[Waseda CJL] Japanese language Program classes – Part 1

For the JLP program with CJL, you need a total of 26 credits to graduate, however each semester you can only register for a maximum of 14 credits. Before you start school, you can register yourself and do a JCAT level check to test your Japanese level to give you a rough idea of which level of class you are suitable (There are a total of 8 levels with level 1 being the lowest). Of course, the results from the level check is just for reference and one can still register a level higher or lower.

There is a total of 3 registration periods for students to register their classes, just take note of the dates stated in the emails. Tip of the day would be to register for the 1 credit classes that interest you first as the more popular classes get filled up by the first registration most of the time.

Here’s a review of the classes that I had chosen for during my 2013 Spring semester with CJL (2 classes are no longer offered due to the teachers leaving school).

Comprehensive Japanese 2
Class name: 総合日本語2 (Comprehensive Japanese 2)
Level 2

My initial JCAT check showed that my Japanese level was around level 3 but I felt that my Japanese foundation wasn’t too good so I decided to go for a 5 credits Level 2 Comprehensive Japanese class where the teachers would be using Mina no Ninhongo II (Lesson 26 to Lesson 50). I re-took this level as my Causative, Passive, Casuative-Passive and honorific/respect forms were pretty weak and the focus of Level 2 classes was mainly this. In addition to text books, class activities like essay writing, presentation and speaking were also practiced. The syllabus from this class is almost equivalent to JLPT N4

Food module
Class name: 「食べ物」で学ぶ日本語2-3 (Learning Japanese through Food 2-3)
Class teacher: 中山 由佳
Level 2-3

1 of the more popular classes that would get filled up after the first registration. 1 would think that you would be learning much about Japanese food in this class but the class syllabus is mainly using Japanese to learn about food from both Japan and your home country. The class in general would be for us to sit in small groups to discuss about a certain food topic be it seasonal or cultural food. There are 2 major presentations from this class where we would share food in our home countries.

Appropriate Expression
Class name: 状況に応じた表現を考えて話す2-3 (Appropriate Expressions for Various Situations 2-3)
Class teacher: 小池 真理
Level 2-3

In this class, the teacher would prepare materials with conversations from various topics. As the title stated, appropritate expressions and so we would learn the correct technique to speak or reply in certain situations. We would first practice the various conversations in the class materials than split into groups or pairs to practice. As this is a speaking class, not much preparation is needed but you have to speak up in class. Sometimes, the teacher would chooser random students to go up to the front to have a impromptu conversation depending on the topic learnt that day. There would be 4 written homework and 2 tests to grade for this class.

Class name: 困ったときの日本語会話2 (Japanese Conversation: When in Trouble 2)
Class teacher: 大友 可能子
Level 2

The topics from this class is pretty relevant to everyone life but the first half of the class was very tough for me initially as the teacher wanted us to find a daily life topic and we would need to go record the conversation and dictate it out word by word then reenact the whole conversation out in class. However, when we got to the second half of the class, the teacher would go through conversations that we would encounter in daily life like making restaurant reservation by phone, asking for directions to certain places of interest by phone and what to say when we go to the hair salon by teaching us some of the main key words to take note. Though you have to muster a lot of courage for this class as you would really nee to make calls in front of the whole class to make actual reservations and actual directions for some places of interest.

Reading out loud
Class name: 声に出して読む日本語2-3 (Learning Japanese: Reading Out Loud 2-3)
Class teacher: 山中 都
Level 2 – 3

Pronunciation class, but it looks like they would be cancelling the lower level 2-3 class coming semester onwards but a higher level class of level 5-8 with the same teacher is continues to be offered. Pronunciation classes are almost the same as they use the same technique but various teachers have different ways of communicating with the students. This teacher is very humorous and so it was very enjoyable to be in this class though most of the time I was lost when we were corrected with our intonation and drawing the intonation curve always make me wonder what went wrong with my Pronunciation. It is so tough to differentiate the tones.

Practical Pronunciation
Class name: 伝わる発音・使える文型2-3 (Practical Pronunciation and Grammar 2-3)
Class teacher: 中川 千恵子
Level 2-3

Another pronunciation class but this teacher is the main subject head for pronunciation classes in Waseda and the textbook we used was actually written by her. This is quite an easy class as the teacher was very kind and every week we just go through the pronunciation from each chapter. No major tests for this class but mini presentations every week which would be graded. We would write a short passage, then draw in the pause lines and intonation curves and present what we had written.

Kanji Encountered in Town
Class name: 街・生活の中の漢字2-3 (“Kanji” Encountered in Town 2-3)
Class teacher: 神尾 まつ江
Level 2-3

This is a level 2-3 class but there is another level 3-4 class with the same syllabus, just that the number of kanji learnt weekly is about 30 kanji a week compared to 20 kanji for the level 2-3 class. Though, kanji is simple for Chinese speakers but in general we know the meaning of the words but not the correct Japanese pronunciation most of the time. I felt that I learnt a lot that semester in terms of kanji that I was able to read most of the bill boards in Japanese. How this class works is for each student to submit 3 kanji we use from various billboard/ads that we see in our daily life as per the teacher’s topic of the week. Then the teacher would choose 1-2 kanji for each of us to present to the class in Japanese. All these words would be re-visited again during mid-term and final test.


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