Back to School 2017, Osaka JALT's 7th annual spring mini-conference

Saturday, May 27, 2017 - 9:00am to 5:00pm
Event Speaker: 
Keynote speaker: Gordon Bateson of Kochi University of Technology
Fee for JALT members: 
Fee for non-JALT members: 
2000 yen
Contact or Queries: 

Back to School 2017 is Osaka JALT's 7th annual spring mini-conference which aims to share ideas on a wide range of topics to help everyone in the new school year. With long and short presentations, poster sessions, and plenty of time to socialize (including a dinner party afterwards at a nearby restaurant), there is sure to be something for everyone.

This year's conference is again at Osaka Jogakuin University, very near JR and subway Tamatsukuri station. Please enter through the south gate of the university, which is just up the steep hill from the 7-11 by Tamatsukuri station. Access map:

RSVP to reserve a seat at the dinner party at a nearby izakaya via this link:

The list of this year's presentations is here:

And the schedule can be found here: (Please double-check closer to the 27th for any possible changes.)

Our keynote speaker is Professor Gordon Bateson of Kochi University of Technology

His plenary session entitled "Theory and Practice of Gamification in the Language Learning Classroom" is sure to be of interest to teachers of all tech levels and teaching situations. This presentation will consider ways in which ideas from game theory and game design can be applied in education to improve students' motivation and engagement. These ideas will be illustrated with examples from the presenter’s own experience creating activities and courses for language learning.

Of central importance in these learning materials is making the goals of the course, and the steps to achieve those goals, clear to the students. To this end, the presenter has made use of the Moodle LMS (Learning Management System) to create blended learning environments that support students of varying ability and aptitude, and encourage active learning through collaborative work in pairs and groups. The result is a “flipped classroom” in which students prepare outside class for performances and assignments done in the classroom. Responses from student surveys show that students have found these courses useful and enjoyable.

The Moodle-supported courses employ various tools and techniques. Some of the technologies, such as conditional activities and digital badges, are available in standard Moodle, while others, such as the Scoreboard block and extended Reading activity, have been developed by the presenter and can be added to a Moodle site as 3rd-party plugins.

This presentation is intended for teachers from across the spectrum of computer literacy. Whether you have never used an LMS before, or use one every day, it is hoped that this presentation will improve your awareness of the versatility of a modern LMS, and how it can support you and your students in and out of the classroom.

Gordon Bateson has a B.Sc. degree in Software Engineering from Imperial College, London and a M.Sc. in Teaching English for Specific Purposes (TESP) from Aston University, Birmingham, U.K. He has lived and worked in Japan for the last 27 years. He teaches English at Kochi University of Technology (Japan) and develops add-ons for Moodle. He is currently enrolled as a doctoral student at Aizu university (Japan).

To get a sense of what last year's Back to School event was like, please see
and for previous years, please see .

Any questions can be directed to us at osakajalt AT .

Back to School 2017 is co-sponsored by Osaka Jogakuin University's Research Institute of International Collaboration and Coexistence Research on Language Learning, by Cambridge Centre West Japan, and by .

2 -26-54 Tamatsukuri
Osaka, Osaka
540-0004 Japan