With over 1600 enrollments each year, the Japanese language program in the Department of Asian Studies at UBC is the largest such program in North America.

Curriculum

Our program, which comprises a diverse student body from Canada and many other countries, including new learners, learners with prior knowledge of Japanese, and heritage learners, provides students at all levels a friendly environment in which to learn Japanese and cross-cultural communication. Our courses focus on communicative competencies with an emphasis on developing reading, writing, listening and speaking skills for active use of language in real-life situations, while also raising awareness of the sociolinguistic and cultural differences between Japanese and other languages.

In addition to the core language skills, students at more advanced levels study Japanese historical, cultural and social topics in order to gain a better understanding of the country while reflecting on and evaluating their own culture for genuine cultural understanding.

 

Placement Procedure

Some students are required to take an online placement test and attend an advising session for placement purpose, while some students may proceed to register for a course appropriate for their levels without taking a placement test.

You are required to take a placement test and attend a placement advising session if you:

1) live with family members (parents, grandparents, siblings, etc.) who speak Japanese

2) have prior knowledge in Japanese language (through self study, living or studying in Japan for an extended period of time, watching dramas, anime or reading manga, novels, etc.)

3) were born in Japan and/or has attended school in Japan.

Steps:

  1. First, complete the online portion of the placement test (link here).
  2. Upon completion, attend a placement advising session.

No appointment is necessary to attend the advising session. Inquiry: JAPN.placement@ubc.ca

Date Time Location
Tuesday, January 10, 2023 3pm-5pm BUCH B307
Thursday, January 12, 2023 3pm-5pm ANGU 437
Wednesday, January 18, 2023 10am-11am, 4pm-5pm Zoom

Note:

1) To ensure that you register yourself in a course appropriate for your level, you should make every effort to attend an advising session/placement test before your registration date.

2) Although a recommendation will be given by an advisor on the advising/placement test days listed above, a student may be placed at another level at the discretion of the course instructor after classes have begun. In such a case, a space will be guaranteed in the appropriate course.

3) If you are unable to attend any advising session or take a placement exam during summer, you should try to register into a course which you think is most appropriate for your level. However, in such a case, if you are referred to another course at the discretion of the instructor at the beginning of term, a space will not be guaranteed.

4) A set of textbooks for the Japanese 100 and 200 level courses are reserved at the Asian Library for your reference. You may also consult Course Descriptions for information on textbooks.

You are NOT REQUIRED to take a placement test if you:

1) are a continuing UBC student who has successfully completed a Japanese prerequisite course may proceed to register for the next higher level

2) are a transfer student from a post-secondary institution with Japanese language transfer credits may proceed to register for the next higher level.

3) are a new student that has studied Japanese at a BC high school (add note: if you have completed Japanese 11 (not beginner Japanese 11), you may skip JAPN 100 and register for JAPN 101; if you have completed Japanese 12, you may skip JAPN 100 and JAPN 101 and register for JAPN 200/201/ or 260).

4) are a new student with no prior Japanese language background should register for JAPN 100/101 or JAPN 160.

60 minute on paper test and 10 minute interview; no appointment is necessary.

Please note that the Japanese test for language exemption is different from the placement test. Inquiry: JAPN.placement@ubc.ca

Date Time Location
Tuesday, January 10, 2023 3pm-5pm BUCH B307
Thursday, January 12, 2023 3pm-5pm ANGU 437

For all questions specifically for Japanese courses (JAPN): JAPN.placement@ubc.ca 

Emails should include your full name and student number in the title. If your inquiry is about a certain course, add the course code in the title as well. You may experience delays if the email title convention is not followed.

Please allow between 2 -5 business days before sending in another email with the same inquiry.

Students in one of the following categories are recommended to register for the following courses:

UBC Continuing Students

Students who have successfully completed a modern Japanese language course should proceed with the next level course(s). We strongly recommend taking the following pairs of courses consecutively in the same academic year:

JAPN 160/260, JAPN 100/101, JAPN 200/201, JAPN 360/361, JAPN 320/321, JAPN 322/323, JAPN 400/401.

Transfer students with Japanese language transfer credits

Based on your qualified transfer credits, enroll in the next level. Please bring a record of UBC transfer credits and your transcript for the first day of class.

New students who have studied Japanese in high school

If you have taken Japanese 9, 10 and/or introductory 11 in secondary school (in BC), please register for either JAPN 100/JAPN101 (we recommend you take both courses as a pair) or JAPN160.

If you have taken Japanese 11 in secondary school (in BC), please register for JAPN101.

If you have taken Japanese 12 in secondary school (in BC), please register for JAPN200/JAPN201 (we recommend you take both courses as a pair) or JAPN260.

New students with no prior Japanese language background

Enroll in one of our two streams of beginner courses:

Intensive: JAPN160/ JAPN260

Non-Intensive: JAPN100/JAPN101