Continual internationalism has seen Japanese increase their interaction with people of various languages and cultural backgrounds for research, business, education, and trade. However, Japanese lack the English-speaking confidence to be effective communicators compared to other countries and are currently ranked 35th out of 74 in English proficiency (Tsuboya-Newell, 2017). One reason for this is Japan being a monolingual, monocultural country where there is little opportunity to practice English in a natural setting. A second reason being the lack of English-speaking opportunities afforded to students during English language lessons due to the prevalence of the teacher-centered grammar-translation method of instruction. Recently the popularity of portable translation devices has increased, with people relying on these devices for their English communication activities due to their lack of confidence in their English speaking communication competence, and the investment in terms of time and money it would take to gain a high level of English speaking communication. However, as these portable translation devices are relatively new to the market, there remains many questions that need to be investigated. This presentation will present the results of an experiment using pocket translation devices between Japanese and international students. The presenter will show that although pocket translation devices have advanced, their ability for seamless communication is still limited. The presentation will then demonstrate ways in which users can be trained for more effective communication using pocket translations devices. Finally, the presenter will show ways in which pocket translation devices could be used in an educational setting future.
Jeremy White, Ritsumeikan University, Japan
Ryosuke Yamanishi, Ritsumeikan University, Japan
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Jeremy White, and Ryosuke Yamanishi