German Teachers’ Classroom Language Seen From the Learners’ Perspective

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Axel Harting, Hiroshima University


How do Japanese students of German perceive their teachers’ language of instruction? In pursuit of answering this question, a survey was carried out with 3 learner groups of 1st-, 2nd-, and 3rd- year students. Containing open and closed questions, the survey aimed at getting the students’ opinion on their teacher’s use of German and Japanese in class and their preferences for which of these languages should be used for certain teaching purposes. The results show that the higher the L2 competence of the students, the more they are inclined towards being taught in the target language. Also, differences between the learner groups were revealed concerning their language preference for certain teaching purposes, such as explaining, correcting, or giving instructions regarding exercises. The learners’ feedback will provide an incentive for German teachers to reflect on their language of instruction and adjust it to better accommodate students’ expectations and needs.