Elizabethtown College Associate Professor of Japanese Nobuaki Takahashi recently held a virtual one-day workshop on his focused research field: corrective feedback in second language acquisition. The workshop, “To correct, or not to correct: that is the question,” included two lectures and two workshops. It was requested and funded by the Department of East Asian Languages & Literatures, Columbian College of Arts & Sciences at George Washington University.

The workshop was delivered virtually, enabling K-12 and college/university level Japanese language teachers from not only the U.S. but also internationally to attend.

Takahashi’s lectures focused on the historical background of the field of second language acquisition and error correction while also providing theoretical background, including language pedagogy, cognitive linguistics, and psychology.

Corrective feedback in second language acquisition has been Takahashi’s main field of research since his graduate studies. He believes learning about error correction is an important part of being an educator.

“Dealing with learners’ errors is a complex and very deep area,” said Takahashi. “There are so many factors to consider to help/assist students. We should never simply take the action of correcting just because we feel that is what we are supposed to do. We need to consider the essence of the action—we correct students to ultimately assist their language development. Not because that is our job, but because we want to help students.”