Making Global Knowledge Accessible to EFL Speakers of an Undergraduate Leadership Program Through a Flipped and Ubiquitous Learning Environment

Keywords: global leadership, ubiquitous learning, flipped learning, Content and Language Integrated Learning


This paper reports on how an undergraduate global leadership course was designed and implemented at a Japanese mid-sized private university to match the Japanese government’s initiative of fostering global individuals through education. By incorporating a flipped learning approach (Bergmann & Sam, 2012) and the content materials from a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC), the university was able to offer a global leadership program to Japanese students with some “hidden” English language assistance. The language support was provided by employing Content and Language Integrated Learning (CLIL), a pedagogical approach that is gaining global popularity (Coyle, Hood, & Marsh, 2010). Flipped learning was introduced to maximise the face-to-face class time for the activities to enhance active learning. Content learning was designed to be done online, before coming to every class. In order to support flipped learning and CLIL, ubiquitous learning was also incorporated to the program design. This paper also focuses on capturing the leadership program and develop the understanding of roles of each stakeholder by mapping human and nonhuman actors to see what resources were involved in manifesting this highly complex learning environment. The student perception on the leadership program was compared through interviews conducted in Weeks 4 and 14, to see if the program was successfully perceived as a leadership program, or perceived as just another English language program. Some implications of designing this type of multifunctional course are discussed to conclude the paper.

Author Biographies

Nobue Tanaka-Ellis, Tokai University, Japan

Nobue Tanaka-Ellis is Associate Professor at the International Education Center, Tokai University, Japan. She holds a Bachelor of Arts, a Master of CALL, and a Ph.D. in Applied Linguistics/CALL from the University of Melbourne. She grew up in five different countries and taught ESL in Australia and Japan. Her current research interests include ubiquitous learning, TBLT, CLIL, intercultural communication, and leadership education.

Sachiyo Sekiguchi, Meiji Gakuin University, Japan

Sachiyo Sekiguchi is an Associate Professor at the Faculty of Letters, Meiji Gakuin University in Tokyo, Japan. Her current research interests include Learning Design, Technology-Enhanced Learning, Virtual Exchange, and global leadership education. She obtained her Masters degree in IT in Education at the University of Melbourne and Master of Arts from Monash University in Australia.