Russian-Japanese Tandem Learning

Tandem Learning is a method of foreign language which has been garnering more and more attention recently.  In tandem learning, participants pair up with someone who speaks the language they are studying, and in turn help their partner to practice the language they speak.  For example, as in the Russian-Japanese tandem learning program, Japanese students who were studying Russian were paired up with Russian students who were studying Japanese.  Through tandem learning, participants can hone their skills in a number of different areas, including listening, speaking, compiling, write, and so forth.  In contrast to a traditional classroom, where there is a hierarchical relationship between teacher and students, in tandem learning the participants learn from each other on the basis of equality.  This allows participants to use their target language in a more frank and intimate way. 

 Thirty Russian students, from six universities in Russia, cooperated in the two-week Russo-Japanese Business Summer School short-term study program, which has been held since 2018.  In this program, participants learned about Japan through International Japan Studies classes which were taught in Russian, and studied Japanese through Russian-Japanese tandem learning.  Introduction of tandem learning in the summer program served as the springboard for tandem learning between Japanese students studying Russian at TUFS and Russian exchange students studying Japanese at TUFS during the regular academic year; this is particularly valuable as a means of allowing students to experience language learning outside the classroom.