On 29th November 2014, the Japan Foundation London in conjunction with the British Association for Teaching Japanese as a foreign language (BATJ) held a seminar on using JF Standard as an assessment tool in Japanese language education. This was led by Mayumi Mitsuya, Japanese Language Senior Specialist at Japanese Cultural Institute, the Japan Foundation Rome, and was attended by approximately 20 teachers.
In the first part of the seminar, Mitsuya-sensei and the participants looked at different tests for assessing competence in accomplishing tasks, and examined what should assessed and by what criteria. This was followed by a workshop in which participants considered simple exam questions for measuring competence in accomplishing tasks and created a rubric to assess them. Participants also discussed what kinds of assessment can be used in their own classes and what form this assessment can take.
All the participants found the seminar helpful to their teaching strategies. Some of their comments included:
(“I’m currently teaching with the Marugoto textbooks and needed to establish a form of assessment so this workshop was really useful. There were plenty of ideas that I feel I could use straight away.”)
(“I didn’t actually know much about JF Standard previously but now I feel that I really understand it. “)
(“It was really useful to be able to discuss the difference between language activities and assessing language competence based on examples of actual students’ work.”)
We would like to thank Mitsuya-sensei for her enlightening talk, and all our participants for coming and their enthusiastic contribution to the discussions.