Program Director and Major Advisor: Makiko Inoue
The Japanese major provides the training and cultural background needed for entering East Asia-related careers in such fields as the arts, business, government, international relations, higher education, and the media. Students may also consider a double major in Japanese and another discipline, such as art history, business, economics, computer science, international relations, or linguistics. Another option available to students is a 24-credit undergraduate certificate in East Asian Studies.
After completing the prerequisite of one year of language (12 credits - JAPN101 Elementary Japanese I, six hours per week, fall or summer I; and JAPN102 Elementary Japanese II, six hours per week, spring or summer II), students must complete 42 credits for the major course requirements (24 language, 6 civilization/history, 12 elective).
Program Learning Outcomes
- Upon completion of the core language sequence of JAPN 101-302, students will be able to ask and answer questions, handle topics related to their daily life and autobiographical topics by means of narration and description, engage in conversation in a participatory manner, and disagree by providing supporting reasons about a range of everyday topics, using passable grammar, vocabulary, and speech style(s) appropriate to specific social contexts.
- Students will be able to read and understand kanji (Chinese characters) and kanji compound vocabulary introduced during the course; grasp the main points in a reading passage, analyze syntactic (grammatical) structures, recognize the function of polite (honorific/humble) language styles, and identify deleted subjects.
- Upon completion of one or more courses in literary/cultural studies, students will demonstrate strong skills in interpreting a variety of literary, cultural, and historical texts in translation, and indicate a nuanced and deep understanding of the diversity of Japanese literature(s) and culture(s).
Placement in Courses
For information about the Foreign Language Placement Assessment, go to: http://www.arhu.umd.edu/undergraduate/flpa.
Students must take language-acquisition courses sequentially, and receive a grade of C- or better to advance to the next level. Once credit has been received in a higher level language acquisition or grammar course, a lower level course may not be taken for credit.
|JAPN201||Intermediate Japanese I||6|
|JAPN202||Intermediate Japanese II||6|
|JAPN301||Advanced Japanese I||6|
|JAPN302||Advanced Japanese II||6|
|Select an Option:||6|
|East Asian Civilization I|
|History of Japan Since 1800|
|East Asian Civilization II|
|History of Japan to 1800|
|Courses that fulfill the literature/cultural studies requirement for the major include (3xx-level or above):||3|
|Edo Text and Context: Origins of Japanese Popular Culture|
|Reading Japanese Empire|
|Women and Japanese Literature: Japanese Literature in Translation|
|Modern Japanese Literature and Film (In Translation)|
|Japan From the Margins|
|The Atomic Bomb in Literature and Memory|
|Special Topics in Japanese Studies|
|Courses that fulfill the linguistics requirement for the major include (3xx-level or above):||3|
|History of the Japanese Language|
|Introductory Japanese Linguistics|
|Seminar in Japanese Discourse and Conversation Analysis|
|Topics in Japanese Pragmatics|
|Courses that fulfill general elective requirements (3xx-level or above):||3|
|Traditional Japanese Language and Culture|
|Readings in Modern Japanese Literature|
|Readings in Japanese Cultural Studies|
|The Art of Translation|
|The Languages of East Asia|
|Pertinent courses at the 3xx or 4xx level in History and Art History can be applied toward the general elective requirements. JAPN courses in literature/cultural studies or linguistics at the 3xx or 4xx level which are not being applied to those categories may also be applied to the general elective category.||3|
Electives must be in Japanese language, literature, linguistics, or other East Asian subjects (one must be in the area of Japanese linguistics and one in the area of Japanese literature), and are subject to approval by the student's advisor.
Students must earn a grade of "C-" or higher in each course applied toward a major or minor in the School of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures. Additionally, an overall GPA of 2.0 in a major or minor is required for graduation.
Click here for roadmaps for four-year plans in the College of Arts and Humanities.
Additional information on developing a four-year academic plan can be found on the following pages:
Students in the Japanese program have successfully applied for a number of internship opportunities through the Japanese Information and Cultural Center (JICC), The Japan-America Society of Washington, D.C. (JASWDC), and other local organizations. For more information, please see the program advisor.
The Japanese program offers a number of exchange program opportunities on a semester or yearlong basis with Japanese universities including Keio and Waseda in Tokyo, as well as study abroad opportunities through programs such as the University Studies Abroad Consortium (USAC) in Osaka, Japan. For more information on study abroad programs, see the program advisor and/or the Education Abroad website globalmaryland.umd.edu/offices/education-abroad.
Students are encouraged to pursue scholarship funding through the Bridging (https://www.aatj.org/studyabroad/japan-bridging-scholarships), Gilman (https://www.iie.org/Programs/Gilman-Scholarship-Program), Watanabe (https://www.usjapancouncil.org/watanabe-scholarship/), Freeman (https://www.iie.org/Programs/Freeman-ASIA), Boren (https://borenawards.org/eligible-programs#countries) and Critical Language Scholarship (https://clscholarship.org/languages/japanese) programs. We also urge you to seek advice when applying to such programs from UMD's National Scholarships Office (https://www.scholarships.umd.edu/); the staff there offer helpful workshops which can help you to prepare a successful application.