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Mediation, Interculturality & Citizenship Education: The significance and potential of Japanese Language Education

On Saturday 23rd February 2013, Professor Michael Byram of Durham University and Professor Hideo Hosokawa of Waseda University held a lecture on Mediation, Interculturality & Citizenship Education: The significance and potential of Japanese Language Education at the Japan Foundation London, in association with British Association for Teaching Japanese as a Foreign Language (BATJ).

Prof. Byram started the lecture by discussing and demonstrating how foreign language teaching in Higher Education should and can be related to liberal educational aims of developing ‘criticality’ in learners and how this can be done through linking language teaching with ‘education for citizenship’. The lecture focused on the theory behind how the aims and objectives of the cultural dimension of language teaching correspond to this of criticality and citizenship, as well as examples from advanced language learners and beginners’ courses.

The theme of mediation, interculturality and citizenship continued in Prof. Hosokawa’s lecture, which explored the relationship between individuals and society and the boundaries between language and culture. To illustrate how mediation relates to interculturality and citizenship education in Japanese language education, Prof. Hosokawa gave examples of the experiences of Japanese language students who participated in his research.

The lecture was not only attended in person by approximately 40 people, but also had a total of 193 views (including 74 unique views) from across the world thanks to a live broadcast on Ustream. Some of the comments from participants included:


(“I’ve had an interest in this topic for a while, but I hadn’t had a chance to hear a lecture by these researchers so this was a really good experience for me.”)


(“Combining real research with actual examples meant I could get a deep understanding of this topic. It was really interesting to explore the concept of what Japanese language education and education in general should be like.”)


(“I wanted to find out more about citizenship education, and I think it was a really new discovery to explore the connection between language education and citizenship education.”)

We would like to thank Professor Byram, Professor Hosokawa and all attendees for their enthusiastic participation in this lecture.

This lecture was recorded on Ustream and can be viewed here:

We have also included the presentation files from the two lecturers below.

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