Asian Studies

Many leading scholars have declared this century the Asian Century. Not only is Asia home to nearly 60% of the world's population and much of its history, but today it is also one of the most important regions of the world. The Asian Studies program is therefore dedicated to the study of Asia, both as a vital part of the world today and as a central part of human history.

SMU's Asian Studies is the University's institutional nexus of experts, events, and programs related to Asia and is the key contact point for the media and the greater DFW area.  

For undergraduates, Asian Studies is also an interdisciplinary minor that introduces students to different forms of political activity, social relations, religious traditions, and literatures. Students explore a world that since the nineteenth century has come to share in the dilemmas of modernity that challenge us all. For some students, this inquiry provides a challenging and satisfying addition to a liberal arts education. For some, it is an opportunity to restore connections to an ancestral past. For others it leads to graduate studies or is the beginning of a professional career in international business or law.


  • Award-winning faculty experts covering almost all areas of Asia and nearly all of the humanities and social science disciplines
  • Events, lectures, and film series bring in internationally-renowned speakers. Most are open to the public; all are free
  • Because of its interdisciplinary nature, a minor in Asian Studies combines well with other majors such as business, economics, history, journalism, marketing, political science, public policy, sociology or religious studies
  • Our graduates have careers in government, international business, law, mass media, and education.  Several have attended highly-ranked graduate schools in international relations, business, and the humanities
  • Asian Studies promotes opportunities for internships with leading companies in Asia
  • SMU offers language classes in Chinese, Hindi, and Japanese
  • Students are encouraged to study abroad in one of the SMU-affiliated programs in Beijing, Kyoto, Suzhou, or Taipei