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Training and Supervision of College Foreign Language Teachers


  • Michio P. Hagiwara

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      Michio P. Hagiwara (Ph.D., Univ of Michigan) is Assistant Professor of French at the University of Michigan. He taught in NDEA Institutes at the University of Missouri at Kansas City (1961–62) and at Utah State University (1964). He has been Linguistic Consultant for NDEA research projects at the University of Hawaii since 1966. Professor Hagiwara co-authored: Active Review of French (1963), L‘échelle (1966), and Continuons à Parler (1967), all published by Blaisdell. He is a member of MLA, AATF, ACTFL, and the Linguistic Society of America.


ABSTRACT: In the past two decades modern language instruction has changed considerably in theory and practice. Unfortunately, opportunities for young college teachers to evaluate and increase their language proficiency and teaching skills or increase their knowledge of methodology and linguistics have seldom been available. Many surveys seem to indicate that only a few foreign language departments have instituted any systematic training of graduate assistants. This article describes the teaching assistants in French, their training and supervision, and the extent of the supervisor's duties at the Univ. of Michigan. The program there aims to prepare the inexperienced assistants, in the shortest time possible, to decrease direct supervision gradually, and to encourage outstanding instructors to participate in the administration and supervision of the lower-level courses. It does not demand excessive time and energy from the assistants or cause major changes in the existing requirements for degree work. A description of the system offers an insight into the complexity of the problem as well as possibilities of solution. Moreover, an analysis of the past reports concerning the practices adopted by some institutions and the articles outlining ideal training programs yields useful information for the development and evaluation of a college foreign language teacher training and supervision program.