For the last 9 years, the GHO has hosted delegations from Niigata University in Japan. This year's Canada Study Tour will take place from March 15-22, when we will welcome six undergraduate students and one graduate student.
The Tour, funded by the Japan Student Services Organization (JASSO), provides a forum to share information and experiences, and to compare and contrast Canadian and Japanese approaches to teaching and learning in health sciences.
Miyuki Motoyama will be among the delegation visiting McMaster. The third year Nursing student hopes to gain a “more global viewpoint” while learning about nursing practice at McMaster and how it compares to Niigata. At the same time, she is excited about visiting a new place she has never been: “This will be my first visit to Canada so I want to learn more about Canadian culture and school life in general. And improve my English too!”
First year Laboratory Science student Yuya Hirasawa is looking forward to gaining some experience with Problem Based Learning from the place it originated. “I think PBL is quite different from the Japanese learning style but its method is effective and practical – and it’s something I feel I need to know more about.” His colleague Chiyona Shimada, a second year Nursing student, agrees. Commenting on her current perception of the cultural differences, she says, “In Japan, most students study passively, by listening to the teachers, while in Canada, the students come up with solutions to problems for themselves.”
The Canada Study Tour offers a unique opportunity for all parties involved, while fostering ongoing academic exchange between the two institutions.