Sessions / College and University Educators

09:00 Sun

ESP and CLIL: Directions and Reflections #184

SIG Forum
Finished
Sun, Jun 21, 09:00-10:20 JST

What’s new in ESP or CLIL in Japanese colleges and universities? With the emphasis on educating Japanese students for success on the world stage, more universities are implementing English education with specialized academic and professional content. Our panel of teacher-researchers will share their research and reflections on this expanding field.

Glen Hill

Many science majors do not seem motivated to study English despite it being the language of science. Many don't think it will be used in companies that will hire them. I showed my students three interviews from their science teachers; the focus was on their own English experiences, learning English, and advice to students. The purpose of the homework was to expose students to a peers' points of view and background in the language, because they don't normally get that directly from the science teachers. In my talk, I will describe the essays from students based on that homework, in which they gave their opinion of each teacher and on the one that was most interesting or surprising.

Alastair Graham-Marr

In recent years, across Asia, the number of English programs that teach English through content has been increasing, and many programs have adopted an EMI (English as Medium of Instruction) approach rather than CLIL or ESP/EAP. However, many Asian languages, such as Korean or Japanese, are syllable timed, or mora-timed, and consequently, such learners often lack a natural understanding of suprasegmental phonology.Learners therefore struggle to comprehend extended streams of connected speech that they would otherwise understand were it written down on paper. Given that many European languages are stress-timed and generally match the phonological rhythms of English, importing European styled EMI without any consideration to Asian phonological contexts is arguably negligent. This talk presents a study at a Japanese science university, where sheltered content was taught. The talk will outline the difficulties that students encountered.

Owen Kozlowski

In ideal situations instructors hope for ability-sorted learners, executive control of syllabi and curricula, and the ability to curate materials and resources. What are instructors to do when these hopes are unattainable to any degree and the typical structural, notional/functional, situational, skill-based, and TBLT classroom approaches appear unsuitable? This presentation will relate the presenter’s experience of adapting a CLIL/content-heavy approach to a challenging course and non-typical group of learners. Uses and applications of Google Classroom, YouTube, and other online resources will be discussed and explored.

What’s new in ESP or CLIL in Japanese colleges and universities? With the emphasis on educating Japanese students for success on the world stage, more universities are implementing English education with specialized academic and professional content. Our panel of teacher-researchers will share their research and reflections on this expanding field.

Glen Hill

Many science majors do not seem motivated to study English despite it being the language of science. Many don't think it will be used in companies that will hire them. I showed my students three interviews from their science teachers; the focus was on their own English experiences, learning English, ... more

Speaker: Glen Hill

I have a master's degree in science, but I've been teaching English in Japan since 1998. For the past 15+ years, I've been a tenured professor at a science university, ... more

Speaker: Owen Kozlowski

From kindergarten floor, to corporate boardroom, to university lecture hall, Owen Kozlowski’s 15+ years of teaching in Japan have been in nearly every context imaginable. Currently a full-time shokutaku lecturer ... more

Speaker: Alastair Graham-Marr

Alastair Graham-Marr is a professor at the Tokyo University of Science and an editor at Abax Ltd.

10:30 Sun

University teacher and student views of humor #104

Presentation
Finished
Sun, Jun 21, 10:30-11:05 JST

This presentation will report on the results of a survey designed to elicit learners’ and educators’ perceptions of the role of humor in university English language courses. The participants included students taking required language courses at ten universities across Japan (n = 956) as well as a selection of both Japanese and non-Japanese university-level educators (n = 50). Quantitative results of the study covered such variables as the role of humor in the classroom and how humor can both decrease L2 anxiety and deepen understanding of the target culture. Additionally, qualitative, open-ended survey items queried learners and instructors about the interrelation between humor, language proficiency, and cultural understanding and the potential negative effects of humor use in the language classroom.

Many of the respondents highlighted humor’s value for improving classroom atmosphere while others focused on how they had benefited personally, such as through increased language-learning motivation or a greater degree of teaching satisfaction. Additionally, many cited concerns about how cultural dissimilarities in values and humor focus can lead to misunderstandings.

After reviewing the results, the presenter will share expanded insights from follow-up oral interviews with select participants. Finally, implications for language pedagogy and intercultural communicative competence will be considered.

This presentation will report on the results of a survey designed to elicit learners’ and educators’ perceptions of the role of humor in university English language courses. The participants included students taking required language courses at ten universities across Japan (n = 956) as well as a selection of both Japanese and non-Japanese university-level educators (n = 50). Quantitative results of the study covered such variables as the role of humor in the classroom and how humor can both decrease L2 anxiety and deepen understanding of the target culture. Additionally, qualitative, open-ended survey items queried learners and instructors about the ... more

Speaker: John Rucynski

I am currently associate professor in the Center for Liberal Arts & Language Education at Okayama University. My research interests include language and culture integrated learning, CBI/CLIL, and the role ... more

11:15 Sun

Less is more - Academic poster design that works #195

Presentation
Finished
Sun, Jun 21, 11:15-11:50 JST

A major part of brain activity is given over to visual processing (Fiser et al., 2004) yet many "academic posters" fail to make much visual impact. This presentation takes a hard look at academic poster design to identify what works and what doesn’t. Using tips from the fields of graphic poster design and infographics, the presenter will offer some key rules and ideas to help make your academic posters more successful. Topics covered include use of text and language, colour and shape, as well as high-impact graphs and charts. With suggestions on software and online tools for poster design, and resources for artwork and creating new data visualisations, this session will help you to think afresh about poster design, both for your own academic posters and when working with students on poster projects. Most of the principles presented will be equally applicable to creating effective presentation slides.

A major part of brain activity is given over to visual processing (Fiser et al., 2004) yet many "academic posters" fail to make much visual impact. This presentation takes a hard look at academic poster design to identify what works and what doesn’t. Using tips from the fields of graphic poster design and infographics, the presenter will offer some key rules and ideas to help make your academic posters more successful. Topics covered include use of text and language, colour and shape, as well as high-impact graphs and charts. With suggestions on software and online tools for poster design, and ... more

Speaker: Samuel Bruce

Samuel Bruce has been teaching EFL and ESL for the past 22 years. He has taught in Hong Kong, China, New Zealand, the UK, and Japan. He began teaching at ... more

12:00 Sun

Creating a language table at a university in Japan #106

Presentation
Finished
Sun, Jun 21, 12:00-12:35 JST

Self-access language learning centers are a rapidly emerging phenomenon in Asia (Ryan, et al., 2019). However, there are few self-access language tables documented in the English-language literature in Japan, such as those at International Christian University (Ueno, 2017, 2019) and Osaka University. This presentation will introduce a foreign language table (FLT) initiative for undergraduate EFL learners at a new public university in Japan.

In the university curriculum, students take 400 minutes of English-language classes for 14 weeks in a mandatory 2-year program that culminates in a short-term study abroad program in an English-using country. In preparation for this program, many students have expressed the desire to interact with foreigners, and to use English and other foreign languages. However, students often do not know of or take advantage of language opportunities when they are offered on the university campus or at the university dormitory. Thus, issues about student outreach, participation, and engagement will be presented, in addition to how these issues were addressed throughout the academic year. Future directions include the development of the lunchtime language table into a student-led extracurricular club, and the subsequent proposal to develop the FLT into a standalone space.

Self-access language learning centers are a rapidly emerging phenomenon in Asia (Ryan, et al., 2019). However, there are few self-access language tables documented in the English-language literature in Japan, such as those at International Christian University (Ueno, 2017, 2019) and Osaka University. This presentation will introduce a foreign language table (FLT) initiative for undergraduate EFL learners at a new public university in Japan.

In the university curriculum, students take 400 minutes of English-language classes for 14 weeks in a mandatory 2-year program that culminates in a short-term study abroad program in an English-using country. In preparation for this program, many ... more

Speaker: Dawn Lucovich

PanSIG Virtual Conference Committee Chair / The University of Nagano, Assistant Professor / Nagano JALT, President

12:45 Sun

Investigating the experience of non-Japanese long-term EFL teaching professionals at Japanese Universities #107

Presentation
Finished
Sun, Jun 21, 12:45-13:20 JST

As the population of Japan gets older and the number of students falls, hiring new teaching staff at Japanese universities has become less frequent than in the past. As a result, the average age of long-term teaching professionals has risen, and it is worthwhile to consider how these teachers are coping in the profession after many years of teaching. This presentation will briefly share some research on teacher burnout, and then focus on the findings from a series of interviews which were held with non-Japanese teachers of English at Japanese universities. Common problems and issues such as burnout, administrative changes, and other issues will be discussed. Some tips on long-term survival in a Japanese tertiary institution are offered and audience comments are welcomed.

As the population of Japan gets older and the number of students falls, hiring new teaching staff at Japanese universities has become less frequent than in the past. As a result, the average age of long-term teaching professionals has risen, and it is worthwhile to consider how these teachers are coping in the profession after many years of teaching. This presentation will briefly share some research on teacher burnout, and then focus on the findings from a series of interviews which were held with non-Japanese teachers of English at Japanese universities. Common problems and issues such as burnout, administrative changes, ... more

13:30 Sun

Using a learner corpus to design a placement test #108

Presentation
Finished
Sun, Jun 21, 13:30-14:05 JST

This presentation aims to demonstrate a reliable and efficient method of developing valid constructs for placement tests with the use of corpus techniques. With English medium courses at universities rising, one of the challenges for English language support programs is to determine whether and to what extent students need extra language support. A lack of resources has meant that the English Language Program at International University of Japan has relied heavily on the TOEIC ITP test to place students, but over the years this has proved unreliable. This presentation will explain how instructors at IUJ have designed the grammar component of an in-house placement test. In particular, the presenter will outline how constructs for the test were developed from three sources of data: the ability of learners at an intermediate level as derived from a learner corpus; the experience of instructors in the program; the demands of academic writing at the graduate level as based on an academic corpus. The literature on test design offers little guidance for teachers on how to use corpora to make decisions about constructs. This presentation will begin to address that gap by demonstrating how to search learner corpora and handle the language data.

This presentation aims to demonstrate a reliable and efficient method of developing valid constructs for placement tests with the use of corpus techniques. With English medium courses at universities rising, one of the challenges for English language support programs is to determine whether and to what extent students need extra language support. A lack of resources has meant that the English Language Program at International University of Japan has relied heavily on the TOEIC ITP test to place students, but over the years this has proved unreliable. This presentation will explain how instructors at IUJ have designed the grammar component ... more

Speaker: Parsons Daniel

Teacher of EAP to international students of economics, business, politics and international relations. Research interest in corpus linguistics applications to EAP.

14:15 Sun

In-class surveys one question at a time #109

Presentation
Finished
Sun, Jun 21, 14:15-14:50 JST

Teachers gather valuable information about students from in-class surveys often administered at the beginning or the end of a course. Responses may be quantitative or qualitative in nature, and they may assist teachers in action research designs to guide changes during the course or in a subsequent one. Questions may ask how well a lesson or some component is perceived as instructive, utile, or motivating, whether they are asked with ranking, choice, or open-essay format. Japanese university students are no stranger to feedback surveys; institutions require them at the end of courses to determine teacher and course effectiveness. But, students may face too many administrative surveys in a year. If they are required only to rank items, it is easy to become desensitized or demotivated and intentionally mark the answers inappropriately. Student anonymity is a prized feature of good surveys, but it may not always be practical to a teacher, especially if comparisons are desired between certain groups. This presentation will describe how weekly surveys of just one essay question each were delivered, and how the responses were compiled then presented back to students with insightful comments. Both teacher and students gained useful knowledge and perspective in the process.

Teachers gather valuable information about students from in-class surveys often administered at the beginning or the end of a course. Responses may be quantitative or qualitative in nature, and they may assist teachers in action research designs to guide changes during the course or in a subsequent one. Questions may ask how well a lesson or some component is perceived as instructive, utile, or motivating, whether they are asked with ranking, choice, or open-essay format. Japanese university students are no stranger to feedback surveys; institutions require them at the end of courses to determine teacher and course effectiveness. But, students ... more

Speaker: Glen Hill

I have a master's degree in science, but I've been teaching English in Japan since 1998. For the past 15+ years, I've been a tenured professor at a science university, ... more

15:00 Sun

Templates for term paper research notes #101

Presentation
Finished
Sun, Jun 21, 15:00-15:35 JST

Academic Writing is a required two-semester course for first year students at Kyoto University. In the second semester all students write a long essay (normally a literature review) of at least 1,000 words. Textbooks typically focus on the language used (paragraph and essay structure, common genres, academic style, etc.), but aside from stressing the importance of paraphrasing and summarizing to avoid plagiarism, no guidance is given on how to take notes while conducting research. Students must efficiently read through multiple sources, and synthesize points into a coherent argument. This requires research and cognitive skills not covered in the textbooks. Dedicated software exists to help researchers organize their work, but teachers are not likely to require students to use such apps. The presenter will show simple templates in MS Word and Excel, and discuss how he uses them in his classes.

Academic Writing is a required two-semester course for first year students at Kyoto University. In the second semester all students write a long essay (normally a literature review) of at least 1,000 words. Textbooks typically focus on the language used (paragraph and essay structure, common genres, academic style, etc.), but aside from stressing the importance of paraphrasing and summarizing to avoid plagiarism, no guidance is given on how to take notes while conducting research. Students must efficiently read through multiple sources, and synthesize points into a coherent argument. This requires research and cognitive skills not covered ... more

Speaker: David Kolf

Part-time Lecturer at Kyoto University ILAS, where I teach Academic Writing, and at Ryukoku University, where I have writing and communication classes for first-year students.

15:45 Sun

A peer support program for incoming students #196

Presentation
Finished
Sun, Jun 21, 15:45-16:20 JST

"The integration of new students into college programs can be a challenge for both the staff and the new students themselves. The start of college can be an anxiety filled time and the provision of support is not only appreciated by the new students, but also helps them gain a sense of belonging, form social networks, and increase confidence. The institution itself benefits from greater student satisfaction and improved student retention. This presentation will look at the evolution of a peer support program at a small university’s English department during its orientation period. The Peer Support Team (PST) involved twenty 2nd year students assisting forty-one incoming students in their transition from high school to university. First, an overview of the current program and how it was developed over several years will be presented. This will be followed by an examination of the results of post-participation questionnaires on both student cohorts. The mixed method research provided positive feedback on the program and its implementation, as well as identifying points for improvement. Time will be allotted to an exchange of ideas and strategies used to integrate incoming students into the university system, as well as to increase student involvement within the given department and the institution. Participants should leave the session with a renewed sense of the importance of how they integrate incoming students into the university environment."

"The integration of new students into college programs can be a challenge for both the staff and the new students themselves. The start of college can be an anxiety filled time and the provision of support is not only appreciated by the new students, but also helps them gain a sense of belonging, form social networks, and increase confidence. The institution itself benefits from greater student satisfaction and improved student retention. This presentation will look at the evolution of a peer support program at a small university’s English department during its orientation period. The Peer Support Team (PST) involved twenty ... more

15:45 Sun

A peer support program for incoming students #211

Presentation
Sun, Jun 21, 15:45-16:20 JST

The integration of new students into college programs can be a challenge for both the staff and the new students themselves. The start of college can be an anxiety filled time and the provision of support is not only appreciated by the new students, but also helps them gain a sense of belonging, form social networks, and increase confidence. The institution itself benefits from greater student satisfaction and improved student retention. This presentation will look at the evolution of a peer support program at a small university’s English department during its orientation period. The Peer Support Team (PST) involved twenty 2nd year students assisting forty-one incoming students in their transition from high school to university. First, an overview of the current program and how it was developed over several years will be presented. This will be followed by an examination of the results of post-participation questionnaires on both student cohorts. The mixed method research provided positive feedback on the program and its implementation, as well as identifying points for improvement. Time will be allotted to an exchange of ideas and strategies used to integrate incoming students into the university system, as well as to increase student involvement within the given department and the institution. Participants should leave the session with a renewed sense of the importance of how they integrate incoming students into the university environment.

The integration of new students into college programs can be a challenge for both the staff and the new students themselves. The start of college can be an anxiety filled time and the provision of support is not only appreciated by the new students, but also helps them gain a sense of belonging, form social networks, and increase confidence. The institution itself benefits from greater student satisfaction and improved student retention. This presentation will look at the evolution of a peer support program at a small university’s English department during its orientation period. The Peer Support Team (PST) involved twenty ... more