East Asian Languages and Cultures
Variety of Courses
Every semester, about 50 courses are available at the university in East Asian subjects, and about 30 of these are offered directly through the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures. With interest in East Asia running high, language and culture classes draw a wide range of students who take advantage of the department's courses, programs, and learning resources.
The department currently offers a four-year sequence of language courses in Chinese and Japanese and a three-year sequence in the Korean language. Language tables and an advanced language maintenance program in which native speakers deliver lectures in Chinese and Japanese on a wide array of subjects provide further opportunitiess to improve speaking and listening skills. A language laboratory makes tapes and videos available for students to review lessons or advance their comprehension outside classroom hours. Asian films are also available. Lecture and discussion courses in English, usually of small to moderate size, illustrate the diversity and development of East Asian cultures. A program in bibliographical and research techniques helps students master skills essential for advanced inquiry and lucid presentation.
Our faculty is meeting the demand for courses about contemporary East Asia while maintaining its dedication to the rich heritage of traditional East Asian cultures. Beyond course offerings, the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures, its affiliated departments, and the Center for East Asian Studies (CEAS) organize lectures, symposia, exhibits, films, and musical/theatrical performances for its students and the academic community. The overall goal of the department is to train students in interpreting, appreciating, and transmitting important cultural traditions and to aid in bridging the gap between East Asian lives and our own.
During their education, many students choose to extend their learning experience beyond their own campus by participating in study abroad programs at institutions affiliated with the University of Kansas. Study abroad affiliations include Sophia, Fukuoka, Obirin and Okayama Universities and Tsuda College (Japan); Nankai, Nanjing, and Zhengzhou Universities (People's Republic of China); the Mandarin Training Center in Taipei (Taiwan); and Sogang and Ewha Women's Universities (Republic of Korea). Students can receive partial financial assistance from the University of Kansas to attend these schools and credit for courses taken abroad can be transferred to KU and applied toward graduation requirements.
The bachelor's and master's degrees in East Asian Languages and Cultures, backed by one or more years of study abroad, are first steps toward a variety of career choices. The Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures' graduates have sought careers in teaching high school and have used their training in colleges, in business, in government, and in professional schools. Other graduates have continued their advanced education at schools such as Columbia University, Harvard University, Georgetown University, the University of Michigan and Stanford University.