achieved their goals.
We are sometimes said at international students Sensei wa majimedesune 'You are very serious'. Such expressions cannot be classified as incomplete, however sometimes make listeners feel uncomfortable. In this paper, as examples of NA-adjectives learned at beginning and lower-intermediate levels, we analyze the factors that make the listener feel uncomfortable by the use of it in various situations, contexts and subjects, although the word itself does not have a negative meaning. Also, based on the analyses results, we present what kind of situations each adjective is appropriately applied, what kind of expressions are needed to replace the adjective when not appropriate.
In a second language environment, does a Japanese language learner's communication strategies (CS) change depending on whether to not they have classroom learning experiences? Speech data of 4 upper-intermediate Japanese learners was extracted from the "International Corpus of Japanese as a Second Language (I-JAS)" and CS was analysed regarding whether or not learning experiences in a classroom environment could be considered to be a factor in CS differences. Even in the same second language environment, there were differences in CS usage between Japanese language learners in a classroom environment and a natural environment.
Language learning awareness changes over time and due to other factors. In the cases of learners whose major is not Japanese, changes in the environment such as decreased exposure to Japanese have an impact. We, therefore, conducted interviews with Brazilian Japanese learners who returned home in order to investigate the changes in awareness and motivation regarding Japanese learning. Results revealed that they had established learning methods suitable for their current learning environment and for themselves, and continued learning with clear goals. We intend to clarify how they maintained their learning motivation and examine what support teachers can provide.
Recently, although recognition was shown that education should center on 'Japanese for living' in the situational syllabus, in regional Japanese language education, this is still only found in few places. Especially for learners who cannot use intermediary words, it is hard to find an appropriate method of support. Therefore, in this study, we aimed at Chinese who are starting to learn Japanese in local Japanese classrooms in Tokyo, Osaka and Fukuoka. We will explore the way of regional Japanese education for zero beginners after clarifying their difficulties in Japanese learning, and how they are currently being supported.
The main purpose of this paper is to seek possible improvements of teaching instructions in Japanese speech by analyzing teaching method through the first to third periods. Reflecting the first and second period, many students could not give understandable speech for student-student interaction.Therefore, we took 3 measures to deal with this issue. 1. Providing scripts with pitch carves and the sound files which is read out with correct pronunciation. 2. Having students to use visual aids during the speech. 3. Having students to prepare some questions at the end of the speech. As a result of these measures, most students can give a proper speech for student-student interaction.
This study created a questionnaire for students and teachers, and explored the elements needed to improve the upper intermediate level from research result and rubric evaluation. As a result, teachers emphasize the adequacy of correctness of grammar and expression, whereas students emphasize the content such as report configuration and their opinions. The rubric evaluations also showed similar trends. From this result, the authors found it was important to explicitly present that needed elements to improve intermediate level to upper intermediate level by rubric evaluations. The authors also found rubric evaluations were effective in raising awareness of the student's level improvement.
There are many refusal expressions used to maintain the campus life comfortable and safe. The author collected the signs of refusal expressions in a university in Japan and a university in China to make a comparative study. The pictures and photos are transformed into words. The similarities and differences of the different situations will be discussed and analyzed. Meanwhile, why the differences come into being is also discussed in this paper.
In order to capture the relationship between grammatical ability and listening ability, this paper investigates how the students catch the abbreviation of the subject, using the request or permission expression of the verbs that mean giving or receiving. Even among the same kind of learning items, there were differences in the error rate depending on the expressions. It turned out that the difficulty level differs depending on affinity. As the high misleading rate in causative sentences and sentences that use verbs that including directionality in motion,it can be said that it is important to practice listening putting emphasis on grammar through the intermediate level.
This study aimed to clarify what learners think about during a pronunciation test, which comprised reading of words, sentences, and a picture story. The study was conducted to ascertain the learners' ability after a special morae lesson using body movements, and employed interviews to ask the learners about their thoughts while they were completing the test. The interview results found the influence of the use of direction only in the test involving reading of words and sentences. Furthermore, the results highlighted the necessity to bridge the gap between reading of words, sentences and doing a picture story.
This is a report on the development of intermediate level composition materials. Students have difficulty in writing compositions. How can we deal with that? There are three countermeasures. The first is the subject of the composition. It is important to be able to obtain intellectual satisfaction. The second is the method of learning. Learners enjoy talking between themselves and then summarizing what they want to write. The third is awareness of the structure. This also relates to writing reports. In the following year, other teachers used these teaching materials and further advancements were made, namely, expressions were added and the method of presentation was improved.
This study reports on the attempts to develop a learning environment in which Japanese learners can receive the benefits of support and facilities for pursuing their Japanese studies through introducing the example of the process of preparing and conducting the first Japanese language speech contest, held in 2017 at Tohoku University International Graduate School of Accounting Policy (IGSAP). Specifically, first of all, I discuss the establishment of relations between the teachers, the staff, the support organization and learners through the Japanese language speech contest. Secondly, I discuss the improvement of equipment in the school for Japanese learning. Based on these analyses, I discuss new understandings and effects.
International students, who want to study engineering at university in Japan, have to learn mathematics in Japanese. What they need to learn is both mathematics itself and mathematical terminology. However, some difficulties will arise when the lecturers teach both in limited time. Therefore, the authors have been researching and creating the 'efficient mathematic terminology practice book' using FileMaker application. The 'Kanji practice book' and 'Keywords quiz' are shown in this paper.
This paper reports a practice on a content-based seminar to deepen Japanese intermediate-low learners' understanding about Japanese novels, and shows the change of learners' confidence and motivation by questionnaire. Students read various short novels, from graded readers to authentic materials, and discussed the contents and shared feedback with classmates. Also, at the end of the semester, they did Extensive Reading of graded readers and had a "Biblio-Battle". The result of the survey shows that these activities have helped leaners gain confidence in reading Japanese and motivation to learn Japanese.
Skillful citation requires both propriety of referencing format and effective incorporation of citations into one's own writing. This study analyzed the use of source materials in argumentative essays by two international students. The essays were written as Japanese reading course assignments. Results show that, although one student partially succeeded in integrating source information to support her own claims, the other failed to incorporate citations into her own arguments. Neither student was able to provide warrants for the concluding claim from sources appropriately. Neither was able to convey the meanings of the original texts correctly, which suggests a lack of sufficient reading comprehension proficiency.
The Diagnostic Tests of Kanji ability in TTBJ system (Tsukuba Test-Battery of Japanese) have been developed to check the Japanese language learners' overall working knowledge on kanji and kanji vocabulary from various aspects. Main objectives of these tests are to give some useful advices for both of the learners with/without kanji-background and to show the way how they can learn Japanese kanji effectively. Some advices may give a valuable lesson to the learners with kanji-background, and sometimes may give an encouragement for the learners without kanji-background. The author made new feedback pages for these tests and discuss their expected effect.
In this paper, I will examine advanced level learners' thinking process from their talks after completion of the writing task requiring citation along with their works. The purpose is to find clues for effective teaching of citation, one of the necessary skills for academic writing. In a writing class for advanced level learners, I introduced a practice determining whether to use direct citation or indirect citation for several times during the course. The said task was given at the closing hours. First I would examine effectiveness of the practice and then present the clues for further teaching.
This paper reports the results of the analysis of Japanese verbal behaviors in situations of discontentment through a comparison of Japanese native speakers and Estonian learners of Japanese language at different levels. Generally, the verbal strategies used by advanced learners were closer to the ones used by Japanese native speakers, the only exception being a situation with a superior(teacher). In that situation, advanced learners tended not to mention the teacher's unfavorable behavior, but native speakers and lower level learners did. Taking these results into account, this paper will analyze Japanese textbooks about the strategies of expressing discontentment and the acquisition of language use in Japanese studies.
We conducted a writing activity involving an interview-based report for further communication among students and not for academic or practical purpose. The activity included the following steps: read an interview-based article as a model, choose a theme on which one would like to be interviewed, interview each other, write the first draft of the report, check the interviewee's draft, get comments from other students, and prepare the final report. After the class, in a questionnaire, some students mentioned that they better understood their classmates and enjoyed the activity because they could choose the themes. Moreover, in their reports, the students adopted some expressions of quotation and the writing style of the model article.
This study investigated the relationship between perception and production of Japanese accents by native speakers of Chinese. The research consisted of perception and production experiments, whose subjects were first year students of Japanese. In the perception experiment, pseudowords were used and in the production experiment, unknown words were used. The results demonstrated that there was a strong correlation between perception and production of accent in Japanese, and in order to produce Japanese accent appropriately, the ability to differentiate accent by perception is required.
The system "Karin" in this paper is a mobile oriented version based on a collocation search system already developed for PC and tablet, designed for intermediate and advanced level learners. These systems provide users with a tool to find the collocations of noun-verb and modifier-nouns, with some useful functions for learners, such as Furigana, simple example sentences and their translations, and some informative indices. The results of the trial session show that many of the users find this system useful. However, there are some technical and operational problems which need to be improved.
When those with no background in teaching Japanese as a second language volunteer in Japanese language classes, they often do all the talking. However, at the author's educational institution, the listening skills of veteran senior male volunteers improved and a change occurred in their attitude. The author interviewed 2 senior males who had served as volunteers for over 8 years. It became clear that they were uneasy when the international students did not respond quickly, but as the relationship developed, the desire to know more about the student grew, the fear of no response disappeared and conversation became two-way.
The authors did questionnaires for international students who had passed entrance exam at Japan from the Middle East countries, and interviewed those students who answered that "It is difficult for me to score high on the Examination for Japanese University Admission for International Students (EJU) " in the questionnaires. In this report, the authors described, by analyzing the interview survey of those students, several contents and methods of the mathematics education in their countries.
This paper analyzes discussion in a task-based activity conducted in a pre-advanced Japanese course. Each group organized and integrated the ideas about a given topic using the following procedure: 1) internalizing individual opinion 2) sharing ideas 3) discussion 4) presenting ideas as a group. The presentation content was improved for the group whose discussion included more rapport building actions. This result provides insight into what makes the discussion more effective and how the discussion affects students learning.
This paper presents an e-learning material that we have been developing for improving learner's accents of Japanese. It will help learners predict the correct accent and if they get it wrong, and also will guide them to recognize it and lead them so that they can correct it by themselves. This e-learning material consists of: (1) rules of accents, (2) checking learners' understanding, and (3) practice to predict the accents by listening to words by each category. One of our future goals is that we will include not only words but also sentences in this material so that learners can practice outside of class.
In Tokyo Japanese Language Education Center, from April 2016 to March 2017, as a practice of inclusive education, the center accepted a Japanese learner from Nepal with a visual disorder who wanted to go on to the graduate school. The center supported his life in Japan, instructed Japanese, and guided him through the entrance examination of the graduate school. Through these processes, he consequently passed the entrance exam and entered the graduate school. From now on, the authors hope that practical reports are accumulated and that information-sharing systems are well established.
This is a practical report of advanced Japanese language class, which was aimed at deepening students' interests and understanding of Japanese language and culture, as well as their mother tongues. The class analyzed historical changes of the Japanese language, similarities and differences of grammar, vocabulary, words' pronunciation and characters use in different areas of Japan. The participants compared Japanese with their mother tongues and they were encouraged by the instructors to focus on latest Japanese studies. The overall aim was to promote an understanding of multiple cultures and languages in addition to the Japanese language.
Our university aims at developing thinking power, and ability to recognize and solve problems. As the number of the international students in our university is rising, so the troubles such as accidents and crimes they face are increasing. Therefore we have given the classes that get the students themselves to discuss and think about the causes and solutions of troubles. Moreover, this school year, we introduced writing practices similar to the essay questions of EJU. In this report, we take up these self-made writing practices and examine how these classes are effective on their ability of recognition and description.
For the purposes of a contemporary Japanese affairs course, everyday questions brought up by the students regarding Japan were used as learning topics. A Project Based Learning approach was used to help students 1) formulate theories regarding a given proposition, 2) promote research and learning using the Internet 3) foster discussion amongst peers, 4) practice writing short reports and making presentations. Using these steps, the students often reported changing their original point of view after being exposed to data and participating in discussions, thus further deepening their understanding of contemporary Japanese affairs. Finally, the student answers to the course questionnaire show that student satisfaction was high and that the course structure was perceived positively.
In recent years, the number of people using anime and manga in Japanese language classes has increased. However, most anime and manga are targeted at the intermediate advanced level. The beginner level lessons mainly use textbooks. They have few opportunities to touch native Japanese. Also, Usui (2012) said"because of the limited listening ability, using of animation was limited to higher than intermediate or middle advanced level". This time, the authors researched the possibility of teaching using animation. The authors created learning materials based on the anime "Spirited Away", especially for beginner level learners. They can study the vocabulary and sentence patterns of elementary level Japanese with the video. In this study, the authors report on practical lessons and results, future tasks.
Vocabulary learning such as exercises or daily tests is a burden for some students with low motivation for learning. This research focuses on whether repeated practices are effective or not for middle and lower level students. To examine this, I planned lessons that the students touched target words frequently and looked at the result of tests which were done before and after lessons. As a result, it was cleared that repeated practices were effective. In addition, it was figured out that the students felt importance of the explanation by teacher, using short sentences and repeated practices, by the questionnaire after this research.
The Center for Distance Learning of Japanese and Japanese Issues of the Center for Education of Global Communication at the University of Tsukuba has already developed a Japanese study site, web tests, a web corpus and an analysis system for learning items. These are available to the public as learning support contents for learners and teachers of Japanese. The current paper introduces in detail these different types of support contents. In addition, the Center for Distance Learning also reports on its future plans to develop support contents for Japanese language education using AI as well as the development of a digital textbook.
This study investigated the development of source use through a series of writing assignments for a university liberal arts course. Participants were two undergraduate students, whose L1 were Japanese and Chinese. Citation analysis revealed that the final versions of term papers used references with higher reliability and various citation signals compared to the previous assignments. Nevertheless, the final essays included over-citations, where source attributions were unnecessary, and under-citations, where distinctions between original texts and the students' own ideas or expressions were difficult. These results suggest that source-based writing is considerably challenging for novice writers and requires persistent, long-term support.
This study analyses emails written by 30 Japanese native speakers (JNS) and 90 Japanese language learners (JLL). Each participant wrote an email for Task A, "Declining a request for a translation" and Task B, "Inquiring about coming to Japan." For Task A, we found that the JNS used circumlocution, saying things
in a roundabout way such as dekisoo ni nai, whereas JLL commonly used direct phrases such as dekinai. For Task B, JNS inquired without appealing to the senses, but JLL mentioned hardships and lacked consideration. Japanese language education should introduce JLL to methods of responding more politely or indirectly.
In this paper we organize problems and seek a solution entailed in the task of correcting a research proposal. International students who wish to enter a graduate school in Japan must have high Japanese proficiency and the ability to compose a research proposal. Even those who possess profound scholarly knowledge and an adequate command of Japanese are likely to suffer in writing a research proposal. This is a pressing question not just for individual students, but for Japanese language schools, as well. We therefore consider the weak academic awareness and skills of the students and systematically review the team teaching approach.
This research analyzes the results of 8 instructors who scrutinized the rubrics used for teaching academic writing to first year college students. The instructors taught academic writing to over 2000 students in this exercise. In order to guarantee equivalent educational opportunities, the instructors coordinated together and the students wrote a 2500 character report for the final output. This research reports on sharing the process of how instructors used rubrics and the descriptions provided for consideration.By collecting the points for improvement, this can be helpful in varied practical situations for the examination and improvement of evaluation.
This paper reports the results of comment sheets filled by pre-advanced Japanese language learners based on what they listen to during other students' oral presentations. The author used data of presentations that were judged as good by students and analyzed distinctive features in their comments. There were many comments concerning the way presented, for example, the volume of voice, eye contact, and comprehensibility, however, there were no comments on the accent and grammatical accuracy. Based on these results, we would like to examine the items that students place emphasis on, are aware of, and prepare for during oral presentations.
This is a report of students' reflective activity and the results of a questionnaire which was administered in Japanese classes for first year students. Since it is important that students notice by themselves how they speak in Japanese in order to improve oral skills, students were asked to record and transcribe their own speeches. Several students noticed their habits in speaking and clarified the points they needed to correct. The results of the questionnaire revealed that most students found the reflective activity was useful because they could realize their speaking habits. On the other hand, a few students didn't find it useful because it was difficult to become aware of their speaking habits, etc.
Out of class hours and as part of the "Culture Lessons," students wrote up "Activity Records" which teachers corrected and commented on. Record topics were: Japanese Language Study, New Experiences, Life in Japan, and Weekly Questions. The records allowed students to review their week and to give feedback on the lessons. Additionally, the records functioned as the communication tool described in "Journal Activity" (Kutsuma and others, 2011) and elements of them were fed back into the lessons. Tasks and lengths were simple and open, keeping the activity comfortable and ongoing. These short, weekly reviews brought benefits similar to those obtained in the "Journal Activity."
Positive evidence and negative evidence are indispensable to the acquisition of a second language. Thus, in various ways, teachers provide such evidence to learners. However, research about how learners elicit these evidence from teacher is rare. If evidence fosters learner's second language acquisition, then researching learners' methods of obtaining evidences would be very important. Therefore, this study examined how learners elicited evidence from teachers. The result of the analysis revealed that learners used six methods to elicit evidence.
15 learners of Japanese at a university in Beijing who have a language partner from Japan to increase conversation opportunities were tasked with completing 30 minute interview with their language partner and then reporting on what they learned through a poster presentation in class. While most of these learners of Japanese can talk about everyday topics, there are some who have difficulty handling social and advanced topics, and in sustaining a long dialogue even after four consecutive semesters studying Japanese language. Results of an end of semester survey showed that activities gave the learners 'confidence'. This paper will introduce the class activities that supported the interview and poster presentation tasks.
Japanese language education is mainly taking place in educational settings outside of Japan, and there is a variety in motivation to study and educational environments across different regions. Sakuma (2006) defined three types of Japanese education environments: 1. Environment with learners at secondary educational level; 2. Environment without emphasis on practicality of the Japanese language; 3. Environment with emphasis on tourism. This paper is a life story analysis of Japanese language educators from Kazakhstan (second type in classification by Sakuma (2006)), with a focus on regionalization.