Welcome to AKP! AKP students are automatically enrolled in the “AKP 日本語チャレンジ program” in which you try to speak only in Japanese as much as possible while you are on campus! It requires quite a bit of patience and effort, but will be good practice and will remarkably improve your fluency. Here are the basic rules of this program for the 2016 Fall Semester.
- You are supposed to speak only in Japanese as much as possible while you are on the campus of Doshisha University, including the time before classes, between classes and after classes, and lunchtime. Your AKP friends might talk to you in English, but you should stick to speaking to them in Japanese. So, the more everyone gets involved, the easier it will be to achieve it.
- When you are talking to office staff or a Japanese teacher about a complicated matter, you might feel it too difficult to speak only in Japanese. In such a case, please ask “英語で話してもいいですか？（May I speak in English?）” before you switch to English. After that discussion, you can switch back to the 日本語チャレンジmode.
- It will be ideal if you could manage the whole time on campus in Japanese, however, we will allow a few exceptions when the priority of speaking in English shall apply such as during your elective courses conducted in English (including discussions with your peers regarding course matters outside of the classroom, if necessary), when participating in some activities on campus where English or another foreign language is used as a primary communication language, and when talking to English speakers who don’t have a command of Japanese, etc.
- Every day in Japanese class, your teacher will ask you about your accomplishment of the challenge of the previous class-day, and we will keep a record accordingly.
Our initial daily goal is achievement of 50%, equivalent to a ☆, and if you achieve 70% or more, we will record ☆☆, and ☆☆☆ if you achieve 90% or more (almost perfectly), and if you claim 100％ achievement, we will count a bonus☆ (equivalent to ☆☆☆☆). As you can see, this works by the honor system based on your own claim. We will announce a couple of times this semester how you are doing so that we can encourage people who are trying hard.
Speaking only in Japanese is not easy, and is oftentimes quite frustrating. Since you are communicating in Japanese at home, too, you might get tired of it. However, it will definitely lower your resistance to speaking up in Japanese. Sometimes students even come up with interesting Japanese phrases by doing so. We hope you will enjoy the challenge and improve your fluency daily!