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Asian Studies Major Guide for 2016-2017

What is Asian Studies?

The Asian Studies program provides students the opportunity for intensive study of pre-modern and modern Asian civilizations. Resources for this program, which allows a focus on one of four geographical-cultural areas (China, Islamic World, Japan and South Asia), are provided by several departments. The Asian Studies major combines language study with work in art history, geography, history, literature, political science, and/or religious studies.  The growing cultural and economic influence of Asia globally makes expertise in this area increasingly important. The Asian Studies program can lead to government careers in international relations, foreign service, immigration and naturalization service and the United Nations as well as careers in the private sector. Asian Studies majors may pursue advanced degrees to hone their language skills, teach at the college or university level, practice law, etc.

Salary Trends in Asian Studies

An Arts and Sciences degree can propel you in limitless directions. Majors are not always the deciding factor as to what career path you follow. As with any degree, your pre-professional experiences (volunteerism, work experience, internships, etc.) enhance your chances at obtaining desired employment and further guide where you fall on the salary continuum.

Requirements for Asian Studies

Corequisite: Competence (the successful completion of the 200-level sequence of that language or
demonstration of equivalent mastery) in a major Asian language of the chosen geographical-cultural area.

Requirements: The major concentration consists of 30 credit hours of upper-division courses from Asian Studies and approved departmental offerings.

  1. Twelve of the hours from courses listed within one of the following four geographical-cultural areas: Islamic World, China, South Asia, and Japan
    a. Subdivision A – six hours selected from: Art, Literature, and Religious Studies
    b. Subdivision B – six hours selected from: Geography, History, and Political Science
  2. Six hours selected from courses listed within another geographical-cultural area
  3. Twelve hours selected from Asian Studies 300-level or above courses of the student’s choice

Ready for the World logo

Ready for the World

“Ready for the World” is part of a long-range plan to transform the UTK campus into a culture of diversity that best prepares students for working and competing in the 21st century.  Thus students are encouraged to actively participate in the diverse cultural programs offered on campus.  Some of these events include the guest lecture series, cultural nights at the International House, and international film screenings.  Visit the Center for International Education website or the Ready for the World website for more information on upcoming cultural programs and activities. Learn more about UT’s Ready for the World initiative to help students gain the international and intercultural knowledge they need to succeed in today’s world.

Students are also encouraged to develop a global perspective within their academic program through study abroad.  The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, offers study abroad programs in Asia, Europe, Africa, Australia, South America, and North America. Program lengths vary from mini-term trips to the entire academic year, and students may choose to fulfill general education requirements, study a foreign language, or take courses within their majors. In addition, UTK offers students opportunities for international internships.

Students are highly encouraged to begin planning early in their academic career and to consult with an academic advisor about the best time to study abroad as well as what courses to take abroad. For more information about program options, the application process, and how to finance study abroad, please visit the Programs Abroad Office website.

Experience Learning

Experience Learning LogoExperience Learning is a bold new initiative with the goal of transforming the educational student experience at the University of Tennessee. Over a five-year period, UT will transform our culture to give students more opportunities to be involved in civic engagement, solve complex real-world problems, and contribute to the welfare of their communities as part of their regular course work.

The purpose of Experience Learning is to help students apply the knowledge, skills, and values learned in the classroom to real-world challenges. Experience Learning also seeks to engage student learning through direct experience and intense reflection to increase knowledge, acquire lifelong learning and problem-solving skills, and elucidate values.

Learn more about Experience Learning.

Academic Plan and Milestones

Following an academic plan will help students stay on track to graduate in four years. For first-time, first-year, full-time, degree-seeking students, UT has implemented Universal Tracking (uTrack), an academic monitoring system designed to help students stay on track for timely graduation. In order to remain on track, students must complete the minimum requirements for each tracking semester, known as milestones. Milestones may include successful completion of specified courses and/or attainment of a minimum GPA.

To see a sample academic plan and milestones for this major, please visit the undergraduate catalog.

For More Information

Dr. Suzanne Wright
School of Art
416 Art & Architecture Bldg.
(865) 974-4267


The information on this page should be considered general information only. For more specific information on this and other programs refer to the UT catalog or contact the department and/or college directly.

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