Degree Programs

English Language Teaching Practices

Picture of English Language Teaching Practices class

AIU offers a unique linguistic and cultural environment for its students. English is routinely heard, spoken, and used in and out of the classroom. Numerous opportunities are available for practicing English in formal and informal settings. A robust intensive English language program, English for Academic Purposes (EAP), creates the perfect setting for observing experienced teachers doing what they do best. The Language Development and Intercultural Studies Center (LDIC) offers ideal opportunities for self-directed learning, group study, and familiarity with excellent teaching materials and resources. AIU, in other words, is the perfect campus for improving one’s own communicative competence in English while learning how to be an expert at teaching others. The ELT program offers a solid foundational curriculum in language teaching theory and pedagogy while promoting opportunities to become a competent and reflective life-long learner of language and culture - in this case, English.

Expected Student Outcomes

  • Knowledge of English as a language
  • Understanding of the role of English in a globalized world
  • Comprehension and application of fundamental TESOL theories and methods
  • Familiarity with methods of inquiry in language education
  • Processing and critical analysis of information
  • Competence in language classroom communication issues
  • Ability to express oneself professionally in speaking and writing
  • Self-reflection as an educator

Feature1 - Flexible Scheduling

Complete the program at your own pace
While the English Language Teaching Practices program is generally completed over the course of two years, it can also be completed over three to four years by taking weekend classes, ideal for those currently working.

Feature2 - Teacher Certificate

Earn an English Teacher' s Certificate while in ELT
ELT students have the privilege to upgrade their Type 1 Teaching Certificate to an Advanced Teaching Certificate by completing the necessary courses. Students without a Teaching Certificate have the option to join the Teacher’s License Program to earn a Type 1 Teaching Certificate for Upper Secondary School.

Picture of Teaching Practices

Teaching practices at local high schools

Flow of Course Offerings

English Village Program for Young Students

Picture of English VillageAs one component of the Top Global University Project (MEXT),ELT students have been designing and offering the English Village Program on a regular basis, which is a three-day English learning opportunity for young students from across the country. ELT students enjoy the privilege of trying out their own teaching techniques and materials with groups of authentic students.

Message from Program Head

Picture of Hiroki UCHIDA

When you look at English as an international language (EIL), you may soon realize that your current/future students will be more likely to communicate in English with speakers of English as a second/foreign language rather than with native speakers of the language. This implies that English teaching should focus more on training students to be speakers of EIL, which can be Japanese-like English but acceptable enough.

Fluency will be the key factor in the new phase of English education in Japan. Accuracy development should occur concurrently with fluency development. Therefore, you have to be ready to get rid of your baseless belief that students need to learn a large amount of vocabulary. In addition, obtaining good knowledge of grammar structures before speaking or writing in English is an outdated notion. For the students’ fluency development, opportunities for meaning-focused learning are indispensable, which, in fact, have been missing in many English classrooms in Japan.

To know is one thing, while it is quite another to do. As this proverb suggests, you need to be familiar with a variety of EFL/ESL theories. When our ELT program says you are familiar with a theory or teaching technique, you are supposed to not only know it, but also to be able to practice it in your classroom. This is what makes our ELT program different.

Dean and Director of the Graduate School
Head of English Language Teaching Practices

English Language Teaching Practices Faculty

Message from Alumnus

Picture of Yuko UCHIMA

“Be a student before you are a teacher.” The phrase that one of the professors in the ELT program said in class was an eye-opener to me. It explains a very fundamental perspective toward teaching students, especially for planning lessons and making materials for a class. When it comes to teaching, if we lack knowledge about theory and pedagogy, we are likely to conduct the lesson in the same way we learned from our own teachers. Prior to joining the ELT program, I also faced some difficulty with my own teaching methodology and I felt that I had reached the limits in my ability to improve my students’ English.

The ELT program provides a unique, fulfilling environment for those who want to be an expert at teaching English or brush up their teaching skills. Since in-service teachers and pre-service teachers have the opportunity to discuss and learn cooperatively, class discussion is always bursting with fresh and daring ideas, which makes the ELT students eager to learn more and broadens their perspective on teaching. While learning language teaching theory and pedagogy, graduate students also have numerous opportunities to apply what they have learned to a teaching practicum and “English Village,” a three-day program for junior and senior high school students conducted by AIU students. ELT students receive advice from professors and colleagues so that they can revise their lesson plans and improve their teaching.

After I learned how to bridge theory to practice, I started teaching both junior and senior high school students. There has not been a single day when I felt I provided my students with the perfect class. No two classes are exactly the same, therefore teaching should always evolve and change depending on the students’ needs. Indeed, teaching is challenging. The things I learned in the ELT program developed my teaching style and I find it rewarding to reflect on and revise my classes by combining theory and practice to improve students’ communicative competence in English. This program certainly lets you encounter lifelong colleagues to work with and enriches your mind to help you become a better teacher.

Yuko UCHIMA (Nationality: Japan)

2008 Mar.
Graduated from Akita International University
2012 Sep.
Enrolled in Graduate School of Global Communication and Language at AIU
2015 Mar.
Completed Master of English Language Teaching (Professional)
Taught in the EAP program at AIU
Currently teaching at Sapporo Nihon University Junior and Senior High School

Student's Voice

As an undergraduate student, I knew that I wanted to become an English teacher. I just didn't feel ready; I wanted to learn more. I asked myself if I wanted to be an English teacher or a ‘professional’ English teacher. But what does professional even mean? For me it means not only knowing the theory, but being able to put it into practice. This is what AIU’s ELT program can do for you.

Chihiro OGURA (Nationality: Japan / Undergraduate: Akita International University)

How do you improve your students’ communicative skills? The ELT program never offers you the answer to the question, but instead, provides various opportunities to think about how to identify and solve teaching problems. This will help you build the foundation for finding the answer for yourself. As an in-service teacher, I'm satisfied with the program because I can reflect on my own teaching from both theoretical and practical perspectives.

Takahiro ITO (Nationality: Japan / Undergraduate: Tokyo Gakugei University)

Being a student in the ELT program while also working as an assistant language teacher (ALT) has been challenging and incredibly rewarding. In this unique position I am able to take what I've learned from an AIU class and apply it the very next day to my own lessons. For me, this embodies the practical nature of the ELT program by broadening my perspectives and increasing my teaching toolbox with immediate results.

Zachary HYDUSIK (Nationality: U.S.A / Undergraduate: University of Vermont)

English education in Japan has been changing in order to nurture students with communicative skills in the language. As an English teacher, I have also faced lots of difficulties and sought for solutions. The ELT program offers discoveries and surprises that will transform unsatisfactory teachings styles into more effective and instructive ones. Are you satisfied with your current teaching? If not, the ELT program is the best choice for you.

Fumiya HIKICHI (Nationality: Japan / Undergraduate: Shumei University)

Picture of English Language Practices Students

Example Career after Graduation

  • Full-time English Teacher at Miyagi Prefectural Matsushima High School
  • Full-time English Teacher at Katagami Municipal Ujo Junior High School
  • Full-time English Teacher at Taki Municipal Meiwa Junior High School
  • Full-time English Teacher at Sapporo Nihon University Junior and Senior High School
  • Full-time English Teacher at The Second High School Attached to Hachinohe Institute of Technology
  • Full-time English Teacher at Shibata Municipal Shibata Higashi Junior High School
  • Full-time English Teacher at Kanagawa Prefectural Tsurumine High School
  • Full-time Lecturer at Akita International University
  • Reappointment as an English Teacher in Akita Prefecture