Concentration Requirements

The concentration consists of at least six semester courses.

  • ASIA 210: “Approaches to Asian Studies”
    This course is required for all concentrators and is ideally taken in the sophomore or junior year.  The course will equip students with the methodological tools to critically navigate their own specific tracks in the Asian Studies concentration.
  • Three-Course Curricular Focus
    Each concentrator constructs a three-course curricular focus which can center on either a region or country interdisciplinarily (e.g., South Asia via history, anthropology, and art) or on a theme inter-regionally (e.g., Imperialism/Colonialism in Asia; Art and Performance in Asia).
  • Two Elective Courses on Asia
    These two courses, which can include language study, add intellectual depth or breadth to the curricular focus.

Other requirements for the concentration are as follows.

  • Capstone Project and Senior Symposium
    The capstone of the concentration is a research paper or performance/exhibit completed within one of the courses taken for the concentration.  (This is not an additional course, but is a project pursued as part of the concentration.)  The scope (e.g., length of paper) and kind of work (e.g., type of analysis) undertaken should be substantial.  Whether a project is substantial enough to serve as a student’s capstone project should be determined by the professor and in terms appropriate to the content and structure of that course.  The minimum acceptable length of a capstone paper is 10 pages (3000 words), but many projects will be longer. If a concentrator would like to pursue their capstone project in a course that does not have a required assignment that would naturally be such a substantial undertaking, the definition of the capstone project assignment and its assessment will be determined by the professor in conversation with the concentrator and the chair. A thesis in Asian Studies can count as the capstone project, as can a thesis on Asia written for another unit. For the Senior Symposium, each concentrator will prepare a 10-minute presentation that explains: the topic of their capstone project; the approach they took; and how the project relates to the work they have done in the concentration, and to their curricular focus in particular.  The presentation could also reflect critically on the capstone project; the student could consider how, in light of all of the coursework they have done, they might now pursue their project differently (for example, if the capstone project were completed early in the student’s Asian Studies sequence).  If the project was a creative work (e.g., a performance, an exhibit), the presentation should include analytical reflection on that creative work.  Presentations will be followed by Q & A and discussion. The Senior Symposium will be public; junior concentrators, faculty, and prospective concentrators are especially encouraged to attend.
  • Disciplinary Breadth
    Of the five courses that comprise the curricular focus and electives, at least two different disciplines must be covered.
  • Geographic Breadth
    Of the five courses that comprise the curricular focus and electives, at least two regions or countries of Asia (China, Japan, Korea, Taiwan, East Asia, Southeast Asia, South Asia) must be covered.

Students are encouraged to study abroad.  With permission of a faculty advisor, as many as two courses taken abroad can be counted toward the concentration.

Students electing to pursue an Asian Studies concentration should complete the Asian Studies Concentration Form (below) in consultation with their advisor.

Asian Studies Concentration Form

Directions:  Please download the blank form and complete the form offline.  Save a copy for your records.  Email the completed form to:  1) your advisor, 2) the Chair of Asian Studies ([email protected]), and 3) the Asian Studies administrative assistant ([email protected]).