The JET Programme in Japan – Acronyms

Titles and Roles

ACT – Assistant Chinese Teacher
AET – Assistant English Teacher
AFT – Assistant French Teacher
AGT – Assistant German Teacher
AJET – Association for Japan Exchange and Teaching
AKT – Assistant Korean Teacher
ALT – Assistant Language Teacher
BETS – British English Teacher Scheme (British forerunner to JET Programme)
BOE – Board of Education
CIR – Coordinator for International Relations
CLAIR – Council of Local Authorities for International Relations
CLIL – Content and Language Integrated Learning
CO – Contracting Organization
EALT – take a guess (aka SALT – “S” for shogakkou)
EFL – English as a Foreign Language
ERC – English Research Consultant
ES – Elementary School
ESID – Every Situation is Different
ESL – English as a Second Language
ESS – English Speaking Society (English Extracurricular Club)
ETC – English Teachers’ Consultant
GIH – General Information Handbook
HS – High School
JET – Japan Exchange and Teaching
JETAA – JET Alumni Association
JHS – Junior High School
JTL (JTE) – Japanese Teacher of Language (English)
MEF – Monbusho English Fellow (American forerunner to the JET Programme)
PA – Prefectural Advisor
PC – Programme Coordinator
PC – Programme Coordinator (former JET, CLAIR employee)
RA – Regional Advisor (Like a PA, but only for a chunk of a prefecture instead of the whole thing)
RMTH – Resource Materials and Teaching Handbook
SEA – Sports Exchange Advisor
SHS – Senior High School
TEFL – Teaching English as a Foreign Language
TESL – Teaching English as a Second Language
TO – Tokyo Orientation
TOA – Tokyo Orientation Assistant
TOEFL – Test of English as Foreign Language
TOEIC – Test of English for International Communication
TPR -Total Physical Response
T-T – Team-teaching


gaimusho – Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA)
soumusho – Ministry of Internal Affairs and
Communications (MIC)
monbukagakusho – Ministry of Education, Culture,
Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT)
kencho – Prefectural Government Office
kyoiku-iinkai – Board of Education
shiyakusho – City Hall
yakuba – Town Hall

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byokyu – sick leave (paid)
chugakko – junior high school
daigaku – university
daikyu – compensatory holiday
eigo – English (eikaiwa – English conversation)
ichi-nensei – first year
kocho sensei – headmaster / principal
koko – senior high school
kyoto sensei – deputy head / vice-principal
kyushoku – school lunch
nenkyu – annual paid holiday
nihongo – Japanese language
ni-nensei – second year
san-nensei – third year
seito – students
sensei – teacher; form of address for teachers
shogakko – primary / elementary school
yasumi – holiday, rest, break, sick leave
yochien – kindergarten
zangyo – overtime

Work and Society

bonenkai – end of year party
enkai – party
gaman – patience, tolerance, perseverance
giri – obligation
honne – real intention, true feelings
kangeikai – welcome party
nijikai – second party following the enkai
omiyage – souvenir gifts
shinnenkai – New Year party
sobetsukai – farewell party
tatemae – saying and doing what is expected
Commonly used words
bento – packed (boxed) lunch
dame – no good, not acceptable
dozo – help yourself, go ahead
gai(koku)jin – foreigner
genki – lively, well
hiragana – Japanese syllabary
inaka – rural areas
kokusaika – internationalisation
kanji – Chinese characters
katakana – Japanese syllabary used for foreign words
katakana eigo – Japanised pronunciation of English
meishi – business cards
romaji – Romanisation of Japanese