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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures : Asian Studies

Undergraduate Course: Japanese Language Beginner (ASST08059)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Literatures, Languages and Cultures CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 8 (Year 1 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryAn integrated introduction to spoken and written Japanese for those with little or no previous knowledge of the language. The course will include kana writing (Japanese phonetic writing), and an introduction to some kanji (Japanese Characters), approximately 90-100.
Teaching will be aimed at enabling students to speak, read and write Modern Japanese at a post beginner level, equivalent to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages level A1.
The course provides essential grounding for the continuation course Japanese Language Post Beginner and subsequent Japanese language study.
A good deal of private study is necessary to meet the requirements of the course.
This course is intended primarily for students taking Japanese honours and priority will be given to those students when spaces are limited. Students wishing to enrol on the course as an outside subject are invited to email the course administrator to be placed on the waiting list.

This course is not available to native or near-native speakers of Japanese. If in doubt, contact the Course Organiser.

A placement test and questionnaire on students' background in Japanese language studies will be conducted in the induction session.
Course description Japanese Language Beginner will cover all four language skills (speaking, listening, reading and writing). It will introduce the three sets of Japanese characters, grammar and vocabulary at the elementary level of Japanese language, such as numbers, location words, verbs in present and past tenses, adjectives. It also covers useful expressions for daily life such as shopping, ordering at a restaurant, asking for directions, talking about weather.

Japanese Language Beginner is taught through a series of classes focused on different aspects of language learning. As offered in the University's Hybrid Model, the majority of activities are provided asynchronously, and they require a lot of individual study. The teaching activities will follow this pattern on a weekly basis:

- The Conversation and Grammar class covers the Conversation and Grammar section of the textbook. This is the main class for the course, and the class will be offered synchronously and asynchronously. (LO1, 2,5)

- The Reading and Writing class covers the Reading and Writing section of the textbook, including kana and kanji characters. This class will be offered mainly asynchronously. (LO1,3,4)

- The Workbook class covers the Workbook of the textbook. This class will be offered mainly asynchronously.(LO1,3)

- The Oral class focuses on developing speaking skills including pronunciation and useful phrases in real situations. This class will be offered mainly asynchronously, with an optional short 1-to-1 weekly session. (LO1,2)

- The Language Application class covers the group project work and other useful skills for learning Japanese such as how to type Japanese characters and online dictionaries. This class will be offered mainly asynchronously. (LO2,4,5)

There will be regular homework assignments throughout the semester. You are also expected to do a set of group work with peer feedback element.

Be sure to read the additional class delivery information before enrolling on this course.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Additional Costs Textbooks (approximate costs: Genki 1 textbook: £45.50; Genki 1 Workbook: £20.50. Supplemental textbook for self-study for kanji characters: Kanji Look and Learn Textbook: £23.50; Kanji Look and Learn workbook)
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2024/25, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  0
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Seminar/Tutorial Hours 66, Summative Assessment Hours 2, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 128 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 40 %, Coursework 40 %, Practical Exam 20 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Exams (60%):
Regular online tests (30%)
Oral exam (20%)
Practical exam (10%)

Coursework (40%, 10% each):
Oral assignment
Writing assignment
Group project work
Portfolio of homework
Feedback Feedback is an essential element of all aspects of the course. You will receive timely and detailed feedback on your formal homework assignments and course work.
You will also receive instant scores and feedback after on continuous assessments via online tests throughout semester, as well as instant feedback at their live sessions (online / on-campus).
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. use very basic Japanese grammar, vocabulary and expressions, with the ability to read, write and use appropriately hiragana, katakana and approximately 100 kanji characters, at Common European Framework of Reference for Languages level A1.
  2. interact in a simple way provided the other person talks very slowly and clearly and is prepared to help, and to understand and to use familiar and simple everyday expressions and very basic phrases such as introduce him/herself and others and can ask and answer questions about personal details such as where he/she lives, likes/dislikes, and things he/she has.
  3. read and write very simple messages and personal letters with hiragana, katakana and about up to 100 kanji characters, in both hand-writing and typing.
  4. utilise basic skills with technology such as use of online dictionaries and master the basic writing skills of Japanese text on computer / mobile devices.
  5. work both independently and in a team for collaborative project work as a successful language learner.
Reading List
Essential textbooks:

1. GENKI: An Integrated Course in Elementary Japanese I [Third Edition] ,
Author: Eri Banno, Yoko Ikeda, Yutaka Ohno, Chikako Shinagawa, Kyoko Tokashiki, ISBN 978-4-7890-1730-5, Publisher: The Japan Times, Published: 5/03/2020.

2. GENKI: An Integrated Course in Elementary Japanese Workbook I [Third Edition] , Author: Eri Banno, Yoko Ikeda, Yutaka Ohno, Chikako Shinagawa, Kyoko Tokashiki, ISBN 978-4-7890-1731-2, Publisher: The Japan Times, Published: 5/03/2020.


Useful textbooks for kanji study (recommended):

1. Kanji Look And Learn Textbook:
Authors: Eri Banno, Yoko Ikeda, Chikako Shinagawa, Kaori Tajima, Kyoko Tokashiki, ISBN: 9784789013499, Publisher: Japan Times Published: May 2009.

2. Kanji Look And Learn Workbook:
Authors: Eri Banno, Yoko Ikeda, Chikako Shinagawa, Kaori Tajima, Kyoko Tokashiki , ISBN: 9784789013505, Publisher: Japan Times, Published: June 2009.

3. Basic Kanji Book I, Chieko Kano et al., (Tokyo: Bonjinsha, 1989)

Dictionaries (recommended):

1. The Japan Foundation Basic Japanese-English Dictionary (Tokyo/Oxford: Bonjinsha & Oxford U.P., 1986)

2. Kenkyusha's New Japanese-English and English-Japanese Dictionaries

3. Haig, John W. ed., The New Nelson Japanese-English Character Dictionary, based on the classical edition by Andrew N Nelson (Tokyo: Tuttle 1997)

4. Hadamitzy, Wolfgang and Mark Spahn eds., Japanese Character Dictionary with compound lookup via any kanji (Boston: Cheng and Tsui 1991)

Other recommendations will be provided in the course handbook.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Personal and intellectual autonomy: Self-awareness and reflection; independent learning and development; creative and inventive thinking, knowledge integration and application

Personal effectiveness: Planning, organising and time management; team working; assertiveness and confidence; flexibility.

Communication: Interpersonal skills, verbal and written communication, presentation.
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserDr Akihiko Shimizu
Course secretaryMiss Kara McCormack
Tel: (0131 6)50 3030
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