The fluid processes of transnationalization and modernization in Asia mean that it is increasingly anachronistic to approach the study of contemporary Asia from the perspective of just one country or a singular discipline. The Contemporary Asian Studies (CAS) major and minor programs offered by the Asian Institute at the Munk School of Global Affairs provide a multi-disciplinary lens through which to examine the linkages between Asia’s history, its emergence onto the global stage, and the challenges and opportunities inherent in its modernity, as well as Asia’s future(s) in the global arena.
The CAS program is thematically-driven, reflective of contemporary issues that are of relevance to understanding the complexities of today’s Asia. The CAS courses are distinctly pan-Asian in geographic scope, providing empirical and critical coverage of South, Southeast, and East Asia through multiple disciplinary approaches to the study of the region, including Anthropology, Economics, Geography, History, Political Science, Religion, and Sociology.
By exposing students to current issues and debates in Asia, the CAS program is designed to prepare students for careers in or about Asia. In addition, the Asian Institute is committed to facilitating overseas experiential learning opportunities, including field schools, international course modules, professional internships, and study abroad opportunities. Upper-level CAS courses are designed to be research-intensive. There is no language requirement for the CAS major or minor. However, students are strongly encouraged to study an Asian language. One FCE in an approved Asian language can be credited towards the major or minor degree.
Students may also be interested in the South Asian Studies minor, which is closely connected with the Contemporary Asian Studies program.
NOTE: Students who wish to count courses towards the CAS major or minor that are not listed as CAS courses or in Group A, B, or C below (including U of T courses and transfer credits) must seek pre-approval from the program director prior to taking the course. Asian content does not guarantee that the course will be approved for CAS program credit.
Munk School of Global Affairs, Room 228N
1 Devonshire Place