Assistant Teaching Fellow, Japanese Studies

Durham, United Kingdom
£26,715 - £32,817 per annum (pro rata)
Monday, 16 November 2020
End of advertisement period
Monday, 30 November 2020
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Part Time

School of Modern Languages and Cultures

Grade 6: - £26,715 - £32,817 per annum (pro rata)
Fixed Term - Part Time
Contract Duration: 10 weeks
Contracted Hours per Week: 24.5
Closing Date: 30-Nov-2020, 7:59:00 AM

Job Description

The School of Modern Languages and Cultures seeks to appoint an Assistant Teaching Fellow in Japanese.

The post will be fixed term commencing 11 January 2021 and ending 19 March 2021 and part-time (0.7FTE) and therefore the salary will be pro rata to the salary shown.

The post-holder will be responsible for the delivery of intensive language teaching in Japanese language (12 hrs/week) to students registered for the BA in Japanese Studies in their third year, as a substitute for those who are unable to go abroad as normally planned. The successful candidate will also engage in administrative duties involving assessment, course documentation, quality assurance and materials development.

The School of Modern Languages and Cultures

The School is one of the largest and most successful Schools of Modern Languages in the UK bringing together research in Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Hispanic, Italian, Japanese and Russian Studies. It is consistently ranked in the top five in national league tables, such as the Complete University Guide. The School’s reach spans Europe, the Arab world, Russophone Eurasia, Hispanic America, and East Asia, and their mutual socio-cultural, intellectual and linguistic relations. The School federates expertise to generate innovative research practices and activities that cross historical, geographical and methodological boundaries. Its research focuses on the transnational study of literatures, cultures and histories. Translation – understood in its broad sense of transmission, interpretation and sharing of languages, ideas and histories – underpins the School’s collective practices. The School has particular strengths in medieval and early modern Studies, visual arts and culture and the relationship between the sciences and the humanities, with further strong research interests in 19th to 21st century literature and culture, textual scholarship, gender and sexuality studies, critical and cultural theory, travel literature, creative writing, and translation. The School’s forward-thinking research agenda was recently highlighted in its major conference Our Uncommon Ground, held in Durham in 2018 (http://our-uncommon-ground.co.uk/). This conference brought together speakers from across the world to articulate and embrace the values of a discipline equipped to study cultures and their interactions in historical perspective.

Japanese Studies

Along with Chinese, Japanese Studies is a vital area of growth in the School of Modern Languages and Cultures, with enrolments demonstrating significant annual increases since its inception. East Asian Studies at Durham overall ranked 5th in 2020 according to league tables compiled by the Complete University Guide, contributing to Durham University’s top 50 placing for Arts and Humanities in the Times QS World Rankings.

More detailed information is available from https://www.dur.ac.uk/mlac/japanese/ and related pages.


To carry out intensive Japanese language instruction, module co-ordination, materials development and other related course administration in Japanese Studies, in connection with the Virtual Year Abroad program.


  • To teach Japanese Language at intermediate to advanced (equivalent to N3 to N1 on the JLPT scale, or CEFR B1 to C1);
  • To develop teaching materials appropriate to the courses and which are compliant with National Subject Benchmarking Statements.

 Examining and Assessment

  • To design, set and mark formative assessments;
  • To provide formative feedback to students throughout the duration of the appointment.


  • To deliver Japanese language teaching in Japanese Studies in consultation with the Japanese Language Programme Co-ordinator;
  • To co-ordinate the Japanese language course as required, liaising with colleagues and students as required;
  • To attend relevant meetings as necessary to support delivery of the teaching;
  • To offer advice and guidance to students;
  • Any other duties as may be reasonably required by the School.

 The duties and responsibilities outlined above are not intended to be an exhaustive list, but provide guidance on the main duties of the post.

Relationships and Contacts

Responsible to the Head of the School of Modern Languages and Cultures.  Directly supervised by the Director of Studies and Year Abroad Coordinator for Japanese. Interacts with support staff in the School of Modern Languages & Cultures, and other teaching staff in the School.

Person Specification

It is essential that in your written application you give evidence of proven experience against the relevant selection criteria. Assessment of such experience will be further developed and discussed with those candidates invited for interview, along with those skills and competencies to be assessed in a presentation and formal interview.



  • A strong undergraduate degree in a subject closely aligned with the teaching of Japanese language, or in a closely related field


  • Experience in teaching Japanese as a foreign language to undergraduate learners
  • Experience in course materials design
  • Experience of the setting and conduct of assessments
  • Experience of working in a collaborative teaching environment
  • Familiarity with the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages and or the Japanese Language Proficiency Test (JLPT), and experience in teaching Japanese within the context of CEFR or JLPT learning descriptors
  • Experience in e-Learning

Special Knowledge

  • Understanding of cultural, political and social aspects of Japan
  • Knowledge of communicative and student-centred language teaching methods
  • Experience of teaching

Skills & Competencies

  • Native or near-native proficiency in spoken and written English
  • Native or near-native proficiency in spoken and written Japanese
  • Demonstrable ability to teach on-line and/or blended courses, and to develop e-Learning materials
  • Outstanding interpersonal skills
  • Excellent organisational and administrative skills
  • Ability to communicate clearly, precisely and effectively in written and oral forms
  • Ability to work as a member of a team that delivers a range of language courses
  • Willingness to engage with and contribute to activity in a professional and collegial manner



  • A postgraduate qualification in foreign language teaching
  • A postgraduate qualification in teaching Japanese as a foreign language
  • Member of the Higher Education Academy


  • Experience in module co-ordination

Special Knowledge

  • Knowledge of recent developments in Language Learning and Teaching
  • Knowledge of UK secondary and tertiary education systems
  • Knowledge of Blackboard or equivalent virtual learning environments

How to Apply

For informal enquiries please contact the Head of Department at j.j.long@durham.ac.uk. All enquiries will be treated in the strictest confidence.

We prefer to receive applications online via the Durham University Vacancies Site. https://www.dur.ac.uk/jobs/

Applications are particularly welcome from women and black and minority ethnic candidates, who are under-represented in academic posts in the University.

What to Submit

All applicants are asked to submit:

  • a CV and covering letter which details your experience, skills and achievements in meeting (or the potential to meet) the criteria set out above.


You should provide details of 3 referees and the details of your current line manager so that we may seek an employment reference (if they are not listed as an academic referee).

Please note:

  • We shall seek references during the application process. Unless in the case of very early career candidates, referees should not (if possible) include your PhD supervisor(s) and include references from a University other than your own.
  • We would ask that you alert your referees to this application as soon as possible so that we can quickly obtain references. If you do not wish (some or all) of your referees to be approached during the recruitment process; you must clearly indicate this to us at the time of your application.
  • References sought for candidates may be made available to the panel during the shortlisting process.
  • We will seek a reference from your current line-manager if we make you an offer of employment (albeit you may have also nominated your line manager as an academic referee). Please clearly indicate on the application form which referee is your current line-manager and indicate if we should only approach them once an offer has been made.

We will notify you on the status of your application at various points throughout the selection process, via automated emails from our e-recruitment system. Please check your spam/junk folder periodically to ensure you receive all emails.

Next Steps

The assessment for the post will include an interview (thirty-minutes) and a presentation at which candidates will be asked to present a plan for an online class for third-year students of Japanese (ten minutes).

Shortlisted candidates will be invited for interview on 14 December 2020.

DBS Requirement: Not Applicable.