On Line Discussion
Beyond the Classroom with Videoconferencing and Internet Discussion Forum:
Use of Peer Editing from the Japanese
A course was
developed to be offered as an Intermediate Japanese language course at
University of North Carolina-Wilmington (UNCW) in the U.S. in conjunction with Elementary English as Foreign
Language at Iwate Prefectural University (IPU) in Japan. A traditional
third-semester level 3-credit Japanese language course was modified to utilize
the technology and to enhance teaching pedagogy and to bring authentic Japanese
language and culture into classroom.
This also enabled the class to incorporate the goal of Participate in
Multilingual Communities at Home and Around the World (ACTFL Standard 5). It was started in the fall semester of 1999
and was conducted between the UNCW and IPU for three years. The course was successful in a way
that it gave unique opportunities for students to develop their Japanese
language skills and to learn about the culture through correspondences with
Japanese counterparts, using a videoconferencing and the Internet Forum. Japanese students edited and gave feedback to
American students writings, and American students gave feedback to their
English essays as return. The peer editing
could be risky for the intermediate level of language instructions but it was
very fruitful and worthwhile. Through
this experience, the students developed the friendship with their counterparts
and were motivated even more to study Japanese and go to Japan some day. This
experience offered the students the first step for developing a better
understanding of a different culture through communication with peers of the
same age, discussing issues of their interest and developing a better
appreciation for other cultures with the careful and open minded attitude
toward the information around them.
Students wrote essays on the following given topics:
Self-introduction: What do
you do for free time, hobbies and part-time job?
What do you do with your
family for the annual event, birthday, matsuri, or
Pop Culture: what is popular
in music, fashion, keitai, etc.
Current event: what is going
on? Any global issues you are interested in?
The above topics are chosen since the American
students have finished the textbook up
to Chapter 5 of Yookoso by Tohsaku. Within two week period, they exchanged the
essay on Forum, which is an asynchronous bulletin board on the web, edited
partners essay, and asked questions about the content. The partner were assigned and rotated for
every topic biweekly.
The course provided students Virtual Study
The next best thing to being there!
More details on class structures, course contents,
procedures, pros and cons, ways of technology
usage, future recommendation, et. al. are published with feedback from
the participated students by The Japan Foundation and 凡人社（Bonjinsha）「世界の日本語教育 ＜日本語教育事情報告編＞」第７号 Current Report on
Japanese-Language Education around the Globe Vol.7