Starting Spring 2018, Japanese books, ranging from children’s books, manga series, film comics, and novels, will be available for check-out in the lower level of the library! Currently, a team of two students, Brianna Kosmer and Pa Dra Lee, and a faculty member, Dr. Tomomi Kakegawa in the Department of Languages, are working on a research project funded by the CETL Summer SoTL Grant to develop an extensive reading (ER) program for Spring semester’s JAPN 302 - Advanced Japanese Language and Culture class.
As opposed to intensive reading, in which language learners apply grammar and vocabulary skills to decipher the meaning of every word and sentence, extensive reading is when language learners read large amounts of target-language material that interests them, at a level that is appropriate for their experience and proficiency.
Some of the steps taken so far to prepare for adding ER to the Japanese language curriculum at UWEC have involved reviewing published research on ER, collecting books for students, and leveling those books appropriately. This fall, a plan for implementing and assessing the extensive reading program will be developed, and in May, the research and results will be presented at CERCA.
Students taking JAPN 302 this spring will have a collection of 50 books to choose from, and if the pilot is successful, the final collection is projected to be more than 300 books. With the plan to expand ER to other Japanese language courses after the program assessment this spring, students studying at different levels of Japanese will have the opportunity to check out books from the collection. The collection will be a great way for students to practice their language and reading skills in Japanese.