The graduate program in East Asian Languages and Cultures at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign reflects the Department's conviction that an understanding of East Asia must build on a broad and deep proficiency in both the languages of the region and in the theoretical and methodological approaches that inform advanced teaching and research of its cultures. Both the Master's and Doctoral programs embody that conviction in concept and design. Graduate students in the Department are encouraged to develop breadth of vision in their approach to East Asia, spanning historical periods, academic disciplines, and geographical boundaries, testing theories and methods and critically assessing their usefulness in understanding the cultures of East Asia.

East Asia is currently undergoing major transformations both within the region and in its relationships outside the region. Those who possess a high degree of proficiency in the languages of East Asia and a deep understanding of its cultures, as well as the ability to think critically will be best prepared to play a meaningful role in the emerging syncretism that is East Asia.

We offer both a Master of Arts (M.A.) and a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in East Asian Languages and Cultures.

The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign is a member of the consortium sponsoring the Inter-University Center (IUC for Japanese Studies in Yokohama, Japan, the premiere advanced language training program for academics and professionals in the various fields of Japanese studies). Students enrolled in the MA and PhD programs at UIUC are eligible for a substantial tuition reduction at IUC. For more information, visit the website.

The M.A. may be taken either as a first step toward the Ph.D. in the Department or as a terminal degree in preparation for various professional activities and positions. It may also be pursued as part of an interdisciplinary program of graduate studies such as the M.B.A.; or it may lead to work at the doctoral level in one of the University's numerous other disciplinary and professional graduate programs that permit specialization in East Asian studies. Master's students who wish to pursue the Ph.D. must apply for and be accepted into the doctoral program.

The Ph.D. is an advanced research degree that qualifies its recipients for a variety of professional and research careers. Often the degree leads to positions in teaching and research at the college or university level, but it can also be useful in other positions in the public and private sector where advanced training in East Asian languages and cultures is valued. It may also be pursued as part of an interdisciplinary program of graduate studies, such as the M.B.A. The Ph.D. is the highest degree conferred by the University, and all applicants for admission to the Ph.D. program must first have earned an M.A., either in the Department or elsewhere.

For more information, contact the Interim Director of Graduate Studies:

Professor Roderick Wilson