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College of Arts & Sciences

The Department of Asian Languages and Literature offers an undergraduate major and minor in Japanese, through which students develop their ability to read, write and speak Japanese and gain an understanding and appreciation of the literature, linguistics and culture associated with the language. A popular option for many undergraduates at the UW is to combine a major in Japanese with a second major from another department, such as Computer Science, Business Administration or Global and Regional Studies. Graduates of the Department go on to a wide variety of career fields such as health care, technology, government, entertainment, education, marketing and business, reflecting the indispensability of knowledge of Asian languages and cultures in our increasingly interconnected world.

Major category: Minimum requirements

Curricular options: Linguistics, Literature

Topic(s): Arts, Humanities and Design

Degree requirements

Applicant type

Applicant type

Freshmen can apply to the UW to begin autumn quarter or winter quarter (U.S. applicants only)

Read more about applying to the UW as a freshman, including details for programs that provide high school students with college credit (like Running Start).

Japanese is a minimum requirements major. You may declare this major after enrolling at the UW and completing the prerequisites. Visit the department website for more information.

Quarters of general admisson to UW: autumn / winter (U.S. applicants only) / spring / summer

Preparation for the major is a factor in transfer admission.

  • Use the information below to help you prepare for this degree
  • Visit MyPlan to run a degree audit.
  • Use the UW Equivalency Guide to find out how courses taken at a Washington state community or technical college will transfer to the UW.
  • UW college and school graduation requirements

Department admission information

You must enroll at the UW before applying to this major. Please contact the department for additional details.
This major has minimum admission requirements. Transfer students must be enrolled at the UW before applying to the major.

Minimum of 2.5 cumulative GPA is required.

A student entering the junior year without two years of the appropriate foreign language will not be able to complete the degree requirements in two years unless he or she takes accelerated courses at the UW during summer quarter.

Read more about applying to the UW as a transfer student.

Courses required for the major:

  • 20 credits in the language of primary concentration
  • One writing (W-prefix) course in English, with minimum grade of 2.0

Entering transfer information:

Total undergraduates: 43
Total from Washington community colleges: 6

Career outcomes

See list of all majors