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UBC Department of Asian Studies

The UBC Department of Asian Studies at the University of British Columbia was established in 1961 and is one of the top Asian Studies departments in North America. The department's faculty and staff offices are located in the Asian Centre of the Vancouver campus.

Department of Asian Studies
UBC Asian Centre (August 2010).jpg
The Asian Centre
Established1961 (1961)
Parent institution
University of British Columbia
HeadRoss King
Location, ,


UBC Department of Asian Studies Logo of a Camellia sinensis or Thea sinensis, the tea plant whence many teas are derived.


The Asian Centre building that houses the department consists of the roof and structural framework of the Sanyo Pavilion constructed for the 1970 World Exposition in Osaka, Japan.[1]


Camellia sinensis

The UBC Department of Asian Studies logo is often mistaken to be a lotus flower, with its symbolization of purity, non-attachment and enlightenment in Buddhist tradition. The design (courtesy of Asian Studies MA student in Japanese Literature and Visual Culture and graphic designer Julien Butterlin) does indeed gesture in this direction, but the flower depicted is in fact that of Camellia sinensis or Thea sinensis, the tea plant whence many teas are derived. A genus of flowering plants in the family Theaceae, Camellia sinensis is used to harvest white tea, green tea, oolong, pu-erh tea and black tea.

Tea is the second-most widely consumed beverage in the world after water, and has played and continues to play such a central role in all Asian cultures that it was a natural choice to symbolize the diverse Asian languages, literature, cultures, histories, and religions represented in the Department of Asian Studies.

Degrees ProgramsEdit


Majors require 48 credits and minors require 30 credits of coursework within the department.

  • Major and minor in Asian Area Studies
  • Major and minor in Asian Language and Culture
    • The major includes a specialization in China, Chinese Literature, Japan, Korea, or South Asia.
  • Honours Program in Asian Studies


  • Master of Arts in Asian Studies
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Asian Studies

Course OfferingsEdit

The Department of Asian Studies offers two categories of undergraduate courses. The first category features courses on the contemporary and historical culture of South, Southeast, and East Asia, and do not require knowledge of an Asian language. The second category features courses in various Asian languages from an introductory to advanced level, with the latter covering literary, philosophical and historical works in their original language.

The department also offers graduate courses falling under the categories of Asia, China, Japan, Korea, South Asia, and Theories, Methods & Pan-Regional.


Research activitiesEdit


  • Bruce Fulton, Associate Professor in Korean Literature and Literary Translation

Former FacultyEdit

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-07-21. Retrieved 2014-05-15.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  2. ^ a b
  3. ^

External linksEdit