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Laotian Studies

About Us

The Laotian Studies course is one of the newest one in this university. TUFS is the only university in Japan where Lao is officially taught, and one of a few universities in the world.
Lao P. D. R. (Lao People’s Democratic Republic: Laos) may not be widely known to Japanese, but Japan and Laos celebrated the 50th anniversary of establishment of diplomatic relations in 2005. The relations are growing stronger through financial support and cultural exchanges. In recent years, Laos has been experiencing drastic changes brought about by rapid economic growth, while their traditional culture has remained. We provide students with the opportunity to study the culture, society and history of Laos and the neighboring countries through studying Lao language.
The students are expected to endeavor to find out answers to their own questions and work hard in their chosen field of study.

Characteristics of the Curriculum

Our curriculum aims to make students acquire the following skills in the first year;
(i) basic reading and writing, (ii) daily conversation, (iii) reading short stories.
The curriculum is designed as a modular system, so that students can acquire grammar and writing in a short period. It is categorized into vocabulary, essay writing, reading comprehension, translation, conversation and so on, according to the level of difficulty. Thus students can plan their own language learning. In addition, they also acquire basic knowledge about Laotian society and are expected to carry out presentations based on themes of their choice.
Besides using textbooks written by our own staff, we also use some articles extracted from newspapers or books published in Laos to make students aware of Laotian culture and societal issues.
Furthermore, students can hear Lao language spoken by our native Laotian teachers as well as gain real-time Laotian information from them.

Careers After Graduation

Although there are not many Laos-related industries, our graduates are doing well in various fields, applying what they have learnt at TUFS. Graduates have found work in JETRO, Tokyo Customs, the Prime Minster's Office, NTT Communications, Wakachiku Construction, Sendai Television Incorporated and Shueisha, among others.
There are also students who moved on to graduate schools here at TUFS, Kyoto University, Hitotsubashi University, Osaka University, Tokyo Medical and Dental University and Mie University and so on.

Staff

SUZUKI, Reiko Professor Lao linguistics
KIKUCHI, Yoko Associate Professor Modern and contemporary history of Laos
DUANGPHASY, Mayphone Visiting Associate Professor Lao language
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