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Some Recommendations For U.S.A. Faculty On Teaching Liberal Education Courses In Japan.

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Conference

2006 Annual Conference & Exposition

Location

Chicago, Illinois

Publication Date

June 18, 2006

Start Date

June 18, 2006

End Date

June 21, 2006

ISSN

2153-5965

Conference Session

Integrating H&SS in Engineering II

Tagged Division

Liberal Education

Page Count

8

Page Numbers

11.1142.1 - 11.1142.8

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/445

Download Count

11

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Paper Authors

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John Krupczak Hope College

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Associate Professor of Engineering.

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James Heisler Hope College

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Professor of Economics.

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Thomas Ludwig Hope College

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Professor of Psychology.

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Roger Nemeth Hope College

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Professor of Sociology.

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James Piers Hope College

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Professor of Sociology and Social Work.

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Neal Sobania Pacific Lutheran University

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Executive Director of the Wang Center at Pacific Lutheran University. Formerly Professor of History and Director of International Education at Hope College.

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Abstract
NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Some Recommendations for U.S.A. Faculty on Teaching Liberal Education Courses in Japan

Abstract

This work presents a summary of practical information for faculty from United States institutions of higher education planning on teaching liberal education courses in Japan. These recommendations are based on the experience of the authors in teaching sociology, history, economics, psychology, and general education classes, at both a US liberal arts college and at a medium sized comprehensive university in Tokyo, Japan. For faculty participating in an exchange program, a key element is successful adaptation of existing familiar course materials for use in a different institution and culture. We have found that a major theme in successfully negotiating this change is shifting from a process-oriented approach favored in the US, to one emphasizing the specific learning goals and assessment methods of a particular course. In the experience reported here, Japanese students were accustomed to taking responsibility for their own learning process, therefore requiring the course instructor to define learning objectives and the specific nature of evaluation process. Other recommendations focus on adapting to the differing features of student schedules and pre-college preparation in the two countries. Guidelines are prepared as a distillation of some recent experience for the benefit US faculty participating in US-Japanese exchange programs.

Background

The goal of this paper is to convey information from recent experiences by US faculty teaching in Japan. This work represents a summary of recent experiences and is not intended as an exhaustive review of Japanese higher education. More comprehensive overviews of Japanese higher education have been prepared by Benjamin1, Becker2, and Hayes3. The National Research Council has examined the similarities, differences, and trends in how the US and Japan educate and train engineers4.

To provide a background, the major features of the Japanese educational system are reviewed. The educational systems of the United States and Japan have a similar structure2-4. This is in part because the current Japanese system was strongly influenced by the US occupation government after World War II. In Japan, education is compulsory until age 15. The Elementary grades are for ages 6-11. This is followed by junior high school, also called middle school or upper elementary school, for ages 12-15. Nearly all education in elementary and junior high school is in the form of neighborhood public schools.

At the university level, total undergraduate enrollment in Japan in 1995 was 2,263,512 students. Enrollment in engineering and computer science was 516,244 (23%). At a comparable time in the United States total undergraduate enrollment was 7,791,000.

Krupczak, J., & Heisler, J., & Ludwig, T., & Nemeth, R., & Piers, J., & Sobania, N. (2006, June), Some Recommendations For U.S.A. Faculty On Teaching Liberal Education Courses In Japan. Paper presented at 2006 Annual Conference & Exposition, Chicago, Illinois. https://peer.asee.org/445

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2006 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015