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Japanese Language Courses

Japanese Language

JAPANESE 111-1,2,3 – Japanese I

Overview of class

Japanese I (JAPANESE 111-1, 2 and 3) is a yearlong course that covers the first half of college level elementary Japanese.  In Japanese I, students will build a solid foundation while developing the four skills of speaking, listening, reading, and writing.  Students will also learn various aspects of Japanese culture and society through in-class activities, written assignments, and projects.  Careful and thorough review and preparation for each class session is required.

Registration Requirements

Except for JAPANESE 111-1, students must pass the preceding course with C- or above, or must be placed into the course by the departmental placement test.

 Learning Objectives 

The goal of Japanese I is to bring students’ overall Japanese proficiency to the Intermediate-Low level defined by the American Council on Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) proficiency guidelines.  Upon the satisfactory completion of the course, students will be able to greet, introduce themselves, describe their families and friends, and discuss their daily routines and experiences. 

Teaching Method 

This course is conducted mostly in Japanese, and class hours are spent mainly on oral proficiency development.  Written assignments are given for reading and writing proficiency development. 



Evaluation Method 

Class participation and performance; assignments; quizzes; oral, listening, and written examinations.



Class Materials (Required) 

Oka, M. et al. (2021).  TOBIRA 1: Beginning Japanese. Tokyo: Kuroshio Publishers.  ISBN 978-4-87424-870-6.

 

Class Materials (Suggested) 

Endo-Hudson, M (1994). English Grammar for Students of Japanese. Ann Arbor: The Olivia and Hill Press. ISBN: 0-934034-16-8; Makino, S. & Tsutsui M. (1989). Dictionary of Basic Japanese Grammar. Tokyo: The Japan Times. ISBN 4-7890-0454-6; Kodansha (2012). Kodansha's Essential Kanji Dictionary. Tokyo: Kodansha. ISBN: 978-1568363974.

 

JAPANESE 121-1,2,3 – Japanese II

Overview of class

Japanese II (JAPANESE 121-1, 2 and 3), sequel to Japanese I (JAPANESE 111), is a yearlong course that covers the second half of college level elementary Japanese and prepares students for intermediate Japanese (JAPANESE 211). In this course, students will continue developing the four skills (speaking, listening, reading, and writing) and learn various aspects of Japanese culture and society through readings, video viewing, written assignments, and in-class activities. The emphasis will be on developing the skills necessary to use auxiliary verbs and complex sentences to express subtle differences in meaning and accuracy appropriate to the given contexts. Students will also practice cohesively describing their experiences and summarizing a story that they heard, read, or watched. Careful and thorough review and preparation for each class session are required. With consistent oral and written feedback from the instructor, students will enhance their language and cultural awareness, leading to increased understanding, appreciation, and utilization of the target language, to become autonomous learners.

Registration Requirements

Students must pass the preceding course with C- or above, or must be placed into the course by the departmental placement test.

 Learning Objectives 

The year-end proficiency goal of Japanese II is for the students to reach the Intermediate-Mid level defined by the American Council on Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) proficiency guidelines and A2 - B1 defined in the Common European Framework of Reference for Language (CEFR). Upon the satisfactory completion of the course, students will be able to handle various types of more complex daily conversational situations and passages. 

Teaching Method

This course is conducted mostly in Japanese. Class hours are spent mainly on oral proficiency development, and written assignments are given for reading and writing proficiency development.

 Evaluation Method

Class participation and performance, assignments, quizzes, oral and written examinations, and essays

 Class Materials (Required)

Oka, M. et al. (2022). TOBIRA II: Beginning Japanese. Tokyo: Kuroshio Publishers. ISBN 978-4-87424-900-0.

 Class Materials (Suggested)

Kodansha's Essential Kanji Dictionary. Tokyo: Kodansha. ISBN 978-1568363974; Endo-Hudson, M. (1994). English Grammar for Students of Japanese. Ann Arbor: The Olivia and Hill Press. ISBN 978-0934034166; Makino, S. & Tsutsui, M. (1989). Dictionary of Basic Japanese Grammar. Tokyo: The Japan Times. ISBN 978-4789004541.

 

JAPANESE 211-1,2,3 – Japanese III

Overview of class
Japanese III (JAPANESE 211-1, 2, 3) is a yearlong course, sequel to Japanese II (JAPANESE 121-1, 2, 3), that covers college-level intermediate Japanese. In Japanese III, students will continue developing the four skills of speaking, listening, reading, and writing, and learning various aspects of Japanese culture and society through reading materials, TV dramas, class discussions and an interview project (211-2, 3). A large number of intermediate to advanced-level expressions and Kanji is introduced to prepare students to the advanced-level Japanese.  The casual speech and formal writing styles are also introduced, and students will become familiarized with different language styles for different settings. Students are expected to prepare for each class session through assignments and quizzes.  JAPANESE 211-1 aims to finetune grammatical roughness and bring overall proficiency to the Intermediate-Mid level proficiency defined by the American Council on Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) proficiency guidelines.  JAPANESE 211-2 and -3 aim to bring students’ proficiency to ACTFL’s Intermediate-High level as close as possible.


Registration Requirements
Students must pass the preceding course with C- or above, or must be placed into the course by the departmental placement test.

Learning Objectives
Upon the successful completion of the year-long course, the students will be able to 1) comfortably and appropriately handle daily situations, 2) describe and narrate daily events and personal experiences in an organized manner, 3) summarize the main points of what is read, seen, or heard, 4) use casual/formal speech and written styles, 5) use approximately 500 basic kanji characters in context and attain working knowledge of additional kanji that are frequently used in media, and 6) communicate with native speakers on familiar topics in informal settings. The students are also expected to 7) deepen their understanding of customs, culture, and social phenomena of contemporary Japan, and 8) learn to study independently.

Teaching Method
In-class discussion. 
Review and preparation for each class session are expected. This course is conducted in Japanese.

Evaluation Method
Class participation and performance, assignments, quizzes, oral and written examinations and projects.

Class Materials (Required)

JAPANESE 211-1

Yasui et al. (2019).  QUARTET: Intermediate Japanese Across the Four Language Skills, Vol.1 (English Edition). Tokyo: The Japan Times. ISBN: 978-4789016957

Yasui et al. (2019). QUARTET: Intermediate Japanese Across the Four Language Skills, Vol.1, Workbook (English Edition). Tokyo: The Japan Times.  ISBN: 978-4789016964

 

JAPANESE 211-2

Yasui et al. (2019).  QUARTET: Intermediate Japanese Across the Four Language Skills, Vol.1 (English Edition). Tokyo: The Japan Times. ISBN: 978-4789016957

Yasui et al. (2020). QUARTET: Intermediate Japanese Across the Four Language Skills, Vol.2 (English Edition). Tokyo: The Japan Times. ISBN: 978-4789017459

Yasui et al. (2019). QUARTET: Intermediate Japanese Across the Four Language Skills, Vol.1, Workbook (English Edition). Tokyo: The Japan Times.  ISBN: 978-4789016964

Yasui et al. (2020). QUARTET: Intermediate Japanese Across the Four Language Skills, Vol.2, Workbook (English Edition). Tokyo: The Japan Times.  ISBN: 978-4789017466

JAPANESE 211-3

Yasui et al. (2020). QUARTET: Intermediate Japanese Across the Four Language Skills, Vol.2 (English Edition). Tokyo: The Japan Times. ISBN: 978-4789017459

 

Yasui et al. (2020). QUARTET: Intermediate Japanese Across the Four Language Skills, Vol.2, Workbook (English Edition). Tokyo: The Japan Times.  ISBN: 978-4789017466


JAPANESE 310* – Japanese Modernism

Overview of class

This is an advanced course in reading and translation of modern Japanese, focusing on the literature of the Taisho and early Showa periods.  We will examine a range of different genres, styles, and texts to consider what modernism was as an aesthetic, cultural, and intellectual movement within the literary arts.  Through an examination of representative short stories, novels, poetry, and criticism the course will explore a series of questions including but not limited to: How can we define Japanese modernism? What are the aesthetic bases of modernist literature?   How did writers and artists respond to contemporary political trends such as Marxism, feminism, imperialism, and nationalism?  In what ways did modernist works reflect rapidly changing conceptions of space, time, and self in the early to mid-20th Century?  Primary readings are in Japanese with discussion and theoretical readings in English.

Registration Requirements

Students must have completed JAPANESE 211-3 with C- or above, or must be placed into the class by the departmental placement test.

 Learning Objectives:

Teaching Method
Discussion, workshopping of translations, lecture

Evaluation Method
Attendance and participation, weekly writing assignments, midterm exam, final project

Class Materials (Required)
Jay Rubin, Making Sense of Japanese: What the Textbooks Don’t Tell You ISBN 978-1568364926

The Compact Nelson Japanese-English Character Dictionary (softcover, abridged) ISBN 978-4805313978;

All other materials will be made available in PDF form.


JAPANESE 312-1 – Japanese IV: Contemporary Japanese Literary Works for Reading and Discussion

Course overview coming soon!

JAPANESE 313 – Japanese IV: Japanese Newspaper Reading and News Listening

Overview of class

JAPANESE 313-1 is an upper-intermediate fourth-year Japanese language course. All of the fourth-year Japanese courses have the common goal of bringing students’ overall proficiency towards the Advanced-Low defined by the proficiency guidelines of American Council on Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) as close as possible.  JAPANESE 313-1 centers on the reading and analysis of  news articles curated by the instructor.  The focus will be on enhancing students’ news reading-comprehension abilities through systematic vocabulary building that includes collocations, idioms and kanji compounds.  Students will have the opportunity to practice their newly acquired vocabulary in discussions that develop ideas from the articles read in class.  Students will also hone their listening-comprehension skills by watching and listening to news.  This course does NOT provide training for writing skills development (All students taking this course are expected to have at least the intermediate-level writing skills, equivalent to the end of JAPANESE 211-3, and should be able to write an opinion paper in the plain style).  The students who need writing skills development should take JAPANESE 314-1.

Registration Requirements:
Students must have completed JAPANESE 211-3 with C- or above, or must be placed into the class by the departmental placement test.

Learning Objectives
Upon the successful completion of the course, the students will be able to 1) read a variety of news articles without heavily relying on a dictionary; 2) understand news on topics in social problems, finance, economic, politics, etc.; 3) summarize the main point of news articles concisely; and 4) look at social issues reported in news and news articles in cultural and social contexts and discuss those issues.

Teaching Method:
Classes are conducted only in Japanese. Class time will be used for vocabulary building practices (e.g., paraphrasing, providing definitions in Japanese) and for discussions.  Active and productive class participation and class performance are expected.

Evaluation Method:
Kanji/vocabulary quizzes, assignments; oral and written examinations; active and productive class participation and class performance.

Class Materials (Required):
Matsumoto, et. al. (2016).  News Nihongo. Tokyo: The Japan Times.  ISBN 978-4789015967


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