Readdressing EFL approaches: CLIL curriculum in a Japanese medical university context

| December 4, 2013
Readdressing EFL approaches: CLIL curriculum in a Japanese medical university context

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Chad L. Godfrey
Saitama Medical University

Chad Godfrey is an assistant professor at Saitama Medical University, where he teaches CLIL, presentation skills and foreign exchange programs. He has a master’s degree in applied linguistics from the University of Birmingham, and has been an educator in Japan for over 12 years. He is currently interested in researching CLIL methodology in a Japanese context, and gender-based language differences particularly related to the field of medicine.
Universities in Japan are searching for practical approaches to improve their EFL programs.Content and language integrated learning (CLIL) is one approach that has shown potential for both improving language learning and cognition. However, despite CLIL’s positive outcomes, disjuncture – or “a tension between one’s current way of doing things and a new approach” (Mehisto, 2008, p.93) – can occur when implementing the program. Nevertheless, the author believes that the successes of adopting a CLIL program outweigh the problems that can surfaced in balancing content and language instruction and CLIL’s 4Cs – content, communication, cognition and culture. In this paper, I will briefly share how our university has explored better learning through CLIL and the issues involved in adopting a CLIL approach to language learning. First, I will discuss the rationale for adopting a CLIL-based curriculum. This will be followed by presenting the early stages of implementation and the adjustments that were made. Following this, a discussion about revisiting the 4Cs of the CLIL program will be addressed. In the final section, the implications this program may have for other CLIL teachers in Asia will be summarized.
[private] Pages 365-371

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Category: Curriculum Contexts, Volume 15 Issue 4