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International Studies and Programs

Asian Studies Center

Siddharth Chandra, Director

The Asian Studies Center was established in 1962 to further knowledge and understanding of the countries of Asia, with a concentration on East Asia. In 2000, the center became the nation’s first all-Asia National Undergraduate Resource Center, expanding the center’s focus to include regions as diverse as Central and Southeast Asia.

The center’s primary function is to enrich education in the social sciences, humanities, and professional school training through Asia-centered curricular, extra-curricular, and outreach activities. The center’s programming is designed to educate people who wish to become area specialists, and integrate knowledge of Asia into their disciplinary studies. It also strengthens undergraduate and graduate academic programs, stimulates research and publications, and aids in partnerships with Asian institutions.

The center coordinates Asian Studies offerings within the various disciplines on campus. The Asian Studies Center does not award degrees; students are enrolled in participating colleges and departments. An undergraduate degree program in East Asian Languages and Cultures, an Asian concentration in the Bachelor of Arts degree in Global and Area Studies, and a Minor in Asian Studies are available. For additional information on degree programs, refer to the College of Social Science and the Department of Linguistics and Germanic, Slavic, Asian and African Languages in the College of Arts and Letters sections of this catalog.

Asian languages taught in the Department of Linguistics, Languages and Cultures include Chinese, Japanese, Hindi, Nepali, Vietnamese, Tagalog, Thai, Korean, and others. Other academic units offering courses on Asia include Agricultural Economics, Anthropology, Art, Art History, and Design, Economics, Geography, History, James Madison, Philosophy, Political Science, Religious Studies, and Sociology. Interdisciplinary courses on Asia are also offered at the undergraduate level. Graduate students may receive funding through the Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) grant program for advanced Asian language study in furtherance of their programs of study.

The center brings distinguished scholars as visiting professors to the campus in cooperation with interested departments, invites other specialists to the campus for lectures or seminars. The center also arranges special institutes on research and teaching and secures research support for faculty and graduate students. It houses several Asian country councils and various undergraduate and graduate student academic award programs.

For more information, call 1-517-353-1680, email, or visit