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Undergraduate Program


Option 1: East Asian Studies major with coursework in Chinese & Chinese studies

Students must take classes in at least 3 different departments (e.g. MLC, ANT, HIS, REL). The EAS major can satisfy the Humanities or Social Sciences divisional requirement, depending upon courses chosen (see website for details).

Prerequisite (2 courses): 1 year of language (e.g. CHI 101-102)

Required coursework (10 courses):

  • A total of three foundational survey courses, one selected from each of the three following areas: Pre-Modern East Asia, Modern East Asia, and Contemporary East Asia. See the EAS major page below for listings of the courses from which you may choose.
  • One additional year of language training (e.g. CHI 151-152)
  • EST 201: Approaches to East Asian Studies (Prerequisite: must have taken two non-language courses in East Asian Studies before enrolling)
  • Four electives, twoof which must be writing-intensive courses that meet the College’s upper-level writing requirement for graduation.

Option 2: Individualized major through Interdepartmental Programs

Students can also create an individualized major in Chinese by proposing a unified course of study consisting of at least ten courses across more than one department. The proposed course of study must be demonstrably different from the majors already available through East Asian Studies or other departments. Students will first create their own major plan, then submit an application to Interdepartmental Programs for approval.

The proposed major should consist primarily of upper-level coursework. Language courses at the intermediate level or above may be included. Proposed plan must include two courses that satisfy the university’s upper level writing requirement. See website for more information.

Below is information on:


Chinese Minor Requirements

  • Any three-course Chinese language sequence
  • Three further courses in Chinese language, culture, literature, film, art, history, or politics

Complete list of Chinese courses >

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Chinese Clusters

The department offers three Chinese clusters in the humanities academic division.

Chinese Language (H1CHI001)
This cluster introduces students to basic language skills (reading, writing, speaking, and listening).

Chinese Language and Culture (H1CHI002)
This cluster introduces students to Chinese culture through language courses and courses on Chinese literature, popular culture, religion and history.

Chinese Culture (H1CHI003)
This cluster introduces students to Chinese culture, history, literature, and religion.

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Education Abroad in China

Students are encouraged to study abroad in China, if possible. The Center for Study Abroad has programs in major cities in China, including Hong Kong, Shanghai, Beijing, and Nanjing. Generally speaking, coursework undertaken abroad will count toward the Chinese minor. For more information on studying abroad in China, visit the education abroad site or speak to a education abroad advisor.

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Language Placement Information

Advanced Placement (AP) scores or International Baccalaureate (IB) rankings assist departmental advisors in finding the right course level for you. Information on how you learned the language or languages you know will also help us advise you on the most appropriate courses for you.

For students with previous experience with the Mandarin language, the first step is to take the online placement exam. You will receive a score that will be used along with the survey information you provide and with any AP or IB scores you have submitted. Together, these will help determine your placement in a specific language course. For more information on the online placement test, and instructions for how to login, see our online placement exam instructions page. Students who have not studied Standard Mandarin Chinese previously and who are not heritage speakers of Standard Mandarin Chinese may register for CHI 101 without taking a placement exam.

The placement you receive with your online numerical test scores is not necessarily how you will be placed by MLC.

Students will receive a “Course planning, placement, and recommendations” sheet with their language placement information from Academic Advising during Orientation and via email.

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Contact Information

For more information about Chinese language, literature, and culture courses or about becoming a Chinese minor, contact Professor Ping Pian at or Professor Elizabeth Weber at


Ping Pian, Associate Professor of Instruction in Chinese

Guoming Tian, Assistant Professor of Instruction in Chinese

Elizabeth E. Weber, Visiting Assistant Professor of Chinese

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