Asian Studies Program

Program Director: Carol Brash

Administrative Assistant: Norma Koetter

The Asian Studies major and minor prepare students for personal and professional engagement in and with Asia in accordance with the Benedictine commitment to service, learning in community, multiculturalism, leadership, and global citizenship.  Graduates of Asian Studies at CSB/SJU go on to pursue careers in education, religion, government, diplomacy, international relations, law, business, medicine, journalism, non-profit and non-governmental activism, and other professional paths. 

This major offers an interdisciplinary and experiential liberal arts approach to the study of Asia's great traditions, modern transformation, global Diaspora, and its pivotal role in today's world.   The curriculum offers a broad array of courses in art, economics, environmental studies, gender studies, global business leadership, geography, history, language and literature, management, philosophy, political science, and theology. Coursework is complemented by study abroad, May Term experiences, service learning, internships, teaching, and other experiential opportunities in China, Japan, and India.  Courses taken at our study abroad sites in China, Japan, and India count toward the major and minor. (Please consult the Office of Education Abroad for a complete listing of study abroad courses.)

Assessment of Student Learning

The Asian Studies Program pursues on-going assessment of its curriculum, pedagogy, and experiential offerings. Through student surveys, oral presentations, the senior thesis, and experiential activities, we regularly assess the Program's efforts in meeting student objectives established in our Assessment Mission Statement and Plan. Assessment data are used to assist the Asian Studies faculty in its periodic program review.

Major in Asian Studies (48 credits)

Students majoring in Asian Studies are required to complete 48 credits of courses from the interdisciplinary offerings listed below. A gateway course, ASIA 200, to be taken in the spring of the sophomore year, exposes students to a broad understanding of Asian Studies. ASIA 399, taken in the senior year, is the a capstone experience in which students explore a chosen topic in a more in-depth manner under the guidance of the Asian Studies faculty. Students majoring in Asian Studies are required to study an Asian language through the intermediate (CHIN212 or JAPN212) level; additional English-language courses to complete the major should be selected based on the student's specific interest, and in consultation with a faculty advisor. While many Asian Studies courses are centered on the humanities, students are expected to take at least 8 credits from the social sciences or the arts. All courses taken through CSB/SJU study abroad programs in China, Japan, and India will count toward the elective course requirements for the Asian Studies major.

Students will pursue a three-course concentration that is thematic, geographic, or chronological (e.g. "women in Asia," "India," or "nineteenth-century Asia") and which is explained in the student focus statement developed in the ASA 200 course and in consultation with the Director of Asian Studies.

Asian Studies students must complete their Common Curriculum Experiential Learning requirement through an Asia- or Asian America-related experience which includes but is not necessarily limited to CSB/SJU-approved semester study abroad, internship, teaching, and service learning activities related to the student's chosen concentration.

No more than 4 credits from non-CSB/SJU study abroad experiences will apply toward the Asian Studies major without prior approval of the Director of Asian Studies.

Minor in Asian Studies (20 credits) 

The minor requires 20 credits:  Asia 200, 4 credits at the 100 level and 12 credits at the 300 level.  Up to 4 credits of Chinese and Japanese languages courses of 212 or higher CAN count for the Asian
Studies minor. These courses may include 212, 311, 312, and ILP of 300 level or higher on either CSB/SJU campuses or study abroad sites.  Literature in translation courses offered under the LNGS (formerly MCLT) course designation will count toward the Asian Studies minor. 

Minor in Chinese Language

This minor is administered by the Department of Languages and Cultures, and requires courses in Chinese language and culture.  For more information on the Chinese minor, go to the Languages and Cultures website at

Minor in Japanese Language

This minor is administered by the Languages and Cultures and requires courses in Japanese language and culture. For more information on the Japanese minor, go to the Department of Languages and Cultures website at

Courses for Major/Minor

ASIA 200, 271, 371, 397, 399

ART 100, 208, 240D, ART 240F, 309

CHIN 111/112, 115/116, 211/212, 311/312, 315/316, 321B, 330, 371

COLG 280

ECON 316, 317, 362

ENGL 385C, 386 

ENVR 200A, 300J, 312

GBUS 201, 300, 321, 330, 337, 341

GEND 180A, 290A, 290B, 360E, 381

GEOG 230, 312

HIST 114, 115, 116, 117, 118, 300, 305, 315, 316, 317, 319, 368


JAPN 111/112, 115/116, 211, 212, 311/312, 315/316, 321A, 321B, 321C, 330A, 330B, 330C

PHIL 156, 339

POLS 121, 223, 346, 352, 355, 356, 358A

THEO 327, 345, 363, 365, 369B, 369C

Courses (ASIA)