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University Language Centre

Japanese (Intermediate): Zenglin Cai

Zenglin, a non-credited student from China, studied Intermediate Japanese at the University Language Centre (ULC).

Why did you choose to study a language at the University of Manchester?

Zenglin Cai

I reckoned that if I would like to study a new language alongside my intense academic commitment for my major, it would be best for me to explore the language in a more systematic way, rather than self-studying.

Studying at the University allows me to access the weekly language lessons much quicker. Plus, with the School's systematic teaching staff review system, we have a stake in improving the quality of instruction and teaching.

Apart from class time, how much time did you spend a week on your studies?

I usually spent around ten hours per week watching Japanese television and movies, and practised my speaking by following the characters' lines at the same time. While I was having fun with such entertainment, I was also maintaining my language proficiency outside the class.

How did you find your course in terms of level?

I found it a very reasonable level for students who already have a basic level of Japanese (knowing katakana and hiragana and some basic grammar).

What did you most enjoy about your course?

The lecturer gave us a lot of chances to speak the language in the class, like playing interactive games and speaking practice. This was important, as speaking is always an enormous barrier for a language learner.

Also, the dossier tasks were a very enjoyable part of the study journey. It kept me aware of the importance of practising, and its great flexibility also allowed me to really enjoy the study process.

Have you been able to put your newly acquired language skills to use outside the classroom? If so, please tell us how.

I am now ready to take the Japanese Language Proficiency Test at N3 level.