UW–Madison offers M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in Chinese, specializing in linguistics, literature and culture, or thought. The program provides broad foundations and focused training in these three tracks, assuring that graduates are prepared to teach and conduct research.

The Chinese Collection, as part of an East Asian Collection ranked highly nationally, houses excellent basic collections, databases, and journals.

The department is home to the journal Chinese Literature: Essays, Articles, Reviews (CLEAR) and encourages graduate student participation in the production of this publication.

For more details about the program and its respective specializations, see the department website.

Prospective students should see the program website for funding information.

Minimum Degree Requirements and Satisfactory Progress

To make progress toward a graduate degree, students must meet the Graduate School Minimum Degree Requirements and Satisfactory Progress in addition to the requirements of the program.

Doctoral Degrees

Ph.D.

Minimum Graduate Degree Credit Requirement

51 credits

Minimum Graduate Residence Credit Requirement

32 credits

Minimum Graduate Coursework (50%) Requirement

All 51 credits must be completed in graduate-level coursework; courses with the Graduate Level Coursework attribute are identified and searchable in the university's Course Guide.

Prior Coursework Requirements: Graduate Work from Other Institutions

With program approval, students are allowed to count no more than 9 credits of graduate coursework from other institutions. Coursework earned ten years or more prior to admission to a doctoral degree is not allowed to satisfy requirements.

Prior Coursework Requirements: UW–Madison Undergraduate

With program approval, no more than 7 credits of graduate coursework (as defined above) completed while a UW–Madison undergraduate may be counted to satisfy degree requirements. Coursework earned ten years or more prior to admission to a doctoral degree is not allowed to satisfy requirements.

Prior Coursework Requirements: UW–Madison University Special

With program approval, students are allowed to count no more than 9 credits of graduate coursework (as defined above) taken as a UW–Madison Special student. Coursework earned ten years or more prior to admission to a doctoral degree is not allowed to satisfy requirements.

Credits per Term Allowed

15 credits

Program-Specific Courses Required

Four seminars beyond the M.A. level are required. With the consent of the major professor, courses above the 700 level (exclusive of independent-reading courses) may be substituted for up to two of the seminars.

Doctoral Minor/Breadth Requirements

All doctoral students are required to complete a minor.

Overall Graduate GPA Requirement

3.50 GPA required

Other Grade Requirements

Ph.D. candidates should maintain a 3.5 GPA in all coursework and may not have any more than two Incompletes on their record at any one time.

Probation Policy

A semester GPA below 3.5 will result in the student being placed on academic probation. If a semester GPA of 3.5 is not attained during the subsequent semester of full time enrollment, the student may be dismissed from the program or allowed to continue for 1 additional semester based on advisor appeal to the Graduate School. A student on probation may not take the preliminary examination.

Advisor / Committee

All students are required to be supervised by a major professor. Students meet regularly with their advisor to ensure satisfactory progress. The major professor serves as dissertation advisor.

Assessments and Examinations

A dissertation proposal must be presented to the members of the Ph.D. committee and accepted within one semester of passing the preliminary examination.

Time Constraints

A candidate for a doctoral degree who fails to take the final oral examination and deposit the dissertation within five years after passing the preliminary examination may be required to take another preliminary examination and to be admitted to candidacy a second time.

Language Requirements

Advanced proficiency in modern Chinese is required. Students must demonstrate reading proficiency in classical Chinese and one additional research language.

Applications will be evaluated on the basis of the applicant's previous academic record, letters of recommendation, and personal statement. Graduate Record Exam (GRE) scores are required. TOEFL is required of all applicants who are not native speakers of English. Writing samples in English are strongly encouraged for M.A. applicants and required of Ph.D. applicants.

Knowledge and Skills

  • Demonstrate a thorough and in-depth understanding of research problems, potentials, and limits with respect to theory, knowledge, or practice in at least one of the following areas of study: Chinese literature and culture, Chinese linguistics, Japanese literature and culture, Japanese linguistics, and Transasian studies.
  • Formulate ideas, concepts, designs, and/or techniques beyond the current boundaries of knowledge within the specialized field(s).
  • Create scholarship and advance knowledge that makes a substantive contribution to the field(s).
  • Articulate and communicate complex ideas in a clear and understandable manner to both specialized and general audience.

Professional Conduct

  • Recognize, apply, and foster ethical and professional conduct.

Chinese Faculty: Professors Dunne, Huang, Nienhauser; Associate Professors Huntington, Meulenbeld, Zhang; Assistant Professors Yang, Zhu

Japanese Faculty: Professors Kern, McGloin, Mori; Associate Professors D'Etcheverry, Geyer, Ridgely

Languages and Cultures of Asia Faculty: Professors Rafferty (chair), Buhnemann, Schamiloglu; Associate Professor Gade