USHIDA Eiko

Educational background

Ph.D. in Second Language Acquisition
Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, U.S.A.

Key words for education

motivation, Content-Based Instruction (CBI), reflective practice, technology-enhanced language teaching and learning

Sample courses

Japanese 3, Academic Japanese Training

Features of my courses

“From theory to practice” is my philosophy for teaching. My courses incorporate research-based findings from areas in second language acquisition and foreign language teaching.

Japanese 3 is an intermediate-level Japanese class offered to all international students at Okayama University. I encourage my students to use Japanese learned in class in their daily life – inside and outside the classroom – to express what they want to say while making full use of their study abroad experiences. My teaching emphasizes the importance of mistakes, tolerance of ambiguity, and negotiation of meaning for language improvement.

Academic Japanese Training class motivates ambitious Discovery students to take courses offered in Japanese outside the Discovery Program, helping them to develop necessary study skills and acquire useful learning strategies through individually customized lessons. Students’ learning portfolios contribute to create a “vocabulary bank” as well as “study tips” for all Discovery students with limited Japanese language ability.

Key words for research

motivation, Content-Based Instruction (CBI), technology-enhanced language teaching and learning, curriculum development, course design, roles of teachers, program evaluation

Key publications and conference presentations

  • “Monty’s Bridge to Tomorrow”, University of Alaska, 2014.
  • “Strategies to Integrate Culture”, AP Japanese Language and Culture Instructional Strategies to Incorporate Culture Curriculum Module, College Board, 2010.
  • “Developing Web-Based Multi-Level Materials for Japanese Content Based Instruction”, Japanese Language and Literature, Vol. 42, No.2, 2008.
  • “An Application of Standards: Japanese-Language Curriculum Development for Graduate Students of International Relations”, Japanese-Language Education around the Globe, Vol. 17, 2007.
  • “The Role of Students’ Attitudes and Motivation in Second Language Learning in Online Language Courses”, CALICO Journal, Vol. 23, No. 1, 2005.

What I like about Discovery

As a teacher of Japanese language and culture who has spent half of my life overseas, this program has offered me a challenging but fun place to pursue my personal mission. I am able to teach not only students from all over the world but also students from many parts of Japan while living in Japan, my home country, and using both Japanese and English. It is always exciting to observe Discovery students bring multiple cultures together by building lasting friendships and relationships in multiple languages. I also enjoy discovering “something new” about Japan and the world and sharing these findings with the world.