The English Discussion Center at Rikkyo University was established in 2010 in order to implement an innovative English Discussion Program with the purpose of developing and enhancing the English communication ability necessary for the global international community. Our program is characterized by three features: first, small class sizes (roughly 8 students per class); second, developing and enhancing English communication ability through active learning; and third, an original curriculum unified across all of its instructors in its aims, principles, and methods. The program's innovative design attracted strong attention when it was first launched. Now, as a firmly established course, it still does so owing to an active process of review and refinement.
The main goal of our Center is to help our students learn how to participate effectively in English discussion, and thus provide them with confidence in English communication. Another goal is to contribute to the development of English education through the improvement of our English Discussion program.
Director, Center for English Discussion Class
● January 7, 2019
Recruitment for English Instructors position is now closed.
Since its foundation, Rikkyo University has created and maintained a reputation for excellence in English education. In the past decade, we have also played a leading role in reforming English language education in Japan, by promoting intercultural awareness and communicative language learning.
In April of 2010, we implemented an innovative English education curriculum. The university-wide English language curriculum for first-year students aims to equip them with university-level English skills so that they can collect information and express their opinions in English. This is divided into two streams – the regular course and the advanced course.
The regular course includes the following mandatory English classes:
The advanced course includes the following mandatory English classes:
In April of 2010, we implemented an innovative English education curriculum. Central to this was the creation of the English Discussion Class, a class of about eight students, which all freshman students are required to take.
Bishop Williams, the founder of Rikkyo University, is said to have begun Rikkyo with just eight students. We therefore believe that our micro discussion classes are a return to the founding spirit of our university, and will serve to strengthen the long-standing association of Rikkyo with successful English language learning.
The English Discussion Class encourages students to cultivate and express their opinions in English. What makes our program stand out is that the micro discussion classes are required of all first year students, meeting once a week for 100 minutes over two semesters. The class provides students with a unique opportunity to develop their communication skills. It is the first attempt among Japanese universities to offer such a communicative course as part of the general, compulsory English curriculum for all students regardless of their majors.
English Discussion instructors follow our unified syllabus and instructor handbook. The syllabus is topic-based, focusing on themes such as education, human rights, language, gender, and the environment. These topics are supported by the integration of language functions and communication skills. Students are divided into four levels based upon an English-language placement test, and the syllabus is designed to reflect the difference in students’ levels.