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 the coordinator of the Japanese language program, Maruta has also organized periodic Japanese language lectures on various topics, including the value of US-Japan relations by the Consul-General of Japan in Boston. She is a former co-leader of the Wesleyan Language Collective. 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 studying abroad in Japan and for 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 foreign languages. She was trained as a 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.

In addition to Wesleyan courses, Maruta taught a course titled 'Introduction to Japanese Language and Culture' to incarcerated students at Cheshire C.I. through the Center for Prison Education program during the fall 2023 semester.

The following is a 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 holistic, 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 can not only discover these intraregional connections and similarities but 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 Yoga Alliance standards, admires wellness and is interested in incorporating this practice into her language teaching.

Academic Affiliations

Office Hours

Spring 2024

Mon & Wed : 10:45am - 11:45am @Fisk 303 (drop-in) & by appointment

 

Courses

Spring 2024
JAPN 104 - 01
Elementary Japanese II

JAPN 104 - 02
Elementary Japanese II

JAPN 218 - 01
Third-Year Japanese II