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JS Seminar LL


This is the course description from 2016-2017
The new course description will follow as soon as possible.

Admission requirements

For students majoring in Japan Studies, it is recommended that they have completed the BA2 Language & Linguistics Seminar. For students outside the Japan Studies program, background in linguistics and elementary knowledge of Japanese is useful.


How “unique” is the structure of the Japanese language as compared with other languages of the world? What do various grammatical phenomena in Japanese tell us about the ways in which humans in general process and interpret sentences? How similar and different are the dialects of Japanese? What do the use and representation of the Japanese language in the popular culture tell us about the relationship between the Japanese language and society?
In this course, we focus on a number of current key questions in Japanese linguistics and provide students with theoretical tools to address them through lectures and seminar discussions. The goal is to assist students in preparing for their BA thesis project in Japanese Linguistics. We will cover sub-fields of Japanese Linguistics such as phonology, syntax, semantics, pragmatics, typology, dialectology and socio-linguistics.

Course objectives

1) To become familiar with important developments and remaining empirical puzzles within Japanese linguistics.
2) To acquire theoretical tools to address various linguistic problems.
3) To get inspirations for possible thesis topics.
4) To develop the ability to locate relevant references/sources and critically analyze them.
5) To develop presentation and writing skills.


The timetable is available on the Japanstudies

Mode of instruction

  • Seminar
    The course consists of a substantial and a practical component. In the substantial component, the lecturer and guest speakers will lead the discussions on various empirical problems in Japanese linguistics, and introduce theoretical tools to address them. Students are required to actively participate in these class discussions and prepare for them through reading assignments and working on exercises. The practical part consists of a visit to the library and practical workshops on how to work on a thesis. The course will result in a conceptual presentation of the planned BA thesis, provided by the students.

Course Load

Total course load 5 EC x 28 hours= 140 hours

  • Lectures: (12 × 2 hours) 24 hours

  • Study of compulsory literature: (5×4 hours) 20 hours

  • Assignment(s): (8×2 hours) 16 hours

  • Writing a critical review of an article: 20 hours

  • Writing a chapter of the BA thesis: 40 hours

  • Preparation for the conceptual presentation of the BA thesis: 20 hours

Assessment method

  • Participation (attendance and involvement in the discussion based on the reading of assignments): 20%

  • Oral presentation of the concept of the BA thesis (20 min): 20%

  • Review (1000-1500 words) and exercises: 20%

  • Workpiece (chapter of the BA thesis; 2500-3000 words): 40%

Weighing The final mark for the course is established by determining the weighted average.

Resit The resit includes revision of the concept BA thesis, review and workpiece as the first opportunity.


Blackboard will be used for is used for all relevant information relating to the course, including course content, assignments, literature and relevant links.

Reading list See blackboard


Enrolment through uSis is mandatory.

General information about uSis is available in English and Dutch

Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs

Registration Studeren à la carte

Registration Contractonderwijs

Not applicable.


Dr. W. Uegaki