East Asian Studies Major

The East Asian Studies Major positions UM students to pursue graduate work in East Asian Studies as well as careers in academia, government, education (middle and senior high school), business, law, and any other discipline (e.g., in the areas of environmental and climate change) in which Japan, China, Korea, and other East Asian countries are key global players.

student tries on kimono in japan

Our program builds on a long history of institutional commitment to East Asia. Ambassador Mike Mansfield first taught Far Eastern History at the University of Montana from 1934-1942. UM has the largest permanent East Asia faculty as well as the strongest Japanese language program in the Northern Rockies. Its Chinese language program has over thirty years of history at the institution. UM also maintains many exchange, research, and study abroad programs in China, Japan and other East Asian countries through a number of schools and universities, including programs in Education, Law, Business and Journalism.

The East Asian Studies major provides UM students with a broad understanding of the major cultures of this dynamic region and then gives students the freedom to tailor their studies to focus on either China or Japan. The major requires a spread of courses focusing on China, Japan, and either Vietnam or Pan-Asia to ensure that students receive training in the traditional cultures of the East Asian region (which represent major contributions to the world’s philosophical and artistic systems and also continue to exert a strong influence on the region today) and are able to choose from a variety of contemporary political, economic, and cultural courses to suit their goals.

To learn more about the East Asian Studies Major, contact the the Director of the East Asian Studies program, Dr. Eric Schluessel at eric.schluessel@umontana.edu