PEAK Staff Profile

Tatsuhiko Matsushita, MA (Nagoya), PhD (VUW)
PEAK Associate Professor – Japanese Language

Contact : matsushita[at]


Tatsuhiko Matsushita Prof. Matsushita was born and raised in Nagoya and entered Waseda University in Tokyo as an undergraduate to study Japanese language and literature. During his fourth year, he went to study at Nankai University in Tianjin, China, where he spent two years as a national exchange student. He earned his master’s degree in Japanese language and culture from Nagoya University. Prof. Matsushita worked for J.F. Oberlin (Obirin) University, Tokyo, in charge of its Japanese language program, as well as the teacher training courses at both undergraduate and graduate levels. After working there for about fifteen years, he entered the PhD program of Victoria University of Wellington in 2008 to pursue his interest in applied linguistics. Upon submission of his PhD thesis in March, 2012, he joined PEAK of the University of Tokyo. He was awarded his PhD degree in 2013. Prof. Matsushita has various experiences in coordinating Japanese language programs and collaborating with international colleagues, government staff and local residents for scholastic and educational purposes. He now enjoys working with students and staff at the University of Tokyo.

Research Interests

Prof. Matsushita has a wide range of interests in second language teaching. At the moment he is mainly working on two fields: vocabulary studies and language program management. Vocabulary studies includes topics such as quantitative analysis of Japanese vocabulary, analyzing and controlling vocabulary load of texts, vocabulary testing, cognition and acquisition of Kanji and Japanese vocabulary, and first language effects on acquiring second language vocabulary. In the language program management study, Prof. Matsushita explores a general framework for establishing a new second language program. Specifically, in collaboration with Prof. Beuckmann and other PEAK colleagues, he tries to describe the logic model of PEAK Japanese language courses and evaluates the Japanese program as a case study. All of these studies are practical and useful in second language learning and teaching.

Selected Publications

In what order should learners learn Japanese vocabulary? A corpus-based approach. PhD dissertation, Victoria University of Wellington. Wellington, 2012.
「日本語の学術共通語彙(アカデミック・ワード)の抽出と妥当性の検証(Extracting and validating the Japanese Academic World List)」. 『2011年度 日本語教育学会春季大会 予稿集(Proceedings of the Conference for Teaching Japanese as a Foreign Language, Spring 2011)』. P.244-249, 2011.
「中上級日本語学習者による形容語彙の産出 ―韓国語母語の学習者の場合― (Adjectival vocabulary production by intermediate and advanced Korean learners of Japanese) 」, Kurosaki, A. and Matsushita, T. 『日本語教育(Teaching Japanese as a Foreign Language)』 141. P.46-56, 2009.
「チームやプログラムとして実践する(Practice as a team or a program)」. “Group Sakura”, Obirin University Japanese Language Program (Ed.). 『自律を目指すことばの学習 さくら先生のチュートリアル(Language learning towards autonomy: Sakura-sensei’s tutorial)』. Tokyo: Bonjinsha, p.174-185, 2007.
「語彙学習先行モジュールの日中バイリンガル児童・生徒への応用 ―母語の漢字知識を活かす― (Application of the antecedent module of vocabulary learning to Japanese-Chinese bilingual children: taking advantage of L1 Chinese kanji knowledge)」. 『母語・継承語・バイリンガル教育研究 (Studies in Mother Tongue, Heritage Language and Bilingual Education) 』1, p.84-95, 2005.