This four-year Chinese Studies or Japanese Studies degree immerses you in the study of the culture and society of China or Japan. It focuses on developing your languages skills and building an appreciation of different cultures.
You'll gain an in-depth insight into how culture, cinema, history, politics and society shape the countries where your chosen language is spoken. You'll develop the knowledge and understanding you need to engage with people in their native language.
You'll graduate as a confident linguist, in your chosen East Asian language, ready to embark on your career journey as a global citizen.
You will be well positioned to take advantage of exciting new career opportunities emerging from Britain's growing connections with East Asia, as China's economic and political power continues to rise alongside Japan's diplomatic importance.
Your course during COVID-19
Please rest assured we make all reasonable efforts to provide you with the programmes, services and facilities described. However, it may be necessary to make changes due to significant disruption.
Given the changing nature of the COVID-19 pandemic, the commitments outlined are subject to guidelines that may be in place from time to time.
View our COVID-19 Study page, which gives information about your Newcastle University study experience for the academic year 2021-22.
See our terms and conditions and student complaints information
Quality and ranking
- 6th in the UK - The Complete University Guide 2022 (East and South Asian Studies)
- 3rd in the UK - the Times/Sunday Times Good University Guide 2020 (East and South Asian Studies)
- 6th in the UK for research power – Research Excellence Framework 2014 (Modern Languages)
Modules and learning
The information below is intended to provide an example of what you will study.
Most degrees are divided into stages. Each stage lasts for one academic year, and you'll complete modules totalling 120 credits by the end of each stage.
Our teaching is informed by research. Course content may change periodically to reflect developments in the discipline, the requirements of external bodies and partners, and student feedback.
Optional module availability
Student demand for optional modules may affect availability.
Full details of the modules on offer will be published through the Programme Regulations and Specifications ahead of each academic year. This usually happens in May.
To find out more please see our terms and conditions.
In Stage 1, you will study compulsory Chinese or Japanese language modules, along with a number of optional modules that look at culture and cultural studies. You also have the option to study international film.
|Introduction to Chinese Culture||20|
|Introduction to Japanese History and Culture||20|
In Stage 2, you will continue to build your language skills. You will also be able to choose modules that include, Cities in East Asian Cinema: Culture, History & Identity.
You spend your third year at a university in China or Japan. You’ll follow an intensive programme of language study, build relationships with native speakers and absorb the local culture.
For the fourth year of the degree, after the Year Abroad, if you started your studies from scratch or post-GCSE you can go into one of two language modules, depending on language level.
We base these figures and graphs on the most up-to-date information available to us. They combine data on the planned delivery and assessments of our courses in 2021-22 with data on the modules chosen by our students in 2020-21.
Teaching time is made up of:
- scheduled learning and teaching activities. These are timetabled activities with a member of staff present
- structured guided learning. These are activities developed by staff to support engagement with module learning. Students or groups of students undertake these activities without direct staff participation or supervision
Teaching and assessment
The majority of language modules are taught by native speakers. You also work in language laboratories and undertake self-study in our award-winning Language Resource Centre.
You'll be assessed through a combination of:
Assignments – written or fieldwork
Dissertation or research project
Examinations – practical or online
Skills and experience
You have the option of writing a dissertation in your final year, which allows you to explore and discuss a topic of interest in great detail, while developing your research skills.
This degree includes a compulsory year abroad. You'll follow an intensive programme of language study at a university in China or Japan, while building relationships with native speakers and absorbing the local culture.
In China, you can study in:
- Hainan Island
In Japan, you can study in:
Support for year abroad
You will receive lots of help to prepare for your year abroad, including:
- briefings covering practicalities like insurance, visas and student safety
- a Tandem Learning Scheme, to practise conversation in your foreign language and make in-country contacts, before you travel
There are also events in your second year where you can meet students who have already done their year abroad, and Chinese and Japanese exchange students from our host universities in East Asia.
You'll be in contact with our Year Abroad team during your time abroad, and communicate with your personal tutor. You'll also write blog posts, reflecting on your linguistic, personal and professional development.
Facilities and environment
As a Modern Languages student, you'll be based at our city-centre campus, in the School of Modern Languages. We've been teaching modern languages in Newcastle for more than 100 years.
You will have access to language laboratories and the award-winning Language Resource Centre, with self-study resources for over 50 languages. You'll also have access to:
- specialist language learning software
- live foreign-language TV channels
You'll have the support of an academic member of staff as a personal tutor throughout your degree to help with academic and personal issues.
Peer mentors will help you in your first year. They are fellow students who can help you settle in and answer any questions you have when starting university.
Ability in languages is highly regarded by employers across all sectors, including industry and business. Employers value the linguistic skills and cultural awareness of graduates.
With ever more European and international connections, language skills are important and give you a real advantage in applying for a wide range of graduate jobs.
For some graduates teaching is a popular career choice, undertaking primary and secondary Postgraduate Certificate of Education (PGCE) or teaching English abroad. Others go into jobs where their language skills are desirable, such as the media, sales, e-commerce, and areas of finance.
Make a difference
The School of Modern Languages works with the University’s Careers Service to run an annual Employability Week, including an opportunity to network with recent graduates.
We also collaborate on the Modern Languages careers blog, Careers Translated. The blog gives you access to a range of relevant jobs, training and work experience opportunities, as well as interviews with alumni and employers, and general advice.
Our award-winning Careers Service is one of the largest and best in the country, and we have strong links with employers. We provide an extensive range of opportunities to all students through our ncl+ initiative.
Recognition of professional qualifications outside of the UK
From 1 January 2021 there is an update to the way professional qualifications are recognised by countries outside of the UK.
All candidates are considered on an individual basis and we accept a broad range of qualifications. The entrance requirements below apply to 2021 entry.
Other UK qualifications (and PARTNERS)
Qualifications from outside the UK
English Language requirements
Through our PARTNERS programme, you could receive an offer up to three grades lower than the typical requirements, and get support throughout the application process. To apply through PARTNERS, you must be based in the UK and meet our eligibility criteria.
Entrance courses (INTO)
International Pathway Courses are specialist programmes designed for international students who want to study in the UK. We provide a range of study options for international students in partnership with INTO.
This policy applies to all undergraduate and postgraduate admissions at Newcastle University, including Newcastle University London. It is intended to provide information about our admissions policies and procedures to applicants and potential applicants, to their advisors and family members, and to staff of the University.
Tuition fees and scholarships
Tuition fees for 2021 entry (per year)
Home Fee Students
International Fee Students
The maximum fee that we are permitted to charge for home fee-paying students is set by the UK government.
As a general principle, you should expect the tuition fee to increase in each subsequent academic year of your course, subject to government regulations on fee increases and in line with inflation.
You will be charged tuition fees for each year of your degree programme (unless you are on a shorter exchange programme).
The tuition fee amount you will pay may increase slightly year on year as a result of inflation.
For courses commencing from September 2021 and beyond, EU, other EEA and Swiss nationals will no longer be eligible for home fees or Student Finance England support.
If you are from the EU you will pay international tuition fees.
Year abroad and additional costs
For programmes where you can spend a year on a work placement or studying abroad, you will receive a significant fee reduction for that year.
Some of our degrees involve additional costs which are not covered by your tuition fees.
Find out more about:
Find out more about:
Open days and events
The situation with Covid-19 means that we're unable to hold Open Days on campus. However, you don’t have to visit in person to experience Newcastle.
From the comfort of your sofa you'll be able to:
• explore our beautiful campus
• find out about our vibrant city
• discover what students think about studying at Newcastle
You'll also have the opportunity to speak to academic staff and find out more about the subjects you're interested in.
How to apply
Apply through UCAS
To apply for undergraduate study at Newcastle University, you must use the online application system managed by the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS). All UK schools and colleges, and a small number of EU and international establishments, are registered with UCAS. You will need:
- the UCAS name and institution codes for Newcastle University (NEWC/N21)
- the UCAS code for the course you want to apply for
- the UCAS 'buzzword' for your school or college
If you are applying independently, or are applying from a school or college which is not registered to manage applications, you will still use the Apply system. You will not need a buzzword.Apply through UCAS
Apply through an agent
International students often apply to us through an agent. Have a look at our recommended agents and get in touch with them.