Six-day Japanese language immersion camp

La Trobe University will be running a six-day Japanese language immersion camp beginning Wednesday 28 March for Year 10 students from across Victoria to boost interest in Asian language courses.  

sushiLa Trobe University won a tender from Victoria Department of Education, to design and implement the immersion camp.

A total of 50 Year 10 students from various secondary schools were selected out of the 100 applications received to stay for five nights at Melbourne Discovery and participate in Japanese language and cultural activities says Coordinator Professor Kaori Okano.

‘The Year 10 students will have the opportunity to try their hands at a variety of activities from dance and drumming, to making sushi, and Japanese calligraphy. 

‘They will also have the opportunity to hear from current La Trobe students recently returned from Japan on exchange programs and those get an insight to university life in Melbourne,’ says Professor Okano.

The initiative funded by National Asian Languages and Studies in Australian Schools (NALSAS) and Victoria Department of Education hopes to encourage students to continue the study of Japanese at VCE level, whilst providing a wide range of interactive activities to experience the diverse culture.

‘There has been a large decline in Year 10-11 students enrolling in language courses at VCE level. This is a widespread concern with just 12 per cent of students in Victoria enrolling in languages, and only 6 per cent enrolling in Asian languages,’ says Professor Okano.

The immersion camp is the first to take place in Victoria but will help monitor the improvement of student’s proficiency and motivation towards the language. 

‘This is a great way for students to become more motivated about language. The students are being asked to keep a journal written both in English and Japanese to document their experiences and engage with both languages.  

‘We hope that through providing students with hands on experiences, which can’t be achieved in the classroom environment, will help to increase their enthusiasm towards the subject,’ says Professor Okano.

A detailed report on the 2012 Japanese Language Immersion Camp for Year 10 Students.

For more information or to arrange an interview please contact:

Meghan Lodwick Media and Communications Officer

T:  03 9479 5353 M:  0418 495 941 E: