Japanese Language & Culture BA

The ability to communicate with Japanese speakers and appreciate Japanese culture gives you an advantage in a wide range of careers. Whether on the job or in your community, your Japanese language competency and cultural understanding can help you establish valuable connections in the global community.

The B.A. in Japanese Language and Culture prepares students to be active participants in an ever-shrinking and increasingly interdependent world society by developing students’ literacy in global matters, multiculturalism and cultural diversity, as well as guiding students to achieve a higher level of language proficiency (intermediate-high level according to the ACTFL guidelines in Japanese) to be able to communicate effectively in Japanese with well-rounded Japanese cultural knowledge in such areas as history, literature, and social sciences.

The program prepares graduates for successful careers as professionals in teaching, business, technology, travel, tourism, governmental and nongovernmental agencies, and for graduate study in Japanese studies, linguistics, Asian studies, translation and interpretation, TESOL, or focused international disciplines such as policy, management, environmental sciences, business management, and business administration.

To learn more about the major, visit the World Languages & Cultures website.

Required Courses

In order to graduate, you will also need to complete your general education and university requirements.

Complete all of the following pre-requisite courses:

Complete all of the following courses:

Complete four of the following Language and Linguistics courses:

Complete five of the following culture courses, of which only one may be 200-level:

Complete one of the following Secondary Culture courses:

Compete all of the following courses:

Complete JAPN 420: Maximizing Study Abroad Experiences (1-2 units) and then select one of the following options to satisfy the requirements of the major:

  • Option 1 - Study Abroad (for a Summer, a Semester, or one Year).
  • Option 2 - Community Project. See Department Chair for details.

Learning Outcomes

MLO 1: Japanese Language and Communication

1.1 Students are able to communicate effectively in Japanese in three modes: interpersonal, interpretive, and presentational; and in a culturally appropriate manner in a variety of social and professional settings and circumstances at the Intermediate-High level of language proficiency, according to the ACTFL Guidelines.

1.2 Students gain competency in the Japanese language and linguistics including phonetics, phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics, and discourse. Students compare, contrast, and analyze the structural differences between Japanese and English.

MLO 2: Japanese Culture

2.1 Students develop a comprehensive understanding, appreciation, and knowledge of Japanese culture: perspectives (ideas, beliefs, attitudes, values, philosophies), practices (patterns of social interactions) and products (both tangible and intangible, for example, art, history, literature, music).

2.2 Students develop analytical and critical thinking in areas such as how Japan’s cultural background influences modern Japanese life, how to compare their own culture with the Japanese culture, or how Japanese culture relates to other world cultures in an age of global inter-relatedness.

MLO 3: Secondary Culture Other Than Japanese

3.1 Students describe concepts of culture and use that understanding in their comparison of the Japanese culture with a second culture other than Japan.

3.2 Students will analyze and make connections between the perspectives, ways of thinking, behavioral practices, and cultural products of a second culture other than Japanese.

MLO 4: Research & Technology

4.1 Students gain knowledge of appropriate research methodologies and are able to apply them in their studies.

4.2 Students use appropriate technologies in research and studies relative to Japanese language and culture.

4.3 Students collect, manage, and analyze current and emerging technology-based resources to develop and produce their scholarly work.

MLO 5: Cultural Internalization and Language Immersion

5.1 Students demonstrate that they have actively immersed themselves in authentic Japanese cultural and linguistic environments and have internalized the language and cultural experience, from which they have developed a personal understanding and new perspectives of the community.

NOTE: Students develop intercultural communication skills and strategies, and learn to adapt and respond in effective ways. This MLO may be fulfilled by a study abroad or equivalent experience.

WLC's Japanese program has exchange agreements with:

  • Chuo University, Tokyo
  • Dokkyo University, Saitama
  • J.F. Oberlin University, Tokyo
  • Nagoya University of Foreign Studies, Aichi
  • Okayama University, Okayama
  • Osaka Gakuin University, Osaka
  • Toyo University, Tokyo
  • The University of Kitakyushu, Kitakyushu
  • The University of Shiga Prefecture, Shiga
  • Nagasaki University, Nagasaki
  • Ritsumeikan University, Kyoto
  • Tsukuba University*, Ibaraki
  • Waseda University*, Tokyo

* Study abroad at these Universities is conducted through CSU International Programs.