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Saturday, January 17, 2009, 2:30pm - 4:30pm

The Use Of Student Evaluation of Teaching Surveys in Higher Education: 

Is English Language Teaching A Disadvantaged Profession?  

Peter Burden, Okayama Shoka University

Little is known about the actual processes students follow when responding to end-of-semester student evaluation of teaching surveys (SETs). What do first year university students think about their English learning experiences, and do these experiences influence how they evaluate their university English classes? This presentation will explore these and other questions and share results of the presenter's study of 144 first year university students' beliefs about their English learning experiences and whether these beliefs have influenced how they evaluate.
Peter Burden holds an EdD in TESOL from Exeter University in his native Britain and has presented widely on student evaluation in Japan, Korea and Australia. He has published in “Teaching and Teacher Education”, “System” and “Assessment and Evaluation in Higher Education” journals and has served on the evaluation committee at his university. He currently serves as an officer for his university kumiai (union).

Location: Room 3 of Namba Shimin Gakushu Center (Osaka City
Municipal Lifelong Learning Center - Namba Branch), (O-CAT 4F, 06 6643-7010)

JALT members: Free, One-day members: 1,000 yen



Friday, February 6, 2009, 6:30pm - 8:30pm

Good Practices that Help Students Learn and Teachers Grow
Wilma Luth, Hokkaido JALT Chapter President

Changes in classroom practice generally have a ripple effect. For example, a teacher’s primary reason for learning their students’ names might be to simply foster a caring environment in the classroom. But students also stay more motivated when the teacher knows their names, and teachers are better equipped when problems do arise in the classroom or when assessment time rolls around.

The first half of this presentation will focus on small changes that teachers can make in the classroom that aid student learning either directly or indirectly. They include actions taken by the teacher as well as ways of organizing classroom activities. Participants will explore how the suggested actions help student learning and will be challenged to transform their teaching by making one change in their classroom practice.

In the second half of the presentation we will look at ways teachers can sustain their energy and enthusiasm for teaching by engaging in professional development outside of the classroom. Keeping a teaching journal, participating in professional organizations (like JALT) or enrolling in courses are just some of the ideas that we will discuss. The ideas presented are not meant to be an exhaustive list. Please come prepared to share your own ideas and experiences.

Wilma Luth earned her MA-TESOL at SIT (the School for International Training) and is a licensed trainer in SIT’s TESOL Certificate Course. She’s the current president of Hokkaido JALT and is looking forward to starting a full-time position at Hokkai Gakuen University in April. Her professional interests include learning strategies and reflective practice.

The meeting will start at 6:30 (doors open at 6:00). Join us for dinner afterwards at the Indian restaurant on the fifth floor of the OCAT building, just one floor above the meeting venue.

Venue: Namba Shimin Gakushu Center (Osaka City Municipal Lifelong Learning Center - Namba Branch), (O-CAT 4F, 06-6643-7010)

Guide to Location:
Link to meeting location

JALT members: Free
One-day members: 1,000 yen


Saturday, February 7, 2009, 6:00pm - 8:00pm
Party with National JALT Directors, Officers, and representatives from throughout Japan

JALT's National Directors, Chapter and SIG representatives, and appointed national officers from throughout Japan are meeting in Osaka this weekend for business meetings required by NPO rules and will be
coming to The Beer Company on Saturday evening to continue discussions and let off steam. All are welcome and encouraged to come and mingle with all sorts of fellow language teachers at this lively event.

Please be sure to contact by 9:00 pm on Friday, Feb 6, if you'd like to reserve a seat with us and the dinner set with all you care to drink (4000 yen) or just the all you can drink set (2000 yen). You can also order a la carte. We hope to see you there!

Location: The Beer Company (DD House) near Hankyu Umeda, 1st floor, 06-6375-2461‎

Guide to Location: Link to meeting location

Cost: 4000 yen for dinner course and all you care to drink, 2000
yen for just all you can drink. You can also order a la carte.



Thursday, March 26, 2009, 7:00pm - 10:00pm 

Sour Strawberries:  

a documentary film on Japan's hidden guest workers by Tilman Konig and Daniel Kramers

Speaker: Arudou Debito

Co-sponsored by Amnesty International, Democrats Abroad-Kansai, and others, and with introduction and discussion led by Arudou Debito (blogger, Japan Times columnist, and author of Japanese Only and Handbook for Newcomers), "Sour Strawberries" is a 60-min. film on migrant workers, human rights, exploitation and discrimination in Japan. It tells the story of two Nikkei-Jin workers from Peru and Brazil and three Chinese participants of the International Training Program. It also features interviews with former Vice-Minister of Justice Kono Taro, Upper
House Member Tsurunen Marutei, Union-Leader Torii Ippei, Arudo Debito, Keidanren represenative Inoue Hiroshi and the German political scientist and Japan expert Dr. Gabriele Vogt.

Shot in March 2008 by a German-Japanese film crew in Tokyo. The movie shows migrants fighting for their rights as workers and citizens. The people concerned are always at the center of interest. While describing their situation, they are the protagonists of the movie.

See the trailer here:

Subtitles in English and Japanese. 500 yen optional donation


Location: The Blarney Stone Irish Pub in Umeda, 6F Sonezaki Centre Building, 2-10-15 Sonezaki, Kita-ku (Umeda)

500 yen optional donation



Sunday, May 31, 2009, 1:30pm – 4:00pm

Six Principles for Foreign

Language Classes

David Beglar, Temple University Japan

A number of leading authorities in the field of second language teaching and learning have stated that teachers should be guided by pedagogical principles that are primarily based on empirical research, rather than strictly adhering to a single teaching method, and particularly one that has little or no theoretical or empirical support. The purpose of this presentation is to propose six pedagogical principles that can be applied
in any foreign language classroom and to suggest multiple ways of implementing each principle. These principles also influence instruction by allowing teachers to quickly assess their course syllabus and course materials for strengths and weaknesses. Through the use of these principles, teachers can create a more acquisition-rich learning environment in which students can both enjoy learning and make substantial progress in their attempts to acquire the foreign language.
Attendees will be asked to participate frequently in pair and group discussions, react to the ideas proposed in the presentation, and make suggestions regarding how they would implement the six pedagogical principles.

David Beglar, Ed.D., is Director of Graduate Programs in Education at Temple University, Japan Campus Doors open at 1:30. Workshop starts at 2:00.

Location: Osaka City Municipal Lifelong Learning Center, Room 5, 5F, Umeda's Dai-2 Building, across the street from the Hilton and the Maru building. Tel: 06-6345-5000.

JALT members: Free
One-day members: 1,000 yen



Sunday, June 21, 2009, 12:15pm – 5:45pm

5th Annual Tech Day at Hannan University:  

Tech Day Plus

Marcos Benevides, John Campbell-Larson, Neal Chambers, Stuart Cunningham, Mark Donnellan, Henry Foster, Craig Gamble, Myles Grogan, Troy Guze, Robert Hamilton, Justin Harris, Salem Hicks, John Honisz-Greens, Arthur Lauritsen, Paul Marlowe, Doug Meyer, John Rylander, Steve Silsbee, Mai Tran Thanh, and Matthew Walsh.

The themes of Tech Day are simplicity and practicality - ideas that teachers can use with a minimum of preparation or technical knowledge. This year's event promises to be bigger and better than ever: in addition to our "Tech" presentations that will take place in two fully equipped computer labs, we’re adding a “Plus” stream on a wide range of topics.

This year's presentations:

Marcos Benevides and John Rylander
- Pragmatics in a Hurry: Teaching speech acts with very short video clips

John Campbell-Larson - Raising Awareness of Spoken Discourse

Neal Chambers - Increasing Student and Teacher interaction with Twitter

Stuart Cunningham - Consciousness-raising grammar instruction

Mark Donnellan - Using Moodle chat and podcasts

Henry Foster - Building learner-generated vocabulary logs using

Craig Gamble - Creating and using podcasts in your classroom

Myles Grogan - Making pictures - Illustrations for the classroom

Troy Guze - Getting Started With Moodle - Setting it up from scratch

Robert Hamilton - Getting a grip on Subtitles: using free software to convert DVD subtitles into usable text files

Justin Harris - Photo Story 3: A simple way to make multi-media projects in the classroom

Salem Hicks - Using Skype to foster international communication and understanding

John Honisz-Greens

  - Using lexical profiling to aid student fluency and vocabulary acquisition 

  - D.R.E.A.M. Management in the ELT context

Arthur Lauritsen
- Multimedia and its use in vocabulary acquisition

Paul Marlowe - Using Google tools for writing in the L2 classroom

Douglas Meyer - Using to make dialogs and videos

Steve Silsbee - Online resources for finding and creating comics

Mai Tran Thanh - Making video presentations with Windows Movie Maker

Matthew Walsh - Basics of using an iPhone for language classes

Hannan University's main campus, near Kintetsu Kawachi Amami station


JALT members: 500 yen
One-day members: 1,000 yen, 500 yen for full-time students



Sunday, July 5, 2009, 11:00am – 4:00pm

2nd Annual Extensive Reading

in Japan Seminar 2009

Speakers: Rob Waring & others

Extensive Reading is a growing phenomenon in Japan and an excellent way of reaching our students. This will be a full day of presentations and poster sessions about ER and there will be a wide range of publishers with their
latest offerings. Whether you are new to ER or a seasoned pro, there will be something for you to learn!

This event is jointly sponsored by the Osaka and Kyoto Chapters and the Extensive Reading SIG of JALT. For further details see ,, and .

Location: Kinki University, Higashi-Osaka campus

Guide to Location: Link to meeting location

JALT members: Free
One-day members: 500 yen



Sunday, 12 July 2009 - 1:30pm – 5:30pm

Stories that Need to be Told:

 A film screening by an award-winning Japanese-Canadian, Linda Ohama

Linda Ohama, a Japanese-Canadian filmmaker and visual artist, will show and discuss her international award-winning film, Obaachan’s Garden, the story of a
remarkable journey of strength, love and determination of one woman`s life of over 100 years. This is a moving film about the life of Asayo Imamoto Murakami, born in Onomichi, Hiroshima-ken, who was sent to Canada in 1923. She was the last picture bride living in Canada when she passed away just short of her 105th birthday. Her first home and flower garden in Canada are now a national historic site and museum. Ohama, the granddaughter of the film’s heroine, will share some behind-the-scenes experiences of the making of this film and also speak of her work on her next film. Ohama will also speak about her artwork and the community work she has been involved in both in Canada and Japan.
Doors open at 1:30, presentation starts at 2:00.
Japanese subtitles.

Linda Ohama, a third-generation Japanese-Canadian, is an accomplished filmmaker, visual artist, educator, and an active citizen, strongly committed to preserving cultural heritage and promoting educational and cultural exchange. Her artwork and films have received numerous international awards. She is currently in Japan working on her next project.

This event is co-sponsored by Osaka JALT, Kyoto JALT, and SIETAR Kansai.

Location: Osaka Gakuin University, Building 2, near Hankyu Shojaku and JR Kishibe stations

Guide to Location: Link to meeting location

JALT members and students 500 yen
One-day members: 1000 yen



Saturday, 1 August 2009 - 2:00pm - 4:30pm

Living and Teaching in Qatar

Followed by Beer Garden Party

Speaker: Larry Metzger

Long-time Kansai resident Larry Metzger is visiting from his current teaching post in Qatar where he serves as Vice President of Qatar TESOL. He'll share his
perspectives on making the multi-faceted transition from Japan to Qatar, characteristics of Arabic learners of English, raising 3rd culture children in the Middle East, the Japanese/Expat community in Qatar, and more. He'll also access the Qatar University online portal to demonstrate their use of Blackboard, anti-plagiarism software, discussion boards, and so on. Those interested in setting up collaborative cross-cultural research, teaching, and summer school projects between students studying to be teachers in the Gulf (UAE, Bahrain, Oman, Kuwait, Qatar) and Japan, are particularly encouraged to attend.

Larry's specialty at Qatar University is in teaching research-based academic writing in the argumentative and problem-solution genres across the curriculum using Blackboard and online search engines (J-stor, Pro-quest, E-brary, Lexis nexus, and others). He piloted the Safe Assign anti-plagiarism software used now in all classes to curb collusion and plagiarism. In May, he gave a workshop
on writing course reforms to teachers at the International Conference on Education (ICE 2009) at the University of Brunei. He has also written and received an MEPI (Middle East Partnership Initiative) grant for $50,000 from the US State Department for Qatar University to establish a democratically elected student senate. Currently, as Vice President of Qatar TESOL, he is setting up the national and international network to expand and develop effective Special Interest Groups within the Gulf, Iran, and Asia. He is interested in connecting with teachers and schools interested in skype-, pod-cast-, and email-exchanges or discussion boards on global topics among teachers and students.

Doors open at 1:30, presentation starts at 2:00. Dinner party afterward at a nearby beer garden with all you can eat/drink for 3500 yen. Please contact us at if you'd like to join us just for the party as details may change prior to Saturday.

Location: Osaka City Municipal Lifelong Learning Center, multi-media lab, 5F, Umeda's Eki-mae Dai-2 Building, across the street from the Hilton and the Maru building. Tel: 06-6345-5000.
Guide to Location

JALT members: Free
One-day members:1,000 yen, Students: 500 yen




Sunday, October 25, 2009, 1:00pm - 7:30pm

Autumn Potpourri:

 Job-Hunting, Corpus Linguistics, and Curriculum Design

Douglas Meyer, Matt Smith, Gerald Williams, Jonathon Aliponga, Jonathan Watkins, Craig Gamble, Michael Wilkins, and Eugene Vakhnenko

This event will have three presentations. Doors open at 12:45.


Douglas Meyer - Job-Hunting Workshop

The present-day language teacher needs much more than a university degree and a winning smile. Drawing on his own experiences and those of participants in this interactive workshop, he'll offer tips and ample resources to help sharpen your skills and improve your chances of landing the job you're looking for.

Doug Meyer has been teaching EFL in Korea and Japan since 1995, currently at Momoyama Gakuin High School in Osaka. He recently completed his MA in the Temple University Linguistics program. He is Publicity Chair for Osaka JALT and Coordinator of JALT's Job Information Center.


Matt Smith - Words, Types and Patterns: an Investigation

This presentation suggests an approach to grammar that does not rely on syntactic trees or exhaustive categorisation of parts of speech and clauses. Instead, using only the most simple coding, words are analysed by their behaviours and the patterns that they typically create. By applying this approach, words can be categorised into 'families' for a more organic and authentic description of language. Participants will engage in concordancing tasks with genuine corpus texts to investigate and evaluate this approach. The presentation will include a brief description of how this approach is being applied to the analysis of the Chubu PASEO Learner Corpus.

Matt Smith received his MA in Applied Linguistics from the University of Birmingham. He has been teaching in Japan for nine years, currently at Chubu University in Aichi prefecture in both the Humanities department and in the Preparation for Academic Study in English Overseas (PASEO) programme. His areas of interest include the lexical approach to language description, written discourse analysis, and the study of super corpora and
learner corpora for better informed teaching practices.


Gerald Williams, Jonathon Aliponga, Jonathan Watkins, Craig Gamble, Michael Wilkins, and Eugene Vakhnenko

- Integrating Part-time Instructors in a Coordinated Curriculum

English courses are compulsory at university. After six years of required English courses, it is unsurprising if unsuccessful students show a lack of interest in English upon entering university. Part-time instructors are often given little direction and support to determine what to teach and how to positively affect students' overall English learning. This seminar will introduce a coordinated program with a focus on, first, structures that
aim at improving student English level and, second, the role of part-time instructors. The presenters will do a short introduction on each segment, followed by discussion from the participants. The segments will include using English, dealing with homework, and socializing, among other things.

Gerald Williams is Chair of the Department of English Education at Kansai University of International Studies, Amagasaki, Hyogo.
Jonathan Aliponga is Program Coordinator in the Department of English Education at KUIS.
Jonathan Watkins, Craig Gamble, Michael Wilkins, and Eugene Vakhnenko are part-time lecturers in the Department of English Education at KUIS.


Dinner, drinks, and further discussion at Satoyama dining restaurant on the 17th floor of the Terminal Building (near Hankyu Umeda station). All you can eat dinner buffet is 2,480 yen, and with all you can drink add 1,050 yen.

Osaka City Municipal Lifelong Learning Center, 5F, Umeda's Eki-mae Dai-2 Building, across the street from the Hilton and the Maru building. Tel: 06-6345-5000.

Link to meeting location

Fee for JALT members:  Free
Fee for one-day members:  1,000 yen, Students: 500 yen





Sunday, December 13, 2009, 1:00pm - 8:00pm

JALT 2009 Conference Review, The Joy of Action Research, and Annual Bonenkai 

This will be our last chapter event of the year. Doors open at 1:00. We'll start by discussing our impressions of the National JALT conference in Shizuoka, held Nov 21-23. What impressed us and what did we learn?


 2:00pm - 5:00pm

The Joy of Action Research:

Goals, Principles, and Methods

Greg Sholdt and Tim Greer, of Kobe University

Getting started in action or classroom-based research can be a bewildering endeavor; however, the benefits include a better understanding of students and teaching practices, a rationale for making changes in classrooms, and even a renewed interest in teaching. Furthermore, teacher-researchers are able to contribute their findings to the community of language instructors, enhance their professional skill-set and employability, develop a fuller understanding of the research process, and better understand published research. In this interactive workshop, the presenters will review the fundamental principles of action research and discuss quantitative and qualitative data collection methods and techniques for ensuring project success. Participants will then work in small groups to develop their own personalized action research projects. In the first part of the workshop, the presenters will review the goals, benefits, and methods of classroom-based or action research. Both qualitative and quantitative approaches will be discussed in terms of methods of data collection and analysis and appropriateness for research goals. In the second part of the workshop, participants will work together in small groups to develop research studies that can be tailored to their specific language learning classrooms and research interests. The workshop will provide a relaxed and fun setting to discover the joys of action research and enable participants to leave with concrete plans for conducting their own projects.

Greg Sholdt is a short-term associate professor teaching English for the School of Languages and Communication at Kobe University. He has a background in Educational Psychology with an emphasis on quantitative methods for educational research. His interests center on extensive reading, English for academic purposes, and action research as a means for professional development. He is a member of the Editorial Advisory Board of the JALT Journal and has experience teaching Introductory Statistics at the University of Hawaii and an online course on quantitative research methods for language teachers in Japan.

Tim Greer is an associate professor in the School of Languages and Communication at Kobe University, Japan. His research interests focus on naturally occurring interaction in Japanese and English. His doctoral dissertation looked at the accomplishment of identity by so-called “half-Japanese” teenagers in bilingual interaction and he is currently investigating the way Japanese students make use of various interactional practices in English. His research combines ethnography and qualitative approaches with micro-discourse analytic approaches such as conversation analysis and membership categorization analysis.

Afterward we'll head to a nearby restaurant for our annual bonenkai.

Temple University Japan, Osaka Ekimae Bldg. 3, 21st Floor, 1-1-3-2100 Umeda, Kita-ku, Tel: 06-6343-0005
JALT members: Free
One-day members: 1,000 yen, full-time students: 500 yen