UW–Madison offers M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in Japanese, specializing either in linguistics or in literature and culture. The program provides broad foundations and focused training in these two specialties, assuring that our graduates are amply prepared to teach and conduct research.

Japanese Program

The literature and culture specialty covers the Heian through Heisei periods, offering a wide range of courses on fiction, poetry, drama, popular culture, visual culture, cinema, acoustic culture, and cutting-edge cross-media and avant-garde topics, particularly manga and anime.

The linguistics specialty excels in areas such as functional linguistics, pragmatics, discourse/conversation analysis, sociolinguistics, applied linguistics, and language pedagogy. Students will receive excellent training both in various aspects of Japanese linguistics and Japanese applied linguistics, not only in graduate courses they take but also through actual teaching as a teaching assistant.

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.

Master’s Degrees

M.A.

Minimum Graduate Degree Credit Requirement

30 credits

Minimum Graduate Residence Credit Requirement

16 credits

Minimum Graduate Coursework (50%) Requirement

All 30 credits must be 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 five or more years prior to admission to a master’s 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 five or more years prior to admission to a master’s 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 five or more years prior to admission to a master’s degree is not allowed to satisfy requirements.

Credits per Term Allowed

15 credits

Program-Specific Courses Required

Japanese literature/culture students must take three graduate-level courses (500 level or above) in literature/culture, including at least one course at the 700 level or higher.

Japanese linguistics students must take E ASIAN 434 Introduction to Japanese Linguistics and E ASIAN 623 Teaching of Japanese as a Foreign Language.

Overall Graduate GPA Requirement

3.00 GPA required.

Other Grade Requirements

Students must earn a B or above in all coursework (300 or above, not including research credits) taken as a graduate student.

Probation Policy

If a student’s average falls below 3.0 in a given semester, the department will decide whether the student may continue on probation. A specific plan will be arranged with dates and deadlines in place in regard to removal of probationary status.

Advisor / Committee

All students are required to have an advisor, and should consult with a faculty member to serve as major professor no later than the end of their second semester. Students meet regularly with their advisor to ensure satisfactory progress.

Assessments and Examinations

For Japanese literature/culture students, a final examination is required.

Japanese linguistics students are required to pass two final in-class examinations on "Introduction to Japanese Linguistics" and "Teaching Japanese as a Foreign Language."

Linguistics students are required to submit one substantial research paper.

Time Constraints

The maximum time for completing all M.A. requirements and passing the M.A. examination is three years.

Master’s degree students who are absent for five or more years will not be given credit for prior work.

Language Requirements

Advanced proficiency in modern Japanese is required.

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 understanding of the primary field(s) of study in a historical, comparative, and global context.
  • Demonstrate understanding of the major theories, research methods, and approaches to inquiry in one of the following areas of study: Chinese literature and culture, Chinese linguistics, Japanese literature and culture, Japanese linguistics, and Transasian studies.
  • Demonstrate ability to integrate theories into practice.
  • Demonstrate ability to articulate and communicate knowledge in specialized field(s).

Professional Conduct

  • Recognize and apply principles of ethical and professional conduct.

Faculty

Professors Bühnemann, Dunne, Huang, Huntington, Kern, McGloin, Mori (chair), Nienhauser, Zhang; Associate Professors Cerulli, D'Etcheverry, Geyer, Lim, Meulenbeld, Ridgely; Assistant Professors Yang, Zhu (Diversity Liaison); Faculty Associate Barnard, Nakakubo

East Asia

Charo D'Etcheverry (Associate Professor). Area: Classical Japanese Literature

Naomi Geyer (Associate Professor). Area: Japanese Language

Nicole Huang (Professor). Area: Transcultural East Asia; 20th century Chinese and Taiwanese Literature

Rania Huntington (Professor). Area: Ming and Qing Narrative and Drama, Chinese Literature of the weird and supernatural

Adam L. Kern (Professor). Area: Popular Literature, Culture, Poetry, Theater, and Visual Culture of early modern-modern Japan.

Byung-jin Lim (Associate Professor) .Area: Korean Language and Linguistics, Second / Foreign Language Acquisition, Korean Language Textbook Development

Naomi McGloin (Professor). Area: Japanese Language and Linguistics

Mark Meulenbeld (Associate Professor). Area: Daoism, Chinese Religion and Literature

Junko Mori (Professor). Area: Japanese Linguistics, Applied Linguistics, Sociolinguistics

Takako Nakakubo (Faculty Associate). Area: Second Language Acquisition of Japanese, Japanese Pedagogy

William Nienhauser (Professor). Area: Early Traditional Chinese Fiction and History; early poetry (Du Fu and Tao Qian)

Steve Ridgely (Associate Professor). Area: Modern Japanese Literature, Pop culture, TransAsian studies

Bei Yang (Assistant Professor). Area: Second Language Acquisition, Chinese Languages and Linguistics

Hongming Zhang (Professor). Area: Chinese Linguistics; History of Chinese Language; Teaching Chinese as a Second Language

Weihua Zhu (Assistant Professor). Area: Chinese Language, Pedagogy and Second Language Acquisition

South Asia

Gudrun Bühnemann (Professor). Area: Sanskrit Language and Literature; Buddhism in India and Nepal; Hinduism; Tantrism; Yoga Studies

Anthony Cerulli (Associate Professor). Area: Theory and Method in the Study of Religion in South Asia; History of Medicine in India; Sanskrit Language and Literature; Kerala History and Culture; Malayalam Language.

John D. Dunne (Professor). Area: Buddhist Philosophy and Contemplative Practice; Religious Studies; Cognitive Science of Religion

Southeast asia

Erlin Barnard (Faculty Associate) Area: Indonesian Language, Language Pedagogy; Materials Development; Second Language Acquisition

Language instructors

Language instructors are an integral part of our department, teaching more than 14 languages during the academic year from East (Chinese, Japanese, Korean), South (Hindi, Persian, Sanskrit, Tibetan, Urdu), Southeast (Burmese, Filipino, Hmong, Indonesian, Thai, Vietnamese) Asian Languages.

Graduate advisor

Undergraduate Advisor:
email Rachel Weiss
1244 Van Hise Hall
608-890-0138