This article primarily draws upon the experiences of educators and administrators during the initial months of the COVID-19 pandemic to consider ways that teachers can plan for “new normal” EFL (English as a foreign language) classes in post-pandemic Japan. Rather than trading in our “real” physical classrooms for “virtual” ones, it suggests that we take this opportunity to introduce an updated curriculum combining the best of both environments to create a blended educational experience. In addition to improving educational outcomes, blending EFL classes promises to make them more resilient in the face of adversity while providing better support for neurodiversity in the student body.
To use machine translation effectively, it is necessary to do advance-editing which makes an original text easier to translate into the target language. Also, it is necessary for users of machine translation to know the target language grammar to do advance-editing. In this research, to get suggestions for better use of machine translation, two Japanese university students were the research participants: “A” in the course for elementary school education and “B” in English Education. Participants of this research wrote one e-mail passage as they usually do, and one in being conscience of making it easier to translate into English. Both e-mails were written in Japanese. After that, these e-mail passages were translated into English by machine translation. The author analyzed the complexity of the output sentences, focusing on whether the meaning of these sentences was understandable. As a result, “A” produced appropriate sentences for machine translation. On the other hand, “B” produced many complex sentences, and there were errors that make them hard to understand the meaning. In addition, the author applied the rules of machine translation being suggested in the previous research to the error sentences and proposed the application of a writing strategy to advance-editing of machine translation.
According to Miyake (2009), phrase shadowing helps learners to memorize English chunks. It is not yet known, however, whether this method can be used on paragraphs or what factors affect its effectiveness. Furthermore, improvement of repetition speed, its theoretical basis, has not yet been tested using paragraphs. The current study investigates the extent to which shadowing is an effective method of memorizing English chunks and how the number of repetitions and the difficulty of the material to be memorized influence the scores on cued recall tests. In addition, the current study investigated whether participants’ shadowing speed improved when shadowing paragraphs. In this study, participants shadowed two texts of different difficulty levels 30 times. After every 10 repetitions, they took cued recall tests, followed by a delayed post-test after one week. In addition, participants’ shadowing speed was measured before and after the training session. The results showed that the participants recalled more English chunks as the number of repetitions increased. However, the difficult material required fewer repetitions than the easy material. Finally, an improvement of shadowing speed was observed after the training session; however, it was not a prerequisite for the memorization of the chunks.
Overpassivization is the mistake of overusing passive sentences with intransitive verbs and has been the subject of considerable research as a common problem among English as a Foreign Language (EFL) learners of various native tongues. The “Unaccusative Trap Hypothesis” (UTH) postulates that early-stage language learners do not distinguish unaccusatives from unergatives. Instead, after they correctly differentiate between these two types of intransitives, learners’ overpassivization errors appear to be linked to unaccusatives instead of unergatives. Many researchers have demonstrated that subject animacy influences learners’ choice of voice (active or passive). Research has focused on three factors and their interactions: verb categories, learners’ proficiency levels, and subject animacy. This study used statistical analyses of a Voice Production Task to investigate significant differences between unergative verbs and unaccusative verbs (both alternating and non-alternating). Furthermore, the interactions between these verb types and learners’ proficiency in high school students were considered. The findings demonstrate a statistically significant relationship between overpassivization errors and inanimate subjects by high school students. This indicates that learners overpassivize verbs with inanimate subjects once they acquire passive forms with transitive verbs. Thus, passivized errors of unaccusatives are caused more by subject animacy than the UTH.
One language teaching technique, Corrective Feedback (CF) has been defined as an instructional reaction to learners’ problematic utterances. As plenty of research shows its effectiveness in second language (L2) development, the idea of teaching peer corrective feedback to L2 learners (i.e., CF training) has been considered as a way to expand the students’ learning opportunities. This current study demonstrates how beneficial CF training could be provided to L2 learners. Twenty-four students majoring in Foreign Languages in a private university participated in the study and were divided into two groups: the experimental group with CF training (EX) and the control group without CF training (CO). The students in the EX group went through two stages based on Sato & Lyster’s (2012) study: the modeling stage and the practice stage. The results revealed that the majority of the students in the EX group were successfully able to give CF (i.e., recasts and prompts) to their partner and also properly responded to the CF provided. CF training may have the potential to increase and expand students’ learning opportunities by improving their language awareness when they have peer interactional activity and, thereby, contributing to their L2 development.