Japanese Studies Minor | Bachelor's Program for Adults and Transfers

Public Engagement

Japanese Studies Minor

  • Zen Buddhism, Samurai, haiku, yakuza, sushi, anime, Kurosawa — a minor in Japanese Studies will open doors to these and other marvels of a fascinating language and culture. The language skills and cultural understanding acquired through a minor in Japanese Studies can benefit students interested in a broad range of subjects and professions — from journalism, law, business, and government to history, the arts, and education.

    The minor in Japanese Studies has two objectives — to provide a substantial introduction to the Japanese language and to introduce the study of Japanese culture through courses in literature, history, religion, film, philosophy, art history, and sociology offered throughout the university. Japanese Studies is an interdisciplinary field of study, drawing on a broad range of courses in language, literature, film, history, and politics. The knowledge and skills gained from this minor can complement any program of study, deepening students' global competencies and cross-cultural perspectives and their awareness of a range of important cultural and social issues.

    Students interested in a minor can simulate a worksheet that accounts for courses already completed and in progress using the "What If" feature in Degree Works.

    Course availability may vary from semester to semester. Some courses may be in development and offered at a later time. Students seeking to pursue alternative coursework to fulfill the minor should consult with their advisors.


    Minors are available to undergraduate students across The New School except those students at Lang and in the Bachelor's Program for Adults and Transfer Students who are completing a self-designed BA or BS in Liberal Arts, who are not permitted to declare minors. For students at Lang or in the Bachelor's Program for Adults and Transfer Students interested in pursuing a deeper study of this subject area, opportunities are available through the self-designed major in Liberal Arts. To explore this, contact an academic advisor or read more information about self-designed options for Lang or the Bachelor's Program for Adults and Transfer Students.

    Learning Outcomes

    A student who has completed this minor should be able to demonstrate:

    • An intermediate level of proficiency in speaking and listening skills in Japanese
    • An intermediate level of proficiency in reading and writing hiragana, katakana and at least 220 kanji  
    • A basic understanding of premodern and modern Japanese culture, civilization, politics, literature, history, and society
    • Knowledge of similarities and differences between students' own culture and cultures of the Japanese-speaking world.


    Subject Area Sample Courses Requirements
    Core Courses NJPN 1101 Japanese Introductory 1
    NJPN 1102 Japanese Introductory 2
    NJPN 2101 Japanese Intermediate 1
    NJPN 2102 Japanese Intermediate 2
    NJPN 3101 Japanese Advanced 1
    12 credits
    Elective Courses NJPN 3101 Japanese Advanced (If not used to satisfy core requirements)
    PLAH 2160 Japanese Art (taught in English)
    NFLM 2501 Movements in World Cinema (taught in English)
    LREL 2107 Religions of East Asia (taught in English)
    LREL 3507 Buddhism and Modern Thought (taught in English)
    LINA 2023 Buddhist Art in Asia (taught in English)
    NFLM 3005 Cinema of the Warrior - The Films of Akira Kurosawa (taught in English)
    LNGC 1514 Atomic Dreams, Nuclear Nightmare – A History of the Bomb (taught in English)
    LINA 3045 Delicious Movement - Reflecting on Nakedness (taught in English)
    NCOM 3023 Media, Nature, and Apocalypse (taught in English)
    TDRU 2111 Global Theater History 1 - The Hero and The Highborn (taught in English)
    1-4 credits

    Students with more advanced proficiency may, upon the recommendation of the Japanese section coordinator, substitute an elective course for one required core course in the study of the language. In the event that advanced-level courses are not offered, an Independent Study course in Japanese will be offered.

    Students must earn a grade of C or higher in all courses taken for the minor.

    For questions regarding this minor's curriculum, including requests for course substitutions, please contact Marie-Christine Massé, coordinator of Japanese Studies, at massem@newschool.edu or 212.229.5676.

  • The New School has been accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education since 1960. For more information, visit Accreditation and State Regulatory Authorizations. Middle States Commission on Higher Education, 3624 Market Street, 2nd Floor West, Philadelphia, PA 19104. 216.284.5000