Transformative Effect of Reading Activities on Critical Incident Scenarios in Fostering Cultural Empathy (76083)

Session Information: Foreign Languages Education & Applied Linguistics
Session Chair: Chandra Mohan Vasudeva Panicker

Saturday, 25 November 2023 10:25
Session: Session 1
Room: Room F (Live Stream)
Presentation Type: Live-Stream Presentation

All presentation times are UTC + 9 (Asia/Tokyo)

In response to the evolving political and social landscape of the 21st century, foreign language (FL) programs within US colleges have undergone a significant paradigm shift. The focus has transitioned from proficiency across skills to “transformation”. A key avenue through which this transformation can be achieved lies in FL classrooms, where the cultivation of "cultural empathy" is being pursued. However, this integration of language studies and cultural content, designed to stimulate self-reflection, critical analysis, and emotional engagement, presents notable challenges, particularly at introductory levels and in the context of Japanese as a Foreign Language (JFL) environment, due to learners' limited linguistic abilities, educators' hesitancy to use L1, and the lack of target-culture communities. To address this, the teacher-researcher conducted a project in an Elementary Japanese course: exploring students' transformation towards increased cultural empathy through a two-step exercise involving reading scenarios in Japanese and subsequently composing reflections and discussions in English. The reading materials, aligned with the textbook content (family dynamics, dining etiquette, gender roles, and punctuality), explored value conflicts between Japanese people and individuals from different cultures. Qualitative thematic analysis of student reflections using MAXQDA (2022) revealed discernible patterns and outcomes. Notably, perspective transformation surfaced, especially in the context of punctuality. While the activity might not wholly transform students, it serves as a gateway to cultivating fundamental cultural empathy skills. Despite the limitations of this case study, it indicates that scenario reading and discussion could effectively foster both FL skills and cultural empathy without the risk of real-world consequences.

Minami Hyodo, Emory University, United States

About the Presenter(s)
Ms Minami Hyodo is a University Postdoctoral Fellow or Instructor at Emory University in United States

See this presentation on the full scheduleSaturday Schedule

Conference Comments & Feedback

Place a comment using your LinkedIn profile


Share on activity feed

Powered by WP LinkPress

Share this Presentation

Posted by Clive Staples Lewis

Last updated: 2023-02-23 23:45:00