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August 07, 2002

Universities to Test E-learning Market

In September, six Japanese universities are to test the Southeast Asian e-learning market. Tokyo Institute of Technology and Aoyama Gakuin, Tokyo, Waseda, Keio and Kyoto Universities will provide courses such as IT management and law entirely in English, in conjunction with corporate partners such as Hitachi and IBM Japan, to students in Thailand, the Philippines, Malaysia, Vietnam and Singapore. The test will simulate an actual classroom experience, with related course materials shown on the screen when instructors begin to speak. Basic tests will be offered in the middle of courses to prevent users from getting bored. The Trade Ministry is developing the e-learning system as part of the government's "e-Japan initiative" to promote the use of IT, aiming to create an e-learning market in Asia. Japanese universities, which are suffering from a decline in students due to the falling birthrate, are trying to attract the elderly or expand operations overseas.

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