Program Highlight

Chiang Mai River

Are you interested in a spending a term in India? Consider a semester-abroad program at Pondicherry University, located in a beautiful seaside town in Southern India where local people speak Tamil, Hindi and French!

All majors can be accommodated: the university has programs in biodiversity, language, philosophy, anthropology, biology, physics, english, economics, religious studies and other disciplines. A 17-day study tour of south India is integrated into the semester, with possibilities for travel in the North.

Please contact Dan Meckel for more information. 

SMP Spotlight

Brick Lane

Rachael Carter, “Chicken Tikka Masala: Literature of the South Asian Diaspora in Britain,” Class of 2007.

50% of non-white Britons are of South Asian descent, and the multiple south Asian communities and cultures of Great Britain—focused in London—are a vibrant part of national life. Using four novels written by Britons of South Asian descent, this St. Mary's Project explores the impact and aftermath of reverse colonization in Great Britain.

About the Major

Because of its wide-ranging historical and geographic scope, Asian Studies must employ an interdisciplinary approach. The core requirement for the major in Asian Studies is a team-taught, interdisciplinary course, which offers students an opportunity to explore the breadth of disciplinary approaches to this study area. Further Asian Studies courses may be found in the departments of Political Science, Economics, History, English, International Languages and Cultures, Philosophy and Religious Studies, and Theater, Film and Media Studies. This "area studies" approach demands that students take an active and conscious part in designing their major in Asian Studies.

The Asian Studies faculty strongly recommends that students anchor their study of Asia in language study and study abroad. In addition to Chinese language offerings on-campus, St. Mary's offers study-abroad programs at Fudan University in Shanghai, China; Lingnan University in Hong Kong, China; Payap University in Chiang Mai, Thailand; and Akita University in Japan. Students may pursue the study of other Asian languages through study-abroad programs in other Asian countries, or choose to attend language programs at other universities and colleges in the U.S. No study of Asia and its cultures is complete without the study of an Asian language.

Degree Requirements for the Major

To complete a major in the cross-disciplinary study area in Asian Studies, a student must satisfy the following requirements, designed to establish the breadth and depth of knowledge consistent with the goals of the Asian Studies program.

  1. General College requirements (see "Curriculum" section of the college catalog).
  2. Required Courses. At least 44 semester-hours in Asian Studies cross-listed courses, as specified in a, b, c, and d, below. A grade of C- or better must be received in each course counted towards the major, and the cumulative grade-point average of courses used to satisfy the major requirements must be at least 2.00. Courses taken for Credit/No Credit may not be used to satisfy major requirements. 
    1. ASIA200: Introduction to Asian Studies
    2. At least 8 semester-hours in an Asian Language, to be completed in one of the following ways:
      • Complete ILCC 101 and ILCC 102: Elementary Chinese I & II.
      • Any Asian language at another college or university.
      • Study abroad in an Asian country that includes intensive language study. Note: the Asian Studies coordinator must approve program.
      • Demonstrate at least second-semester college-level proficiency in an Asian language.

        Note: students who major in Asian Studies are strongly encouraged to pursue additional coursework in Asian languages.

    3. Additional elective courses: 24 semester-hours of Asian Studies courses in at least 3 separate disciplines, of which 20 semester-hours must be at the 300 or 400 level.

      Note: students also fulfilling a major in Chinese Language (ILCC) may not use ILCC semester-hours of Chinese Language to fulfill this requirement in section c.

    4. A St. Mary's Project: 8 semester hours.

      Note: Students who complete an interdisciplinary SMP of which only 4 semester hours are counted as ASIA493/494 must complete an additional 4 semester-hours chosen from any 300-400 level Asian Studies courses in addition to requirements a-c. Students who complete an SMP entirely outside of ASIA 493/494 must complete 8 semester-hours chosen from any 300-400 level Asian Studies courses in addition to requirements a-c.

    Courses taken for the major should form a cohesive program and be selected in consultation with a faculty adviser from Asian Studies.

    A complete list of approved current offerings will appear in the "Schedule of Classes."

    Our curriculum is designed to promote the following learning outcomes:

    1. Students will acquire proficiency in an Asian language
    2. Students will acquire in-depth content in three separate disciplines related to Asian Studies (a total of 24 upper-division credits in these disciplines)
    3. Students will acquire an interdisciplinary approach to the analysis and understanding of Asian culture, politics, economics, religion and literature
    4. Students will acquire first-hand experience of Asian culture through traveling, living and learning in an Asian environment