Your complete guide to studying Asian Studies

Everything you need to know about studying Asian Studies

part of Social Sciences

What is Asian Studies?

Asian Studies is an interdisciplinary field that explores the rich cultures of Asia, including its history, politics, economies, and societies. It offers a deep understanding of this extremely diverse region of the world, one which has had a huge influence on global affairs since antiquity.

Asian Studies Specialisations

In Asian Studies, students can choose from various specialisations that focus on specific areas or countries within Asia. The most common specialisations in Asian Studies are:

  • East Asian Studies (China, Japan, Korea);
  • South Asian Studies (India, Pakistan);
  • Southeast Asian Studies (Indonesia, Vietnam, Thailand);
  • Asian History;
  • Asian Politics and International Relations.

Both Bachelor's and Master's degree programmes offer these specialisations, allowing students to explore the nuances of these regional or thematic areas.

What will you learn during an Asian Studies programme?

During an Asian Studies degree, you learn about all aspects of life in Asia, from history, literature, and art to politics and social customs. If you're wondering why Asian studies is a good degree, here's what you'll gain:

  • a well-rounded understanding of the histories, cultures and societies of Asian countries; insights into the political, economic, and social issues shaping Asia today;
  • proficiency in an Asian language like Chinese, Japanese, or Korean;
  • skills to perform interdisciplinary research and analytical abilities;
  • a global perspective.

Here are some courses you can have as part of this programme:

  • Chinese Linguistics, or the study of the Chinese language;
  • Asian Religions, where you explore the major religions like Hinduism or Confucianism which shaped thinking in Asia;
  • Images of Asia about visual representations and symbolism throughout the region;
  • Exploring Japan, with a focus on Japanese culture, art, and society;
  • South Asian Cinema: Bollywood and Beyond.

A degree in Asian Studies is the right choice for you if you have a keen interest in Asia's dynamic and influential role in the world. The skills you get from Asian Studies courses can be highly beneficial in many sectors, from business to diplomacy.

Skills required for a degree in Asian Studies

The Asian Studies degree requirements include a strong interest in Asian cultures, an ability to learn new languages and to be able to analyse and think critically about complex issues of society. Good communication skills and cultural sensitivity are also highly valued in this field.

What can you do with an Asian Studies degree?

An Asian Studies degree paves the way for a variety of career paths. The most popular jobs you can get include:

  • Diplomat or International Relations Specialist;
  • International Business Consultant;
  • Non-profit Organization Worker;
  • Translator or Interpreter;
  • Teacher or Academic Researcher.

Is an Asian Studies degree worth it? Definitely! As Asia's influence continues to grow on the global stage, those with a deep understanding of this region will find their skills in high demand.

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