Japanese Language, Minor

Program Code: JAPNS_UMNR

Program Description

The minor in Japanese is intended to provide students with a good working knowledge of the Japanese language, culture, and society in order to broaden their horizons and sharpen their awareness in internationalism and globalization. Students undertake three years of language and culture/film/literature study (or equivalent); education abroad can be included.

What is Japanese?

The Japanese program provides students with an opportunity to concentrate on acquiring expertise in an important modern language and its culture. Giving students a strong working knowledge of the Japanese language and understanding of Japanese culture, the program can help prepare students for work in contexts where the language and culture are pertinent, to live and work in Japan as informed and capable individuals equipped with appropriate intercultural skills and awareness, or for graduate study in Japan-related fields. Graduates may work in government service, domestic and foreign offices, or international agencies. Many go on to teach English in Japan or to do translation work. Employment may also be available with trade organizations, international banking houses, or U.S. companies abroad. Domestic and multinational companies are increasingly seeking employees with backgrounds in multicultural studies as a way of dealing with the global market.

You Might Like This Program If...

  • You are interested in Japanese language, culture, history, or society.
  • You want to live or work in Japan.
  • You are aiming for a career involving travel to Japan and interaction with native speakers of Japanese.

Program Requirements

Requirement Credits
Requirements for the Minor 18-20

Requirements for the Minor

A grade of C or better is required for all courses in the minor, as specified by Senate Policy 59-10. In addition, at least six credits of the minor must be unique from the prescribed courses required by a student's major(s).

Prescribed Courses
Prescribed Courses: Require a grade of C or better
JAPNS 2Level One Japanese B4
JAPNS 3Level Two Japanese A4
Additional Courses
Additional Courses: Require a grade of C or better
Select 4 credits of the following: 14
Level Two Japanese B
Foreign Study--Intermediate Japanese
Select 6-8 credits of the following: 16-8
Foreign Studies
Level Three Japanese A
Level Three Japanese B
Level Four Japanese A
Level Four Japanese B
Japanese Through Manga
Japan in the World
Courtly Japan
War and the Warrior in Japan
Beyond Anime
Contemporary Japan: Cultures, Lifestyles, Trends
Japanese Film
Japanese Literature
Independent Studies
Special Topics
Foreign Study--Advanced Japanese

Special topics courses in English or other courses in English do not satisfy this requirement. 

Academic Advising

The objectives of the university's academic advising program are to help advisees identify and achieve their academic goals, to promote their intellectual discovery, and to encourage students to take advantage of both in-and out-of class educational opportunities in order that they become self-directed learners and decision makers.

Both advisers and advisees share responsibility for making the advising relationship succeed. By encouraging their advisees to become engaged in their education, to meet their educational goals, and to develop the habit of learning, advisers assume a significant educational role. The advisee's unit of enrollment will provide each advisee with a primary academic adviser, the information needed to plan the chosen program of study, and referrals to other specialized resources.


University Park

Liberal Arts Academic Advising
Use the Liberal Arts Meet the Academic Advisers web page to see the contact information for the specific adviser(s) of this program

Career Paths

A minor in Japanese can be the basis for careers in the public sector (diplomatic corps, armed forces, intelligence, etc.), international law, business, public relations, journalism, travel and hospitality, careers requiring foreign travel or living abroad in Japan language specialist (translating, interpreting, teaching).


With a Japanese minor you'll be prepared for a career in a wide range of industries and professions, including the public sector (diplomatic corps, armed forces, intelligence, etc.), international law, business, public relations, journalism, travel and hospitality, careers requiring foreign travel or living abroad in Asia, language specialist (translating, interpreting, teaching).

Opportunities for Graduate Studies

International Affairs programs, law, or the study of Asia in various disciplines, such as art history, literature, history, religion, philosophy, political science, and sociology.


University Park

102 Old Botany Building
University Park, PA 16802