Not too easy. Not too difficult.
This is a great course! Even though it is quite a bit of work, Wakabayashi sensei is lively and kind. She'll give you a Japanese pronunciation of your name- my first name in class is Cherushii instead of Chelsea. The class overall has a welcoming atmosphere as everyone is in the same boat as you, with no prior Japanese education. Even though my mother is Japanese, she never taught me how to speak the language, despite everyone automatically assuming I could. You have to speak up if you want to pass the class, since that is the most effective way to learn a new language. Even if you struggle at first, the sensei will help you. There is a lot of homework and outside practice, but that is to be expected when learning a new language. I recommend this class to anyone who is interested in learning a new language.
This is the kind of class you cannot get away with cheating. The course requires understanding as sensei will ask you to use the words you know to come up with fun anecdotes. It is always a blast using the language to make interesting offers, for example one of my classmates invited me to a water drinking party! Since this is only the first half of beginner Japanese, you will learn the basics and polite ways of speaking/writing, as well as the hiragana and katakana alphabets. I especially love writing in Japanese because the written language is beautiful, despite kanji being exceptionally difficult (It has THOUSANDS of symbols). I was surprised by the amount of information we were taught, I learned more from one semester of University Japanese than four years of High School Spanish. As long as I stayed on top of the workload, I did well and had fun.
Hours per week:
Advice for students:
The book is an absolute must if you plan to pass the class. It explains many of the concepts to be discussed in class and has quirky little Japanese drawings. Most of the homework comes right out of the workbook. Only take this class if it is something you really want to do. Japanese is only spoken by a small region of the world, so if you plan to go to Japan or have Japanese family like I do, definitely take the class. If not, it may not be very beneficial to you in the long run.