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First year

Course EC Semester 1 Semester 2

First semester (Fall semester)

Introduction to Asian Studies 10

Advanced Chinese Language

Advanced Mandarin 1 10

Elective (select 10 EC):

Automation, Justice and Governance in China 10
Comparative Asian Linguistics 10
Advanced Readings in Classical Chinese 5
China's International Political Economy 10
Topics in Modern Chinese History 10
Critical Approaches to Heritage Studies 5
Lives on the Margins: Korean Peninsula Migration and Identity (10 EC) 10
Lives on the Margins: Korean Peninsula Migration and Identity (5 EC) 5
Cultural Heritage in East Asia: Dealing with the Past in Present and Future 10
Material Culture, Memory and Commemoration along the Silk Roads in Central Asia 10
Democratizing Histories (10 EC) 10
Democratizing Histories (5 EC) 5
Japan’s Quiet Order Building Amid China’s Rise 10
Urban Ecology of Asian Cities 10
Topics in Chinese Art History, Things and Paths: Approaches to Chinese Art and Material Culture 10
Pure Land Buddhism 5
Pilgrimage and Holy Places 10
Taiwan MA Seminar 10
Art and Environment in East Asia 10

Spring Semester

Year in China A 30

Second year

Course EC Semester 1 Semester 2

Fall Semester:

Year in China B 30

Spring Semester:

MA Thesis Asian Studies (120 EC) 15

Language Elective (select one of the following two courses):

Advanced Mandarin 3 5

Elective (select 10 EC):

Approaches to East Asian Cinema (10 EC) 10
Approaches to East Asian Cinema (5 EC) 5
The Politics of Destruction: Targeting World Heritage 10
Sinographics: Chinese Writing and Writing Chinese 10
China and Global Cyberspace 10
Topical Readings in Historical and Literary Chinese Texts 10
The Past in the Present: Nation-building in Modern China (10 EC) 10
The Past in the Present: Nation-building in Modern China (5 EC) 5
Culture and Conquest: the Impact of the Mongols and their Descendants 10
Modern Japanese International Political Thought 10
Buddhism seminar 10

Information on the year in China

due to the current COVID-19 outbreak this part of the programme may be cancelled or modified

Students spend a total of one year at Shandong University (Jinan, People’s Republic of China) as part of their Master’s program. The focus of the year at Shandong University is on language acquisition, in order to obtain at least HSK level 5 upon returning to Leiden. During their year in China, the students are also expected to do preparatory research for their Master’s Thesis.

Career Preparation

Important events and sites to develop future career skills

Master’s Open Day (Leiden University)

Skills that improve your employability are also known as:

Transferable skills

Future employers are interested not only in the subject-related knowledge that you acquired during your study programme, but also in ‘transferable skills’. These include cognitive skills, such as critical thinking, reasoning and argumentation and innovation; intrapersonal skills, such as flexibility, initiative, appreciating diversity and metacognition; and interpersonal skills, such as communication, accountability and conflict resolution. In short, they are skills that all professionals need in order to perform well.
It is therefore important that during your study programme you not only acquire as much knowledge as possible about your subject, but also are aware of the skills you have gained and the further skills you still want to learn. The course descriptions in the Prospectus of MA Asian Studies include, in addition to the courses’ learning objectives, a list of the skills that they aim to develop.

The skills we want you to acquire and that you may encounter in the various courses, perhaps in different terms, are:

  • Collaboration

  • Persuasion

  • Research

  • Self-directed learning

  • Creative thinking