All courses at GSJAL are offered in Japanese language only, and students must write their degree thesis in Japanese. No special admission channels are open for international applicants, and no special courses are offered for international students. Students of diverse backgrounds and native languages learn together under the same class settings.
GSJAL has several admission channels to respond to the variety of applicants’ needs and backgrounds. The general entrance exam takes place twice a year for April and September admissions through two windows; domestic and overseas applications. Domestic applications are for those who are living in Japan while overseas applications are for those who are living overseas, regardless of their nationalities. Through domestic applications, applicants who pass the first screening must come to Waseda Campus to sit for an essay exam and an interview session while overseas applicants are evaluated through designated admissions documents only. There is also an admission for graduating Waseda University undergraduate program students and special admissions for students of designated universities in China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Korea.
GSJAL provides classroom-oriented training for Japanese language instructors in close association with the Japanese language education program at CJL.
Waseda University has 5,783 international students from 115 countries (as of May 2018). The outstanding and highly motivated students from around the world are studying together. They have passed the highly competitive entrance examination and eager to learn. Therefore, the classes result in a lively and educationally highly effective environment.
Lectures and seminars at the GSJAL deal not only with analysis of the structures and architecture of the Japanese language, but also with what individuals can do to acquire these structures, what sort of environment is required for them to do so, and what support can be provided by instructors. This is made possible by the opportunity for teaching practice created by the CJL, where the GSJAL students can work with foreign learners of Japanese at Waseda to create lively and animated classes.
The integration of theory and practice at the GSJAL is founded on this classroom-based educational practice through the teaching of “living Japanese”.
GSJAL aims for its students to be the instructors having the basic knowledge from linguistics to pedagogy and playing a leading role in Japanese language education in the future. To become such instructors, the students need to acquire the broader knowledge on language acquisition, language policy, and language education. GSJAL is searching the better institutionalization and supports for the students.
GSJAL introduces the latest research from each pertinent field through academic conferences, study groups, and theses in addition to the regular in-class teaching. Also, we provide a Japanese education training program which is unique to graduate schools.
Student are provided with a diverse variety of opportunities for teaching practice.
Japanese Language Education Practice
Japanese Language Education Practice is part of the core curriculum of the master’s program, and consists of practical training through students’ participant observation in Japanese classes taught by full-time GSJAL faculty members at the Center for Japanese Language. By participating as third-party observers in the classroom, students gain understanding of classroom activities from the multiple perspectives of both instructors and students, and also experience valuable opportunities to acquire the teaching skills employed in the classroom.
In recent years, social and economic globalization has increased opportunities for international interaction, creating demand for Japanese language instruction around the world. In response to the broadening need for Japanese language education transcending age, region, and environment, GSJAL is playing a part in Japanese language education activities in multicultural regions in cooperation with the local governments of Shinjuku and Sumida in Tokyo within Japan and overseas, has provided instructors to assist in providing Japanese language instruction at Waseda University’s overseas offices and at colleges and universities that have exchange agreements with Waseda.
GSJAL students have various opportunities to participate in the work front of Japanese education not only after graduation, but also during their study at Waseda University. Many of GSJAL students are currently actively working at various educational organizations, in meeting the needs of Japanese language learners, with the aim of providing Japanese language education in many countries and regions. Quite a few GSJAL students also go on to doctoral programs, in order to deepen their research and take a doctoral degree after acquisition of a master’s degree.