Naho Maruta

Associate Professor of the Practice in East Asian Studies

Fisk Hall, 303
860-685-3458

Associate Professor of the Practice, Fries Center for Global Studies

nmaruta@wesleyan.edu

MA University of Wisconsin at Madison

Naho Maruta

Interested in fostering cross-cultural understanding through improved communication in Japanese for more than a decade, Naho Maruta has taught all levels of Japanese at Wesleyan since 2014. As coordinator of the Japanese program, Maruta also has organized periodic Japanese language lectures on various topics including the value of US-Japan relations by the Consul-General of Japan in Boston.  Over the past year, she has been coordinating the Wesleyan Language Collective with the Fries Center for Global Studies. This collaborative aims to raise awareness of the benefits of foreign language study and to promote the study of foreign languages and cultures. She is a primary resource for study abroad in Japan and the Japanese placement exam.

Maruta’s dedication to language teaching began when she was an undergraduate at Kansai Gaidai University in Osaka, Japan where she specialized in English and American languages and literatures, teaching English and Japanese as a foreign language. She was trained as Japanese teaching assistant at Wake Forest University, and earned her master’s degree in Japanese linguistics and pedagogy from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Prior to Wesleyan, she taught at the University of Notre Dame and Bowdoin College.

The following is key point summary of Maruta's teaching statement: “The goal of foreign language teaching is not merely to generate facility in the target language among learners. Embedding language learning in a liberal arts education is an important key to anchoring and enhancing knowledge in a more wholistic, general sense, particularly in a department like the College of East Asian Studies. The Japanese hiragana and katakana writing systems, for example, were created by Japanese individuals based on kanji characters that first entered Japan from ancient China. Both the Japanese and Korean languages have honorific expressions. By learning Japanese, students are not only able to discover these intraregional connections and similarities, but can also use them as a gateway towards thinking about the historical and political contexts framing East Asia as a whole. For me, as a foreign language instructor and educator at Wesleyan University, this general positioning of language learning as an integral means of maximizing the potentials of a liberal arts education opens up onto two key objectives that I aim to emphasize in my teaching. These objectives involve using foreign language learning (1) to provide students with the opportunity to enhance their knowledge of their own and other countries, and (2) to cultivate students’ overall capacity to thrive in society as compassionate global citizens, both independently and collaboratively.”

Outside of academia, Maruta enjoys yoga, kayaking, travel, and sampling global cuisine. Maruta, who holds a 200-hour yoga teacher training certification in accordance with the Yoga Alliance standards, admires wellness and is interested in taking the practice into her language teaching.

Academic Affiliations

Office Hours

Spring 2020: Thursday & Friday 10:45am - 11:45am and by appointment

Courses

Fall 2020
JAPN 205 - 01
Intermediate Japanese I

JAPN 219 - 01
Fourth-Year Japanese I