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.
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.
Earn an English Teaching 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.
English Village Program for Young Students
As 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.
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 (ESL/EFL) 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 should be 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.
Teaching needs both theory and experience. Any teacher would agree with this, but how many of them actually have achieved a good balance of the two?
When I started my teaching career at the age of 22, I thought actual teaching activities would make me improve more than possessing expertise in pedagogy. Gradually, however, I came to realize that I was too unskilled to teach students in terms of both my language and teaching skills. What I did was to repeat what other teachers did and to implement activities that seemed to be effective, without having any theoretical understanding as to their efficacy. After five years, considering that I needed to prepare myself for future English education, I finally made an important decision to stop working and to spend all the money I had saved on going to graduate school.
The two years I spent at AIU proved that my decision was right. All my friends in the ELT program were so kind and inspiring ̶ they helped me a lot. The professors always brought intriguing questions for us to discuss in class and gave us to-the-point feedback. Through learning in the ELT program, I became able to examine WHY my lessons are successful as well as identifying their weak points. This reflective skill has been helping me to improve my teaching, and it will until I retire. Also, all the encounters and opportunities that occurred during my AIU life encouraged me to respect human or cultural diversity and think from various perspectives, which contributes to supporting individual students with diverse personalities and individual learning traits.
As life expectancy increases, changing jobs will be more common, which will result in a growing need for recurrent education. I think that this is also the case with teachers, even if they are not going to quit their jobs. To update your knowledge and skills, if you have some teaching experience like I did, that must be your greatest strength; you can connect what you are learning with what you experienced in real teaching contexts. In addition, you can be a good model for your future students, exemplifying the value of recurrent education. I believe that one of the significant roles of education is preparing students for what they can experience and create in their future. You can be the one who will put this in practice with confidence backed by theory and experience.
The ELT program has given me more experience with the English language and the knowledge to improve my classroom practice. The more I learn about teaching English, the more interested in it I become. This has led me to the realization that learning is a lifelong process. I would like to share the joy of learning English and of learning in general with my future students.
The ELT program provides you with a precious opportunity to develop, broaden, and deepen not only your teaching philosophy, knowledge, and techniques, but also academic perspectives, active research skills, and the connection with other scientific fields, all of which should lead you to be professional English teachers. Join us and see your potential as an educator expand through the program.
Going to graduate school is not a requirement to be a teacher in Japan. However, I believe that going to graduate school enables us to become more skillful educators. In the ELT program at AIU, I am able to learn important theories about education, which I did not have a chance to learn about before. Not only that, but I can also put those theories into practice to see what will work best in a real classroom setting. I am sure that my experiences at AIU will help me to be a better teacher.
“Teaching is always for students.” This idea was an abstract concept for me before joining the ELT program, but I have gradually come to understand how to achieve this goal. Aspects such as how to effectively do class introductions and wrap-ups, as well as how to give instructions and feedback, should all be taken into careful consideration. Thanks to the courses in this program, I familiarized myself with various pedagogical theories, which enhance my skills in these aspects and will surely inform my future teaching.
Full-time Engish Teaching Positions at Junior/Senior High School
Full-time English Teaching Positions at University Level
Reappointment as an English Teacher in Akita Prefecture