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FAQ (Frequently-Asked Questions about PanSIG)

Every organization has its own jargon and JALT is no exception. Two examples, SIG and PanSIG, will be used throughout the PanSIG site and at the conference. These terms are defined and many other questions are answered below. If your question is not here, please contact us.

Please note that presenters pay the same amount as participants. Also, we usually ask presenters to complete their registration about two weeks before the start of the conference (though this varies year to year, so please read the emails that PanSIG sends to you with these details). Earlier registration by presenters allows us to complete the schedule early enough to release to attendees so that they have enough time to decide which presentations to attend.


First of all, what's up with all the dinosaurs for PanSIG 2024?

OK, you noticed there are dinosaurs all over our PanSIG 2024 logo and announcements. PanSIG 2024 will be in Fukui, which has been called "the dinosaur capital of Japan."

  • roughly 80% of all dinosaur fossils discovered in Japan have come from Fukui
  • six dinosaur species were discovered here
  • so was Japan’s first fossilized footprints of a walking dinosaur,
  • and first whole claw from a meat-eating dinosaur

You'll see dinosaurs at Fukui Station, and if you have an extra day, you should check out the Fukui Prefectural Dinosaur Museum.

What is JALT?

The Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the improvement of language teaching and learning. JALT promotes excellence in language learning, teaching, and research by providing opportunities for those involved in language education to meet, share, and collaborate. We have nearly 2,300 members in chapters and affiliates across Japan, as well as members abroad. JALT's website is

How do I join JALT?

Joining JALT is easy. Please visit the JALT Membership page on the website to join JALT.

What is a SIG?

SIG is an acronym for Special Interest Group (分野別研究部会). JALT is divided into two parallel sets of groups: chapters and SIGs. JALT chapters are arranged geographically and each JALT member chooses a chapter, usually the one that is closest to them geographically. JALT SIGs are national groups, with each SIG having members from all over Japan and overseas, and are based on language teaching/learning interests. According to the official mission statement found on the JALT website, JALT SIGs are:

national networks for information exchange and fellowship among teachers with similar interests. They further JALT’s mission of improving foreign and second language education in Japan. SIGs are based on the various academic, research and pedagogical interests shared by JALT members. They are founded on similar occupations, subjects or levels taught, teaching approaches tailored to Japan, interest in certain fields, or interest in certain issues cutting across disciplines.

For a full list of all of the SIGs, please see the official JALT page for its groups.

How do I join a SIG?

To join a SIG, you must be a JALT member. All JALT members may join one SIG at no added cost when they join JALT or renew their membership. You may join additional SIGs for 2,000 yen per SIG. Please visit the JALT Membership page on the website to do this.

What is PanSIG?

PanSIG is an annual conference sponsored and organized by many of JALT's SIGs. It is meant to be a smaller, more intimate conference than the annual international JALT conference, and is place where SIG members can network with each other and other SIG members. PanSIG is usually held in May or June, while the annual international conference is usually held in October or November. The first PanSIG was held in 2002. (For a full list of past PanSIG conferences, see the archive on this site.)

How do I join PanSIG?

PanSIG is not an organization, so none of us "join" PanSIG. The organization to join is JALT (the Japan Association for Language Teaching). You can join JALT online.

You can attend the PanSIG conference as an attendee or presenter by paying the appropriate registration fee. Attendance is open to JALT members and non-JALT members; everyone involved in language teaching is welcome.

To be a presenter at PanSIG, please check the PanSIG Call for Presentations. Each year is different, but generally, the call for presentations opens in November and closes in January.

How do I give a presentation at PanSIG?

To be a presenter at PanSIG, please check the PanSIG Call for Presentations. Each year is different, but generally, the call for presentations opens in November and closes in January. You do not have to be a JALT member to give a presentation at the PanSIG conference, but the registration fees for JALT members are lower than the registration fees for non-members.

Do I submit my proposal directly to my SIG?

No. All conference presentation proposals go through the same submission process, and are judged by the PanSIG Vetting Committee. Please see the call for presentations page for details.

However, each SIG organizes their own forum for PanSIG. If you are interested in participating in a SIG forum, please contact your SIG to see if they are accepting applications for their forum.

I'm not in a SIG / I'm not a JALT member. Can I still attend / present / publish?

Yes. PanSIG is open to JALT members and non-JALT members; everyone involved in language teaching is welcome.

JALT members enjoy a discount on the registration fees.

Is PanSIG on social media (twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc.)?

Yes. PanSIG's twitter account is @JALTPanSIG.

PanSIG also has a Facebook page (JALTpansig)

PanSIG also has a YouTube channel

Our Instagram updates its name each year, so please check out our Social Media page for our complete list.

Will WiFi be available at the PanSIG conference?

Each year is different, and it depends on the venue. Please see our WiFi Availability page for information specific to the upcoming conference, and please check back before coming just in case the situation has changed.

Can I use my eduroam account at PanSIG?

eduroam is an international Wi-Fi internet access roaming service for users in research, higher education and further education (Wikipedia).

Some universities in Japan have eduroam. Please check eduroam's location page for Japan

If you've never used eduroam before, you may have to sign in first while on your own university's campus. Please check with your local IT department for details.

How much does the PanSIG conference cost?

As each year's PanSIG conference operates under different circumstances, the fees differ year to year. This site's conference registration and fees page contains fee structures and fee information for the upcoming PanSIG conference.

At the conference, what are the options for lunch?

Each year is different. Please see our food page to read about this year's options.

Why join a SIG?

Each SIG provides information on worldwide practice regarding the theme of the SIG, gives a view of practice in Japan on the theme of the SIG, provides professional development in the conferences and events it sponsors and through the publications it distributes to members, and provides professional opportunities such as presenting at the conferences/events and publishing in the SIG’s publications. A JALT member can join as many SIGs as they want. The fee for membership in each SIG is 2,000 yen (but there is no fee to join your first SIG). For more information, please see the JALT SIG website, or when you are at the conference, please visit the table of the SIG or SIGs you are interested in.

Who organizes PanSIG?

Please see our committee page to see the names of the people who have been working to make the PanSIG conference a reality. For past conferences, please see our archive of past conferences for conference handbooks which will contain the names of the volunteers on the committee.

What about the environmental impact of the conference?

The PanSIG conference has had an Environmental officer since 2014, and we have been working to improve the environmental performance of the conference. This includes local sourcing of sustainable products, reducing waste, and increasing recycling. Since some environmental impact is inevitable, especially from transport, we have also been arranging carbon offsets to compensate for our carbon footprint. You can read more about it here.

What are AMs (Associate Members)?

AM stands for "Associate Member." AMs support JALT through their membership fees, advertisements, sponsored presentations at chapter, SIG and national events, exhibition space at the various JALT conferences across Japan, and many other ways. For a full list of JALT's AMs, please see the AM page on the National JALT site.

As it says on the JALT Associate Membership site, "Associate Membership in JALT is open to any organization that supports the aims of JALT and is involved in the production of quality products or provides services in or directly related to the language education field."

A special thank-you goes out to the AMs who have graciously donated their time and resources to support the PanSIG conference; please see the PanSIG list of participating Associate Members.

What other events does JALT hold?

In addition to the PanSIG conference, some of JALT's SIGs hold their own conferences. One of the largest of these is the JALT CALL SIG Conference, usually held in early June. Additionally, JALT has over 30 local chapters throughout Japan, and they hold regular events. While many of these chapter events are workshops or presentations by one or two speakers, some chapters hold mini-conferences. Please see the JALT calendar for details.

JALT's largest event of the year is our Annual International Conference on Language Teaching and Learning & Educational Materials Exhibition, held in October or November each year.

Which SIGs are participating in PanSIG this year?

Nearly all of JALT's SIGs are participating. We don't have a handy list, but please check the schedule to read about the forums that each SIG puts on.

How can I submit to the PanSIG Journal?

All vetted presentations and forum presentations at the PanSIG Conference are invited to submit a paper based on their presentation for publication in the subsequent PanSIG Journal

In the same way that the presentations were vetted prior to the conference, journal papers from the conference will also be subjected to peer review. From 2020, we have adopted the policy of peer review, where each submitting author will most likely review a maximum of up to two PanSIG Journal submissions. Note that publishing in the PanSIG Journal qualifies as a refereed publication. We would therefore like to encourage all presenters to submit a paper.

What does it cost to publish in the PanSIG Journal?

There are no fees for publishing in the PanSIG Journal

However, as all articles in the PanSIG Journal are based on PanSIG Conference vetted presentations and SIG forum presentations, all authors are required to have participated in the presentation at the PanSIG Conference.