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Major in Asian Religions and Cultures

Please see the Four-Year Plan in Asian Religions and Cultures for a quick guide for how and when to register for courses to graduate with an Asian Religions and Cultures major.

The continent of Asia is home to some of the most ancient and formative civilizations in history.  The world's largest religious traditions have their origins on the continent, and Asian peoples have shaped and reshaped how humanity understands itself and the world for centuries.  The Asian Religions and Cultures (ARC) major facilitates understanding of the continent and its peoples, allowing students to understand not only the Asian past but to put current issues and problems into a broader historical, religious, and cultural context. 


The major in Asian Religions & Cultures (reference number 615) requires a minimum of 31 semester hours and leads to a Bachelor of Arts degree.  Students must take courses from at least four different programs, and at least 17 hours must be in courses numbered 300 or above. A minor or second major is required.

The courses required are distributed as follows:

I. Religion courses  (9 hrs)
RELS 102:  World Religions
RELS 302:  Buddhism
RELS 303:  Hinduism
RELS 306:  Islam
RELS 317:  Confucianism 
RELS 318:  Daoism
RELS 319:  Religions of Asia
RELS 322:  Pilgrimage, Islam and Modernity
RELS 335:  Islam, Sexuality, and Gender
II. Language  (one sequence of 6 hrs)
ARBC 101 & 102:  Elementary Arabic
ARBC 201 & 202: Intermediate Arabic
ARBC 301 & 302: Advanced Arabic
CHIN 101 & 102:  Elementary Chinese
CHIN 201 & 202:  Intermediate Chinese
CHIN 301 & 302: Advanced Intermediate Chinese
CHNF 101 & 102: Intensive Elementary Chinese
CHNF 201 & 202: Intensive Intermediate Chinese
CHNF 301 & 302: Intensive Advanced Chinese
JAPN 101 & 102:  Elementary Japanese
III. History & Politics  (6 hrs)
HIST 110:  Introduction to Asian Civilization
HIST 370:  Modern South Asia: from Empires to Nations
HIST 378: History of Yoga: Tradition, Literature, Practice
HIST 379: Gandhi: The Creation of a Global Legacy
HIST 460:  Traditional East Asia
HIST 461:  Modern East Asia
HIST 462:  History of the Middle East
HIST 466: The Arab-Israeli Conflict: Local and Global Influences
HIST 471:  Modern China
HIST 472:  Modern Japan
PS 352: International Relations of the Middle East
PS 359: Politics of North Korea
PS 364: Chinese Politics
PS 365: Government & Politics of the Middle East
PS 366: Government & Politics in East Asia
IV. Senior Seminar  (1 hr)
ARC 499:  Senior Seminar
V. Electives  (9 hrs)
Select three courses from list below or from Categories I-III above, not already counted toward the major, from at least two different areas of study.
ANTH 333:  The Archaeology of Ancient China
ARC 401:  Topics in Asian Religions & Cultures
ARC 498:  Indep. Study in Asian Religions and Cultures
ART 407:  Islamic Art and Architecture
CHNF 420:  Media Chinese
CHNF 430:  Chinese Culture
CHNF 440:  Chinese Tradition
CHNF 450:  Classical Chinese
GEOG 465:  Geography of East Asia
JAPN 201: Intermediate Japanese I
JAPN 202: Intermediate Japanese II
RELS 100:  New Testament
RELS 101:  Old Testament / Hebrew Scriptures  

Advisor: David Serafini (david.serafini@wku.edu)

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 Last Modified 12/7/23