International University of Japan / CENTER for LANGUAGE EDUCATION and RESEARCH

LANGUAGE

Japanese Language Program

Japanese Language Program

We in the Japanese Language Program (JLP) believe that learning Japanese at IUJ is a rewarding experience. Even so, it is also true that our Japanese courses can be felt to be very demanding―. The courses can be seen that way because students have only one or two years to study the language and the requirements set by a Japanese course are as rigorous as those set by a content course necessary for the degree students seek. Consequently, for those students who are not exempted from taking English Language Program courses it can be even tougher, since it means studying two languages at the same time while pursuing their own studies for an MA or MBA degree. The JLP, therefore, highly advises incoming students to start studying Japanese now and get as well prepared as possible before arriving at IUJ, so that they can achieve the best results during their time at our university.

The JLP puts an emphasis on developing students’ communication skills throughout all levels of courses. In other words, listening and speaking skills are given priority, though those of reading and writing are also taught to enhance communication ability. Courses offered by the JLP are divided in two: the main track courses and the lightly loaded ones. The main track consists of Elementary Japanese 1, 2, 3, Intermediate Japanese 1, 2, 3 (up to mid-stage Intermediate level) and Advanced Japanese 1, 2, 3 and Advanced Japanese 4, 5, 6 (late-stage Intermediate to Advanced level). The 'light load' courses include Basic Japanese 1, 2, 3.
The courses in the main track are designed to develop relatively comprehensive Japanese skills including the reading of Kanji (Chinese characters) and to raise the proficiency level of students as high as possible within the limited period of time available. Classes in Elementary Japanese 1, 2, 3 and Intermediate Japanese 1, 2, 3 meet 4 times a week respectively, while those in Advanced Japanese 1, 2, 3 meet 3 times a week, with tutorials. Advanced Japanese 4, 5, 6 twice a week. These courses may be felt as intensive, but students with the intention to use the language for professional purposes such as internship, research, and business after graduating from IUJ are strongly advised to stay in this track. Many alumni have reported that the minimum level required by such students at the time of graduation is completion of Intermediate 3. Students who wish to take Elementary Japanese 1 must be prepared for the qualifying test which asks some basic linguistic knowledge of Japanese. However, those who cannot prepare themselves in advance could start with a 4-Day Intensive Class (which will be explained later―) but they must be aware that preparation for the test requires an enormous amount of effort.

Courses in the 'light load' track, Basic Japanese 1, 2, 3, have been created to provide students with more opportunities to experience Japan by learning Japanese without threatening their study of content courses. These classes meet two times a week. The major focus will be on developing oral communication skills. Acquiring basic grammar and developing vocabulary will also be stressed to enhance students' communication ability. Kanji are not taught in class because of time constraints.

The courses offered by the JLP and their relationship with one another are diagramed below.

1st year

Fall Winter Spring
Elementary1 Elementary2 Elementary3
Intermediate1 Intermediate2 Intermediate3
Advanced1 Advanced2 Advanced3
Advanced4 Advanced5 Advanced6
Basic1 Basic2 Basic3

2nd year

Fall Winter Spring
Elementary1 Elementary2 Elementary3
Intermediate1 Intermediate2 Intermediate3
Advanced1 Advanced2 Advanced3
Advanced4 Advanced5 Advanced6
Basic1 Basic2 Basic3
Basic4 Basic5 Basic6

Note: Advanced 4, 5, 6 and Business Japanese 1,2, 3 will be offered subject to budget.

The following are rough guidelines concerning what a student can achieve upon completing Japanese language courses at IUJ.

Students who have completed Advanced Japanese 3 with good standing are expected to:

  • (a) Be able to pass the N2 level of the New Japanese-Language Proficiency Test*(Henceforce NJLPT) in December of the same year as long as they have strong Kanji background and study hard prior to the test in December.

  • (c) Obtain advanced-low/mid level in the Oral Proficiency Interview test.

Students who have completed Intermediate Japanese 3 with good standing are expected to:

  • (a) Be able to pass the N3 level of the NJLPT in December of the same year, if they continue to study rigorously on their own until December.

  • (b) Obtain intermediate-high/advanced-low level in the Oral Proficiency Interview test.

Students who have completed Elementary Japanese 3 with good standing are expected to:

  • (a) Be able to pass the N4 level of the NJLPT in December of the same year, if they continue to study rigorously on their own until December.

  • (b) Obtain intermediate-low or Intermediate-mid level in the Oral Proficiency Interview test.

Students who have completed Basic Japanese 3 with good standing are expected to:

  • (a) Pass the N5 level of the NJLPTin December of the same year, if they study approximately 100 kanji on their own

  • (b) Obtain novice-high level in the Oral Proficiency Interview test.

* In the NJLPT (which commenced in 2010), N1 is the equivalent of Level 1 of the old JLPT. Likewise, N2_←Level 2, N3_ ← between 2nd and 3rd level, N4 ←3rd level, N5 ← 4th level.