CLIL for Who? Commodification of English-Medium Courses in Japan’s Higher Education

  • Kayoko HashimotoEmail author
  • Gregory Paul Glasgow
Part of the Multilingual Education Yearbook book series (MEYB)


Content and Language Integrated Learning (CLIL), which had its origins in Europe in the 1990s, has been developed on the assumption that language learning is more effective if knowledge of content other than language is simultaneously acquired. Nowadays, however, CLIL tends to be considered more as one form of English-medium instruction, which symbolizes the current trend towards globalization in education. In Japan, where it is still in its early stages of development, CLIL-related practices are rarely documented and its potential effectiveness as a pedagogical approach is yet to be determined. This chapter situates CLIL within the context of Japan’s higher education, with a particular focus on the Top Global University Project. While the government pushes the higher education sector to increase its international competitiveness by improving English proficiency levels and increasing the number of international students, there is an absence in government policies of acknowledgment of EMI and of the notion of bilingual education. This chapter examines how top Japanese universities have engaged in CLIL, analyses relevant documents published by universities and government offices, and identifies the problems and challenges in implementing CLIL or CLIL-influenced programs in Japan.


CLIL EMI Bilingual education Top global university project Japan’s higher education 


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The University of QueenslandBrisbaneAustralia
  2. 2.Kanda University of International StudiesChibaJapan

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