This program is designed for students whose career goals require only the M.A. degree, as well as for those who want to continue in a major Ph.D. field but do not have the necessary language or area background.
Asian languages currently taught at Cornell are Bengali, Burmese, Chinese (Cantonese and Mandarin), Hindi-Urdu, Indonesian, Japanese, Khmer (Cambodian), Korean, Nepali, Sanskrit, Sinhalese, Tagalog, Thai, and Vietnamese.
East Asian studies. Proficiency in speaking and reading Chinese, Japanese, or Korean is required. Each candidate must complete one year of full-time study (normally four courses each semester) in Asian studies. Students who have some previous language training will be directed to courses at the appropriate level and may, if they are advanced enough, complete the M.A. degree requirements in as little as one academic year.
South Asian studies. Proficiency in one or more South Asian languages, usually the equivalent of three years of nonintensive study, is required. An intensive summer program in Nepali is currently offered each summer.
Southeast Asian studies. Proficiency in one or more Southeast Asian languages, usually the equivalent of three years of nonintensive language study, is required. Proficiency can be obtained in two academic years plus one summer, or in two summers and one academic year. In addition to language study, each M.A. degree candidate is expected to successfully complete a minimum of eight one-semester courses.Asian studies is available as a minor field of concentration for master's or doctoral degree candidates admitted to a major field of the Graduate School. Candidates selecting a minor in Asian studies should discuss language requirements with their Special Committee. Major and minor work is also offered in the social sciences, history, literature, and religion.