JAPN related information

This page will provide you with information about activities beyond JAPN classroom;  links to study tools and resources such as Japanese newspapers; give additional information about Japanese culture as well as give you tips on travel to Japan.

Students have several opportunities to practice their Japanese and expand their knowledge of the culture beyond the classroom. You can get involved in one of the student clubs at the Alma Mater Society or participate in Japanese New Year’s party. Students in JAPN 200 class use LinguaeLive to talk to your peers in Japan; practice the language and meet a new friend. Attending events or volunteering at the Queen’s International Student Centre will give you the opportunity to immerse yourself in other cultures and get to know exchange students from Japan!

Queen's International Student Centre

The Queen’s University International Centre (QUIC) is an international education support service for students, faculty and staff at Queen’s. Through its activities the Centre promotes an internationally informed and cross culturally sensitive university community.

QUIC programs and services support

  • the academic and personal development of international students, other international members of the Queen’s community, and their families;
  • the academic and personal development of Queen’s students, staff and faculty interested in Education Abroad; and
  • the internationalization of the campus by working with university departments, offices, groups and individuals to enhance and diversify the international learning environment at Queen’s through educational and training activities.

QUIC offers many cultural events and get-together for students, as well as the opportunity to volunteer to support international students with improving their English as they integrate into Queen’s life.  It is a fruitful way to meet other students from other countries, to help and to learn from one another.

Check QUIC Calendar of Events for the most up-to-date information.

Japanese New Year's party

New Year is the biggest annual celebration in Japan. Schools close for about two weeks of winter holiday before and after New Year's, and most companies also shut down for New Year break from around December 30 to January 3. On New Year's Day families gather and eat special meals called "osechi ryori." People visit Shinto shrines and Buddhist temples to pray for good fortune in the coming year. Children receive small gifts of money, called "otoshidama," from their relatives. Traditional games like "karuta" (played with cards usually featuring well-known poems on them) are enjoyed. People send New Year's cards called "nengajo" to their friends and acquaintances from work. (Source: Kids Web Japan. Picture source: Japan this! blog)

Every year, the class representatives in JAPN classes get together to organize Japanese New Year’s potluck-style party. Students from all levels are invited to share a meal and participate in activities.

Student Clubs

With approximately 450 student clubs to choose from, you can easily enhance what you learn in the classroom and give you the chance to embrace your passions. More than 100 cultural and ethnic student clubs and organizations foster diversity and cultural engagement on campus. Below are AMS (Alma Mater Society) clubs that may be of interests for students of Japanese:

Name Description
Queen's Anime Club (QAC)


The Queen’s Anime Club's mandate is to provide and promote "anime," formally known as Japanese animation, to the Queen's community and public, as well as appreciation for Japanese art culture by various screenings and activities.

Japanese Relations at Queen’s

The club promotes Japanese culture and foster international understanding to Queen's students and the Kingston community. It also serves as a bridge between exchange students from both Queen's and Japan.


Related links

Learning Japanese
Nihongo eな NIHONGO eな- Portal for Learning Japanese is a site dedicated to introducing all kinds of websites and online tools useful for studying Japanese
Erin's Challenge Series of mini-dramas in high school setting. Good for learning Japanese language as well as Japanese culture
Let's learn Japanese Online (NHK) Audio drama for Japanese learners (NHK: Japan Broadcasting Corporation)
Java Kanji Flash Cards 500 Exercises of 500 most frequent kanji
Rikai - by Todd Rudick Embeds pop-up glossary help in any Japanese text
Rikaichan Pop-up dictionary for FireFox
Hiragana This system adds hiragana on the kanji

Japan Relations at Queen's The club ( established and located on Queen's campus) promotes Japanese culture and foster international understanding to Queen's students and the Kingston community. It also serves as a bridge between exchange students from both Queen's and Japan.
Japanese Proficiency Test The Japanese-Language Proficiency Test (JLPT) has been offered by the Japan Foundation and Japan Educational Exchanges and Services (formerly Association of International Education, Japan) since 1984 as a reliable means of evaluating and certifying the Japanese proficiency of non-native speakers.
The Japanese Language Proficiency Test (Toronto) - York University The JLPT was held at York University for the first time in Toronto in 1997. The test has been hosted by the Japanese Section of York University on behalf of the Japan Foundation. It is also a joint event by Japanese language professionals at several universities in Ontario.
Embassy of Japan in Canada The websites of the Japanese Embassy and Consulate have information about Japanese government exchanges, scholarships and fellowships available to Canadians.
The Consulate General of Japan in Toronto  

Travel and Culture
Japan Guide Up-to-date information on travelling and living in Japan
Web Japan Gateway for All Japanese Information
Kids Web Japan Youth's version of Web Japan
Japan National Tourism Organization In-depth Guide to the Regions
Visiting Japan Links From the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan website

Ashai Shimbun Asahi Shinbun [Japanese]
Asahi Shimbun Asahi Shinbun [English]
Mainichi Shinbun Mainichi Shinbun [Japanese]
Yomiuri Shinbun Yomiuri Shinbun [Japanese]
The Japan Times Online The Japan Times [English]

Queen's library has a collection of texts relating to Asian Studies. The dictionaries and encyclopedias are located in the Reference section of Stauffer Library. If you need help from a librarian, please contact Ms Elisabeth Gibson.