Asian Studies

University of California, Berkeley

Overview

The Faculty Group in Asian Studies administers an interdisciplinary program leading to BA, MA, and PhD degrees. Utilizing the faculty and facilities of the entire university, these degree programs cut across conventional disciplinary lines and emphasize a basic core of knowledge concerning one particular geographic area of Asia. Within this core, which requires course work in multiple departments and reading knowledge of at least one Asian language, regionally-oriented students have the freedom to plan an individual program according to their particular interests and approaches. No two programs are alike, and students work closely with the Student Affairs office and with a faculty mentor in designing their customized academic plan. The Faculty Group also offers concurrent degree programs with the Schools of Journalism and Law as well as an undergraduate minor. The group is supported in its efforts by the Institute of East Asian Studies, the International and Area Studies Teaching Program and the Undergraduate and Interdisciplinary Studies of the College of Letters and Science.

UC Berkeley has long been noted for its outstanding scholarship in the area of Asian Studies. A faculty group and an interdisciplinary graduate program on Asia were first established in 1949 under the name Asiatic Studies. The name was changed to Asian Studies in 1959. An interdisciplinary undergraduate major in Asian Studies was established in 1975. More than 70 faculty members and 15 departments are presently engaged in teaching and research concerning Asia. These resources are supplemented by extensive library facilities and by the programs of five major area centers that offer lecture series and colloquia throughout the year. The Bay Area itself, with its Asian ethnic communities, museums, performing arts, monasteries, and trade centers, provides unlimited cultural opportunities for the student interested in reaching beyond the confines of the University.

With the oversight of the Graduate Division, the Group provides a terminal MA in Asian Studies.  In addition, the Group provides a MA/MJ concurrent degree with the School of Journalism, and an interdisciplinary PhD program (open only to UC Berkeley MA in Asian Studies graduates).

Institute of East Asian Studies

The Institute of East Asian Studies, of which the Group in Asian Studies is a part, also supports other programs and affiliates related to areas of interest to students and faculty in Asian Studies. For further information, see the Center for Chinese Studies, the Center for Japanese Studies, the Center for Korean Studies, and the Center for Buddhist Studies.  Other campus centers of interest to students and faculty include the Institute for South Asia Studies and the Center for Southeast Asia Studies.

Berkeley Student Journal of Asian Studies

The Berkeley Student Journal of Asian Studies is an interdisciplinary student journal that bridges research at the undergraduate and graduate levels. The Journal strives to broaden the study of Asia across disciplinary lines and to expand the Asian Studies community by promoting leadership and scholarship of Asia. For further information, please click here.

Undergraduate Program

The undergraduate group major in Asian studies is a rigorous but flexible interdisciplinary program designed to assist students in taking advantage of the rich course offerings in the Asian field campus-wide in a way that is not available through individual departments. There are three concentrations from which a student may select in the major: (1) a multi-area thematic concentration (2) a concentration on China (3) a concentration on Japan. "Multi-area" includes all countries and regions of Asia. One of the areas chosen must be either China or Japan. Other areas can include Korea and countries in South Asia or Southeast Asia.  The Group in Asian Studies offers three minors: Chinese Studies, Japanese Studies, Korean Studies.

The undergraduate program is one of six majors under the International and Area Studies Teaching Program.
Asian Studies: China: BA
Asian Studies: Japan: BA
Asian Studies: Multi-Area: BA
Chinese Studies: Minor
Japanese Studies: Minor
Korean Studies: Minor

Graduate Programs

Asian Studies: MA, MA/MJ, PhD

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Courses

Asian Studies

ASIANST 10 Introduction to Asia 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2016, Fall 2015, Summer 2015 Second 6 Week Session
This course is designed to interest students in Asian cultures early in their undergraduate studies. Topics such as trade, social and political formations, religions, food, and expressive culture that have been important in history as well as in contemporary times in East, South, and Southeast Asia will serve as unifying themes. Comparative thinking across regions of Asia and the perspectives of multiple disciplines will
be brought to bear on the themes.
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ASIANST 98 Directed Group Study 1 - 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2017, Fall 2016, Spring 2016
Group discussion, research and reporting on selected topics.

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ASIANST 150 Special Topics 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2017, Fall 2016, Spring 2016
Advanced research in current issues or regions of Asian studies. The course will focus on specific areas or topics with appropriate comparative material included. Topics change each semester.

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ASIANST H195A Senior Honors 3 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2017, Fall 2016, Spring 2016
Supervised readings or field research on a significant problem in Asian Studies, collection and analysis of research materials, and the preparation of an honors dissertation in close consultation with two members of the faculty.

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ASIANST H195B Senior Honors 3 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2017, Fall 2016, Spring 2016
Supervised readings or field research on a significant problem in Asian Studies, collection and analysis of research materials, and the preparation of an honors dissertation in close consultation with two members of the faculty.

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ASIANST 197 Field Studies 2 - 4 Units

Terms offered: Summer 2017 Second 6 Week Session, Summer 2016 8 Week Session, Summer 2016 Second 6 Week Session
Supervised experience relevant to specific aspects of Asian studies in off-campus locations. Regular individual meetings with faculty sponsor and written reports required.

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ASIANST 198 Directed Group Study 1 - 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2017, Fall 2016, Spring 2016
Directed group study of special topics approved by the chair of the Group in Asian Studies.

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ASIANST 199 Independent Study 1 - 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2017, Fall 2016, Summer 2016 8 Week Session
Directed individual study on topics approved by the chair of the Group in Asian Studies.

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ASIANST 201 Asian Studies Proseminar 1 Unit

Terms offered: Spring 2017, Fall 2016, Spring 2016
This course is required of all first-year graduate students and supervised by a regular faculty member. The seminar will familiarize students with faculty, their Asian interests, research methods, and the courses they teach. It consists of presentations by faculty on their past, present, and future research.

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ASIANST 298 Directed Group Study 2 - 6 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2017, Spring 2016, Spring 2015
Group study of selected topics that vary from term to term.

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ASIANST 299 Independent Study 1 - 7 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2017, Fall 2016, Summer 2016 8 Week Session
Directed reading in subject matter not covered in scheduled seminar offerings.

Independent Study: Read More [+]

Faculty and Instructors

Faculty

Lanchih Po, Associate Adjunct Professor.

Lecturers

Crystal Chang, Lecturer.

Contact Information

Group in Asian Studies

1995 University Avenue, Suite 510E

Phone: 510-642-0333

asianst@berkeley.edu

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Chair of the Group in Asian Studies

Aihwa Ong, PhD (Anthropology)

314 Kroeber Hall

aihwaong@berkeley.edu

Graduate Student Affairs Officer

Dreux Montgomery

1995 University Avenue, Suite #510

Phone: 510-642-0333

dmontgom@berkeley.edu

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