Content-based Japanese language teaching in Australian schools: is CLIL a Good Fit?

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Abstract

Japanese Language Teaching (JLT) is well established in Australia but the number of students studying Japanese has been declining. This decline is due to various factors, among them the rise of Mandarin as a language taught in schools and a reduction in government support for JLT. Content and Language Integrated Learning (CLIL), a popular content-based teaching approach developed in Europe, is currently being trialled in Australian primary and secondary schools, and some of these schools have JLT programs. In Europe, CLIL has been particularly successful in improving learners? conversational ability, and the embrace of Japanese CLIL programs in Australia is therefore positive. However, there are factors involved in teaching a particular language in a particular country or region which may influence the success of the approach. In this article I argue that issues related to JLT in Australia, such as the relationship between Australia and Japan, teaching resources, teacher bilingualism and linguistic distance, need to be carefully examined in order to maximise CLIL?s potential in a new context.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)315 - 330
Number of pages16
JournalJapanese Studies
Volume33
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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