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Interactive Multimedia Courseware for Reading and Writing Japanese Script
University (Main Educational Sector)
Raising the quality of language teaching/learning
Project Website:
EU Label National Website:  
European Language(s) of the Label Website: English  


Because Japanese uses three writing systems, one of the biggest challenges in learning Japanese is learning to read and write. Target language materials make use of all three writing systems, so learners have to master hiragana and katakana as quickly as possible. For the past five years, students at University of Limerick have been using a unique colour-based method for learning how to read and write Japanese. In 2005, Barbara Geraghty, Ann Marcus Quinn and Kumiko Kurebayashi of the Department of Languages and Cultural Studies, developed a CDROM using the colour-based method to teach hiragana. The disc’s Flash-based software simultaneously demonstrates the stroke order used when writing and provides a native pronunciation for each character. Research carried out at University of Limerick has shown that use of the CD can lead to faster acquisition of the hiragana, encourages autonomous learning and can be a valuable component of a blended approach to beginners’ level Japanese teaching and learning. Observation also shows that students use this new technology to improve their handwriting in Japanese.


Contact Details
Japanese Section, Department of Languages and Cultural Studies
Barbara Geraghty
University of Limerick
Tel: ++353 61 202 992