Contact a Humanities Office or Academic unit.
Find your course outlines.


Academic Year: Spring/Summer 2014

Term: 3

Day/Evening: D

Instructor: Dr. Tsuneko Iwai


Office: Togo Salmon Hall 623

Phone: 905-525-9140 x 24940

Office Hours: Tuesday & Thursday, 4:30-5:30pm

Course Objectives:

This course aims to provide you with basic spoken and written discourse skills in Japanese. Acquisition of elementary grammar, kana/kanji scripts, and oral communication skills will be emphasized. As language is to a large extent shaped by culture, aspects of Japanese people and their culture will also be discussed in the context of language learning. You will learn hiragana and katakana, in addition to about 100kanji in this course. We will cover the first 9 lessons of the textbook, Genki I, and present material according to the lesson plan which you will find on Avenue. The internet has a vast array of things to read in Japanese, as well as texts accompanied by sound, on-line dictionaries, some interactive pedagogical material, and kanji learning tools. You are encouraged to access and utilize these materials.


Textbooks, Materials & Fees:


1. Banno, Eri, et. al. Genki I Japan Times, 2011 (Main Text)

2. Banno, Eri, et. al Genki I Japan Times, 2011 (Workbook)

3. Banno, Eri, et. al. Genki I Japan Times, 2011 (Accompanying CDs)



1. Oxford Starter Dictionary.

*2. Furigana Japanese-English Dictionary (Kodansha).

*3. Furigana English-Japanese Dictionary (Kodansha).

* These are recommended, in lieu of item 1, for those students who plan to continue

to study at higher levels.

4 Basic Kanji Book Vol. 1 (Bonjinsha)

Method of Assessment:

All classes are conducted by the instructor. There are two three-hour classes per week. The first hour of each class is lecture. Students will be introduced to new vocabulary and grammatical points of each chapter of the textbook. Kana and Kanji will be introduced also during lecture hour. Next two hours are tutorial class. During tutorial hours students will be given both oral and aural exercises, and are expected to participate fully in every class activity. You will be working primarily in cooperatively structured groups during these hours. Your instructor will use Japanese for instruction except when it is necessary for clarification of grammar points or administrative matters after a few weeks of the commencement of the course, so it is important that you learn useful classroom expressions at the beginning of the course. During tutorial hours, your newly acquired skills will be reinforced through a series of writing/speaking exercises.


A variety of audiovisual/multimedia materials will be used in class and students will also have access these materials through AVENUE.



1. Attendance in lectures and tutorial classes is mandatory as language learning

requires constant reinforcement and interaction with your instructor and classmates.

2. Participation in all class activities and full attention. Cooperation with other students

is fully expected.

3. Workbook homework to be submitted at the beginning of class as shown on the class

schedule. No late submissions will be accepted except in case of emergencies such as

illness substantiated by MSAF or a medical certificate.

4. A five-min. mini-quiz to be written at the beginning of each class.

5. One in-class assignment per week to be performed in class.

6. Two tests to be written as indicated in the schedule.

7. Midterm exam to be written in June.

8. Final exam to be written in August.

9. Listening to the CDs for the week's activities before and after class.

10. Regular review of lecture notes and other course material is mandatory.


Please note:

-There will be no reminder about quizzes/tests/exams/assignments and class activities in class. It is the individual student’s responsibility to check the Avenue regularly and make sure not to miss due dates for assignments or to show up prepared for MQ/tests/exams.

-An unexplained absence from any quiz/tests/exams and assignments will result in a score of zero.

-No make up assignment/MQ/tests/exams will be given except in case of emergencies such as

illness substantiated by a MSAF or medical certificate.



The breakdown of your final grade is as follows:

1. Attendance/class participation 10%

2. In-class assignments 5%

3. Workbook homework 5%

4. Mini quizzes 5%

5. Tests 25% (1st 10% & 2nd 15%)

7. Midterm exam 20%

8. Final exam 30%


Attendance of tutorials and lectures is mandatory and attendance will be taken at every class. For your attendance marks, the following ranges apply:

80-100% missing not more than 6 hours of total class hours (3 hours each term)

50-70% missing not more than 12 hours (6 hours each term)

10-40% missing not more than 18 hours (9 hours each term)

*More than 18 hours of absence will automatically result in attendance grade of 0%.

*If you are late twice, or leave early twice, it is regarded as one absence.


Policy on Missed Work, Extensions, and Late Penalties:

McMaster Student Absence Form (MSAF)

This is a self-reporting tool for undergraduate students to report absences DUE TO MINOR MEDICAL SITUATIONS that last up to 5 days and provides the ability to request accommodation for any missed academic work. Please note, this tool cannot be used during any final examination period. You may submit a maximum of 1 Academic Work Missed request per term. It is YOUR responsibility to follow up with your Instructor immediately (NORMALLY WITHIN TWO WORKING DAYS) regarding the nature of the accommodation. If you are absent for reasons other than medical reasons, for more than 5 days, or exceed 1 request per term, you MUST visit your Associate Dean's Office/Faculty Office). You may be required to provide supporting documentation. This form should be filled out immediately when you are about to return to class after your absence.

Please Note the Following Policies and Statements:

Academic Dishonesty

You are expected to exhibit honesty and use ethical behaviour in all aspects of the learning process. Academic credentials you earn are rooted in principles of honesty and academic integrity.

Academic dishonesty is to knowingly act or fail to act in a way that results or could result in unearned academic credit or advantage. This behaviour can result in serious consequences, e.g. the grade of zero on an assignment, loss of credit with a notation on the transcript (notation reads: "Grade of F assigned for academic dishonesty"), and/or suspension or expulsion from the university.

It is your responsibility to understand what constitutes academic dishonesty. For information on the various types of academic dishonesty please refer to the Academic Integrity Policy, located at

The following illustrates only three forms of academic dishonesty:

  1. Plagiarism, e.g. the submission of work that is not one’s own or for which other credit has been obtained.
  2. Improper collaboration in group work.
  3. Copying or using unauthorized aids in tests and examinations.

Email correspondence policy

It is the policy of the Faculty of Humanities that all email communication sent from students to instructors (including TAs), and from students to staff, must originate from each student’s own McMaster University email account. This policy protects confidentiality and confirms the identity of the student.  Instructors will delete emails that do not originate from a McMaster email account.

Modification of course outlines

The University reserves the right to change dates and/or deadlines etc. for any or all courses in the case of an emergency situation or labour disruption or civil unrest/disobedience, etc. If a modification becomes necessary, reasonable notice and communication with the students will be given with an explanation and the opportunity to comment on changes. Any significant changes should be made in consultation with the Department Chair.

McMaster Student Absence Form (MSAF)

In the event of an absence for medical or other reasons, students should review and follow the Academic Regulation in the Undergraduate Calendar Requests for Relief for Missed Academic Term Work. Please note these regulations have changed beginning Fall 2015. You can find information at If you have any questions about the MSAF, please contact your Associate Dean's office.

Academic Accommodation of Students with Disabilities

Students who require academic accommodation must contact Student Accessibility Services (SAS) to make arrangements with a Program Coordinator. Academic accommodations must be arranged for each term of study. Student Accessibility Services can be contacted by phone 905-525-9140 ext. 28652 or e-mail For further information, consult McMaster University's Policy for Academic Accommodation of Students with Disabilities.

Academic Accommodation for Religious, Indigenous and Spiritual Observances

Students requiring academic accommodation based on religion and spiritual observances should follow the procedures set out in the Course Calendar or by their respective Faculty. In most cases, the student should contact his or her professor or academic advisor as soon as possible to arrange accommodations for classes, assignments, tests and examinations that might be affected by a religious holiday or spiritual observance.