Dear Sophie, How do I Apply to a Majors in Asian Studies?

January 2019: 
Happy New Year! I am hoping you feel well rested after the break and are gearing up for Term 2. This month’s advice is especially for our Asian Studies majors and minors, though this information will be valuable for anyone taking our courses.

So, I’m ready to be an Asian Studies major! But, what exactly does that mean?

First off, congratulations! Asian Studies is an amazing path to follow. You will be graduating with a wealth of knowledge and an extremely valuable degree! It is important to note that we offer two different tracks for a major in Asian Studies – Asian Area Studies and Asian Language and Culture. At first glance, these two options may seem quite similar, but there are a few distinct differences between them. Asian Area Studies (or ASAS) requires only 12 credits in any one language, while Asian Language and Culture (or ASLC) requires anywhere from 15 to 27 credits in one language and requires you to complete at least one course in that language to the 400-level. Further, ASAS requires 27 ASIA credits, while ASLC requires 18-30 ASIA credits, depending on the language you choose to study. Both options require a total of 48 credits of course work, and those credits will be spread differently depending on the language or area of focus (China, Chinese Literature, Japan, Korea, and South Asia). Overall, Asian Language and Culture is based more heavily in language coursework, while Asian Area Studies spreads its focus between language and ASIA courses.

Sounds great! Now, how do I apply?

There is no formal application for an Asian Studies major or minor! By completing the required courses, you are eligible to major or minor in any of our programs. However, please ensure you declare your major or minor in the Degree Navigator as soon as possible. By declaring in any of our programs, you will automatically receive priority on our waitlists, making it easier for you to get into the courses required for your degree!

Perfect! Any last words of advice?

If you’re worried about any of the requirements, or how you currently stand in your program of choice, come visit our Undergraduate Advisor, Shirley Wong, on Monday, Tuesday, or Thursday from 10-11:30 or 1:30-2:30. She will be able to give you more personalized and detailed advice regarding your degree. Also, please note, the credits listed here are only a portion of the credits needed to receive a degree at UBC. In order to graduate, there are still a specific set of faculty requirements that you must complete outside of our Asian Studies requirements.

Got your own burning questions about registrations or academic advising? Send your questions over for the next Dear Sophie at with the subject “Dear Sophie”