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Placement & Advising in Japanese

If you want to major in Japanese, you should declare your major when you register for classes on line. You can speak to an advisor before OR after you declare your major. If you don’t choose an advisor, one will be assigned to you by the Department of Foreign Languages. You can schedule an appointment with a Faculty Advisor by calling or emailing at any time.


Jon Holt, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Japanese Literature

Contact Information:
Phone: 503-725-3522

Laurence Kominz (1984) Ph.D.
Professor of Japanese Ph.D 1983
Columbia University

Contact Information:
Phone: 503-725-5288

Suwako Watanabe (1990) Ph.D.
Professor of Japanese. Ph.D. 1991
Georgetown University

Contact Information:
Phone: 503-725-5284



If you are taking a class in Japanese for the first time and have background from another Japanese language program, it is best to schedule a placement interview just to be sure that you are in the right class. The faculty will make a recommendation based on the interview. You may be encouraged to sign up for “individualized instruction” which assigns credit for your attendance in only part of a regular class or classes. Keep in mind that you might also place in the middle of a sequence and have to wait a term before starting classes.

We strongly recommend in-coming students to take a placement interview, which last about 10 to 15 minutes, at any time prior to the starting term. Please email to set up an appointment. When you contact us, please give your preferred date and time. And please include information on your background in Japanese language study.