Utokyo faculty development東京大学

Online Studying



The online course

Outline for students

The “Interactive Teaching” course began on November 19th, 2014, and by February 2016 (1st–3rd period) it had welcomed over 20,000 registrants from 43 countries.
Students’ ages ranged from teens to eighties and their occupations and specializations were not restricted to graduate students and university faculty, but included elementary and junior high school teachers, those working with human-resource development in private companies, and those training and educating the next generation in the fields of medicine and care for the elderly, among others.

Results of the student survey

Q1.Did the course content match your goals and motivations for taking the course? (N=1,048)

Over 90% responded that it matched their goals and motivations.
Results of the student survey
※This is based on the results of the student surveys conducted after the end of the course (1st and 2nd periods).

Q2. How did the course content compare with the expectations you had at the time of registration?

Over 90% responded that the course was substantial, academic/specialized, and practical to an extent that “exceeded expectations” or “met expectations.”
the results of the student surveys conducted after the end of the course
※This is based on the results of the student surveys conducted after the end of the course (1st and 2nd periods).

Q3.Before and after comparison of the course (N=788)

The proportion of students who responded that they felt sufficiently confident to practice interactive teaching (“very confident” or “confident”) increased 3.3-fold when comparing answers from before and after the course.
the data collected from students who took both the survey before the course and the one after the course
※This is based solely on the data collected from students who took both the survey before the course and the one after the course (1st and 2nd periods).

Real-time session

Graduates of the 1st period real-time session receiving course certificates,
along with teachers and staff

After a selection process, a maximum of twenty applicants participated in a “real-time session” (a face-to-face class). The online students, with ages ranging from twenties to fifties, created a space for sharing expertise in many fields and learning together.

Student Voices

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    Although I didn’t have any basic knowledge, I enjoyed the weekly classes. I was able to reflect on the environments I’ve been in and the teaching I’ve done. In the future, through trial and error, I really want to provide better education and better medical treatment.

    (A female graduate student in her twenties from Kanagawa)

  • Doing it myself, I realized that putting together just one rubric involves discussion and practical work, which takes a vast amount of time. I’m deeply grateful to the team who put this together, as it allows anybody to access the content from a prestigious institution like the University of Tokyo for free.

    (A female graduate student in her forties from Tokyo)

  • What I gained from the course was richer and broader in content than I had expected. I now want to practice and deepen my understanding of what I have learnt, reading the suggested readings and putting together graphic syllabi and structured academic portfolios. Moreover, since my work entails spreading active learning-type teaching at my school, I hope to encourage learning among the other teachers based on what I’ve learnt in the course.

    (A female full-time university lecturer in her thirties from Ishikawa)

  • In all aspects, it was a meaningful course. I gained new knowledge. I was happy that I could participate in such a high-level course for free. I bought the reference books, so I will continue studying. It was great to try writing papers and grading student work based on the rubric. I’ve seen things like rubrics before, but I didn’t use them because they seem too mechanical. However, now I can see them from a new perspective, as a tool for measuring the quality of student papers.

    (A male full-time university lecturer in his thirties from Aichi)

  • I learnt a lot from the course, about the importance of lecture planning and the simple ways in which active learning can be incorporated in teaching. I was also able to learn about the need for a scientific approach to teaching and new pedagogic methods. Moreover, I came to know that interactively evaluating final essays can motivate as well as stimulate the student and that rubrics can help the student deepen his or her learning. The course has had a deep impression on me.

    (A female full-time lecturer in her fifties from Fukuoka)

  • I became a university lecturer after 26 years of practical work experience. As a result, I had to begin teaching without any training and I’ve struggled with this a lot. I’ve read some books concerning didactic methods, but this really was the kind of learning opportunity that I’ve been looking for. Thank you so much! This course was aimed at young, aspiring teachers, but the content was also very useful for someone without a teaching background, like myself.

    (A female full-time university lecturer in her fifties from Kanagawa)

  • I was surprised by how comprehensive the course was. We learnt the teaching basics of how to stimulate student learning through design and portfolios. I hope to study independently to make full use of what I’ve learnt.

    (A female part-time university lecturer in her forties from Fukuoka)

  • This was my first time to learn in the MOOC style. I was worried that I would not be able to follow the course, but the content was so intriguing that I was able to finish it successfully.

    (A male high school teacher in his twenties from Kyoto)

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    This was a great opportunity. Without a doubt, this was a turning point for me.

    (A female high school teacher in her forties from Saitama)

  • I was able to learn about the future of education not only for universities but for all schools. I feel a slightly sad now that the course has finished. The content was really fulfilling.

    (A female high school teacher in her forties from the US)

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    I wrote this in the final paper as well, but thanks to this course I can now incorporate active learning into my own teaching. It only lasted a few weeks, but it had an impact on all of the students, and the progress was also made visible in figures. I’m truly grateful. I will make sure to use videos from the course at other training sessions.

    (A male high school teacher in his fifties from Tokyo)

  • It was my first time to use MOOC lectures, so I had to feel my way forward, but I really enjoyed the course. If given the opportunity, I would have also liked to have participated in the real-time sessions. I would like to sincerely thank Prof. Kurita, Prof. Nakahara, all the graduate student participants, and the staff for broadcasting the lectures. I am planning to rewatch the lecture videos and also I hope to continue learning after the course.

    (A male university librarian in his thirties from Yamagata)

  • This was my first time to study this course. Hearing that the teachers would be from the University of Tokyo, I was worried about the difficulty level, but as they explained everything in a friendly and easy-to-understand manner, I began to look forward to each week’s lesson.

    (A female university student support worker in her forties from Hiroshima)

  • For me, as I am in my third year of teaching art and art history to working adults, being able to take a course like this at this time was very important. I am so happy I could take part because it helped me to realize and learn, and it benefitted me so much.

    (A self-employed/independent female in her thirties from Tokyo)

  • The course duration was very fulfilling. I’m not a university employee (I work in administration), so I thought I didn’t need to participate in the second half of the course but, when actually looked at it, I found that there was much that was useful, such as the planning and evaluation of projects.

    (A male regular employee in his forties from Ishikawa)

  • As a commentator on the course, Prof. Kurita, the coordinator, told me that the lectures were not finished, but that every lecture continues when the graduate-student participants practice active learning methods. This allowed to me deepen my understanding of active learning. Moreover, the course was put together from not only one perspective, but three, allowing us to study active learning from many angles.

    (A female contract/temporary employee in her thirties from Kanagawa)

My learning style

  • Mr. Maekawa Shūichi

    Mr. Maekawa Shūichi

    (Teacher at Meikō Academy Junior and Senior High Schools)

    My course experience was full of ups and downs. My second-term work schedule was very busy, making me worry about whether I could continue. During the first week I had a lot of time, but in the second week I had a lot of work and didn’t get around to taking the test. I heard that Monday was the deadline for the third week, so I began working on it in the morning until the deadline at 9:00. In week 4, I misclicked and only got one question correct… But it was at this point that I really got going, and I scored perfectly from week 5 through to week 8. Excluding the 1-point deduction on the first final paper, I received perfect scores for the second and third papers, giving me a final score of 77. I was so amazed with the wonderful course design, which introduced me to a stream of education! As expected, what I must work on is consolidating what I learn. Just watching the videos wasn’t enough so, when I was writing the papers, I realized how much of the previous learning points I had forgotten. I recommend taking notes and making a portfolio so that you can review them.
  • Ms. Matsumura Kayo

    Ms. Matsumura Kayo

    (University staff)

    I don’t have a smartphone, so I watched the classes on my home PC after work and on weekends. When I was very busy, I could catch up by watching two weeks’ worth during consecutive holidays. It was very helpful that I could go back and rewatch any part that I found interesting or difficult as many times as I needed. My interest grew by debating with the other students and asking them questions on the discussion board. I had just begun helping out at the university and had started learning about active learning, so I was excited to take part in this course because I could immediately put into practice what I learned about speaking style, the importance of revising, and how to design lessons.
  • Mr. Kobayashi Yasushi

    Mr. Kobayashi Yasushi

    (Associate professor in the Division of Science Education, Miyagi University of Education)

    Teachers of all ages have always wished for the growth of their students. Wanting to take part in that excitement, I participated in “Interactive Teaching.” Making use of the rewind and stop functions, I could take part in the eight-week online course “as if I were actually there!” The “state of learning” in Japan is in the midst of a drastic change. As we are also seeking to make changes to the “state of teachers,” we should acknowledge the unchanging stance of teachers, that of the constantly learning teacher. The essence of active learning is the student growing to become a “person central to learning.” Thinking about these things is the reason why I am practicing “Interactive Teaching” at a teacher-development site.
  • Mr. Higuchi Takashi

    Mr. Higuchi Takashi

    (University librarian)

    Regardless of specialization or occupation, there is always a need to raise the next generation, meaning that we must also get involved in “teaching.” In business today, it seems that it is becoming rarer for one person to complete the full workload and more common to build teams of people with different strengths to yield results on a project-by-project basis.

    The content of the course was aimed at everyone who has some connection to “teaching.” It was extremely easy to understand and full of useful content. It made full use of the merits of online lecturing by allowing teachers and students to “learn together” while, concurrently, visualizing the content and providing students with an awareness of and lessons about the necessity of conversation skills, etc. In the future, I want to apply what I have learnt in the course when “accurately conveying my own experiences.”

Spin-off Programs

  • November 14, 2015

    Short skill session program “Facilitation”

    Short skill session program “Facilitation”
    This element was taught by the course skill session coordinator, Mr. Fujita Masanori (actor/producer at Ongakuza Musical). He used techniques from musicals to instruct us in an experiential 4.5-hour session concerning the theme “Making Space,” which involved collaborative exploration of the learning spaces of the new age. We learned four kinds of icebreakers and practiced self-introductions, which received a strong response in the online course. We also practiced how to project our voices through one-on-one sessions with actors from Mr. Fujita’s Ongakuza Musical. We were taught correct posture and how to walk aesthetically and got to experience the hot topic of improvisation, all useful content for the following day’s teaching. For the finale, all participants worked together to act out a scene and perform it.
  • November 01, 2015

    Short knowledge session on the program “Rubrics”

    Short knowledge session on the program “Rubrics”
    This element was taught by Associate Professor Kurita Kayoko (Center for Research and Development of Higher Education, University of Tokyo) and Mr. Narita Hideo (development and research at the Kawai-juku Coaching School). At the orientation, we revised the content of the online course and covered the main points concerning creating rubrics. At the workshop, we took the first-year class “Writing Course” as a case study for experiencing the full process of rubric-making. Moreover, by going through the tasks and problems that originated from this process, the participants could jointly discover the key points to bear in mind.