Presenters: Marjo Mitsutomi and Mariko Sakurada, Akita International University, Japan
This paper discusses the challenges of integrating the concept of “learner autonomy” into the over-all academic structure of an institution. The Language Development and Intercultural Studies Center (LDIC) at Akita International University (AIU) is a state-of-the art facility for self-access learning. Although a source of pride, the existence of the LDIC is largely invisible to the University community and serves primarily students in the intensive English program. The speakers represent both the academic as well as the operational management of the LDIC. Together they are designing an advising framework which includes not only foreign language teachers but also faculty and staff across the various programs and departments at AIU. The presenters will share their strategies in creating a coherent “customer service” model for the LDIC, the ultimate purpose of which is to invite language learners at all levels to commit themselves to the practice of life-long autonomous learning.