jeffuhfuh
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#1
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#1
Hey everyone!

This is a thread for anyone who is thinking of studying Japanese/Japanese Studies at university from 2014.

I'm currently studying Japanese Studies at the University of Sheffield. If you've applied to the Uni of Sheffield then feel free to join the Facebook group and ask current students any questions you may have about the course: www.facebook.com/groups/445033272263964/


Hopefully this thread becomes a useful place for information and place to possibly meet your future coursemates (as it was in the JP Studies 2013 thread)

So feel free to ask questions about Japanese Studies or say anything regarding studying Japanese at university.
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pomme de terre
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#2
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#2
I study Japanese at Manchester University and I'm also happy to help with any questions anyone has! (Though I don't check this site that often.. if you quote me I'll respond )
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Thanatosis
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#3
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#3
Hi, I'm actually in my first year at another uni studying Biomed and was wondering whether i would be able to transfer to Manchester's biomed course which also offers a joint degree with a modern foreign language such as Japanese. I only did up to GCSE Japanese which i got an A* in but the course requirements mentions that i would need a As level. I have emailed them about it but won't get a reply until next year. How do you find your course so far? The level of teaching etc What year are you in and how is interaction between you, fellow course mates and lecturers? Thanks
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VK96
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#4
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#4
(Original post by Thanatosis)
Hi, I'm actually in my first year at another uni studying Biomed and was wondering whether i would be able to transfer to Manchester's biomed course which also offers a joint degree with a modern foreign language such as Japanese. I only did up to GCSE Japanese which i got an A* in but the course requirements mentions that i would need a As level. I have emailed them about it but won't get a reply until next year. How do you find your course so far? The level of teaching etc What year are you in and how is interaction between you, fellow course mates and lecturers? Thanks
I applied to Manchester to do Anatomy with Mandarin, seems awesome
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pomme de terre
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#5
Report 8 years ago
#5
(Original post by Thanatosis)
Hi, I'm actually in my first year at another uni studying Biomed and was wondering whether i would be able to transfer to Manchester's biomed course which also offers a joint degree with a modern foreign language such as Japanese. I only did up to GCSE Japanese which i got an A* in but the course requirements mentions that i would need a As level. I have emailed them about it but won't get a reply until next year. How do you find your course so far? The level of teaching etc What year are you in and how is interaction between you, fellow course mates and lecturers? Thanks
That's because in order to do biomed+Japanese, you need to be in the advanced first year group which is only 40 credits, as opposed to the beginners which is 60 credits. The beginners one would mean you wouldn't get enough of the biomed. As for the level I'd say it's definitely higher than GCSE A* but not *too* much. Basically you need to be familiar with the material covered in the textbooks Genki 1&2 as that course is basically a follow on from that. And a knowledge of about 300 kanji. But of course, I'm sure when they email back they'll give you a more detailed (and accurate) answer. Haha. (but some of the people in the advanced class have a higher level than that, think of it more as AS and onwards)

I'm final year! I think it's a really good course. Of course, I've never taken a Japanese course at another uni but I did meet several other English people from other unis on my year abroad and... well.... I think that the Manchester course is definitely a high standard.Yeah, you get to know your teachers and coursemates pretty well! Well,if you're in the advanced group, like I was, you might not get to know the beginners people that well, unless you go to a lot of Japanese society events, etc. But that's up to you!
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Squaresquirrel
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#6
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#6
I'm doing my first year of Japanesse at SOAS. But will probably retake the year. So happy to advise people with questions as well as meet people going
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Thanatosis
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#7
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#7
(Original post by pomme de terre)
That's because in order to do biomed+Japanese, you need to be in the advanced first year group which is only 40 credits, as opposed to the beginners which is 60 credits. The beginners one would mean you wouldn't get enough of the biomed. As for the level I'd say it's definitely higher than GCSE A* but not *too* much. Basically you need to be familiar with the material covered in the textbooks Genki 1&2 as that course is basically a follow on from that. And a knowledge of about 300 kanji. But of course, I'm sure when they email back they'll give you a more detailed (and accurate) answer. Haha. (but some of the people in the advanced class have a higher level than that, think of it more as AS and onwards)

I'm final year! I think it's a really good course. Of course, I've never taken a Japanese course at another uni but I did meet several other English people from other unis on my year abroad and... well.... I think that the Manchester course is definitely a high standard.Yeah, you get to know your teachers and coursemates pretty well! Well,if you're in the advanced group, like I was, you might not get to know the beginners people that well, unless you go to a lot of Japanese society events, etc. But that's up to you!
Thank you for your perspective Also, i discovered that the Biomed course at Manchester is not IBMS accredited. Do you think that will hinder job prospects for the future? Or do you think the standard of the course will provide me with enough lab skills to make me employable after graduation? Also, how was your year abroad in Japan?
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Thanatosis
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#8
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#8
(Original post by Squaresquirrel)
I'm doing my first year of Japanesse at SOAS. But will probably retake the year. So happy to advise people with questions as well as meet people going
I almost applied for SOAS back when i was convinced that i was going to study Economics and Japanese at university xD How's the course and uni been so far thought, out of interest? And why are you retaking the year?
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Squaresquirrel
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#9
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#9
(Original post by Thanatosis)
I almost applied for SOAS back when i was convinced that i was going to study Economics and Japanese at university xD How's the course and uni been so far thought, out of interest? And why are you retaking the year?
The teachers and structure of the course is pretty amazing tbh. Though it moves incredibly fast and is pretty hard.

I'm re taking 'cause I missed some time due to illness so I think it would be better to re-take rather than struggle catching up.
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pomme de terre
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#10
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#10
(Original post by Thanatosis)
Thank you for your perspective Also, i discovered that the Biomed course at Manchester is not IBMS accredited. Do you think that will hinder job prospects for the future? Or do you think the standard of the course will provide me with enough lab skills to make me employable after graduation? Also, how was your year abroad in Japan?
Ummm, I don't know what that means! But I have friends who did biomed and they were in the lab a lot... Anyway I think you're better off asking in the biomed forum about that!

Ohhh and it was amazing... it's seriously difficult to adjust back to life in England after it.
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Ronove
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#11
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#11
(Original post by pomme de terre)
That's because in order to do biomed+Japanese, you need to be in the advanced first year group which is only 40 credits, as opposed to the beginners which is 60 credits. The beginners one would mean you wouldn't get enough of the biomed. As for the level I'd say it's definitely higher than GCSE A* but not *too* much. Basically you need to be familiar with the material covered in the textbooks Genki 1&2 as that course is basically a follow on from that. And a knowledge of about 300 kanji. But of course, I'm sure when they email back they'll give you a more detailed (and accurate) answer. Haha. (but some of the people in the advanced class have a higher level than that, think of it more as AS and onwards)

I'm final year! I think it's a really good course. Of course, I've never taken a Japanese course at another uni but I did meet several other English people from other unis on my year abroad and... well.... I think that the Manchester course is definitely a high standard.Yeah, you get to know your teachers and coursemates pretty well! Well,if you're in the advanced group, like I was, you might not get to know the beginners people that well, unless you go to a lot of Japanese society events, etc. But that's up to you!
I'm not applying for Japanese (though I did back when I was 17, 8 years ago, but then changed my mind - stick at it people, I doubt you'll regret it!), but am now in the process of learning Japanese after putting it aside for many years.

What I am curious about is whether, when you mention knowledge of 300 kanji here, that includes the ability to write them all? I am self-teaching and at the very start, and can't help wondering how far behind people's writing ability is supposed to be compared to their recognition. Obviously the writing ability lags behind, but whenever I see '(knowledge of) n kanji' mentioned, for example for people looking to take the JLPT exams, I can't work out whether you're supposed to be able to just recognise them all or to be able to recognise many more (naturally) while being able to comfortably write the number stated.
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pomme de terre
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#12
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#12
(Original post by Ronove)
I'm not applying for Japanese (though I did back when I was 17, 8 years ago, but then changed my mind - stick at it people, I doubt you'll regret it!), but am now in the process of learning Japanese after putting it aside for many years.

What I am curious about is whether, when you mention knowledge of 300 kanji here, that includes the ability to write them all? I am self-teaching and at the very start, and can't help wondering how far behind people's writing ability is supposed to be compared to their recognition. Obviously the writing ability lags behind, but whenever I see '(knowledge of) n kanji' mentioned, for example for people looking to take the JLPT exams, I can't work out whether you're supposed to be able to just recognise them all or to be able to recognise many more (naturally) while being able to comfortably write the number stated.
Well, for a start, in JLPT you don't have to write anything - it's a multiple choice test! So it's fine just to recognise kanji for that. (Actually I think JLPT is basically a terrible measure of someone's Japanese, but it's held in high esteem in Japan so whatever it's still worth taking it).

But when people say knowledge of n kanji, it's definitely that you can simply recognise them rather than being able to write them all. Even Japanese people struggle with that. (Actually my Japanese teacher asked ME the other week about a certain kanji!)

Some people say as long as you can recognise the kanji it's okay because you don't often actually write things down in your day to day life. So as long as you're able to recognise them well enough to choose the correct one when typing it's okay. That's one viewpoint anyway. I try to learn and write as many as I can because I think it helps me remember them better - also having good kanji knowledge really helps you with your vocabulary. (Also it's a kind of pride thing since a lot of Japanese people assume western foreigners suck at kanji even if you can speak Japanese well, so I want to prove them wrong! )

I guess it depends what you're learning Japanese for, and how serious you are about it!
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Ronove
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#13
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#13
(Original post by pomme de terre)
Well, for a start, in JLPT you don't have to write anything - it's a multiple choice test! So it's fine just to recognise kanji for that. (Actually I think JLPT is basically a terrible measure of someone's Japanese, but it's held in high esteem in Japan so whatever it's still worth taking it).

But when people say knowledge of n kanji, it's definitely that you can simply recognise them rather than being able to write them all. Even Japanese people struggle with that. (Actually my Japanese teacher asked ME the other week about a certain kanji!)

Some people say as long as you can recognise the kanji it's okay because you don't often actually write things down in your day to day life. So as long as you're able to recognise them well enough to choose the correct one when typing it's okay. That's one viewpoint anyway. I try to learn and write as many as I can because I think it helps me remember them better - also having good kanji knowledge really helps you with your vocabulary. (Also it's a kind of pride thing since a lot of Japanese people assume western foreigners suck at kanji even if you can speak Japanese well, so I want to prove them wrong! )

I guess it depends what you're learning Japanese for, and how serious you are about it!
Thanks for that. The typing thing had not occurred to me at all, I kind of expected to need to be able to write everything I knew by hand. I'm learning purely for enjoyment/satisfaction/self-betterment. I ended up doing languages at uni, just not Japanese. Since then I've forgotten my uni languages while trying to become fluent in Danish!
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Thanatosis
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#14
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#14
(Original post by pomme de terre)
Ummm, I don't know what that means! But I have friends who did biomed and they were in the lab a lot... Anyway I think you're better off asking in the biomed forum about that!

Ohhh and it was amazing... it's seriously difficult to adjust back to life in England after it.
IBMS accreditation enables you to work in NHS labs otherwise you'd have to do additional top up modules after your degree to cover the key skills required to work there (hence more labs -.-).
What kind of things did you do there in Japan? Was it full time work?
Arigatou ;D
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pomme de terre
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#15
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#15
(Original post by Ronove)
Thanks for that. The typing thing had not occurred to me at all, I kind of expected to need to be able to write everything I knew by hand. I'm learning purely for enjoyment/satisfaction/self-betterment. I ended up doing languages at uni, just not Japanese. Since then I've forgotten my uni languages while trying to become fluent in Danish!
No, not at all! Perhaps if you were aiming to work or live in Japan you should learn to write by hand simply because there's so much bureaucracy haha, but apart from that I can't really think of any situation where you'd HAVE to write kanji. Personally I'd recommend learning to write at least a basic 500 though!
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pomme de terre
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#16
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#16
(Original post by Thanatosis)
IBMS accreditation enables you to work in NHS labs otherwise you'd have to do additional top up modules after your degree to cover the key skills required to work there (hence more labs -.-).
What kind of things did you do there in Japan? Was it full time work?
Arigatou ;D
I see! Well you should ask about the IBMS in the biomedical forum or maybe contact the admissions tutors.
No - study abroad. Only in exceptional cases do people do placements, though I think maybe with a sciency subject you may be able to do one. I think (?) the guy who did neuroscience with Japanese in my year did a placement. Again you should probably try and contact someone at the uni if doing a placement rather than study abroad for your 3rd year is something that is important to you because I don't know if it's possible.

Though I did do translation on the side as a part time job! It wasn't that regular but it paid very very well!
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Ronove
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#17
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#17
(Original post by pomme de terre)
No, not at all! Perhaps if you were aiming to work or live in Japan you should learn to write by hand simply because there's so much bureaucracy haha, but apart from that I can't really think of any situation where you'd HAVE to write kanji. Personally I'd recommend learning to write at least a basic 500 though!
I've ordered a book to help me out with that. A Guide to Reading and Writing Japanese by F Sakade (the 1961 version... it was £0.24).

Do you know anything about these readers by the way? Link.
They're really quite expensive to get hold of (whether on Amazon or via White Rabbit Press' website). Do you know of any good (ie cheap) ways to get access to manga in Japanese as well? There doesn't seem to be any source of free access to them here around Copenhagen. I expect the university that offers a business degree with a Japanese slant around here (Copenhagen Business School) has some decent materials, but I doubt I could get access to them.
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pomme de terre
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#18
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#18
(Original post by Ronove)
I've ordered a book to help me out with that. A Guide to Reading and Writing Japanese by F Sakade (the 1961 version... it was £0.24).

Do you know anything about these readers by the way? Link.
They're really quite expensive to get hold of (whether on Amazon or via White Rabbit Press' website). Do you know of any good (ie cheap) ways to get access to manga in Japanese as well? There doesn't seem to be any source of free access to them here around Copenhagen. I expect the university that offers a business degree with a Japanese slant around here (Copenhagen Business School) has some decent materials, but I doubt I could get access to them.
I have no idea about any of those - sorry! Never used a graded reader or read a manga. I think there's probably plenty of manga around on the internet, especially if you search in Japanese. I don't know how much of it is free or cheap though. Btw, if you haven't got it already you should get a rikaikun add on for your browser so if you hover over a kanji it tells you the reading and meaning!

NHK also have an 'easy news' website: http://www3.nhk.or.jp/news/easy/
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Adam7918
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#19
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#19
What kind of Japanese level does the degree aim for by the end of it (e.g N1, N2)?

Also what level are you roughly at now and which year are you in?
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pomme de terre
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#20
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#20
(Original post by Adam7918)
What kind of Japanese level does the degree aim for by the end of it (e.g N1, N2)?

Also what level are you roughly at now and which year are you in?
There was a thread about that recently, with people studying japanese at different unis! http://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/show...426&p=45774028
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