General university degree requirements stipulate that (1) at least four units of the major or three units of the minor be taken in residence at Puget Sound; (2) students earn a GPA of at least 2.0 in courses taken for the major or minor; (3) all courses taken for a major or minor must be taken for graded credit. Any exceptions to these stipulations are indicated in the major and minor degree requirements listed below.
Each major consists of 10 units.
Completion of a minimum of five units in one language is required for the minor in Chinese or Japanese.
All students majoring in the Asian languages are strongly encouraged to augment these majors with the Interdisciplinary Emphasis in Asian Studies (IEAS) offered by the Asian Studies program, thereby enhancing their major with a deeper and broader comprehension of Asian cultures and societies. Other than the two language units and international experience requirements for IEAS, courses taken for the majors may not be applied to the IEAS designation. See requirements under the Asian Studies listing.
Students pursuing the IEAS designation who demonstrate academic excellence and complete a one-semester senior thesis will achieve the added designation Robert Trimble Distinguished Asia Scholar (DAS). See requirements under the Asian Studies listing.
Not all international experiences are suited for Asian Languages and Cultures majors and minors; therefore, only pre-approved study-abroad coursework may be counted toward degrees in the program. To ensure that credit will transfer, a student wishing to apply study-abroad credit toward a major should consult ALC faculty prior to enrollment. Students with demonstrated financial need who are selected for any Chinese or Japanese language program in Asia are eligible for financial support through the Charles Garnet Trimble Endowment in Chinese Studies.
Knowing that a residential atmosphere provides strong support for language learning, students are encouraged to create their own living-language programs. Students have the opportunity to organize a group of language learners and apply to live in university-owned houses on campus where they may communicate in Chinese or Japanese and share their enthusiasm for the cultures they study in a small group environment. For further information and application deadlines, contact Residence Life.
The Asian Languages and Cultures program organizes festivals each spring celebrating the cultures of China and Japan. The Chinese festival coincides with the Chinese Lunar New Year and features a number of activities including calligraphy and tea workshops, traditional cultural displays, and community-based events. Japan Week occurs during the spring cherry blossom season and features movies, speakers, performances, and student-led activities. All Puget Sound students are encouraged to participate in these events.
Students with previous high school language study may be capable of beginning their language coursework at Puget Sound beyond the introductory level. Heritage students and those with other international experiences, such as study abroad, living with exchange students or other intensive studies should have their language proficiency evaluated by a faculty member. Consult program advisors in the particular language.
Advanced Placement Examinations (AP) with a score of four or five apply toward majors or minors for a maximum of one unit at the 200 level.
Asian language coursework completed at other accredited institutions may be accepted toward major areas of concentration for a maximum of four units, with two going toward the language component, and two more units going toward non-language courses. For the minor, only two units of language may be accepted.
ALC transfer students, especially those who have experienced prolonged periods since their last language coursework, will be evaluated on an individual basis. The Asian Languages and Cultures program does not accept or award credit for distance learning courses. The program also reserves the right to exclude a course from a major or minor based on the age of the course.