About Steve

Steve McCarty lectures for Osaka Jogakuin University and College (former full Professor) and the Japanese government international agency JICA. From 2015-2020 he was an Adjunct Professor for international classes and faculty development at Kansai University. Since 1998 he is the elected President of the World Association for Online Education (WAOE). His CV lists 235 publications and 91 presentations, including eight keynote addresses at international conferences. Google Scholar has found 427 citations to his work. He publishes on e-learning, Japan, bilingualism, language teaching, and the academic life. He lives near Kyoto with his Japanese wife. Their sons have careers in the IT and entertainment industries in Tokyo.

His Story

Steven Alan McCarty (Steve McCarty in everyday life and publications) was born in Boston. He was a finalist for Athlete of the Year at a large high school, then studied physics and philosophy at Northeastern University. Supporting himself from age 18, he eventually specialized in Asia and Japan at the University of Hawaii, with semester-long internships in journalism and lawmaking in the State House of Representatives. Having studied Japanese since 1979 in graduate school, he is fluent and literate in Japanese, occasionally translating legal and other documents.

He was active nationally in the Japan Association for Language Teaching from the mid-80s to the mid-90s, and wrote guest editorials for The Japan Times. Then he started global networking and placing many publications online with a Japanese-English e-Portfolio from 1997, and video on the Web in 1998, seven years before YouTube began. He used the first learning management system WebCT 1.0 in 1998, and the Japanese version in 2000. He also pioneered a globally accessible mobile Internet site in 2000. In 2006 he printed calling cards with QR code, the beginning of the Internet of Things. In early 1998 he founded the World Association for Online Education, a California state-registered NPO, and still serves as President and Webmaster.


2007: “Podcasting Student Performances to Develop EFL Skills” designated an “Effective Practice” for student-generated content by the Online Learning Consortium in the U.S.

From 2001: 『香川県人物名鑑』教育 [Who’s Who in Kagawa Prefecture, Education field].

2000: As a contest winner, haiku appeared in the UNESCO World Culture Report (Paris).

2000: Designated “Asia Expert” by the Asia Society (New York City).

1999: Designated “Expert in Distance/Adult Education Research in Asian Countries” by the Open University of Hong Kong Centre for Research in Distance and Adult Learning.

1997, 2001, 2005: English/Japanese e-Portfolio of publications rated 4 stars, “very useful for research” by the Asian Studies WWW Virtual Library at the Australian National University. The bilingual Websites have also been linked from the Harvard Reischauer Center, the Japan WWW Virtual Library at Stanford, and national government libraries.

1985: Certificate of Outstanding Service from the Japan Association for Language Teaching President for contributions as founder of the JALT Matsuyama Chapter.

Contributions to international society

2021, February: Declined the opportunity but helped the Saudi Arabian government find Asian e-learning experts to work on national e-learning standards.

2020, April 22-November 20: Assisting the Japanese government international agency JICA Kansai Chapter (Osaka-Kobe region) in providing briefings by lecturers on Japan online while JICA cannot bring grantees from developing country governments to Japan.

1998-present: President and Webmaster of the World Association for Online Education (WAOE), an NPO registered in California. Conducted many online events such as a World Culture Festival, Online Educator Development Practicum, and a “Future of Universities” discussion with a former Dean at Yale University.

2012-present: Managing the WAOE Facebook Page with many followers, regularly posting news and new publications about e-learning and online education.

2019, October 27: Judged the Kansai University English Speaking Society Presentation Contest.

2019, October 18: Advised the Tokyo-based international Monozukuri Nihongo Kentei system for certification of Japanese communication skills for technology transfer.

2015-2016: Assisted an online graduate program in lawmaking by the National Institute for Legislative Studies of the National Assembly of Nigeria.

2014-2015: Global School of Professional and Continuing Education (GSPACE) Online Learning Platform (to support MBA programs), Advisory Council member, Bangalore, India.

2014, November 13: A group from Deloitte Tohmatsu Consulting came from Tokyo to interview the author in Osaka about ICT in education.

2012-2013: Marketing (through Social Media) Competition Japan, External Advisor & Presentation Contest Judge.

2011: Organized a donation of about $1,400 to a children’s hospital in Bangladesh.

2011: Assisted a national university in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) by arranging for a large group from Ritsumeikan University to attend the Festival of Thinkers (which included many Nobel Prize winners) in Abu Dhabi.

2010: Assisted the distance education department of the national University of Guyana in South America by helping to set up a Moodle site based at the World Association for Online Education servers in the U.S.

2008-2010: Facilitated publishing student papers in English: invited to edit articles from students for Child Research Net in Tokyo.

2006-2010: Main Advisor, Worldwide Kids English, Benesse Tokyo Headquarters.

2005-2006: Ministry of Education (MEXT) infrastructure C category grantee in a research group on machine evaluation of oral English language proficiency.

2003-2008: Executive Board member and conference presentation proposal reviewer for the Asia-Pacific Association for Computer-Assisted Language Learning (APACALL).

2003-2004: Editor, Papyrus News (ESL/EFL mail magazine based at the University of California).

2002: Contributed an illustrated Japanese book on pre-War U.S.-Japan friendship dolls to the Japanese-American National Museum in Los Angeles.

2001-present:  NPO Child Research Net, Tokyo, Advisory Board Member.

2000: Quality assurance tester for the first Japanese language learning management system (WebCT), based at Nagoya University.

2000: “… provided photographs of rare sites and activities in Japan” – Encyclopedia of Monasticism, p. vii.

1999-2005: Global University System, a New York-based NGO recognized by UNESCO, Website maintenance and translation between English and Japanese.

1999-2002: Assisted African and Russian scholars by posting their work on the Web.

1999: Introduced the Internet to a class of 40 Japanese 4th graders and their Principal, including a Web chat with people abroad.

1998: Guest mentor in a graduate school course on Online Education at the University of Maryland through WebCT 1.0, the first learning management system.

1998-2003: Collaborated with European scholars to offer a co-authored guidebook to Shikoku, the pilgrimage island of Japan, in five languages on the open Web to help travelers to Japan.

1997-2004: Webmaster for the Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT) Bilingualism National Special Interest Group and for the Japan Journal of Multilingualism and Multiculturalism.

1997: Second Annual Teaching in the Community Colleges Online Conference, Program Committee Chair. University of Hawaii-Kapiolani Community College.

1996-1997: Contributing Editor, Asia-Pacific Exchange Electronic Journal.

1996-1997: Advisory Board Member, Teaching in the Community Colleges TCC-L.

1996-1997: Member at Large, Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT) Bilingualism National Special Interest Group.

1996: Founded the East-West Discourse List (EWD-L) in collaboration with the University of Hawaii.

1996: Coordinator of the Colloquium on Cross-Cultural Communication/Japan at the Knowledge and Discourse Conference, University of Hong Kong.

1995-1996: Publicity Coordinator, Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT) Kagawa Chapter.

1995-1996: Translator, Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT) College and University Educators National Special Interest Group.

1994: National Special Interest Group Representative on the Japan Association for Language Teaching Executive Board, appointed officer representing all the JALT national research groups (SIGs).

1994: Edited the bilingual monthly column “Of National SIGnificance” in The Language Teacher.

1994: Edited SIG NL, the executive newsletter of JALT’s national special interest groups.

1992-1993, 1995: President of the Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT) Bilingualism National Special Interest Group.

1991-1993: President of the Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT) Kagawa Chapter.

1987-1989: Interpreted for foreign media reporters at the Kompira Kabuki Theater, including their interview with the star Kikugoro.

1987:  Set up a formal sister school relationship between Kagawa Junior College and Windward Community College in Hawaii.

1984: President of the Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT) Matsuyama Chapter.

1984: Founded the Ehime Summer Seminar for in-service training of Japanese secondary school English teachers as a volunteer.

1983: Founded the Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT) Matsuyama Chapter.

Steve has also been a reviewer of academic papers, such as for the Asia-Pacific Exchange Journal (U.S.), the International Journal of Virtual and Personal Learning Environments (U.K.), the Handbook of Research on Web 2.0 and Second Language Learning (Japan), and the Electronic Journal of Foreign Language Teaching (National University of Singapore).