ROBERT HORST TAFERNER

Last Updated :2024/06/04

Affiliations, Positions
Graduate School of Humanities and Social Sciences, Associate Professor
E-mail
rhtafernhiroshima-u.ac.jp

Basic Information

Educational Backgrounds

  • University of Waterloo, Canada, 1983/09, 1987/09
  • School for International Training, U.S.A., 1997/06, 2001/05
  • Lancaster University, Department of Linguistics and Modern English Language, Applied Linguistics, England, 2004, 2014

Academic Degrees

  • Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT-TESOL), School for International Training

Research Fields

  • Humanities;Linguistics;English linguistics

Research Keywords

  • Pragmatics, L2 Writing, Second Language Acquisition, Task-Based Language Teaching, Psycholinguistics

Affiliated Academic Societies

  • American Association for Applied Linguistics (AAAL)
  • European Second Language Association (EUROSLA)
  • Japan Association for Language Teachers (JALT)
  • Japan-Second Language Acquisition (J-SLA)
  • Japanese Association for College English Teachers (JACET)
  • Teaching English as a Second or Other Language (TESOL)

Educational Activity

Course in Charge

  1. 2024, Liberal Arts Education Program1, 1Term, CommunicationIA
  2. 2024, Liberal Arts Education Program1, 2Term, CommunicationIA
  3. 2024, Liberal Arts Education Program1, 3Term, Communication IIA
  4. 2024, Liberal Arts Education Program1, 4Term, Communication IIA
  5. 2024, Liberal Arts Education Program1, 4Term, Contemporary World Issues
  6. 2024, Undergraduate Education, 2Term, Pragmatics
  7. 2024, Undergraduate Education, 4Term, Academic Writing I
  8. 2024, Undergraduate Education, 4Term, Academic Writing II
  9. 2024, Undergraduate Education, 2Term, Special English Training for Studying Abroad
  10. 2024, Undergraduate Education, 3Term, Invitation to Integrated Global Studies II
  11. 2024, Undergraduate Education, Year, Graduation Thesis
  12. 2024, Undergraduate Education, 1Term, Psycholinguistics I
  13. 2024, Undergraduate Education, 2Term, Psycholinguistics II
  14. 2024, Graduate Education (Master's Program) , 2Term, Special Lecture of Humanities and Social Sciences(English Class) Students enrolled before AY 2023
  15. 2024, Graduate Education (Master's Program) , 2Term, Special Lecture of Humanities and Social Sciences(English Class) Students enrolling in AY 2024 or later
  16. 2024, Graduate Education (Master's Program) , 1Term, Second Language Acquisition with a Psycholinguistic Approach

Award of Education

  1. 2022/03/11, OXFORD EMI TRAINING, Oxford University
  2. 2019/06/23, Advanced Communicator Bronze, Toastmasters International
  3. 2019/06/22, Advanced Leader Bronze, Toastmasters International
  4. 2016/05/06, Competent Leader, Toastmasters International
  5. 2016/07/06, Competent Communicator, Toastmasters International

Research Activities

Academic Papers

  1. ★, The effects of instruction on intermediate JLE’s prepositional accuracy: An exploratory study, Studies in European and American Cultures, 22, 19-36, 201512
  2. ★, Pedagogical implications of effective corrective feedback on L2 writing: A longitudinal examination of articles and prepositions, JALT2014 Conference Proceedings, 535-546, 201508
  3. ★, Corrective feedback for second language acquisition: A research and practice perspective, SLWIS Newsletter, September 2014
  4. Influence of written corrective feedback on the interlanguage development of prepositions for pre-intermediate EFL students, JASELE2014 Conference Proceedings, 304-305, 2014
  5. LD SIG forum: Transitions in the lives of learners and teachers, JALT2013 Conference Proceedings, 48-60, 201408
  6. Persistency of morpheme acquisition sequence in contrast to oral metalinguistic explanations and direct written correct feedback for Japanese EFL learners, Proceedings of ALAK (Applied Linguistics Association Korea), 311-316, 2013
  7. ★, Influence of text length on reading fluency of intermediate EFL students, JALT2012 Conference Proceedings, 603-612, 201308
  8. Effects of explicit instruction on the semantic role of English sentence subject: A case of Japanese EFL learners, The 11th Annual Hawaii International Conference on Education 2013, 1129-1143, 2013
  9. ★, Influence of written corrective feedback on intermediate level L2 writing for second language development, The 11th Annual Hawaii International Conference on Education 2013, 2154-2177, 2013
  10. ★, Adapting timed reading materials for the Japanese EFL classroom, Practical English Papers. Yokohama: Yokohama City University, Practical English Center., 1, 50-67, 2012
  11. Global issues for the EFL classroom., JALT2010 Conference Proceedings, 281-292, 201108
  12. Earth Report: Nepal—Crafting a Way, TESOL Resource Center, 2011
  13. Introduction to Nobel Laureates—Achieving Important Goals, TESOL Resource Center., 2011
  14. Book review of Topic Talk 2nd Edition, The Language Teacher, 34(5), 47-48, 2010
  15. Teaching-learning dialogue: Sharing ideas and resources, JALT2009 Conference Proceedings, 576-588, 201008
  16. Feature Article, Nobelity for the classroom, Global Issues in Language Educators Newsletter (GILE-SIG, JALT), 75, 10-13, 201004
  17. ★, L2 learners’ acquisition of the preposition to: Prototypical and polysemous features, Studies in Human Sciences, Bulletin of the Graduate School of Integrated Arts and Sciences 1, 2016, Hiroshima University, 11, 2016
  18. Effects of explicit instruction on high frequency single-word prepositions, Proceedings of PacSLRF 2016, 201-206, 20170315
  19. Book review of Cambridge Academic English: Upper Intermediate, The Language Teacher, 43(3), 37-39, 20190501
  20. ★, Book review of Cross-linguistic similarity in foreign language learning, The Language Teacher, 31(9), 26-28, 20070901
  21. Book review of Thoughts into writing, The Language Teacher, 30(4), 29-30, 20060401
  22. Book review of Sound Bytes 1: Listening for today's World, The Language Teacher, 28(12), 47-48, 20041201
  23. Conversation topics, phonological and grammar support, and communication strategies for Japanese EFL student, Practical English Papers, Vol. 2. Unpublished manuscript. Yokohama: Yokohama City University, Practical English Center., 2, 2013
  24. ★, Feature Article, Study skills and strategies within the academic EFL context in Japan, OnCUE Journal, 3(3), 20-47, 2009
  25. LD SIG forum: Transitions in the lives of learners and teachers., JALT2013 Conference Proceedings, 311-316
  26. Persistency of morpheme acquisition sequence in contrast to oral metalinguistic explanations and direct written correct feedback for Japanese EFL learners., Proceedings of ALAK (Applied Linguistics Association Korea, 311-316
  27. Global issues for the EFL classroom, JALT2010 Conference Proceedings, 281-292
  28. EFL process writing in Japan: Optimizing corrective feedback., Teaching academic English in the Japanese context: Issues, prospects and practices, 127-145
  29. The Nobelity project, The Language Teacher, 33(4), 28-29
  30. Attitudes toward peer collaboration within the EFL writing context in Japan, JALT2008 Conference Proceedings, 1117-1125
  31. GILE SIG forum: Sharing ideas, lessons, and resources, JALT2008 Conference Proceedings, 970-983
  32. Students’ perceptions of teacher feedback and peer review within the Japanese university EFL context, Society of English Language Teaching, SELT, 7, 31-48
  33. ★, Feature Article, Toward effective EFL writing revision: Peer review, College and University Educators OnCUE Journal, 2(2), 76-91
  34. Personal journey to discovering student needs, Junior/ Senior High School National Special Interest Group (JALT N-SIG), 12(2), 3-8
  35. ★, Special 4 skills feature issue, The Language Teacher, 28(12), 1-2
  36. ★, Teaching issues and insights in Japanese high school, School for International Training
  37. Teaching techniques for child-centered learning (Workshop Review), Teaching Children N-SIG, (JALT)
  38. ★, Complications in the L2 Acquisition of the Simple Spatial Prepositions in and on: Crosslinguistic Differences in Image Schema and Family Resemblance, Journal of Second Language Studies, 3(1), 159-172, 20200401
  39. ★, UTILIZING SCHEMATIC INTEGRATIONS TO ENHANCE THE DEVELOPMENT OF SPATIAL PREPOSITIONS: THE CASE OF IN AND ON FOR VEHICLES, TESOL International: AL Forum Newsletter, 20200301
  40. ★, The Grammar Story: Investigating the Staged Acquisition of L2 Grammar Through Processability Theory, Mind Brain Ed Think Tank+, 6(11), 34-39, 20201101
  41. ★, Crosslinguistic Image Schema Differential Hypothesis Clarifies Non-Prototypical and Polysemous Spatial Preposition 'on' for L2 Learners, Cognitive Semantics, 7, 114-134, 2021

Publications such as books

  1. 2009, Earth Report: Hands On for the Classroom, BBC Earth Report Environmental Issues for Discussion, Self-published classroom textbook, 2009, Report, Single work, English
  2. 2009, Nobelity for the Classroom, Nobel Laureate, Self-published classroom textbook, 2009, Textbook, Single work, English
  3. 1993, Report on the Health Hazards and Risk Assessment of Landfill and Incineration practices, as it effects the Canadian population, Health Hazards Risk Assessment Landfill Incineration practices, 1993, Book(general), Joint work, English
  4. 1991, Development of a National Database of Background Levels of Contaminants for the National Contaminated Sites Remediation Program, National Database of Background Levels of Contaminants National Contaminated Sites Remediation Program, Book(general), Joint work, English, Environment Canada, Environment Canada
  5. 1990, Report No. 90-5: Waste Management Guidelines and Waste Data Sheets for Petroleum Marketing Operations, Waste Management Guidelines Waste Data Sheets Petroleum Marketing Operations, Canadian Petroleum Products Institute (Petroleum Association for the Protection of the Canadian Environment), Ontario, Canada, 1990, October, Book(general), Joint work, English
  6. 1990, Report No. 90-10: Waste Management Guidelines and Waste Data Sheets for Petroleum Marketing Operations, Waste Management Guidelines Waste Data Sheets Petroleum Marketing Operations, Canadian Petroleum Products Institute (Petroleum Association for the Protection of the Canadian Environment), Ontario, Canada, 1990, October, Book(general), Joint work, English

Invited Lecture, Oral Presentation, Poster Presentation

  1. What makes English prepositions difficult for second language learners? Establishing features of semantic complexity for the development of an effective teaching approach, 16th Annual CamTESOL Conference on English Language Teaching: 21st Century ELT: Approaches for Effective Practices, 2020/02/09, Without Invitation, English, CamTESOL, Institute of Technology Cambodia (ITC), The explicit teaching of English prepositions to L2 learners is one of the greatest challenges in the classroom (e.g., Jamrozik & Gentner, 2014; Mandler & Cánovas, 2014; Shintani, Mori & Ohmori, 2016). How to provide successful instruction to learners with various L1 backgrounds requires an understanding of spatial, temporal, and abstract prepositional crosslinguistic knowledge for the development of effective learning materials for the classroom. To support ongoing research in this area, 29 intermediate-level participants from a Japanese university illustrate difficult common prepositions, prepositional phrases, and metaphors they encounter through a usage-based elicitation task. This elicitation task shows English sentences that are problematic, a Likert scale survey representing sentence difficulty, and participants' sketches representing their sentences. The results show metacognitive understanding (44%), semantic complexity (31%), semantic comprehension (21%), and frequency of use (4%) responsible for the difficulty of the 421 response items. Semantic complexity in particular shows that participants require explicit clarification for the enhancement of prototypical, polysemous, and abstract usages of in, on, at, by, from, and to. This presentation will summarize and discuss the results and implications of this study and forward future research objectives focusing on the development of effective approaches for the L2 classroom.
  2. Administration of usage-based elicitation tasks to establish features of semantic complexity to develop an effective approach to understanding spatial and temporal prepositions, 16th Annual CamTESOL Conference on English Language Teaching: 21st Century ELT: Approaches for Effective Practices, 2020/02/08, Without Invitation, English, CamTESOL, Institute of Technology Cambodia (ITC), The acquisition of adpositions for L2 learners is one of the most difficult features to master in any language (e.g., Evans & Tyler, 2005; Munnich & Landau, 2010; Johannes, Wilson, & Landau, 2016). Understanding the differences in how languages depict spatial and temporal relationships effect learners' ability to comprehend and ultimately utilize in conversation and written discourse is essential for cognitive linguists to investigate. To understand the problems L2 learners have when learning English prepositions, 29 intermediate-level Japanese university students (representative of L2 learners) show the difficulty they have with prepositions through an elicitation task collecting open-ended English sentences. Japanese translations of those sentences, a seven-point Likert scale indicating sentence level difficulty, and participants' sketches representing the sentences establish the range of issues learners contend with. Analysis of the results reveal a lack of metacognitive understanding (44%), semantic complexity (31%), comprehension (21%), and usage frequency (4%) responsible for the difficulty of the 421 response items. Semantic complexity in particular shows that participants require explicit clarification for the enhancement of prototypical, polysemous, and abstract usages of in, on, at, by, from, and to. This presentation will summarize and discuss the results and implications of this study and forward future research objectives.
  3. Investigation of English Spatial Prepositions In
and On by Asian Learners through Contrastive Analysis, Schematic Integration, and L1 
Transfer, 58th JACET International Convention (Nagoya, 2019) Theme: Beyond ‘Borderless’: English Education in a Changing Society, 2019/08/28, Without Invitation, English, JACET, Nagoya Institute of Technology, This study forwards that a contrastive analysis of integrated schematic features (see Mandler & Pagan-Canovas, 2014) is an innovative approach for the analysis of adpositions (preposition and postposition particles) and provides an answer to the question why the English spatial prepositions in and on in certain contexts are exceedingly difficult for Japanese and other Asian L2 learners to acquire. This phenomenon was investigated with 55 1st-year university students ranging from 18 to 19 years of age. The participants were divided into native Japanese (n = 36) with an average TOEIC score of 682.2 (SD = 102.3) and 19 non-native Japanese students (842, SD = 116). The cloze-test used in this study to evaluate participants prepositional knowledge required them to write an answer in the blank provided in a sentence, complete a self-evaluation of their learning experiences, and indicate the confidence level of their response for each test item. The most surprising finding in this study is that nearly all participants failed to use the high-frequency prepositions in and on in relatively common phrases successfully, and L1 transfer was highly evident regardless of the learners’ English proficiency levels or language backgrounds. This result is contradictory to our general expectation that overall English proficiency correlates highly with proficiency in preposition usage (e.g., Oller & Inal, 1971) and the common assumption that L1 transfer decreases with increasing L2 proficiency (e.g., Jarvis, 2000, p. 246). Furthermore, the results imply that we need to pay more attention to the schematic features of the figures (i.e., cracks, pain, and scar) than those of the ground (i.e., wall, arm, and face). This presentation will facilitate a critical discussion of why schematic features of some spatial nouns are not consciously available to L2 learners and suggest that explicit instruction including schematic integration is needed to support classroom pedagogy.
  4. The Effects of Conceptual and Semantic Crosslinguistic Influence in Explicit L2 Instruction of Temporal Adpositions, 15th International Cognitive Linguistics Conference (ICLC-15) Cross-Linguistic Perspectives on Cognitive Linguistics, 2019/08/09, Without Invitation, English, Kwansei Gakuin University, Nishinomiya, Japan, This study investigates the correlation between general language proficiency and explicit knowledge of English temporal prepositions and the effects of crosslinguistic conceptual and semantic influence in second language instruction. Temporal adpositions (e.g., English prepositions of time and Japanese post-position particles) have shown to be one of the most difficult aspects of language acquisition. Thus, there is a clear need to examine and understand the effects of explicit instruction of temporal prepositions to improve pedagogical approaches for enhancement of second language learning (Jarvis & Pavlenko, 2008; Jarvis, 2011; Suzuki & DeKeyser, 2017). To accomplish these research objectives, a study with 86 1st-year Japanese university students was initiated to promote the usage of nine frequent one-word prepositions of time: at, by, for, from, in, of, on, to, and within, with two experimental treatment groups: ParticipantsLow (n = 35) and ParticipantsHigh (n = 35), and a comparison Control group (n = 16). Accuracy of temporal prepositions was promoted through focus on form treatment exercises including visual representations of the scenes depicted in the treatment items. Pretest, immediate post-test, and delayed post-test results were examined in order to scrutinize the hypothesis that as a second language develops, general language proficiency and prepositional accuracy can develop concurrently. The second hypothesis this study proposes is that the effects of instruction on prepositions of time, as revealed by the grammar test, are constrained by differences in the influence of crosslinguistic conceptual and semantic features, which may be revealed through the observation of crosslinguistic influences, discrepancies in developmental-accuracy orders, and individual differences. The results show a significant lack of correlation between participants’ language proficiency scores and their ability to understand temporal prepositions. Improvements in explicit knowledge due to the treatment were maintained and statistically significant for the experimental treatment groups. In particular, gains in accuracy of to for expressing the endpoint, duration, or the beginning of another event could be easily represented by the use of the Japanese post-position particle made. Another outcome of this study was the further confirmation that conceptual and semantic influences of Japanese particles (for example ni, see Kabata, 2016) play a significant role in approximating correct usages of English prepositions; e.g., utilizing ni (a specific point in time) for at, in, and on (indicating a specific point in time within a time continuum). The implications of this investigation illustrate that the learning of adpositions may be seen as a distinct cognitive area not necessarily parallel to gains in general language proficiency (e.g., Granena, Jackson & Yilmaz, 2016). In addition, crosslinguistic transfer, lexicalization, and semantic extension may all have an influence on individual differences in learning of English prepositions of time and that focus on form treatment exercises with the incorporation of semantic and conceptual visual illustrations and can be generalized to other second language learning contexts and used to enhance the teaching of temporal adpositions., published
  5. Intercultural Sensitivity Development and Academic Acculturation in International English-Medium Instruction (EMI) Programs, 3. International Pragmatics Association (IPrA 16), 2019/06/14, Without Invitation, English, International Pragmatics Association, This study of 40 1st-year university students enrolled in an international English-medium instruction (EMI) program at a national Japanese university addresses the development of intercultural sensitivity and academic acculturation as a means to enhance educational effectiveness. With internationalization of higher education well underway throughout the world, the implementation of educational programs to help facilitate this process is still not well understood from the perspective of intercultural sensitivity. As international students from various cultural and linguistic backgrounds study together, many issues arise as they interact in the classroom, throughout their educational institution, and in society in general. The creation of an international EMI environment comes with many obstacles to overcome including language and instruction polices (e.g., Werther et al., 2013; Ng & Leong, 2016; Zhang, 2017), learner resistance (Huang, 2018) and academic acculturation (Cheng & Fox, 2008; Ngwira et al., 2015), to name a few. To help understand this learning context and the needs of these learners, extension of Bönte’s (2014) research into intercultural sensitivity and educational design was conducted. In particular, teaching style, group work, and the environment were specifically coded as critical variables in her research design and adapted for this current study. In addition, Bennett’s (1986, 2013, 2014) Developmental Model of Intercultural Sensitivity (DMIS) six-stage acculturation scale was utilized to determine the stages of acculturation participants were positioned so as to plan and implement activities to build cultural competence (see Berardo & Deardorff, 2012). This presentation will discuss the results of this study and suggest possible implications that provide insight into managing intercultural and academic transitions for students in higher education international EMI programs.
  6. Identity Choice in English-Medium Instruction (EMI) Courses in Japanese Higher Education, Joint Researchers (in English), The 16th International Pragmatics Conference, 2019/06/14, Without Invitation, English, International Pragmatics Association, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong, This study investigates the influence of English-medium instruction (EMI) on identity choice of Japanese university students in the classroom. Globalization has enhanced student mobility and has forced educators to implement English-medium classes at higher education institutions throughout the world. Japan is not an exception: The Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT) has strongly encouraged universities to conduct courses in English and create programs taught in English in order to attract more international students. However, administrators, faculty and students do not necessarily perceive these English-medium classes positively. Tsuneyoshi (2005) claimed three major problems that EMI has created: language, cultural, and structural dilemmas. As for the first dilemma, Japanese students generally do not have sufficient English proficiency. However, to our knowledge no research has examined their classroom performance from an identity perspective. Following a theoretical framework that learner identity plays a critical role to determine how students behave and interact in the classroom (e.g., Norton, 2000), we conducted semi-structured interviews with two groups: Japanese and non-Japanese international students who enrolled in university-level EMI courses. The interview data observed that the Japanese participants chose a non-native speaker-of-English identity and a forever-EFL (English as a foreign language) learner identity while engaging in group and whole class discussions. In other words, they bipolarized the Japanese student versus international student, and the native speaker of English versus non-native speaker identities. Notably, native speakers of English and international students who were not native speakers of English were viewed dichotomously, yet the division between them was less striking than between Japanese versus non-Japanese international students. Their categorization indicates a dynamic shift of positioning in discourse depending on who is speaking, which leads to their identity choice (i.e., the Japanese, non-native speaker, and forever-EFL learner identities) by relating self to other interlocutors. Overall, their identity choice imposed two forms of self-categorization in this EMI context: (1) mainstream group (i.e., the Japanese students at Japanese universities) in an inferior position, and (2) others group (i.e., native and non-native international speakers of English) into superior positions. Based on the results above, we tentatively conclude that EMI has marginalized some Japanese college students, who are a majority on campus, into a language minority in the classroom. We will discuss their identity shift from the perspectives of social ideology (e.g., a native-oriented monolithic view), classroom culture (e.g., an attentive listener), and cultural values (e.g., politeness). Finally, we will show that their voices are valuable and validate language policy, and also suggest what role applied linguists can play in order to decenter native- oriented norms in society and develop positive EFL speaker identities.
  7. Applying the Crosslinguistic Image Schema Differential hypothesis to learning L2 spatial prepositions, 15th Annual CamTESOL Conference on English Language Teaching, 2019/02/16, Without Invitation, English, CamTESOL, An ongoing challenge for language teachers has been to effectively provide explicit instruction of English prepositions to L2 learners. One reason for this difficulty may be the inability to interpret spatial scenes in different languages (Mandler & Cánovas, 2014). To address this issue, the Crosslinguistic Image Schema Differential (CISD) hypothesis (Author, 2019) is currently being developed to examine prepositions/adpositions. The CISD hypothesis proposes that the greater the difference in image schema between languages, the more difficult the spatial interpretations will be for L2 learners. The results of this current study with 51 intermediate-level Japanese university students (as representative of L2 learners) show the potential of the CISD hypothesis in predicting the difficulty of non-prototypical usages of “on.” In particular, the findings indicate an inability to interpret “encirclement with contact,” “at an edge,” and “concave surface” image schemas. These results imply that the application of CISD can lead to more effective instruction for many hard-to-learn non-prototypical usages for L2 learners and may also be applicable to other spatial relations and languages.
  8. Explaining the difficulty of prepositions through the Crosslinguistic Image Schema Differential hypothesis, CamTESOL 2019—Regional ELT Research Symposium, 2019/02/15, Without Invitation, English, CamTESOL, The difference in how languages structure spatial relationships between two physical entities may lead to an inability to encode spatial scenes in different languages for L2 learners (Mandler & Cánovas, 2014). To address this issue, the Crosslinguistic Image Schema Differential (CISD) hypothesis (Author, 2018) is being initiated to explain the difficulty of prepositions/adpositions for L2 learners. The CISD hypothesis proposes that the greater the difference in image schema depicting figure and ground between languages, the more difficult the spatial interpretations. This study investigates the various uses of the English preposition “on” with 51 intermediate-level Japanese university students (who are representative of L2 learners). The most remarkable findings illustrate that two space-relational subtypes (“encirclement with contact” and “at an edge”) and one image schema (“concave surface”) are almost completely lacking in the participants’ responses. The implications of these findings suggest simple explicit explanations of non-prototypical senses of “on” and the potential of the CISD hypothesis being extended to other spatial relations and languages.
  9. Assessment of Intercultural Sensitivity Development through Study Abroad Program Participation, JALT 2018 Conference, 2018/11/25, Without Invitation, English, JALT, Granship, Shizuoka, Japan, This study follows previous intercultural sensitivity development research conducted by Taferner (2017). This past study of 1st-year university students suggests that daily experiences with homestay family members provide the greatest long-lasting impact on participants’ acculturation process. The purpose of this present study (N = 30) is to elaborate on this previous research by offering intercultural sensitivity training (see Bennett, 2014) primarily targeting the homestay experience and examining the effects of this training. In addition, in this new study a system in which university-level homestay participants were matched with students from the host-university was introduced to facilitate interaction prior to and during their study abroad experience. Broadening their experiences with this Buddy System, as a contrast to the homestay family interaction, was also included as a critical factor in the analysis of change in intercultural sensitivity development through Bennett’s (1986, 2013) Developmental Model of Intercultural Sensitivity (DMIS) six-stage acculturation scale. This scale starts from an ethnocentric position of denial through to integration of an ethnorelativistic perspective. Prior to departure, a majority of the participants were primarily situated in the lower defense and minimization stages of acculturation. After their brief two-week study abroad experience, a change in students’ intercultural sensitivity was evident as movement to higher acceptance and adaptation stages resulted for some of the participants. A discussion of the findings of this study will include the main critical incidents that resulted in the greatest changes in participants’ intercultural development and suggestions for refinements in pedagogy to enhance future study abroad experiences.
  10. Introducing the Contrastive Image Schema Differential Hypothesis to Account for the Order of Difficulty of the Preposition on for L2 Learners, The 57th JACET International Convention 2018, 2018/08/29, Without Invitation, English, JACET, Tohoku Gakuin University, Tsuchitoi Campus Sendai, Miyagi, This study expands Gentner and Bowerman’s (2009) spatial ground support and containment scale and their typological prevalence (TP) hypothesis by introducing the contrastive image schema differential (CISD) hypothesis to explain orders of difficulty for the spatial characteristics of the preposition on. The CISD hypothesis proposes that the greater the difference in image schema depicting figure (located object) and ground (reference object) (Zlatev, 2005) between languages, the more difficult the spatial interpretations are for L2 learners (Dodge & Lakoff, 2005; Grady, 2005; Johnson, 1987, 2005; Lakoff, 1987). This approach to contrastive analysis for prepositional usage is innovative (see e.g., Odlin, 2005) and considerably different from the spatial cognition research conducted by Landau and Jackendoff (1993), Garrod, Ferrier and Campbell (1999), Talmy (2000, 2005), Gentner and Bowerman (2009), and Feist and Gentner (2012). Citing the difficulty of prepositional usage for L2 learners, these previous investigations suggest the importance of further contrastive studies in many languages. Therefore, the utilization of Japanese participants as representative of L2 learners is suitable for this line of research. To conduct this present study, both prototypical and non-prototypical uses of the preposition on were elicited through a grammar test in which 51 Japanese intermediate-level university students completed cloze test items, translated the sentences into Japanese, and then drew pictures of each item. The findings of indicate that the CISD hypothesis is more consistent in predicting the difficulty of non-prototypical sub-type usages than the TP hypothesis. Furthermore, the notion of encirclement with contact at an edge and concave surfaces was almost completely lacking in these students. In summary, while the TP and CISD hypotheses make similar predictions about prototypical usages of on, the present study further examines non-prototypical sub-types and proposes simple explicit instructions for L2 learners to improve their understanding of the preposition on.
  11. Development of Intercultural Competence through Experiential Participation in Study Abroad Programmes, MICFL 2018: Malaysia International Conference on Foreign Language Foreign Language Studies in Tomorrow’s Asia Pacific Region, 2018/03/07, Without Invitation, English, Nilai, Negeri Sembilan, Malaysia, This presentation highlights first year Japanese university students’ realization, transformation, and development of intercultural awareness and competence during their two-week study abroad programme. To meet the goals of internationalization, intercultural adaptability (Salisbury, 2011) and the development of communication skills in English that facilitate learners’ abilities to interact with people from other cultures and experience new societal norms is a necessary challenge. However, creating authentic intercultural learning experiences where learners are compelled to interact with people from other cultures is exceedingly difficult in mono-cultural societies such as Japan. Thus, the need for study abroad experiences that provide learners opportunities to have new encounters that compare and contrast lifestyles, customs, and behaviors in their daily lives (Tarrant, Rubin, & Stoner, 2013) is essential. In addition, the need to assess whether or not learners are actually able to make progress in their intercultural communication skills is of great importance in the development of effective study abroad programmes. With the need to create transformative study abroad experiences, this study investigated 54 Japanese students’ quantitative and qualitative survey results that determined the critical events that had the greatest impact on their learning outcomes. Overwhelmingly, their homestay experiences and daily interactions, where it was obligatory for the learners to experientially participate, had the strongest influence on their learning. Discussion of the findings will address the need to create culturally sensitive survey items that elicit valid and reliable responses, identify critical events that lead to intercultural development, and provide pedagogical recommendations for future study abroad experiences.
  12. Acquisition of the Simple Spatial Prepositions in and on: Crosslinguistic Differences in Image Schema and Family Resemblance, 14th Annual CamTESOL Conference on English Language Teaching, 2018/02/10, Without Invitation, English, CamTESOL, Institute of Technology Cambodia Phnom Penh, Cambodia, This research found that the considerable difficulty Japanese learners have with the usage of the apparently simple spatial prepositions in and on is attributable largely to the differences in image schema involving the figure (located object) and ground (reference object) relations between English and Japanese. This study focuses on the properties of the spatial ground only, i.e., in/on the car/boat, which also presents unavoidable difficulty to learners. Inspection of the findings suggests that differences in image schema between English and Japanese combined with family resemblance are the underlying cause of the difficulty. Pedagogical implications and new challenges for language teachers and applied linguists are briefly discussed.
  13. L1 Interference and Embodied Image Schemas with the Spatial Prepositions in and on for L2 Learners, 14th Annual CamTESOL Conference on English Language Teaching: Regional (ELT) Research Symposium, 2018/02/09, Without Invitation, English, CamTESOL, Cambodia-Korea Cooperation Center (CKCC) Phnom Penh, Cambodia, This study addressed the unsettled question why apparently “simple” spatial prepositions in and on are so difficult for intermediate- or even advanced-level Japanese learners to use. On a mini-test given, only 6% of college students correctly filled in the blank in “birds __ the tree” with in. With an additional picture drawing and description paradigm employed, two general, but not mutually exclusive, hypotheses involving L1 interference with and image schemas of prepositional complements were postulated, confirmed, and elaborated. The generality of the findings and the significance of explicit instruction are also briefly discussed.
  14. Processing the Acquisition of Prepositions, JALT 2017: Language Teaching in a Global Age: Shaping the Classroom, Shaping the World, 2017/11/18, Without Invitation, English, Japan Association for Language Teachers (JALT), Tsukuba International Congress Center (Epochal Tsukuba), Tsukuba, Ibaraki, Japan, The purpose of this cross-sectional study is to examine the influence of explicit instruction on the development of four high frequency English prepositions of time (i.e., for, in, on, to). To further this discussion on the learning of prepositions beyond the semantic level through to higher stages of development, double objects along with ditransitive and prepositional dative verbs will be addressed within Processability Theory.
  15. Changes in Students’ Beliefs and Values through Study Abroad Experiences, The Asian Conference on Education 2017 (ACE2017), 2017/10/20, Without Invitation, English, The Art Center Kobe, Kobe, Japan, The objective of presentation is to discuss the impact of study abroad experiences on changes in students’ beliefs and values with regards to their intercultural adaptability (Salisbury, 2011), global-mindedness, and leadership potential. This topic is of particular importance to second language learners of English because it is through their study and use of English that they compare and contrast differences in lifestyles, customs, and behaviors to which they are familiar with and encounter in their daily lives (Tarrant, Rubin, & Stoner, 2013). To assess the impact of a study abroad experience with Japanese learners of English (N=30) who spent two weeks in Auckland, New Zealand, the Beliefs Events and Values Inventory (BEVI) (Shealy, 2006, 2015) was administered. The BEVI surveys 17 criteria ranging from needs fulfillment, basic openness, self-certitude, sociocultural openness, to global resonance. A comparison of pre- and post-test results reveal that students made some marginal gains which are indicative of more openness to alternative lifestyles. The results also imply that a combination of pre-departure preparation and length of the study abroad experience (Kehl & Morris, 2007) were two very important factors that had an effect the ability to facilitate change in these learners’ beliefs and values. A discussion of future plans to assess improvements in study abroad programs with regards to general language proficiency, academic skills development, and students’ beliefs and values will also be introduced.
  16. Verifying L2 Developmental Readiness for the Acquisition of Prepositions, 17th International Symposium on Processability Approaches to Language Acquisition (PALA) PALA 2017, 2017/09/05, Without Invitation, English, Processability Approaches to Language Acquisition (PALA), Ludwigsburg University of Education, Germany, This study advances the discussion of the acquisition of English prepositions within a Processability Theory (PT) framework (Pienemann, 1998). Through the mapping of double-object (Bettoni & Di Biase, 2015, pp. 38-39), ditransitive, and prepositional dative verb constructions (Wulff & Gries, 2011), evidence of morphosyntactic emergence (Pallotti, 2007; Pienemann, 1998), and S-procedure exchanges (Bettoni & Di Biase, 2015, p. 176; Buyl & Housen, 2015, p. 526), L2 learners’ developmental readiness for the acquisition of prepositions will be examined. Diagnosing L2 development of grammatical structures that are learnable at any particular period of time is necessary for a pedagogical approach more that is closely aligned with their interlanguage (Keßler & Liebner, 2011, p. 138). To investigate the acquisition of English prepositions by L2 learners with PT, 30 Japanese intermediate-level L2 learners of English were interviewed following a protocol similar to Rapid Profile (Keßler & Liebner, 2011). The interviews targeted morphosyntactic structures found in Developmental Stages 3, 4, and 5 of PT (Pienemann & Keßler, 2011). The Frog Story (see Berman & Slobin, 1994; Mayer, 1969) was used to elicit structures including Wh-copula, Aux-2nd question formation, and plural agreement. Visual prompts adapted from Buyl and Housen (2015) prompted S-procedure copula and verb-subject agreement features. In addition, a sequel to The Frog Story was designed to incorporate high frequency ditransitive and prepositional dative verbs for double object constructions to emerge in learners’ oral production.
  17. Processing Explicit Instruction for the Acquisition of Prepositions: Another Step Forward, JACET 56th International Convention, 2017/08/31, Without Invitation, English, The Japan Association of College English Teachers (JACET), Aoyama Gakuin University, The purpose of this cross-sectional study is to examine the influence of explicit instruction on the development of four high frequency English prepositions of time (i.e., for, in, on, to). This study included university students (N = 119) of which 75 received explicit instruction as the Treatment group, while 44 participants were designated as the Control group over the period of one school term. Three treatment sessions used in this current study consisted of grammar instruction and immediate feedback, picture matching and guided production exercises, and a summary short quiz. Previous research on the explicit learning of prepositions conducted in three separate studies by Taferner (2015, 2016a, 2016b) demonstrated that instruction at the semantic level was effective in promoting and generally maintaining what the participants had learned through the treatments provided. Through these previous studies, it was shown that the general language proficiency of the participants was a good indicator of common and simple usages of spatial prepositions, but participants’ accuracy rates of more complex prepositions representing temporal features, for example, were not related to proficiency. Nor did core prototypical features of a preposition seem to have an influence on other usages of the same preposition. Furthermore, implicit usage of the targeted prepositions in participants’ compositions was not evident after treatment sessions were provided. These findings show that explicit instruction has a vital role to play in learning the specific meaning of each preposition within a particular context. To further this discussion on the learning of prepositions beyond the semantic level through to higher stages of development (Pienneman, 1998), double objects (Bettoni & Biase, 2015) along with ditransitive and prepositional dative verbs (Wulff & Gries, 2011) will be addressed. By including these additional parameters into the discussion, a more comprehensive approach to the examination of the acquisition of preposition will be presented.
  18. Assessing Changes in L2 Learners’ Beliefs and Values through Critical Lifetime Events: A Focus on Study Abroad Experiences, 2017/07/20, With Invitation, English, School of Education, University of Nottingham Malaysia, This presentation will highlight the transformation of second language learners’ beliefs and values as they pertain to their intercultural competence and leadership qualities. Language learners consider study abroad opportunities as primarily a means to improve language skills. While important, the reality is that language learning occurs very slowly, such that improvements in language usage due to short periods of engagement can only be marginally realized. What is possibly of more significance is the potential for transformative learning that will encourage personal development and foster enhanced interaction between individuals of various multicultural backgrounds. To conduct this study, the Beliefs, Events, and Values Inventory (BEVI—Shealy, 2006, 2015) was administered to Japanese students who participated in study abroad programs of varying lengths of time. With this in mind, a comparison of learners’ beliefs and values before and after their study abroad experiences was made within and between two groups of students who had studied abroad for a period of two weeks and five months. Preliminary results will focus on the facilitative influence of study abroad experiences on change in L2 learners. Plans to investigate an integration of general language proficiency, academic skills development, and students’ beliefs and values will also be discussed.
  19. Effects of Explicit Instruction on Prepositional Accuracy, Pacific Second Language Research Forum 2016 (PacSLRF2016) Theme: Data Driven Theories in SLA, 2016/09/11, Without Invitation, English, The Japan Second Language Association (J-SLA), Chuo University
  20. Applying Processability Theory to the Acquisition of Prepositions
, Processability Approaches to Language Acquisition (PALA), 2016/09/08, Without Invitation, English, Processability Approaches to Language Acquisition (PALA), Chuo University, This presentation addressed the application of processability approaches to the acquisition of prepositions. To support ongoing research in this area, this study of Japanese university students (N=80) in 1st year English composition classes was designed to investigate the one-word preposition "to". In particular, the use of "to" was examined to demonstrate L2 developmental hierarchy, and the development and stabilization of the use of "to". The results of this study will be used to support the application of processability approaches for the acquisition of other categories of prepositions in future studies.
  21. Effects of Explicit Instruction on Prepositions of Time, JALT PanSIG 2016: Innovations in Education 15th Annual International Conference, 2016/05/21, Without Invitation, English, Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT) The 15th JALT PanSIG International Conference is an annual event sponsored and organized by Special Interest Groups (SIGs) of the Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT)., Meio University, This presentation investigated intermediate EFL learners’ ability to improve their knowledge of prepositions through classroom instruction. To increase preposition learnability and teachability, a study of 1st-year Japanese university students was designed to promote usage of the most frequent prepositions of time: at, by, for, from, in, of, on, over, to, and within. Treatment task design, reliability and validity of grammar tests to identify gains in accuracy was discussed, as well as generalizable pedagogical insights to consider when designing tasks for learners’ interlanguage development.
  22. Data Elicitation Instruments for CF Research, The Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT)—2014 Conference, Tsukuba., 2014, Without Invitation, English, The Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT), Tsukuba International Congress Center (Epochal Tsukuba)
  23. Influence of written corrective feedback on the interlanguage development of prepositions for pre-intermediate EFL students, Japan Society of English Language Education 40th Conference, 2014, Without Invitation, English, Japan Society of English Language Education, University of Tokushima
  24. Task design and its influence on the utility of corrective feedback research on L2 writing, AAAL Portland 2014, 2014, Without Invitation, English, American Association for Applied Linguistics, Portland Marriott, Portland, Oregon, USA.
  25. Understanding L2 writing errors: A focus on tense & aspect, The Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT)—2013 Conference, 2013, Without Invitation, English, The Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT), Kobe Convention Center, Portopia, Kobe
  26. The role of corrective feedback in L2 writing and grammar development, The Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT)—2013 Conference, 2013, Without Invitation, English, The Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT), Kobe Convention Center, Portopia, Kobe
  27. Persistency of morpheme acquisition sequence in contrast to oral metalinguistic explanations and direct written correct feedback for Japanese EFL learners, ALAK 2013 International Conference, 2013, Without Invitation, English, Applied Linguistics Association Korea (ALAK), Busan University of Foreign Studies, Busan, Korea
  28. Limited effect of classroom instruction on the accuracy of verb morphemes by Japanese EFL learners, EUROSLA 2013, 2013, Without Invitation, English, The European Second Language Association (EuroSLA), University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam, Netherlands
  29. Conversation topics, strategies, and phonological support for pre-intermediate Japanese EFL students, Yokohama City University, Practical English Center, Faculty Development Workshop, 2013, Without Invitation, English, Yokohama City University, Practical English Center, Yokohama City University
  30. Influence of written corrective feedback on intermediate level L2 writing for second language development, The 11th Annual Hawaii International Conference on Education 2013, 2013, Without Invitation, English, Hawaii International Conference on Education, Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki, Honolulu, Hawaii
  31. Effects of explicit instruction on the semantic role of English sentence subject: A case of Japanese EFL learners, The 11th Annual Hawaii International Conference on Education 2013, 2013, Without Invitation, English, Hawaii International Conference on Education, Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki, Honolulu, Hawaii
  32. Timed reading for the EFL classroom, The Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT)—2012 Conference, 2012, Without Invitation, English, The Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT), ACT City, Hamamatsu
  33. An exploratory study of timed-reading: Implications for task design for the EFL classroom, Yokohama City University, Practical English Center, Faculty Development Workshop, 2012, With Invitation, English, Yokohama City University, Practical English Center, Yokohama City University
  34. Students’ perceptions of peer feedback on EFL writing, Lancaster University Second Language Learning and Teaching (SLLAT), 2011, With Invitation, English, Lancaster University Second Language Learning and Teaching (SLLAT), Lancaster University
  35. Developing materials for the classroom, Chuo University Faculty Development Seminar, Without Invitation, English, Chuo University, Faculty of Letters
  36. Starting at the Grassroots—Following the Path of Wangari Maathai, The Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT) – 2010 Conference, 2010, Without Invitation, English, The Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT), Aichi Industry and Labor Center, Nagoya
  37. Speed reading for the EFL classroom, Chuo University Faculty Development Seminar—Tokyo, 2012/01/21, With Invitation, English, Chuo University, preprint
  38. Insights into reading fluency in the EFL classroom, The Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT), Chapter Meeting—Toyohashi, 2012/01/22, With Invitation, English
  39. BBC Earth Report—Hands On for the Classroom, The Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT) – 2009 Conference, Shizuoka, 2009/11/22, Without Invitation, English
  40. EAP Program Development in Japanese Universities, CUE 2009 Conference: ESP/EAP: English for Global living, working and studying, Tezukayama University, Nara, 2009/10/17, Without Invitation, English
  41. Nobelity for the Classroom, Peace as a Global Language 8th Annual Conference—Nurturing Grassroots, University of Shimane, Hamada, 2009/09/27, Without Invitation, English
  42. BBC Earth Report—Hands On for the Classroom, Peace as a Global Language 8th Annual Conference—Nurturing Grassroots, University of Shimane, Hamada, 2009/09/27, Without Invitation, English
  43. Peer Collaboration in EFL Writing, The Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT) – 2008 Conference, Tokyo, 2008/11/03, Without Invitation, English
  44. The Nobelity Project, The Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT) – 2008 Conference, Tokyo, 2008/11/02, Without Invitation, English
  45. The Nobelity Project: An EFL Workbook in Progress, JALT GILE SIG Forum Presentation, The Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT) – 2008 Conference, Tokyo, 2008/11/02, Without Invitation, English
  46. Academic English Program Development: Japanese High School Students’ Learning Strategies in Transition, CUE Conference 2008, Osaka, 2008/07/05, Without Invitation, English
  47. EFL Academic Listening Strategies and Expertise in Japan, Association of Language Awareness Conference, Hong Kong, 2008/06/27, Without Invitation, English
  48. ZPD in EFL Writing Revision: Peer Review, JACET/JALT 2008 Conference, Nagoya, 2008/06/14, Without Invitation, English
  49. EFL Academic Listening Strategies and Expertise, The Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT) – 2007 Conference, Tokyo, 2007/11/23, Without Invitation, English
  50. Effective EFL Writing Revision, The Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT) – 2007 College University Educators (CUE) Conference, Nagoya, 2009/06/23, Without Invitation, English
  51. Reflective Teaching Journals: A Tool for Professional Development, Okinawa Language Education Fair, Naha, Okinawa, 2006/11/11, Without Invitation, English
  52. An integrated study of EFL learning strategies, The Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT) – 2006 Conference, Kitakyushu, 2006/11/03, Without Invitation, English
  53. Effective EFL Writing Revision, 2006 Asia TEFL International Conference, Kitakyushu, 2006/08/19, Without Invitation, English
  54. Reflective Teaching Journals, The Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT), Chapter Meeting—Nishihara, Okinawa, 1999, Without Invitation, English
  55. Process Writing for Large Classrooms, The Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT), Chapter Meeting—Nishihara, Okinawa, 2005/10/16, Without Invitation, English
  56. Multimedia Process Writing Course Development, Kyushu-Okinawa Chapter Conference of The Japan Association for Language Education and Technology, Ginowan, Okinawa, 2005/05, Without Invitation, English
  57. A Facilitator’s Role: “Teachers Learning Students”, 16th Okinawa-Kyushu Japan Association for College English Teachers (JACET) Conference, 2001/10, Without Invitation, English

Social Activities

History as Peer Reviews of Academic Papers

  1. 2020, Journal of Second Language Studies, Others, Reviewer, 1
  2. 2019, Journal of Second Language Studies, Others, Peer Reviewer, 1
  3. 2019, PanSig Journal, Others, Peer Reviewer, 2
  4. 2018, The Language Teacher, Chief editor, Book Reviews Co-Editor, 10
  5. 2017, The Language Teacher, Editor, Book Reviews Editor, 12
  6. 2016, The Language Teacher (TLT), Editor, Book Reviews Editor, 12
  7. 2015, The Language Teacher (TLT), Editor, Book Reviews Editor, 7
  8. 2016, TESOL Journal, Reader, 1
  9. 2018, PanSIG 2018, Editor, Peer Reviewer, 3
  10. 2017, PanSIG Journal, Others, PanSIG Journal Article Reader, 3
  11. 2016, 2016 PanSIG Journal, Others, Peer Reviewer, 2
  12. 2016, Studies in European and American Cultures, Others, Article reader, 1
  13. 2015, CALICO Journal, Computer Assisted Language Instruction Consortium., Others, Reader, 1
  14. 2014, The Language Teacher, Editor, Book Reviews Editor, 6
  15. 2013, The Language Teacher, Editor, Book Reviews Editor, 7
  16. 2012, The Language Teacher, Editor, Book Reviews Editor, 9
  17. 2011, The Language Teacher, Editor, Book Reviews Editor, 9
  18. 2010, The Language Teacher, Editor, Book Reviews Editor, 9
  19. 2009, The Language Teacher, Editor, Book Reviews Editor, 12
  20. 2008, The Language Teacher, Editor, Book Reviews Editor, 16
  21. 2007, The Language Teacher, Editor, Book Reviews Editor, 23
  22. 2006, The Language Teacher, Editor, Book Reviews Editor, 27
  23. 2005, The Language Teacher, Editor, Book Reviews Editor, 27
  24. 2004, The Language Teacher, Editor, Book Reviews Editor, 20
  25. 2004, The Language Teacher (TLT), Chief editor, Special 4 Skills Issue Editor, 7