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Administration

General Information

Advising

Undergraduate Programs

Graduate Programs


Instructional and Research Facilities and Programs

Center for Chinese Studies

Center for Japanese Studies

Center for Korean Studies

Center for Okinawan Studies

Center for Pacific Islands Studies

Center for Philippine Studies

Center for South Asian Studies

Center for Southeast Asian Studies

Muslim Societies in Asia and the Pacific


Asian Studies

Pacific Islands Studies

Asian Studies

Moore 416
1890 East-West Road
Honolulu, HI 96822
Tel: (808) 956-6085
Fax: (808) 956-2682
Web: manoa.hawaii.edu/asianstudies/

Faculty

*Graduate Faculty

*M. Aung-Thwin, PhD (Chair)—history, Southeast Asia (Burma)
*P. Abinales, PhD—political science, Southeast Asia(Philippines)
*B. Andaya, PhD—history, Southeast Asia (Malaysia, Indonesia)
*L. Carlile, PhD—political science, East Asia (Japan)
*C. Clayton, PhD—anthropology, East Asia (China)
*E. Harwit, PhD—political science, East Asia (China)
*R. Kwok, PhD—urban and regional planning, East Asia (China)
*Y. Park, PhD—anthropology, East Asia (Korea)
*M. Sharma, PhD—anthropology, South Asia (India)
*A. Stirr, PhD—ethnomusicology, South Asia (Nepal)

Affiliate Faculty

C. Allen, PhD—history, East Asia (Korea, Japan)
J. Chinen, PhD—sociology, East Asia (Okinawa)
M. Das Gupta, PhD—sociology, South Asia (India)
*Y. Kim, PhD—literature, East Asia (Korea)
V. Lanzona, PhD—history, Southeast Asia (Philippines)
F. Lau, PhD—ethnomusicology, East Asia (China)
*M. McDonald, PhD—geography, East Asia (Japan)
*C. Ning, PhD—literature, East Asia (China)
*S. O'Harrow, PhD—linguistics, Southeast Asia (Vietnam)
G. Satsuma, PhD—history, East Asia (Japan)

Cooperating Faculty

The academic program of the ASP is facilitated and enhanced by the participation and support of the affiliate faculty of seven centers focused on Asia in the school: Chinese, Japan, Korean, Okinawan, Philippine, South Asian, and Southeast Asian studies.

These resources are better served by the close cooperation and academic relationship between the Asian Studies Program and the East West Center.

Degrees and Certificates Offered: BA and MA in Asian studies, MA in Asian studies, Graduate Certificates in Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Philippine, South Asian, and Southeast Asian studies are offered. Students may major or minor in Asian Studies.

The Academic Program

Asian studies is the study of Asia. At UH Manoa, it covers a broad arc that begins in the west with South Asia, moves southeastward to Southeast Asia, then eastward to East Asia. The approach to that study is interdisciplinary, taught by faculty trained in the geography, history, anthropology, political science, sociology, language and literature, ethnomusicology, performing arts, and urban and regional planning of Asia.

In addition to the faculty in SPAS, there are approximately 286 faculty and staff who are Asia specialists in different departments and programs throughout the campus. 600 courses on Asia (or with substantive Asia content) are taught at UH Manoa, a unique strength the Asian Studies Program utilizes in crafting its BA and MA degrees.

The Asian Studies Program offers an unprecedented opportunity for students to study a wide range of topics, disciplines, and methodologies to design their individual programs to suit their particular interests. This interdisciplinary approach to the study of Asia, focused on the social sciences and humanities, is the heart of the program's mission. Finally, competency in an Asian language commensurate with the student's focus and level is considered fundamental, and is a required part of the program.

Advising

Graduate students are advised by the appropriate area director or designated faculty. Undergraduates majoring in Asian studies are advised by an undergraduate studies advisor.

Undergraduate Study

Bachelor’s Degree

The undergraduate program in Asian studies is designed for students desiring a liberal arts education and a broad background in traditional and contemporary Asian cultures.

Students seeking a BA in Asian studies must meet all the requirements for admission established by SPAS.

Asian studies is normally declared as a major at the end of the sophomore year or beginning of the junior year though students may apply for admission to the program at any time. The formal declaration is made through the school's Student Academic Services Office.

Program Requirements

  • Earn at least a 2.0 GPA (C average) for all UH Manoa registered courses
  • Register for all required courses (core, major, minor, and certificates) for a letter grade
  • Earn a grade of C (not C-) or better in each course applied to the major, minor, and certificate requirements
  • 60 upper division credits of 300+ courses

Major Requirements

  • Total of at least 36 credit hours of Asia-related course work
  • ASAN 201 and 202, 310 or 312, and 6 additional credit hours of ASAN courses at the 300 or 400 level
  • Two years of an Asian language (excluding conversation or aural comprehension courses), or demonstration of the equivalent level

Majors must also complete one of the following study plans:

Plan 1:

  • 12 credit hours of Asia-related course work from one of the following disciplines or areas: anthropology, art, economics, geography, history, linguistics, literature, music, philosophy, political science, religion, sociology, communicology, or theater and dance
  • 9 credit hours of Asia-related courses outside the primary field of concentration, as approved by the advisor

Plan 2:

  • 12 credit hours of course work on one Asian country or region (e.g., Japan, Southeast Asia)
  • 9 credit hours focused on one or more additional Asian countries or regions

ASAN courses used to satisfy General Education Core requirements may not be used to satisfy major requirements or vice versa.

Language study beyond the required level may count toward the major and is encouraged for Asian studies majors.

For information on a Bachelor Degree Program Sheet, go to www.manoa.hawaii.edu/ovcaa/programsheets/.

Minor Requirements

There are no required courses for acceptance into the Asian Studies minor program. Attendance in ASAN 201-202 (Introduction to Asian Studies) is recommended.

Students must complete 15 credit hours including:

  • ASAN 310 Asian Humanities or 312 Contemporary Asian Civilization (3 credits)
  • ASAN courses numbered 300 and above (minimum 6 credits)
  • Asia-related courses in disciplines other than the major field numbered 300 and above (maximum 6 credits)

It is possible to focus on one particular country or region, such as China, Japan, Korea, Philippines, Southeast Asia, or South Asia.

The Asian studies undergraduate advisor will identify Asia-related courses in various disciplines and assist in planning schedules and preparing minor forms.

Graduate Study

Master’s Degree

The master's program in Asian studies is designed primarily for students who wish to focus their studies on a particular geographical and cultural region of Asia. Such an approach entails interdisciplinary study.

The MA in Asian studies is offered in Plan A (thesis) and Plan B (non-thesis). Although UH Manoa does not offer a PhD in Asian studies, Asia-focused PhD programs are available in anthropology, East Asian languages and literatures, economics, geography, history, linguistics, music, philosophy, political science, public health, sociology, theater, and tropical agriculture.

Students who wish to pursue a doctoral degree in any of these fields should contact the appropriate department.

A student's academic program should concentrate on one of the regions of Asia as represented by the area centers in SPAS—China, Japan, Korea, Okinawa, the Philippines, South Asia, or Southeast Asia. Regarding the latter two, a student may concentrate on a particular country within those regions if sufficient courses are available. The director of each area center or a designated faculty member serves as the graduate student advisor for his or her respective area.

Students without sufficient academic background in Asia-related course work may be required to take certain preparatory courses to make up this deficiency without credit toward the degree. Prospective students should note that the program requires successful completion of course work or demonstrable proficiency in an Asian language beyond the fourth-year level for students concentrating on Japan, at the fourth-year level for students concentrating on China or Korea, or the third-year level for students concentrating on the Philippines, South Asia, or Southeast Asia. Students enrolling from an Asian country may have the foreign language requirement waived if they plan to concentrate on their native country or region. If they elect to concentrate on a country other than their own, they must fulfill the language requirement as previously stated.

Plan A (Thesis) Requirements

The MA Plan A degree in Asian studies requires the following:

  1. A minimum of 36 credit hours. Of these, at least 18 must be earned in courses numbered 600 or higher (including 6 credit hours in ASAN 700 Thesis Research)
  2. Full-time study for minimum of two academic semesters
  3. A minimum of 6 credit hours in an Asian language equivalent to the following: Japanese–6 credit hours beyond the 401 and 402 level; Chinese–8 credit hours at the 401 and 402 level; Korean–6 credit hours at the 401 and 402 level; Philippine, South and Southeast Asian languages–6 credit hours at the 301 and 302 level (an entering student who has achieved this level and can demonstrate proficiency through examination may select alternate courses equaling 6 credit hours with the consent of the area advisor)
  4. An introductory graduate seminar in the particular area of concentration (ASAN 600), taken at the beginning of the student's program
  5. A graduate research seminar in the particular area of concentration (ASAN 750)
  6. A minimum of 3 additional credit hours in Asian studies
  7. A minimum of 15 credit hours of interdisciplinary study related to the candidate's country or region, with at least 3 credit hours each in the fields of humanities, social sciences, and arts. No more than 9 credit hours in one discipline will be counted. A maximum of 6 credits may be taken outside the country/region of focus, after consultation with academic advisor.
  8. Satisfactory completion of a master's thesis and an oral examination on the thesis given by the student's three-member faculty committee

Plan B (Non-thesis) Requirements

The MA Plan B degree in Asian studies requires:

  1. A minimum of 36 credit hours. Of these, at least 18 credits must be earned in courses numbered 600 or higher
  2. Full-time study for minimum of two academic semesters
  3. A minimum of 6 credit hours in an Asian language equivalent to the following: Japanese–6 credit hours beyond the 401 and 402 level; Chinese–8 credit hours at the 401 and 402 level; Korean–6 credit hours at the 401 and 402 level; Philippine, South and Southeast Asian languages–6 credit hours at the 301 and 302 level (an entering student who has achieved this level and can demonstrate proficiency through examination may select alternate courses equaling 6 credit hours with the consent of the area advisor)
  4. An introductory graduate seminar in the particular area of concentration (ASAN 600), taken at the beginning of the student's program
  5. A graduate research seminar in the particular area of concentration (ASAN 750)
  6. A minimum of 3 additional credit hours in Asian studies
  7. A minimum of 21 credit hours of interdisciplinary study related to the candidate's country or region, with at least 3 credit hours each in the fields of humanities, social sciences, and arts. No more than 9 credit hours in one discipline will be counted. A maximum of 6 credits may be taken outside the country/region of focus, after consultation with academic advisor.
  8. Presentation of a portfolio consisting of two seminar papers, and satisfactory completion of an oral examination based on the papers given by the student's three-member faculty committee

Certificate Programs

Graduate Certificates

SPAS, through its Asia focused centers, offers graduate certificates in the following areas: Chinese studies, Korean studies, Japanese studies, Philippine studies, South Asian studies, and Southeast Asian studies. Regularly enrolled graduate students in non-Asian studies disciplines receive a certificate for completing a program of study that focuses on a particular Asian country or region. MA students in Asian studies also receive a certificate for completing studies in their area of concentration.

Certificate Requirements

  • 18 credits of course work, in a defined program of study, at UH Manoa within the chosen certificate area
  • Of these, 15 credits must be at 300-level or higher from at least two major divisions (social sciences, humanities, or arts), with no more than 9 credits in a single division, and at least 9 credits in graduate level courses (600 level or higher)
  • ASAN 600 Asian Studies Seminar: Scope and Methods or 750 Research Seminar in the chosen certificate area
  • A research paper in the chosen certificate area and an oral examination based on the paper; or a thesis or dissertation related to the chosen certificate area in the student's major discipline
  • Language requirements:
    • For the Japanese certificate, 4th year competency (JPN 407)
    • For the Chinese and Korean certificate, 3rd year competency (CHN 301/302 or KOR 301/302); and
    • For the remaining regional certificates, 2nd year competency (201/202 language courses of the chosen certificate area)
  • Complete all coursework for certificate within a seven year period

All language competency requirements can be met either through course work or equivalency examinations in the chosen certificate area. Language courses do not count towards certificate credit requirements.

Academic advising is provided by the center of the student's chosen certificate area.

ASAN Courses