Japanese Joint B.A./M.A. Program

The joint B.A./M.A. degree in Japanese/Asian Languages recognizes the need for master’s-level training upon entering the job market in a variety of sectors that call for highly advanced proficiency in the Japanese language, knowledge of the culture of Japan and its literature, and the skills aquired by B.A. and M.A. graduates in the humanities: research, analysis, interpretation, translation, and communication. The degree gives highly motivated B.A. students the opportunity to earn an M.A. degree using an accelerated undergraduate program in combination with a fifth year of study. Students must have an overall GPA of 3.25 to apply to the program and should have completed all of their MAPS/Core requirements by the end of their sophomore year. No GRE is required. Application is open only to CU-Boulder students. Students must complete a written application (application forms are available in the department office), which will include a statement of purpose, a writing sample, and three letters of recommendation, at least one from a full-time member of the Japanese faculty, by September 1 of their junior year (or, in exceptional circumstances, during a student's senior year).


The joint B.A./M.A. degree requires 147 hours (117 undergraduate and 30 graduate) of coursework, with grades of 3.0 or above in all degree courses and an overall GPA of 3.0. That is, one graduate course counts toward the B.A. as well as toward the M.A. Students are mentored by the undergraduate advisor in consultation with the graduate director and must meet with both every semester to ensure the student is designing a program of study that can be completed in five years.



Prospective graduates will be required to present either 24 hours of approved coursework plus a Master’s thesis (Plan I), or 30 hours of approved coursework without a thesis (Plan II). The 24 hours must be completed at the 5000 level or above. Up to 6 credits from other departments may be completed at the 3000 or 4000 level at the discretion of the department.

Undergraduate Courses

Students complete requirements for the undergraduate Japanese degree, but may substitute a graduate seminar on literature for one undergraduate literature course.


Graduate Courses
Either Plan I (thesis option) or Plan II (non-thesis option). Consent of both the undergraduate and graduate director is required to take the thesis option.


Plan I
In Plan I, any eight of the following 5000-level courses, in addition to six credits of JPNS 6900 Master’s Thesis, are acceptable for the degree. The thesis defense must be completed in the second semester of the final year.

JPNS 5020 Methods of Teaching Asian Languages
JPNS 5040 History of the Japanese Language
JPNS 5050 Japanese Sociolinguistics
JPNS 5060 Advanced Japanese Syntax
JPNS 5150 Theory and Practice of Literary Translation in Japanese
JPNS 5160 Advanced Classical Japanese
JPNS 5210 Classical Prose Literature
JPNS 5220 Waka, Renga, and Haiku
JPNS 5410 Medieval Prose Literature
JPNS 5420 Japanese Buddhism and Literature
JPNS 5610 Japanese Dramatic Literature
JPNS 5810 Modern Japanese Literature
JPNS 5820 Contemporary Japanese Literature
JPNS 5830 Modern and Contemporary Japanese Thought
JPNS 5280 Topics in Classical Japanese Literature
JPNS 5480 Topics in Medieval Japanese Literature


Plan II
For Plan II, any ten courses listed under Plan I (for a total of 30 credits)
are acceptable for the degree.


For additional questions, please contact the Japanese Graduate Advisor, Keller Kimbrough.