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A&S—East Asian Languages and Literatures

The Department of East Asian Languages and Literatures (EALL) offers an interdisciplinary Master of Arts in East Asian Studies (IDMA), focusing on China, Japan, or Korea. The Asian Studies Center, which is part of the University’s Center for International Studies, administers the IDMA program. EALL grants the Master of Arts degree.

Contact Information

Department Chair (EALL): Hiroshi Nara
Main Office: 110 OEH
Graduate Administrator: Patrick Fogarty
Fax: 412-624-3458

Admission and Application Form: To apply, go to and click on Apply Yourself.

The IDMA is typically a two-year program, designed for students who have already had at least two years of Chinese, Japanese, or Korean language study. The applicant’s academic interests must be compatible with the expertise of the East Asian faculty.

Applicants for admission must submit a two-page career statement in English that identifies the student’s academic and intellectual goals. They must submit transcripts of all college-level work, three letters of recommendation in English, a writing sample in English, and scores on the verbal, quantitative, and writing assessment-analytical sections of the Graduate Record Examination. International applicants whose first language is not English are required to submit the TOEFL administered by the Educational Testing Service: The required TOEFL score of 90 (with at least a score of 22 in all of the four sections of speaking, listening, reading, and writing); the required minimum IELTS of 7.0 (with at least 6.5 in each of its four sections). The deadline each year for submitting applications is January 15. Notification can be expected by the middle of March. The program admits students only for the fall term.

Financial Assistance

Current as well as prospective students in Asian Studies are eligible to apply for a variety of scholarships and fellowships administered by the Asian Studies Center.

The dean of the Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences has approved Tuition Reduction Scholarships for out-of-state students accepted into the IDMA program each year. As a result these IDMA students pay in-state tuition rates.

Requirements for the MA

The interdisciplinary Master of Arts in East Asian Studies (IDMA) is intended primarily for predoctoral students who want intensive area training before pursuing a doctoral program in a particular discipline, or for those planning professional careers in government, business, journalism, or pre-college teaching.

Credit Requirements: Students must earn a minimum of 27 credits of course work (excluding language credits) in two or more departments with a B average or better in courses numbered 1000 or above. At least half of these credits must be carried in courses numbered 2000 or above. In addition, EAS 2005 Sources and Methods in EAS, a bibliography course, must be taken in the first year.

Language Requirement: Students must have successfully completed two years of Chinese, Japanese, or Korean language training in order to apply to the program and must continue their language study as part of their graduate work. A minimum of three years’ college-level language study or its equivalent is necessary to fulfill the language requirement for the degree

Course Specialization: Students who specialize in China must take at least one 3-credit course on Japan, and those who specialize in Japan must take at least one 3-credit course on China, and those who specialize in Korea must take at least one 3-credit course on China or Japan.

History Courses: Six of the required credits must be taken in course work relating to the ancient and modern history of China, Japan, or Korea.

Thesis: The thesis topic must be approved by the student’s academic advisor and a faculty committee of three, which regularly included the academic advisor.  The faculty committee must present at least two different departments. The thesis must demonstrate an ability to research primary East Asian language materials.

Oral Comprehensive Examination: When course work and thesis are completed, the student must pass an oral comprehensive examination administered by the student’s faculty committee.

Admission to the MA/MBA Joint Degree Program

Qualified students may simultaneously earn a master’s degree in business administration and an interdisciplinary Master of Arts in East Asian Studies. Students enrolled in the joint degree program take MBA and MA course work concurrently. Students will normally be expected to complete the program in five consecutive terms, beginning in the fall term of the first academic year and ending in the spring term of the following year. Students may, however, extend their program of study in order to pursue further language acquisition or an internship.

Prospective students must meet the full set of admission requirements for MBA study in the Joseph M. Katz Graduate School of Business and for the MA program of graduate study in the Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences. Students should first apply for admission to the MBA program. After admission to the MBA program, applicants to the MA program will be assessed by review panels of appropriate A&S faculty. To obtain MBA application forms, contact: University of Pittsburgh, Joseph M. Katz Graduate School of Business, Office of Admissions, Pittsburgh, PA 15260; phone: 412-648-1700; fax: 412-648-1659; e-mail:


The Asian Studies faculty affiliated with the IDMA Program comprise an outstanding group of specialists in the social sciences and humanities. They share a common dedication to teaching and a vigorous commitment to scholarly research as well as service to the profession. Academic disciplines of individual faculty members and their teaching specializations are noted on the Web site above.

Course Listing for Japanese

Course Listing for Chinese

Course Listing for Korean


Not all courses are offered every term. Undergraduate courses at the 1000 level can be carried for graduate credit. No more than 12 credits of undergraduate courses at the 1000 level can be carried for graduate credit.

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