Major Requirements

Language Training

Students must complete at least six semesters of coursework in an East Asian language or languages as an undergraduate.

  • Students entering with advanced proficiency in an Asian language (as determined by the Center for Language Education) will not be permitted to waive language study and are expected to complete at least two years of language study in a second Asian language in order to fulfill the requirements of the major.
  • Students who place into 3rd year Japanese or Korean on their initial placement test can and should continue their study of the same language for 3rd and 4th year.
  • Students entering at third year Chinese should continue their language study through the fifth-year level and will not be permitted to substitute electives, since we offer advanced classes in Chinese.
  • In the absence of formal language courses at the fifth-year level at Homewood, we will in such cases allow students to replace the remaining two language classes with other electives–or permit them to transfer credits from a 5th-year language course taken elsewhere or overseas.
  • Students studying abroad can formally substitute comparable language classes for language study at Johns Hopkins if they receive credit for their overseas program.

Complete an East Asian History Survey Course

  • 100.243 China: Neolithic to Song
  • 100.347 Early Modern China
  • 100.348 Twentieth-Century China
  • East Asian survey course offered by the history department or history of science and technology department

Students must choose one focus area and complete all requirements listed for that area: history, political science, sociology, or an individualized program.


  • The full-year Undergraduate Seminar in History, 100.193 and 100.194
  • Two East Asian studies history courses. This can include offerings from the history department or history of science and technology department. At least one course must be at the 300-level or higher.

Political Science

  • Two core courses at the 100- or 200-level; in two of the following subfields: American politics, comparative politics, international relations, or political theory.
  • Two East Asian studies political science or sociology courses, one of which must be at the 300-level or higher.


  • Two core courses chosen from the following:
    • 230.101 Introduction to Sociology
    • 230.202 Research Methods for the Social Sciences
    • 230.205 Introduction to Social Statistics
    • 230.213 Introduction to Social Theory
  • Two East Asian studies sociology or political science courses, one of which must be at the 300-level or higher

History of Science Technology and Medicine

  • Two survey courses from the following list:
    • AS.140.104 History of Medicine
    • 140.106 – History of Modern Medicine
    • 140.301 – History of Science: Antiquity-Renaissance
    • 140.302 – Rise Of Modern Science
    • 140.321 – Scientific Revolution
  • Two Upper Level East Asian courses from the following list:
    • 140.305 Science and Technology in East Asia
    • 140. 398- Godzilla and Fukushima
    • 140.346 History of Chinese Medicine
    • 140.146 History of Public Health in East Asia
  • Courses taught by Profs. Y. Frumer, M. Hanson, and H.Y. Kim may be applicable even if not coded AS.140, pending permission.

Individualized focus

  • Requires approval of the EAS director. Focus requirements to be determined in consultation with the director.

Three additional East Asian studies courses. At least one course must be at the 300-level or above. 

Other Departmental Requirements

No major requirements may be taken pass/fail. All courses required for the major must be passed with a grade of C- or above.

The university encourages students enrolled in this program to take advantage of foreign study options. Courses and programs must be pre-approved by the student’s East Asian studies adviser.

Transfer credit policy: Up to six classes may be transferred from study abroad programs or other schools upon approval of the major adviser.

Honors in the major may be earned by maintaining a GPA of 3.5 in the major and earning a grade of A- or above on the senior thesis. Students must enroll in the two semester sequence 310.431 and 310.432 Senior Thesis Seminar: East Asian Studies, which confers 6 credits that can be applied toward two of the eight required EAS courses. Students who earn a passing grade on the thesis will receive credit for the senior thesis seminar regardless of whether they qualify for honors.