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Johns Hopkins UniversityArts and Sciences Magazine

Offerings Grow at
Center for Language Education


Yuki Johnson leads change and growth at the Center for Language Education.

Photo: Willkirk/


One constant for the Center for Language Education (CLE) this past year has been change—and lots of it.

Start with a new name. In January, the center moved away from its original Language Teaching Center moniker to better reflect its mission, which goes beyond teaching, according to Yuki Johnson, the center's director since July 2009.

"We do research and create knowledge, in addition to all the teaching that goes on here," says Johnson of the center, which offers courses in more than 10 languages to students across the university. The CLE also offers evening, noncredit English as a Second Language courses and an intensive summer English language program for visiting and pre-college students.

Along with the name change came renovation of the center's language laboratory in Krieger Hall, which serves all Homewood campus language programs. A new layout and added computer workstations expanded both classroom and self-study space, says Johnson, a Japanese-born educator who brought with her to Hopkins some 30 years of academic experience.

The CLE's menu of language offerings has grown this fall, with the addition of Hebrew and the expansion of the Chinese and Japanese language programs and new textbooks, workshops, and revised curriculums. The new offerings complement existing courses in Arabic, English for International Teaching Assistants, Hindi, Kiswahili, Korean, Persian/Farsi, Russian, and Sanskrit.

To support the expanded programs, the center hired more instructors, bringing the current total to 22 teaching faculty. The CLE also broadened its audio/visual collection to include more contemporary materials reflecting popular culture.

Learning a new language, says Johnson, is more than just memorizing and reciting phrases. "People who come to our programs will learn about the living style, food, and other elements of a culture."