- The long-term goal of the Japanese Language Program at Washington University is to produce learners of Japanese who can express themselves in a culturally coherent and appropriate manner when interacting with native speakers of Japanese who are unaccustomed to communicating with foreigners. Learners will attain the linguistic, communicative and cultural competence necessary to function in Japanese society and will learn how to act in Japanese, both in speech and writing, in ways that are culturally acceptable in Japan. After four academic years of study, students should be able to:
a. communicate fluently and accurately using culturally appropriate language and behavior;
b. read unedited materials written for native speakers comfortably with the occasional use of a dictionary;
c. write texts that will aid them to function and communicate in Japanese society.
- For short-term (course-specific) goals please refer to the course syllabus.
- The achievement of these long-term goals depends on the amount of effort the student expends practicing efficiently. Competence does not come without training and practice! Study in Japan for an academic year or one semester at the Kyoto Consortium for Japanese Studies or Waseda University is strongly encouraged.
- In the First- through Fourth- levels, daily grades account for nearly 60% of the final grade. We grade daily to make certain that learners are always prepared for class and that they keep up with the work expected of them, to make them constantly strive to do their best, and to provide them with feedback on their daily performance. Learning Japanese is fun but it also requires effort and work. We use the following scale to evaluate in-class performance on a daily basis:
0 = Absent beyond the permitted number of absences (see below).
1 = Present in body only; unable to perform in Japanese.
2 = Unfamiliar with the assigned drills, CCs and exercises.
3 = Unable to do drills, CCs and exercises; performance requires considerable assistance from others; unfamiliar with vocabulary, patterns, pronunciation and accent; many aspects of performance would hinder comfortable interaction with a native speaker.
3.5 = Unable to perform drills, CCs, and exercises; many errors in pronunciation, vocabulary and structure; unable to self-correct; several aspects of performance would present difficulty or discomfort for the native speaker.
4.0 = Able to perform drills, CCs, and exercises but with some errors in pronunciation, vocabulary and structure; able to self-correct some errors with help from the instructor; there are some aspects of your performance that would present some difficulty or discomfort for a native speaker.
4.5 = Able to perform drills, CCs, and exercises with ease and fluency but with a few errors in pronunciation, vocabulary and structure; able to self-correct most errors; performance is, for the most part, culturally appropriate and coherent; a native speaker might experience some puzzlement, difficulty, or discomfort when speaking with you.
5 = Able to perform drills, CCs and exercises with ease and fluency and with very few errors; able to self-correct all errors; able to appropriately apply learned patterns and vocabulary to other contexts; performance is culturally appropriate and coherent; a native speaker would have no difficulty, nor experience any discomfort, when speaking with you.
0 = Absent beyond the permitted number of absences.
1 = Present in body only; unable to perform the assigned material.
2 = Insufficient familiarity with assigned kanji and vocabulary; multiple signs of inability to comprehend meanings of sentences or produce coherent, comprehensible sentences.
2.5 = Some familiarity with assigned kanji and vocabulary; some signs of inability to comprehend meanings of sentences or produce coherent, comprehensible sentences.
3 = Excellent preparation of assigned kanji and vocabulary; delivery is smooth and accurate with complete comprehension.
- In the First-through Fourth- levels, students will receive daily feedback on Engrade. Students should access Engrade daily for their daily scores and for comments on their performance.
- In all levels we use the following scale to determine the final letter grade:
98-100% = A+
94-97.9% = A
90-93.9% = A-
87-89.9% = B+
84-86.9% = B
80-83.9% = B-
77-79.9% = C+
74-76.9% = C
70-73.9% = C-
67-69.9% = D+
64-66.9% = D
60-63.9% = D-
< 59% = F
NOTE: We do not round up at the end of the semester. To earn the above letter grades your final numerical grade must fall within the given ranges.
- Students must earn at least a B- in their language courses in order to continue to the next level.
- Students taking a course for the CR/NCR option are required to attain a grade of at least a B- to pass (CR).
- Daily attendance, including subsections, is mandatory. No make-up classes are given. In First- and Second-Levels, at the end of the semester, the four lowest daily grades (F/ACT & R/W) will be deducted from the daily-grade section of ALL students' grade sheets. In other words, students may be absent four times from the main section or the subsection without any penalty, and those students with perfect attendance, for example, will benefit from the deduction of their four lowest grades. In the Third-Level, the three lowest daily grades (F/ACT & R/W) and in the Fourth-level two lowest daily grades (each from Group and Individual) will be deducted at the end of the semester. Students should take into account religious holidays, exams in other courses, job interviews, etc. when using these permitted absences. If a student is absent more than the allowed number of times in FACT/ACT class due to illness or an unforeseen emergency, the student must provide original documentation (e.g., a handwritten note--NOT a copy from the Health Clinic--from the doctor stating that the student was too ill to attend class) in order to be excused.
- Upperclassmen (seniors, graduate students, law school students) should plan to use the allowed absences for scheduled job interviews, exams, etc. They should notify the instructor at the beginning of the semester if it will be necessary to miss class for job interviews or entrance exams/interviews for professional schools.
- Students in First- and Second-Levels should attend only the section for which they are registered. Switching to another section without the prior approval of the instructor will result in a grade of 0 for that day.
- For every 10 minutes students are late for ACT class, one point will be deducted from the daily grade.
- Students will be permitted to make up quizzes at the discretion of the instructor.
- The lowest FACT quiz grade and the lowest Reading/Writing quiz grade will be dropped from the final grade sheet at the end of the semester. If, however, a student is absent more than four times in the First- and Second-levels, and more than three times in the Third-level, the lowest quiz scores will not be dropped at the end of the semester.
- If a student arrives late to a FACT class when a quiz is given, s/he will be permitted to take the quiz during class time but 0.5 will be deducted from the final quiz grade.
- If a student arrives late to an ACT class when a written quiz is given, s/he will not be permitted to take, nor make up, the quiz.
- All written homework assignments are due at the start of class on the assigned due date. It will be considered one-day late if it is turned in later than the start of class on the assigned day.
- If an assignment is turned in late, 10% will be deducted from the grade for every day it is late. Homework will not be accepted beyond one week after the due date.
- In the Fourth- and Fifth- levels, oral and written projects will not be accepted beyond one week after the due date.
- All written homework must be done INDIVIDUALLY. If it is discovered that students have done a written assignment together, a grade of 0 will be given for the assignment. See the Washington University Integrity Policy in the University Bulletin.
- Both in and out of class students are expected to speak in Japanese whenever they are interacting with speakers of Japanese in the language program. The language should be used to communicate with, not just to practice in the classroom, and students should make every effort to use what they have learned to date to interact outside of class with speakers of Japanese in the program.
- One set of textbooks consisting of Parts I, II and III of Japanese: The Spoken Language is available for student use in the East Asia Library in January Hall.