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Upper Advanced Course (B2-2)


The Upper Advanced Course aims to comprehensively develop students’ speaking, reading, listening and writing skills that they have developed so far in their Japanese study, and enable them to use more sophisticated and natural Japanese. You will discuss current affairs featuring in newspapers and TV news, as well as gain appreciation of the language through materials such as film and literature. Furthermore, you will develop the skills to comprehend technical and academic passages written in Japanese, and refine their ability to use Japanese with colleagues in the workplace, both in verbal and written interactions such as email.

The Upper Advanced Course corresponds to N1 level.

On completion of this course, participants will be able to:

  • Read a short story and understand the events and the motives for the characters’ actions.
  • Express their ideas and opinions with precision, present and respond to complex lines of argument.
  • Write clear, detailed texts on a variety of subjects related to their field of interest while synthesising and evaluating information and arguments from a number of sources.
  • Use the language fluently, accurately and effectively on a wide range of topics, marking clearly the relationships between ideas.
  • Understand most TV news and current affairs programmes.

Term 1, 2020 Topics:

  • Media and the Japanese society
    * PR strategy for the Tokyo Olympics
    * Natural disasters told through the Media
    * Influential media in areas affected by natural disasters
    * Listening and analysis of lecture “Disaster responses”
  • Reading a modern novel
    The Seventh Man by Haruki Murakami (from short stories Lexington Ghosts)
  • Viewing and analysing a Japanese film (title TBA)
  • Reading about “Now” in Japan
    *Reading news articles
    *Analysis and discussion on current affairs in Japan
  • Brush-Up on grammar and Kanji

The following topics were covered in Term 1, 2020:

  • Japanese outlook on life and death
    *Changing outlooks on life and death – various beliefs and their changes in history
    *Analysing “Japan Folklore” – examining the appearance of ghosts and yokai
    *Proverbs and idiomatic phrases originating from superstitions

    *Reading a modern novel
        Lexington Ghosts by Haruki Murakami (from short stories Lexington Ghosts)
  • Viewing and analysing the Japanese film A Boy and His Samurai
  • Reading about “Now” in Japan
    *Reading news articles
    *Analysis and discussion on current affairs in Japan
  • Brush-Up on grammar and Kanji


【2020年Term 2のトピック】


  • メディアと日本社会
  • 短編小説を読む
    * 村上春樹「七番目の男」(短編集「レキシントンの幽霊」より)
  • 映画鑑賞・批評 - 未定         
  • 日本の「今」を読み解く
  • 文法と漢字 ブラッシュアップ


  • 日本人の死生観
    *移り変わる死生観 ― 様々な信仰と時代の変化

    *「日本昔話」を分析する -「幽霊」「妖怪」の登場のしかた
    * 現代小説を読む
  • 映画鑑賞・批評 -「ちょんまげぷりん」
  • 日本の「今」を読み解く

  • 文法と漢字 ブラッシュアップ

Course Details in Term 2

Course fee

$280/term + $20 administration fee*

* New and returning students requiring a placement test will be charged a $20 non-refundable administration fee in addition to the $280 course fee when enrolling. 

Course fees include the cost of materials distributed in class.

Evening  class

Mondays | May 4 – June 29, 2020
Taught by Shoko Ono
Venue: The Library at The Japan Foundation, Sydney

Class Size

Min: 7 / Max: 10 participants

* In the case where enrolments do not reach the minimum number of 7 people, the class may be cancelled.


To apply for the Upper Advanced course, please email the J-Course team directly at jcourse(a), and include details of your Japanese language level. Please note that you will be required to take a level check test, which will be organised as soon as possible.

Notes regarding the Term 2 schedule:

  • Classes will be held online until the restrictions for COVID-19 have been lifted.
  • The first week will be a 40 minute orientation session, including warm-up conversation practice.
  • We will cover all topics planned for Term 2. However the final review lessons and test, which are usually scheduled for Weeks 9 and 10, will not be included in Term 2 this year.

Recommended Materials

In Term 1, students will be reading the short story Lexington Ghosts from the novel Lexington Ghosts by Haruki Murakami (ISBN: 978-4-16-750203-4). Details of this novel are available on our Library website (click here).

Please note that there is no set textbook for this course. Learning materials will be provided in class.

Related Links



Photo: Brett Boardman

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