Study Opportunities in Other Disciplines


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The Department of Art offers a BA in Art History under which one may take a number of courses in Chinese Art. The Asian Art History within which a student may concentrate their studies on China. For more information, call 956-8251.

East Asian Languages and Literatures

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Central to the study of China is the Department of East Asian Languages and Literatures. This Department has 9 China specialists on its faculty. They teach approximately 25 undergraduate and graduate courses (some multi-sectioned) in Chinese language and literature each semester, with a total enrollment of about 270 students per semester. Language courses in Chinese from levels 1 4 integrate the four basic skills of reading, writing, speaking, and listening. Specialized courses in reading, conversation, composition, translation, and classical Chinese are available at the upper division levels, as is a special course in Mandarin conversation for native speakers of Cantonese. Students who need special assistance in reading texts in their area of specialization can arrange independent reading courses with individual faculty members at the third- and fourth-year levels. Graduate oriented courses in contemporary linguistic analysis, pedagogy, and literature are offered to graduate students in Chinese and related fields.

Careful attention is given to incoming students so that they can enter at the level appropriate to their abilities. An accelerated track covering a year of material in a semester is offered. The Department usually offers the first-year core courses during the two six-week summer sessions, contingent upon sufficient enrollment.

Students who would like to know their level of competence in speaking and reading Chinese, based on a national standard scale, may arrange to be tested through the Department of East Asian Languages and Literature.

In addition to its important service to students in other academic disciplines, the Department offers its own degree programs at the BA, MA and PhD levels. The BA program emphasizes solid language competency in the four basic skills combined with relevant related courses, such as those in Chinese literature. At the MA level, students can concentrate on language or literature. At the PhD level, concentrations in Chinese linguistics, literature, and comparative studies are offered to students. For more information, call (808) 956-8940.


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Graduate students in the Geography Department may specialize in Chinese geography with training in a selected subfield within the discipline. It is possible to approach the study of Chinese geography from topics related to physical environment, resources, agriculture, population, urbanization, transportation, regional development and spatial organizations of various socio-economic phenomena. For more information, call (808) 956-8465.


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In the History Department, undergraduates may write their senior tutorial on some aspect of Chinese history. At the MA level, history students may specialize in East Asia; and those in the MA Plan A program may write their thesis on some aspect of Chinese history. The History Department also has a PhD program where candidates may concentrate on Chinese history. For more information, call (808) 956-8486.


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In the Richardson School of Law, two opportunities are offered to students interested in pursuing studies in Chinese law. Classified graduate students are eligible to take law school courses, with the consent of their departments. In addition to the course in Chinese law, aspects of Chinese law are covered in courses such as International Sea Use Law, Comparative Labor Law, and Directed Study. For students pursuing the law degree, the Dual Degree Program allows them to receive their JD in Law and an MA in another discipline. One of the most common majors obtained in conjunction with the law degree is the MA in Asian Studies. For more information, call (808) 956-7583.


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Graduate students in the Department of Linguistics must specialize in three areas, one of which can be Chinese linguistics. The Department is particularly strong in the areas of Austronesian linguistics, pidgin and Creole studies, children’s acquisition of language, socio-linguistics, syntax, and phonology. The Department relies on the faculty and courses in Chinese linguistics offered by the Department of East Asian Languages and Literature to assist its students in their study of Chinese linguistics. For more information, call (808) 956-8602.


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The Pacific Asian Management Institute (PAMI) is one of the few international business programs in the nation to focus on Asia. Its major objectives are: to identify problems facing Pacific Asian business and to develop knowledge for their solutions; to facilitate the exchange of ideas between scholars, executives, and policy makers; and to promote competency in international management for individuals, corporations, institutions, and governments.

The institute serves as a center for international business programs and activities in the College of Business Administration. It offers short-term credit and non-credit certificate programs, field study opportunities, a lecture series and conferences for students, academic, and business people. Currently, students in Chinese studies are able to concentrate on China while pursuing an international business major for the Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA), and the Masters of Business Administration (MBA). It is also possible to complete both the MBA and MA in Asian Studies with an emphasis on China. For more information about PAMI, call (808) 956-7564.

Fact Sheet – Shidler Facts Sept 2017


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Graduate students in the Music Department may pursue an MA or PhD in Ethnomusicology in Chinese music. The Ethnomusicology Program enjoys an international reputation in the study of Asian and Pacific music and dance, including theoretical studies and practical applications. Chinese performing arts are a major component of this program. For more information, call (808) 956-7756.


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The Philosophy Department offers both an MA and a PhD in comparative East-West philosophy as well as in Asian Philosophy. For over half a century, the Philosophy department at the University of Hawaii has been recognized internationally as the center for comparative philosophy. It publishes two journals: Philosophy East and West (Roger T. Ames, editor) and the Journal of Chinese Philosophy (Chung-ying Cheng, editor). For more information, call (808) 956-8649.

Political Science

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Within the Political Science Department, it is possible to concentrate on the study of various aspects of Chinese politics or foreign relations, preferably with a view to fitting such study into a larger framework, such as comparative politics or international relations. Both the MA and PhD degrees are available. Many graduates from this department return to their home countries to occupy important governmental positions in their home countries. For more information, call (808) 956-8357.


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The Sociology Department offers opportunities to specialize in the study of China at both the MA and PhD levels. The sociology program is oriented to developing research skills by conducting actual research, and the department has a unique concentration of Asian area specialists on its faculty. The department has also recently established a special program in Comparative Sociology of East Asia. Students interested in China take the regular departmental course sequence in theory and methods, and then develop expertise in specific subfields of sociology while working on China-related research projects of their own choosing. At the MA level, the culmination of the research is the thesis, while the doctoral program requires presentation of a research paper in the form of an article of publishable quality, prior to work on the dissertation. For more information, call (808) 956-7693.

Theatre and Dance

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The Department of Theatre and Dance offers MA, MFA, and PhD degrees which can include specialization in Chinese Theatre. On the Master’s level, students should consult the General and Graduate Information Catalog for curriculum requirements. In general, it is possible to do the equivalent of 15 20 credits in Chinese Theatre within a General or Asian Theatre study program. On the PhD level, a student can choose a program in Asian Theatre or Asian-Western Comparative Theatre, with the area of interest, and the dissertation, in Chinese Theatre. The Department offers Chinese Theatre courses in history, literature, performance analysis, theory, and acting open to all Mānoa students. The Department has an international reputation for producing jingju in English in authentic performance style. Master artists from China have frequently taught courses in the Department. The Department has a large collection of audio-visual materials for the study of performance, including more than 200 videotapes. The Department offers graduate assistantships and tuition waivers, as well as individual grant assistance. Students are eligible to apply for outside grant support as well. For more information, call (808) 956-7677.