The Language Teacher - Issue 42.4; July 2018

Volume: 42
Issue No. 4
Date of publication: July 2018
Download PDF of complete issue:

In this month’s issue . . .

Welcome to the July/August issue of The Language Teacher! As we are near the end of the spring semester I’m sure many of you will be busy with exams and grading assignments, and I hope you will find this issue a pleasant break from all your hard work. For me, this August will be my third year as Assistant Editor on TLT, and I feel very lucky to have worked with such a fantastic team of volunteers for so long. Of course, each year the team changes a little, as new people join and some people sadly leave. This issue we’re saying goodbye to Neil Stead, who has helped us with copyediting and proofreading for over four years—longer than I’ve been on the team to know! We’ve gained two new column editors this year: Marian Hara has joined Mari Nakamura on the slightly renamed Younger Learners column and Paul Beaufait has taken over from Charles Moore on Writers’ Workshop, which is continuing the series on applying for Kaken grants. Stephen Case and Ryan Barnes have also moved from being proofreaders to co-column editors on Book Reviews and Recently Received. Such changes mean that I’ve been able to enjoy training new volunteer proofreaders again this year, and I look forward to welcoming more new people to the team soon. The relationships I get to build as part of the TLT team are definitely a highlight of my role, the other being reading all the great articles and columns in every issue.

Our Feature Articles in this issue address learner anxiety and one of its common causes—tests. First, Jonathan M. Shachter tracked student anxiety about speaking in English over one semester. He found that students became more relaxed as the course progressed, although they got more nervous before performance tasks, especially before giving individual presentations. Next, Sawako Matsugu explains how to design tests that objectively measure students’ achievement of the course goals. She emphasises the importance of creating a table of specifications as a design guide and gives examples of good and bad questions.

In Readers’ Forum, Simon Ball and Christopher Edelman explore the relationship between students’ self-efficacy, motivation, and perceived importance of English. They found that although their students perceived English to be important, their self-efficacy and motivation towards English were low. Sumie Matsuno discusses when and why students start to like or dislike English, suggesting that in Japan many students lose their motivation to study English in junior high school, and that their attitude towards English is often connected to whether they find it easy or difficult. Both articles highlight the need to raise students’ confidence in their ability to use English.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the authors, editors, column editors, copyeditors, proofreaders, and reviewers who work so hard to produce the highest quality content, and also Malcolm Swanson, whose magic touch is responsible for making it all look so good. It really does take a huge team effort to bring you TLT six times each year, and I hope all JALT members appreciate the dedication involved as you read, learn, and enjoy!

Caroline Handley, TLT Assistant Editor

TLTの2018年7/8月号へようこそ。前期もいよいよ終わりに近づき、皆様は試験や評価などでご多忙な中、この号が一息つく機会になれば幸いです。TLTのAssistant Editorとしてこの8月で3年になります。この素晴らしいボランティアグループと一緒に仕事をすることができて幸運だと思っています。もちろん、毎年新人が入ったり、残念ながら前の方が辞めたりと、構成員は変わりますが…。例えば、本号で4年以上の長きに渡り編集と校正の仕事に携わったNeil Steadが辞め、その代わりに、本年、2人の新しいコラム編集長を迎えます。まず、Marian Hara が 若干名称が変わったYounger Learners コラムのMari Nakamuraに加わり、Paul Beaufaitが科研応募のためのシリーズを続けるWriters’ Workshopの Charles Moore の仕事を引き継ぎます。Stephen Case と Ryan Barnesは、Book Reviews と Recently Receivedの校正からコラムの副編集長に変わりました。このような変更は、本年も私が新人の校正ボランティアの研修のお手伝いができるということなので、間もなく入ってくる新しいメンバーをチームに迎え入れることを楽しみにしています。各号の素晴らしい論文とコラムを読むことに加え、TLT のチームとして良い関係を築いていくことが私の役割の重要な点であることは間違いありません。

今月号のFeature Articles は、学生が一番心配なテストに代表される学生の不安感について言及しています。最初に、Jonathan M. Shachter が12週間にわたり日本人学習者のスピーキングに対する不安感を調査し、個人発表などタスク前に不安を感じる一方、授業に慣れるとともに学生はより安心感を増すという結果がでました。次に、 Sawako Matsugu がコースの目的に合った学習者の到達度を客観的に測るテスト作成方法を説明しています。Matsuguは授業で学習したユニットやトピックをバランス良く測定するためのテスト細目表の重要性を強調し、テスト項目の良い例と悪い例を提示しています。

Readers’ Forumでは、Simon Ball と Christopher Edelmanが大学生の自己評価による英語4技能の能力と、英語学習の重要性に対する認識と、英語学習に対する意欲の3つの関係性を調べています。その結果、学生は自分の将来のために英語を重要だと認識していますが、英語学習に対する意欲および自分の英語力に対する評価は低いことが分かりました。Sumie Matsuno は、生徒が英語を好きになり始めたり嫌いになり始める時期やその動機、理由について過去の研究結果を調査しています。その結果、多くが中学で意欲を失い、彼らの英語に対する態度は英語の難易度と関係するという結果が出ています。この2本のRFは、英語使用の際に学生に自信をつけさせることが重要だと述べています。

この場をお借りして、質の高いTLTを作り出すことに専心している全ての著者、編集者、コラム編集者、コピー編集者、校正者と査読者に御礼を申し上げたいと思います。そして毎回美しいJournalを皆様にお届けできるのは、一重にMalcolm Swansonの特殊能力によるものだとお伝えしたいものです。皆様にTLTを年6回お届けするのは大変な努力を要することを読者の方々にも共有して頂き、そしてTLTをお楽しみいただきたいと思います。

Caroline Handley, TLT Assistant Editor

 

Contents


The Language Teacher

Tracking and Quantifying Japanese English Language Learner Speaking Anxiety
by Jonathan M. Shachter, Kyushu Sangyo University

教室で行われるテスト問題作成の秘訣 • Tips for Item Writing for Classroom-based Tests
by 真継 左和子 Sawako Matsugu, 立教大学 Rikkyo University

Self-Efficacy, Motivation, and Perceived Importance of English as an L2 Among Japanese University Students
by Simon Ball, Ritsumeikan University; Christopher Edelman, Ritsumeikan University

Japanese Learners’ Consciousness Toward English: When Do They Begin to Like or Dislike English?
by Sumie Matsuno, Aichi Sangyo University College

Book Reviews

Final Draft Level 2
by Reviewed by Laura MacGregor, Gakushuin University

Get Set! to Learn English
by Steve T. Fukuda, Bunkyo University, JALT CUE-SIG

My Share

It’s a kind of… Explaining Japanese Culture in English
by Brett Davies, Meiji University

Using Peer Pre-check and Self-check Lists to Succeed in PowerPoint Presentations
by Yoko Ichiyama, Toho University

A Day Out!
by Alison Chan

Dice Question Rotation
by James Bury, Shumei University

An interactive, whole body approach to the traditional T/F activity
by Phoebe Lyon, Kanda University of International Studies

SIG Focus

Greetings from the SO SIG!

TLT Wired

Using Kahoot to Gamify Your Classroom
by Stephen Case, Baiko University

Old Grammarians

Great Anime/Manga Series I Missed
by Scott Gardner

Writer's Workshop

Strategies for a Successful Grant Proposal: Part Three
by Robert Cvitkovic, Tokai University; Max Praver, Meijo University

Young Learners

Getting Ready for 2020: Changes and Challenges for English Education in Public Primary Schools in Japan
by Alison K. Nemoto, Miyagi University of Education

Teaching Assistance

“Tell Us About Your Research in Three Minutes”
by David McMurray, The International University of Kagoshima

TLT Interviews

An Interview with Hugh Starkey
by Bob Ashcroft, Tokai University Sapporo

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