Languages at Leicester

Japanese Beginners Fast Track (Level 1)

This is for you if you have no prior knowledge of Japanese (or so little that you effectively want to start again from scratch). You will learn basic skills to enable you to make yourself understood and to find out information in everyday situations. Fast Track courses enable you to complete the level in just one term, instead of two terms.

Key information

New course starting May 2023

  • Course: Saturdays 10.00am - 2.30pm
    Delivery: On-campus (face-to-face)
    Timeline: Starts 13 May - ends 15 July 2023
    Lengths: 10 weeks (60 learning hours)
    Fees: £220 

This course requires a minimum of 8 and it can have up to a maximum of 16 students. Course fee includes all tuition, access to Blackboard, handouts and any tests/exams, but not a textbook.

Please note that courses taught On-campus could be moved online if the Covid-19 situation prevents face-to-face teaching, and for as long as it is required. This decision will be made by the Government and/or the University of Leicester to guarantee the safety of students and staff.

Term runs from October to December. The full course comprises 60 learning hours. Lessons are four hours long and take place once a week. There is a half hour lunch break. 

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Entry level

No previous knowledge of Japanese is required - the course is suitable for absolute beginners.

Course content

  • Introducing yourself
  • Shopping (including asking prices)
  • Ordering in a restaurant
  • Asking dates and times (e.g. "When is your birthday?" "What time does the meeting start?")
  • Talking about routine
  • Introduction to hiragana
  • Talking about what you like and what you can do
  • Talking about your itinerary and locations, (e.g. "Where is the supermarket?" "It is in front of the station.")
  • Describing things using adjectives (my car is big, the film is interesting)
  • Writing a simple letter and making arrangements including invitations and agreeing a date/place
  • Introduction to katakana.


There isn’t a University bookshop however The European Bookshop website holds our book list and offers a 10% discount to all our students. Languages at Leicester Reading List.

It is not essential to bring a course book to the first class. The tutor will discuss book requirements in class and advise you of the best places to obtain the book if required. With some languages there is the option for us to order text books on behalf of a class.

Our approach

This course is taught in Japanese and English. Our programme aims to develop the four language skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing as well as cultural awareness. It provides a good balance between understanding the culture, vocabulary, writing system (Hiragana and Katakana characters) and grammar structures of the Japanese language and enhancing communication and interaction. It supports comprehensive and productive skills in speech and writing through authentic based activities and guided practice in the use of Japanese language. Students will be encouraged to seek opportunities to learn and practise the four skills outside the classroom taking advantage of learning resources provided by tutors and the programme. The group size is to allow intensive interactive practice with individual feedback and advice on progress.


Upon completing the Beginners level (1), you can progress onto the Post-Beginners level (2).

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