Division of Japanese



    The Division of Japanese currently offers a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Japanese, a four-year program aimed to develop students’ communication skills in Japanese.

         This BA program is designed to provide students with the highest level of Japanese language competence in all aspects of communication skills, together with a sound knowledge and understanding of Japanese culture and life.

         With intensive, communication-centric core and compulsory courses, students with little or no background in the Japanese language will graduate with a near native command. Students can also choose their own areas of study from one, or a mixture, of the three specializations:

    • Linguistics
    • Literature
    • Japanese Studies

         In addition to concentrating on the specializations of their preference, students are free to shape their education through two tracks:

    • Japanese Language & Seminar: focusing on taught modules and coursework, students spend the whole period on in-depth study of the Japanese language and culture.    
    • Cooperative Education: focusing on first-hand work experience, students spend seven semesters on intensive coursework and dedicate their last semester to a work placement program. 


    Key Benefits

    • A combination of communication skills, both in Japanese and English, and an insight into Japanese culture and society gives graduates ample opportunities not only in Japanese-speaking settings but also in many other career paths;
    • Course syllabus is structured with high versatility and flexibility. Students can custom-tailor their own study in terms of both specialization and study track to best suit their interests and plans;
    • Teaching is performed by highly qualified native Japanese speakers and competent Thai academics. Practical communication skills and cultural trainings are also given by enthusiastic Japanese long stayers in Chiang Mai, sessions that are most cherished by both students and trainers;
    • In addition to extensive opportunities for a one-year exchange program in Japan, students enjoy a wide variety of innovative academic and extra-curricular activities.    


 Over the course of four years, students are required to complete at least 145 credits. In each semester, they will take six or seven individual courses, normally valued at 3.0 credits per course, adding up to 21.0 credits for the semester. 

     In the first year, students are introduced to Fundamental Japanese modules which establish solid knowledge and communication skills. Besides the Japanese language, students are also required to take communicative English and Thai courses as well as interdisciplinary subjects such as Localism and Globalization, Literary Studies and Man and Quest for Knowledge, plus courses in Science and Social Sciences of their choice, to broaden their knowledge and viewpoints.
     In the second year, students undertake an intensive study in the Japanese language through several more advanced communicative courses, such as Intermediate Japanese 1& 2, Japanese Reading and Writing 1&2, Japanese Listening and Speaking 1&2 and Study of Kanji, together with intermediate-level communicative English courses and a chosen module in the Science & Mathematic field. 
Students also identify their chosen tracks at this level. In addition to the compulsory courses, those in the Language & Seminar track start their minor study while Cooperative Education students start their minor study along with taking elective courses that suit their interests.  
     In the third year, besides advanced communicative Japanese modules, study is concentrated on a more interdisciplinary aspect through A Review of Japan course and either History of Japanese Literature 1&2, or Structure of Japanese 1&2 or Japanese Studies 1&2 modules, depending on one’s specialization. Students also choose one module in their specializations per semester and are required to take further communicative English courses to emphasize their multilingual capability.   
     In the fourth year, in addition to a compulsory advanced course in their specializations, students are free to choose four Japanese modules from a collection of career-focused, skill-enhancing courses. Students taking the Language & Seminar track spread the coursework throughout the year as well as attending Seminars in Japanesesessions and taking two more advanced English modules, while Cooperative Education students concentrate their coursework in the first semester and spend the second semester on apprenticeship as a preparation for the professional world.


Graduates of the Japanese Division have pursued, and become successful in, diverse career paths: education, international organization, diplomacy, airlines, tourism & hospitality industry, journalism & the media, public relations, translation & interpreting, businesses, and many more. 
As Thailand is a manufacturing base of a large number of Japanese companies and transnational organizations, the Japanese Division’s graduates are especially in high demand.

The Faculty of Humanities is one of three faculties established when Chiang Mai University was founded in 1964. The other two faculties are the Faculty of Sciences and the Faculty of Social Sciences. The three faculties offer three groups of foundation courses: natural sciences, social science and humanities as educators at that time believed it would result in a perfect graduate who is equipped with basic knowledge related to things of nature, human society and the mind as well as other qualities of mankind. In the first year of the establishment in 1964, the Faculty of Humanities had 20 full-time academic staff and 2 part-time instructors, 3 administrative staff and 77 students while offering 282 courses.

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