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Interesting Lectures and Seminars

Practical research of Japanese language education(12)

Keiko Matsumoto
2nd year Master student in the Graduate School of Japanese Applied Linguistics
Tomoki Nakamura
1st year Master student in the Graduate School of Japanese Applied Linguistics

Japanese language distance education class using Live-On

エンカク? えんかく? ENKAKU? 遠隔 (read enkaku) means to be separated by distance. "Distance Education" is, as the name suggests, education that takes place between people separated by great distance. Many examples such as "On Demand Lectures" distributed by the School of Human Science's e-school, and "Online English Conversation Class" using internet telephone, have already been put to practice, and we hope that it will be used more in the future over a wider range of fields.

This course started with Professor Satoshi Miyazaki's question, "Why distance education?" Through various practical activities such as lesson participation and coordination, we looked into the realities and possibilities of distance. In the process, students confronted distance by overcoming the original concept of "something to fill in spatial distance."

In the autumn semester of 2010, two types of distance education were put into practice, conversation practice exchanges with Thai Japanese language students and research exchanges in Japanese with Taiwanese graduate school students. At times, we felt that the exchange had come to a standstill, but at those times, we discussed with our exchange partners why we felt things weren't going well. As a result, we noticed that because we were "distant", we had become too tense. By becoming too caught up with "distance", we had forgotten about making relations with our partners and enjoying the exchange.

Exchange with a cooperating overseas school using the Web meeting system

More than "distance", "distance education" is also about "education." This experience, as well as being involved in distance education, helped me rediscover the importance of mental preparedness.

What you can gain from this course doesn't just stop at technical knowledge of distance education and mere experiences. How will you confront what you encounter there? The formation of your own "view of distance education" by your stance and action is the expected result from this course.