ELI Lecturer Brian Morrison published the following article:
Morrison, B.R. (2012). Learning lessons: Implementing the Autonomy Approach. IATEFL 2011Conference Selections, pp. 73-75. Canterbury: IATEFL.
Japanese education policy ensures that upon graduating from high school, 18-year-olds will have studied English for six years. If they have done well, they will have learned the vocabulary and grammar taught to them in class and this knowledge will have been applied successfully in gap-fill tests. Students who have gained high grades have thrived within this system. Kanda University, which specializes in languages, receives new undergraduates every year who have been successful in this way. However, the English-only policy in this institute’s English language classes, assessment of skills rather than of traditional grammar and vocabulary tests, and the greater independence expected of students can create a challenge for those who find the strategies that worked so well at high school are no longer fit for purpose. In recognition of this, the university promotes out-of-class learning with a purpose-built self-access centre, discussion areas, a writing centre, a practice centre and full-time learning advisors offering self-access learner-training courses and consultations. In 2010-11 a new elective taught course was piloted in an attempt to support students to become more effective language learners.