Asian Studies Major Guide for 2012-2013

What is Asian Studies

The Asian Studies program provides an opportunity for the study of modern and ancient Asian civilizations. Resources for this program, which focuses on four geographical-cultural areas, are provided by several departments. The cultural heritage of the Asian people has its roots in ancient civilizations with a different history than those of the West. These differences have tended to divide humanity. An understanding of the significance of Asia in world affairs and of Asian peoples in the human community is extremely beneficial. 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. With advanced degrees, Asian Studies majors may become teachers and lawyers.

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

Co-requisite: 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 26 credit hours of upper-division courses from Asian Studies and approved departmental offerings.
1. Six 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, Music, Philosophy, and Religious Studies
b. Subdivision B – six hours selected from: Anthropology, Economics, Geography, History, Political Science, and Sociology
2. Eight of the remaining hours from any Asian Studies 300-level or above course

Ready for the World logoReady 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 web site ( or the Ready for the World web site ( 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.


Sample Curriculum

Following this four-year plan will help you stay on track to graduate in four years.  Milestone courses have been identified as the minimum courses that must be completed.


Freshman Year Credit Hours
English Composition 6
Asian Language (100 level) 8-10
Natural Science Lab Sequence 8
Mathematics/Quantitative Reasoning 6-8
Elective 0-2
Milestone courses: 
Sophomore Year Credit Hours
Social Science 3
Non U.S. History Sequence 6
Natural Science 3
Asian Language (200 level) 8-10
Arts and Humanities 3
Asian Studies (major) 3
Milestone courses: Second semester of elementary Asian foreign language (if required)
Junior Year Credit Hours
Asian Studies (major) 12
Arts and Humanities 6
Upper Level Distribution 6
Social Science 6
Communicating Through Writing 3
Senior Year Credit Hours
Asian Studies (major) 11
Upper Division Electives 10
Social Science 3
Communicating Orally 3
Electives 0-3
GRAND TOTAL (minimum) 120

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.