Evidence of cultural differences between American and Japanese mainstream science and engineering contexts from analysis of classroom discourse

Nílson Kunioshi, Judy Noguchi, Kazuko Tojo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Teaching styles in science and engineering instruction were compared by analysing corpora of transcripts of lectures delivered in English and Japanese at leading universities in the United States and Japan, respectively. Our findings were compatible with cultural differences related to power distance and field dependence, which have been reported in the literature. Teaching styles seem to simultaneously result from the cultural context as well as reinforce it. Science and engineering instruction in the Japanese educational context tends to reflect and reinforce a personalised transmission of knowledge style, while instruction in the American context tends to match and reinforce learning styles characterised by impersonal, inductive thinking.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)535-544
Number of pages10
JournalEuropean Journal of Engineering Education
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2019 Jul 4



  • Corpus of lectures
  • education and culture
  • language and pedagogy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Engineering(all)

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