Undergraduate Programs

Korea Studies

Paull Shin Korea Studies Program

The Paull Shin Korea Studies Program focuses on Korea within the broader context of East Asia. While it concentrates on the history, society, and language of Korea, courses on China and Japan are also an important part of the curriculum. In addition, visiting professors in other disciplines regularly complement the resident faculty.

Learn more:

Major in Korea Studies

Course # Title Credits Quarter
JSIS 203 or JSIS A 207 Rise of Asia or Asian Traditions 5 AutumnWinter (sometimes)
JSIS 201 The Making of the Twenty-first Century 5 Winter or Spring
HSTAS 212 History of Korean Civilization 5 Autumn
2nd Asian Civilization Course One Asian Civilization course chosen from: HSTAS 201, 202, 211, JSIS A  206, 221, 241, 242 5 Varies
JSIS A/ ANTH 448 Modern Korean Society 5 Autumn
HSTAS 482 History of Modern Korea 5 Varies
HSTAS 481 or JSIS A 466 History of Traditional Korea or Comparative Politics and Korea Studies 5 Varies
Korea Electives
3-400 level
Choose from approved upper-level electives
Korea Electives List
Current Quarter Courses
15 Varies
Research Paper Asian Research Paper written with Jackson School Professor 15 pgs.
Minimum Grade Minimum grade 2.0 in all courses applied to major.
Korean Language Proficiency through 2nd year college level or 3rd quarter of 2nd year college level.(For first- and second-year language courses, grades must average 2.00)
Total Credits (not including language):  50

Minor in Korea Studies

30 credits, to include the following:

  1. JSIS A/HSTAS 212 and one additional introductory Asian civilization course from those listed above (10 credits)
  2. 20 credits of electives, 15 of which must be taken at the UW, to include:a. 10 credits chosen from the list of core courses*b. 5 credits chosen from the list of core courses or the list of electives*c. 5 additional credits in Korean language beyond second-year level, or in upper-division transfer courses on Korea, or from the lists of core and electives*
  3. Minimum grade of 2.0 required in each course applied toward the minor.

Master of Arts in Korea Studies

The University of Washington is one of the few places in the United States that offers training in Korean studies in a variety of disciplines. Courses are offered in Korean language, history, society, politics, literature, and law. The language program offers four full years of instruction in modern Korean language as well as courses in advanced reading. The history courses cover the full range of the Korean experience, from the origins of the Korean people in the archaeological record to contemporary times. Graduate seminars provide opportunities for research in Korean and other non-Western languages on a variety of topics in the political, social, economic, and intellectual history of the country. Courses on Korean society focus on the 20th and 21st centuries, and the political, economic, and social development of both South Korea and North Korea. The program of course offerings is supplemented by visiting professors from a variety of fields.

The objective of the program is to provide students with a broad background which will be of use to them in a variety of professions. Over the past decade, graduates from this program have gone on to successful careers in business, banking, government, social work, and education. Others have used this degree as a step toward earning a doctorate in history, political science, anthropology, or comparative literature at this and other universities. One result of this process has been the creation of a community of students at the University with interests in the Korean area, a valuable asset to the program.

The program emphasizes the study of Korea in the context of East Asian civilization and the modern world economy, not simply as a single country in isolation from its neighbors. Students are encouraged to take related courses on China, on Japan, and in international studies, so that they will emerge from their experience at the University with comprehensive training.

Clark W. Sorensen, Chair

See the Master of Arts page for Degree and Admission requirements

JSIS & Affiliate Korea Studies Faculty

Click here for more Korea at the Jackson School

Korea Studies Courses

Quarterly Course Lists

Korea Studies Major Electives

Course # Title Credits
JSIS A 405/ANTH 449 Social Transformation in Modern East Asia 5
JSIS A/POL S 439 Politics of Divided Korea 5
JSIS A 466/POL S 480 Comparative Politics and Korea Studies (if not taken as required Korea course) 5
JSIS 484 Special Topics East Asia 1-5
GEOG 313 East Asia 5
GEOG 438 Cities of East Asia: Geography and Development 5
HSTAS 481 History of Traditional Korea (if not taken as required Korea course) 5
COM 428 Asian Media Systems 5

No more than 10 credits from:

Course # Title Credits
KOREAN 411 Readings in Contemporary Korean 5
KOREAN 412 Readings in Contemporary Korean 5
KOREAN 413 Readings in Contemporary Korean 5
KOREAN 415 Social Science Literature in Korean 1-5
KOREAN 416 Readings in Korean Literature 5
KOREAN 417 Readings in Korean Journals 5

* A maximum of 5 credits of lower-division coursework (200-level) may be allowed in the 30 credits of Korea/East Asia coursework in the Concentration.

Korea Studies Minor Elective Lists

*Korea Core Courses
JSIS A/ANTH 448 Modern Korean Society (5)
HSTAS 481 History of Traditional Korea (5)
HSTAS 482 History of Modern Korea (5)
JSIS A 405/ANTH 449 Social Change in East Asia (5)
*Korea Elective Courses
All approved upper-division+ East Asia courses. Current courses include:
JSIS A 370 Han Chinese Society and Culture (5)
JSIS A 399 Study Abroad: East Asian Studies (1-5, max. 15)
JSIS A 406 China’s Environment (5)
JSIS A 423 History of Modern Japan (5)
JSIS A 428 Perspectives on East Asia for Teachers (3, max. 6)
JSIS A 431 Demographic Issues in Asia (3-5) I&S
JSIS A 435 Japanese Government and Politics (5)
JSIS A 436 Political Parties in Japan and East Asia (5)
JSIS A 437 International Relations of Japan [formerly SISEA 487] (5)
JSIS A 439 Politics of Divided Korea (5)
JSIS A 424 The Emergence of Postwar Japan (5)
SISEA 441 (not offered) Economic and Social History of Japan to 1900 (5)
JSIS A 473 Political Economy of Postwar Japan (5)
JSIS A 443 Class and Culture in East Asia (5)
JSIS A 403 Politics of Representation in Modern China (5)
JSIS A 404 Religion in China (5)
JSIS A 448 Modern Korean Society (5)
JSIS A 408 Government and Politics of China (5)
JSIS A 454 History of Modern China (5)
JSIS A 456 Topics in Chinese Social History (5)
JSIS A 459 United States-China Relations (5)
JSIS A 460 Cities in China: Past and Present (5)
JSIS A 467 China and Globalization (5)
JSIS A 453 China’s Economic Reforms: Integration Into World Economy (5)
JSIS A 469 Law, Development, and Transition in East Asia (5)
JSIS A 470 Minority Peoples of China (5)
JSIS A 474 Civil Society in Japan and East Asia (5)
JSIS A 475 Japanese Society (5)
JSIS A 478 Readings in the Social Sciences in Japanese (3-5, 3-5)
JSIS A 471 New Orders in East Asia (5)
JSIS A 472 Science, Technology, and Innovation Policies in East Asia (5)
JSIS A 478 Japanese Business and Technology (5)
JSIS A 487 Japanese Trade Politics (5)
JSIS A 437 International Relations of Japan (5)
JSIS 484 Special Topics E Asia (1-5, max. 15)
ECON 494 Economy of Japan (5)
+JSIS A 213 Korean Peninsula and World Politics (5) also allowed