GALE works towards building a supportive community of educators and researchers interested in raising awareness and researching how gender plays an integral role in education and professional interaction. We also network and collaborate with JALT groups and the community at large to promote pedagogical and professional practices, language teaching materials, and research inclusive of gender and gender-related topics.
We feel there is tremendous energy, enthusiasm, and interest right now among JALT members regarding various aspects of gender issues in language education and research. We also feel that a GALE SIG helps to introduce and pull many new members into JALT. Much cutting-edge research involves looking at gender as a factor in linguistic interaction, in teaching, in research, and in teacher training. We are pleased to support the efforts of JALT members in furthering such research and its applications to the foreign language classroom.
The Mission Statement of the Gender Awareness in Language Education National Special Interest Group (GALE SIG) in the Japan Association of Language Teachers (JALT) has the four following points:
* to research gender and its implications for language learning, teaching, and training, such as differences in discourse styles, preferred teaching and learning styles, interests, needs, motivation, aptitude, achievement, classroom interactions, same- sex versus coeducational classrooms and same-sex vs. opposite- sex teaching, and social identity.
* to improve pedagogical practices, develop language teaching materials, and provide a clearinghouse for materials inclusive of gender and gender-related topics in FL subject areas such as communication, history, literature, linguistics, science, sociology, cultural studies, etc.
* to raise awareness of workplace and human rights issues related to gender for language professionals, such as discrimination, harassment, and violence based on gender and sexual orientation, and discrimination on the basis of marital or parental status, and to provide information for countering such discrimination.
* to increase networking opportunities among language professionals interested in teaching, researching, and/or discussing issues related to gender and language education, such as biological sex, gender identity, gendered language, sexual orientation, gender behavior, gender roles, and gender socialization.