Bachelor of Arts Degree-Asian Studies


Program Description

The Asian Studies major combines language training with interdisciplinary study of an Asian region or single country. The program emphasizes social science approaches to the study of history, culture and society, with provision for study of literature and the arts as well.

Students who major in Asian Studies choose one of six options. To link to requirements click on an concentration below.

Information on the degree requirements and contributing faculty for the first five options (China, Japan, Korea, South Asia, and Southeast Asia) are described on individual flyers available in the Office of Student Services, Jackson School of International Studies, 111 Thomson Hall, and may be viewed through the links above by clicking on each option.

The sixth option, Asian Studies (General), provides the opportunity for a different approach to the study of Asia. In the general concentration, the courses in the elective portion of the major need not focus on a single country or even a single region, but may be chosen with other goals in mind—for example, to provide a broad overview of Asia, or to provide an in-depth investigation of a theme or topic (politics, social change, economic development) across a range of Asian societies. Also, students may select any appropriate Asian language to fulfill the two-year requirement without regard to how their other course work is distributed.


Admission to Major - open major

Any undergraduate in good standing may declare Asian Studies (General) as a major.

Major Requirements

Asian Language

30 credits or second-year equivalent language training in an Asian language (Bengali, Burmese, Chinese, Filipino/Tagalog, Hindi, Indonesian, Japanese, Korean, Sanskrit, Thai, Tibetan, Urdu, Vietnamese).


  • Introductory Courses (10 credits):
  1. JSIS 203, The Rise of Asia (5) or JSIS A 207 Asian Civilizations: Traditions (5);
  2. JSIS 201, The Making of the 21st Century (5)
  3. Two Asian Civilizations from two different civilizations (10 credits), chosen from: JSIS A/HSTAS 212 (Korea), JSIS A/HSTAS 241 (Japan), JSIS A 242 (Japan), HSTAS 211 (China), JSIS A/HSTAS 221 (Southeast Asia), JSIS A 206 (South Asia), HSTAS 201, 202 (India),

A minimum of 30 credits in approved upper-division courses on Asia, including

  1. a minimum of 10 credits from one country or regional option and
  2. a minimum of 10 credits chosen from other country or regional options.
  • Asia Research Paper: In addition, an approved research paper is required in one of the upper-division elective courses.
  • A minimum grade of 2.0 in all courses counted toward the major is required, except for first- and second-year language courses, where grades must average at least 2.00. Thirty of the credits required for the concentration courses must be taken in residence at the University of Washington.
  • Overlapping credits: A maximum of 15 credits that are used to fulfill minimum requirements of any other UW major can be counted in this major.

Lists of current course offerings approved for the country and regional Asia options are available online Jackson School Office of Academic Services by following
this link.

Asian Studies-General Advising Worksheet

Asian Studies Minors

Undergraduates also may choose a minor in any of five Asia-related Jackson School programs: China Studies, Japan Studies, Korea Studies, South Asian Studies, and Southeast Asian Studies. Study of a foreign language is encouraged but not required. Information on the requirements for these minors is available in Thomson 111, or through the JSIS Minors Web page.

Jackson School
Office of Academic Services
111 Thomson Hall
Box 353650
Seattle, WA 98195
(206) 543-6001