Critical thinking skills and Japanese as a second language reading textbooks

Thumbnail Image
Nitsu, Nobuko
University of Lethbridge. Faculty of Education
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Lethbridge, Alta. : University of Lethbridge, Faculty of Education, 2004
This study examines aspects of teaching reading in Japanese as a Second Language (JSL) in Japan. The objective of the study is to draw implications for helping JSL students to acquire critical reading skills that are essential for university studies. Examined are selected characteristics of eight JSL reading textbooks commonly used in preliminary courses for Japanese universities. Two major fmdings emerge. First, the texts reveal a preference for exercises and questions that overwhelmingly address superficial aspects of both the content of the text and its linguistic elements. Second, elements of critical analysis are virtually absent in the texts. The study concludes that, to make progress in teaching critical reading skills in JSL classrooms, teachers will need to reflect deliberately on their reading style, making an effort to view texts critically. Beyond that, textbook authors will need to revise substantially their suggested exercises by downplaying rote comprehension and accenting analysis and interpretation.
vi, 63 leaves ; 29 cm. --
Reading -- Research -- Japan , Japanese language -- Study and teaching -- Japan , Reading -- Japan , Critical thinking -- Japan , Japanese language -- Readers