Student Involvement Conference Update

Season’s Greetings from JASAL! I’m sure there have been many parties held in Centres over the last few weeks, and that we’re all looking forward to a well-earned break.

The nights are drawing in, which means that it’s almost time for Father Christmas to visit, and more importantly, that the Student Involvement in SACs Conference is getting closer. We are happy to announce that there will events over 3 days (1st -3rd Feb), with the main event, the student presentations, taking place on Sat 2nd Feb. See the conference page for more details.

The deadline for proposals from students (max. 200 words) is January 10th. Please have your students email their proposals to, where they will be read and selected by the conference committee, made up of Sugiyama Jogakuen University students.

You can now view information about the conference schedule, access and accommodation details on the conference page here

If you are intending to bring/send students to either attend or present at this conference, but have not yet submitted a proposal or confirmed your interest, please contact the conference organisers at the email address above, especially if you would like to use the accommodation provided at the Centre, as it is quite limited. If the demand is high, it may be necessary to find alternative accommodation.

Gook luck with all your SAC related endeavours in 2013 – JASAL will be here to support you!

Announcement: Student Conference In February 2013

JASAL is proud to support the first ever student conference for Student Involvement in Self Access Centers in Japan, organised by students and staff at Sugiyama Jogakuen University in Nagoya, in association with Nanzan University and JASAL. It will take place in February in Nagoya, and is targetted primarily at students, (although teachers, learning advisors and managers are also encouraged to attend and support their students at the event). For more details, click here.

We hope to see many JASAL members there, supporting their students as they present and share their ideas!SISAC Conference Flyer

Add your Centre to the Japan Self-Access Centre Registry!

The field of self-access in Japan is a diverse one, with centres set in a variety of contexts serving a variety of communities, and new centres of all shapes and sizes popping up all the time.

One of our central missions at JASAL is to facilitate communication between centres. To this end, we have created the Japan Self-Access Centre Registry. Our goal is to have an entry for every self-access centre in the country. We need to know what centres are out there, and we need to be able to contact each other to share information and resources, conduct research, etc. We have a lot to learn from each other.

The registry is a Google Docs spreadsheet with a Google Docs form linked to it. Form entries are automatically added to the spreadsheet, which is sorted alphabetically by the second column, “School Name in English”. Both documents are publicly accessible. We have kept the registry quite simple to ensure ease of use.

Please click here to add your centre to the registry!

Click here to view the Japan Self-Access Centre Registry!

We invite anyone connected to a self-access centre in Japan (JASAL member or not) to make an entry for their centre.

Any feedback on the registry is welcome anytime. Please e-mail or any of the Executive Committee members.

Call for Presentations – JASAL Forum at JALT 2012


for the JASAL Forum at JALT2012, Hamamatsu (12th – 15th October 2012)

 Making a difference through self access

 Self access learning, as a growing field in language learning, aims to make a difference in learners’ lives by providing opportunities for language learning not available within the constraints of a classroom setting. To be successful, however, these opportunities need to be promoted and fostered through institutional policies and programmes, and the provision of professional support.

In keeping with this year’s JALT theme, JASAL invites contributions from members which illustrate how self-access learning can make a difference in learners’ language learning and development or address how challenges to successful self-access may be overcome.

We invite submissions on areas including, but not limited to:

–     SAC layout
–     Managing and administrating SACs
–     Materials
–     Learning program design
–     Integrating self-access with curriculum
–     Learner involvement in self-access
–     Self-access learning communities
–     Learning advising/counselling
–     Assessment of self-access learning
–     Evaluating SACs
–     Research design
–     Interaction and collaboration with colleagues and administrators

Following on the success of last year’s event, this year’s JALT forum will consist of a poster session followed by two short presentations and an open forum discussion.

Proposals should include the following:

  1. Title
  2. Format (poster or presentation)
  3. Name(s) of presenter(s) and affiliation(s)
  4. JALT membership number of all presenters, (if applicable)
  5. 150-200 word abstract
  6. 75-word summary which clearly states your topic
  7. Equipment you will require

Please submit your proposal to Katherine Thornton ( and CC by Fri, April 6, 2012.

Please note that while the JALT deadline for submissions is April 13, we need time to put together our proposal. If for some reason your presentation cannot be included in the JASAL Forum, we will notify you so you can submit your proposal to the JALT conference as an individual paper before the April 13th deadline.

Please understand that depending on the number and nature of proposals we receive, we may have to ask you to change from a presentation to a poster or vice versa.

For more information on the JALT 2012 conference, please visit:

Photos and PDFs from JALT 2011

Thank you to all, both members and non-members alike, who attended and contributed to the 2011 JASAL Forum at JALT on 19th November 2011, and made it such a success! With 5 posters, 2 presentations and a lively discussion, it turned into a very enjoyable and informative afternoon. Our theme this year was Growing Trends in Self Access Learning, and many of the contributions focused on the different ways in which institutions promote self-access usage in their respective centres. Look out for Azusa Kodate’s review of the event in the near future (details to be posted on this website). Go to Conference JALT 2011 to see some photos from the Forum. Some of the PDFs and ppts of the presentations are already up, too.

Executive Committee election

We are calling for nominations for the positions of President and Vice President of JASAL to be made by Friday 14th January 2011 (see ‘Election procedure’ below). Both Garold Murray (President) and Lucy Cooker (Vice President) are standing down as they have served their term of five years. Many thanks to Garold and Lucy for their work in developing JASAL between 2005 and 2010.

Eligibility to nominate All members of JASAL are eligible to nominate a candidate. Criteria for nominees Nominees should be members of JASAL. Nominees should be able to demonstrate a commitment to the field of self-access language learning in Japan through their research, teaching, conference presentations and/or publications. Nominees must be able to dedicate time and energy to building the association, strengthening links between members, and leading the association’s activities.

Roles of President and Vice President In the past, the responsibilities of the President and Vice President have included the following:

  1. Organising the yearly JASAL Forum at JALT and other symposia.
  2. Communicating with members and providing support to members developing self-access language learning centres and systems through email communication and the JASAL website.
  3. Promoting JASAL and recruiting members. Currently, selected tasks (e.g. the design and maintenance of the website and maintenance and expansion of the membership database) have been delegated to other JASAL Executive Committee members.

Term of President/Vice President The President/Vice President can serve for two non-consecutive five year terms.

Election procedure

  1. If you are interested in nominating someone for the position of JASAL President or Vice President, first contact them to make sure they are willing to stand. If they agree, then email your nomination to by Friday 14th January 2011.
  2. Nominees should submit their self-introductions to by Sunday 16th January. These should include a brief biodata (so that we know who you are and where you work, and what you have done in the self-access language learning field) and say how you see JASAL developing and how you plan to contribute to JASAL (i.e. “Why should you vote for me?”). Max 250 words.
  3.  Nominees’ information to be posted to the JASAL website by Monday 17th January. [If there is only one nominee for each post at this point, the nominees will be elected unopposed. In the case of two or more nominees for either post, we proceed to Step 4.]
  4.  Call for voting to be sent to all JASAL members by Monday 17th January 2011.
  5. Votes to be cast through the electronic voting system by Monday 31st January 2011.
  6. Members to be informed of the results of the voting by Tuesday 1st February 2011.
  7. Names of the President and Vice President for 2011 – 2016 to be posted on the JASAL website by Wednesday 2nd February 2011.

Webmaster In addition to the elected positions of President and Vice President, JASAL is looking for a dedicated Webmaster, with experience of using WordPress. The Webmaster is a non-elected, voluntary position. The main duties of the Webmaster are to update the JASAL site ( as and when required (usually around once per month). If you are interested in volunteering for this post, please contact Lucy Cooker at

We look forward to your nominations coming in.

JASAL Executive Committee
Garold Murray
Lucy Cooker
Hisako Yamashita

Join us at JALT 2010!

Hi Everyone,

Plase come and join our JASAL Forum at JALT 2010!

Title: Self-Access Learning: Thinking Outside the Box
Date: Saturday 20th November
Time: 1715 – 1845
Room: 1209

To be involved in self-access language learning means not only thinking but being outside the box! This forum includes an extended session for six posters followed by two oral presentations in which presenters from different institutions talk about the creative approaches they have taken in developing and researching self-access learning environments and facilities. The poster and oral presentations will be followed by Q&A and a short discussion.

For more information about JALT 2010,

Report on JASAL Forum

A message from our member, Jo Mynard:

Hello everyone!
I am looking forward to seeing many of you at the JASAL Forum in Nagoya. I was wondering whether anyone would be interested in writing up a report of the event for December 2010 issue of SiSAL Journal (Studies in Self-Access Learning).
Please let me know if you are interested. The report should be less than 2000 words and can be about the event in general, or about your presentation.
Guidelines can be found here
Last year Diego Navarro and I wrote an article based on themes discussed at the 2009 forum which was published in the conference proceedings ( We also wrote a report for SiSAL Journal (

See you in Nagoya!