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Asia Pacific Studies and Japanese BA (Full time) 2018 start

  • Overview

    Technology leader, economic giant and cultural powerhouse, Japan is a fascinating country and an important player in the international community. This degree will allow you to develop language skills in Japanese while gaining an insight into the complex culture, history and politics of Japan and the wider Asia Pacific region.

    Core modules will build your written and spoken language skills and introduce you to the modern history of the Asia Pacific region. Then you’ll choose from a variety of optional modules to gain a better understanding of life in Japan and the Asia Pacific, from East Asian religions to Japanese cinema, Korean politics and the role of women in Chinese society. You’ll even spend a year studying at a Japanese university to immerse yourself in local culture.

    Great facilities and expert tutors will help you make the most of your studies – and you’ll gain valuable skills that really appeal to employers.

    Leeds is a great place to study languages, with an array of facilities available to students. They include our fully equipped Language Centre, including digital language labs, audio/video practice booths and Computer Assisted Language Learning (CALL).

    We also have our Electronic Resource Information Centre, which features specialised computing facilities for translation studies, and Interpreter Training Suites offering you the chance to explore a career in interpreting.

    This course is intended for non-native speakers of Japanese only.

  • Course content

    In your first year you’ll be introduced to Japanese through intensive language classes – and you’ll put that knowledge into context through optional modules exploring Japanese culture and politics, such as A Cultural History from Buddhism to Murakami Haruki or Japan in War and Peace.

    You’ll also choose from a wide range of Asia Pacific modules, covering topics from Development in South East Asia to Modern China. Then, you’ll be able to extend and develop that knowledge at a Japanese university on your residence abroad, giving you plenty of time to refine your language skills.

    When you return, you’ll have a new perspective to bring to your studies, which will include advanced language skills alongside further modules on Japanese life, covering subjects such as business, environmental change and literature. At the same time, you’ll study broader Asia Pacific modules on issues such as Buddhism in Thailand, Chinese visual culture and the impact of globalisation on the rapidly developing South East Asia.

    You'll also apply the critical and research skills you have developed to an independently researched dissertation on a topic of your choice.

    Course structure

    These are typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our Terms and conditions.

    Year 1

    Compulsory modules

    • Basic Japanese Language (1) 20 credits
    • Basic Japanese Language (2) 20 credits
    • IT for LCS Students 5 credits

    Optional modules

    • History and Culture of Early Imperial China 10 credits
    • Japan: A Cultural History from Buddhism to Murakami Haruki 10 credits
    • Introduction to Religious and Philosophical Texts of East Asia 20 credits
    • Intercultural Competence: Theory and Application 20 credits
    • Politics, Culture and Society 20 credits
    • Discourse, Culture and Identity 20 credits

    Year 2

    Compulsory modules

    • Year Abroad in Japan 120 credits

    Year 3

    Compulsory modules

    • Japanese 2A: Written Communication Skills 20 credits
    • Japanese 2B: Spoken Communication Skills 20 credits

    Optional modules

    • Japan's International Relations 20 credits
    • Sino-Japanese Relations: Past and Present 20 credits
    • Korea: Politics, Economy and International Relations 20 credits

    Year 4

    Compulsory modules

    • Japanese 3: Advanced Communication Skills 20 credits
    • final year project

    Optional modules

    • Energy Security: Global and Asian Perspectives 20 credits
    • Buddhism: A Lived Tradition 20 credits

    For more information on typical modules, read Asia Pacific Studies and Japanese BA in the course catalogue

    Broadening your academic horizons

    At Leeds we want you to benefit from the depth and breadth of the University's expertise, to prepare you for success in an ever-changing and challenging world. This course gives you the opportunity to broaden your learning by studying discovery modules. Find out more on the Broadening webpages.

    Learning and teaching

    We use a variety of teaching and learning styles so you can benefit from the expertise of our tutors, including lectures, small-group seminars, tutorials and in some cases workshops.

    However, independent study is also a major part of the course – by preparing for lectures and seminars by reading and researching widely, you’ll build research skills and learn to think critically about the information you find. We have plenty of resources to help you, including great library resources. The University Library even runs training programmes to help you make the most of it.


    Exams and essays are our usual forms of assessment, but some modules may include oral presentations or group work as an assessed component as well. Support is always on hand for this – throughout your time at Leeds you’ll be able to attend extra classes on issues like public speaking, exam technique and structuring an essay.

  • Entry requirements, fees and applying

    Entry requirements

    A-level: ABB-AAB

    excluding General Studies and Critical Thinking. A foreign language is preferred.

    GCSE: 4/C in a foreign language

    • Access to HE Diploma

      Pass diploma with 60 credits overall, including at least 45 credits at level 3, of which 30 credits must be at Distinction and 15 credits at Merit or higher. Grade 4/C in a foreign language at GCSE is required. An interview and a piece of written work may also be required.

    • BTEC

      BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma: DDM-DDD. We particularly welcome applicants holding a foreign language qualification. Other BTEC qualifications are also considered. Please contact the Admissions Office for more information.

    • Cambridge Pre-U

      M1, M1, M1 to D3, M1, M1, preferably including a foreign language.

    • International Baccalaureate

      34 - 35 points overall with 16 at Higher Level and 4 in a foreign language at Standard level.

    • Irish Highers (Leaving Certificate)

      H2, H2, H2, H3, H3, H3 to H2, H2, H2, H2, H3, H3. A foreign language is preferred.

    • Scottish Highers / Advanced Highers

      BB in Advanced Highers and AABBB in Highers or B in Advanced Highers and AAABB in Highers, to AB in Advanced Highers and AABBB in Highers or A in Advanced Highers and AABBB in Highers, or AABBBB to AAAABB in Highers, preferably including a foreign language.

    • Welsh Baccalaureate

      The Welsh Baccalaureate is not typically included in the academic conditions of an offer made to you for this course. If you choose to undertake the Welsh Baccalaureate we would strongly encourage you to draw upon these experiences within your personal statement, as your qualification will then be taken into account both when your application is initially considered by the selection panel and again when reviewed by the admissions tutor at the time your A-level results are passed to us.

    • Other Qualifications

      European Baccalaureate: 77-80%

    Read more about UK and Republic of Ireland accepted qualifications or contact the School’s Undergraduate Admissions Team.

    Where an applicant is taking the EPQ in a relevant subject this might be considered alongside other Level 3 qualifications and may attract an alternative offer in addition to the standard offer. If you are taking A Levels, this would be BBB at A Level (preferably including a foreign language, excluding General Studies and Critical Thinking) and grade A in the EPQ.

    We welcome applications from mature students with Access qualifications, and from students with a wide range of qualifications.

    Alternative entry

    We’re committed to identifying the best possible applicants, regardless of personal circumstances or background.

    Access to Leeds is an alternative admissions scheme which accepts applications from individuals who might be from low income households, in the first generation of their immediate family to apply to higher education, or have had their studies disrupted.

    Find out more about Access to Leeds and alternative admissions.

    Typical Access to Leeds offer: BBC preferably including a foreign language (excluding General Studies and Critical Thinking) at A Level and pass Access to Leeds.


    We accept a range of international equivalent qualifications. For more information, contact the School of Languages, Cultures and Societies admissions team.

    International Foundation Year Programme

    International students who do not meet the academic requirements for undergraduate study may be able to study the University of Leeds International Foundation Year. This gives you the opportunity to study on campus, be taught by University of Leeds academics and progress onto a wide range of Leeds undergraduate courses. Find out more about International Foundation Year programmes.

    English language requirements

    IELTS 7.0 overall, with no less than 6.5 in any component. For other English qualifications, read English language equivalent qualifications.

    International students who do not meet the English language requirements for the programme may be able to study an English for Academic Purposes pre-sessional course with a progression route to the degree programme. For information and entry requirements, read Pre-sessional programmes.

    How to apply

    Apply to this course through UCAS. The institution code for the University of Leeds is L23. Check the deadline for applications on the UCAS website.

    International students apply through UCAS in the same way as UK/EU students. Our network of international representatives can help you with your application. If you’re unsure about the application process, contact the admissions team for help.

    Read about visas, immigration and other information in International students. We recommend that international students apply as early as possible to ensure that they have time to apply for their visa.

    Admissions policy

    School of Languages, Cultures and Societies Undergraduate Admissions Policy


    UK/EU: See fees section below

    International: £17,500 (per year)

    For UK and non-UK EU full-time students starting in 2018, the fee for 2018/19 will be £9,250. 

    The fee for undergraduate students starting in 2019 will be confirmed in September 2018.

    The fee may increase in future years of your course in line with inflation, and as permitted by law. For example, the increase of 2.8% in 2017/18 was based on the government’s forecast for the RPI-X measure of inflation.

    The UK government has confirmed that non-UK EU students in 2018-19 will have home fee status and be eligible for UK government student loans. The UK government has not confirmed the situation for future years, so keep checking our website for updates.

    If you take a study abroad or work placement year, you’ll pay a reduced tuition fee during this period. For more information, see Study abroad and work placement tuition fees and loans.

    Read more about paying fees and charges.

    Additional cost information

    There may be additional costs related to your course or programme of study, or related to being a student at the University of Leeds. Read more about additional costs

    Financial support

    If you have the talent and drive, we want you to be able to study with us, whatever your financial circumstances. There is help for students in the form of loans and non-repayable grants from the University and from the government. Find out more in our Undergraduate funding overview.

  • Career opportunities

    This degree gives you proficiency in a major world language, as well as an insight into the fascinating culture of one of the world’s fastest-growing regions which is increasingly economically important. These will open doors into a wide range of careers, but you will also develop transferable skills that are valued by all kinds of employers.

    You’ll have strong research skills, allowing you to find relevant information from a wide range of sources and draw your own conclusions from what you find. Then you’ll be able to present and defend them clearly with your advanced communication skills. Teamwork, adaptability and time management are also among the key qualities you can develop.

    As a result, graduates have pursued diverse careers. Many join the Japan Exchange and Teaching programme (JET), which recruits graduates to work in teaching and international relations positions. Others have moved into teaching, overseas aid work, tourism, publishing, broadcasting, PR, translating and interpreting both at home and across China, Japan and Hong Kong.

    Careers support

    We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. That’s one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.

    Leeds for Life is our unique approach to helping you make the most of University by supporting your academic and personal development. Find out more at the Leeds for Life website.

    The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.

  • Study abroad and work placements

    Residence abroad

    After your first year you’ll have the chance to follow a year-long course at a partner university in Tokyo, Kyoto, Osaka, Kobe or Fuluoka.

    It’s a great opportunity to boost your language skills and to see how the issues you have studied play out in a Japanese community. It will also demonstrate your independence and adaptability, qualities that employers always seek.

    Read more about Residence abroad in East Asian Studies

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