I’m taking two English lecture courses this semester, one right after
the other, and they’re a perfect illustration of the variance in
instructor quality at Waseda.
Class A: Corporate Governance. Taught by an awesome aussie with
perfect Japanese and great jokes. Syllabus talks about how corporate
governance is “a good prism with which to view differences in economic
systems across countries,” and how studying it “provides insights into
conceptions of agency, decision, risk, and markets.” Lecture runs
parallel with the handout, but each complements the other and neither
Class B: Econometrics. “If the exchange rate is 90 yen to the dollar
in January and 100 yen to the dollar. Has the dollar gotten more or
less expensive?” The teacher barely speaks English, can’t hold our
attention, and in a supposed 300-level class, says he’ll teach
assuming there are people present with no college-level Economics.
Shoot me, please.
There are quality English-language instructors and classes at Waseda,
but they are few and far between.