South East Asia is geographically identified as a group of islands between China and Australasia. These nations include Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines and Singapore, as well as Laos, Cambodia, Thailand and Vietnam which are on the mainland and are extremely popular destinations for students travelling on a gap year! Asian Studies incorporates the history, geography and language of the area, along with religions – which are wide-ranging, including Buddhism, Christianity and Islam – and the study of modern culture.
Generally, universities are looking for hardworking students, with history and geography A-levels and should expect grades showing AAB on A Level results day. However, students should confirm the entry requirements for their chosen universities and degree courses to ensure they are on the right track for admittance.
There are many study options for those individuals interested in studying in this area, from South East Asian studies with or without a year abroad, and International Management and South-east Asian Studies as well as gaining a Bachelor’s of Arts degree in a South-east Asian language, such as Indonesian, Thai or Burmese.
Students who would love the opportunity to travel and study abroad as part of their studies should consider a sandwich course, where they can visit the area or country that they are studying.
Asian studies departments within institutions usually offer a number of dual honours degrees, allowing students to combine a cultural education with a different passion of the candidate, offering the opportunity to explore two strands in greater detail.
One of the skills which are valued by companies and employers is the ability to speak another language, as it shows promise of international relations and relationships. Studying in this area is not as common as other subjects, which can help to separate you from the crowd, it also allows the ability for individuals to stretch themselves to try something different.
Studying this degree opens up the opportunity to study abroad and this is reflected in the range of modules students can select if they do wish to learn overseas. Students are able to tailor their degree according to their aspirations of travelling the globe (Learn more – Thinking of studying abroad).
This area of study also attracts lecturers and esteemed academics to the UK to teach the subject, giving candidates some of the best minds in the class with them.
Introductory and intermediate courses in Asian studies and languages use an array of learning experiences and techniques. Most units are taught through formal lectures and related tutorials and seminars. Assessment is a combination of written examinations and coursework completion, as well as presentation and group work, these will vary from each institution, which is why choosing the right university is personal to each student and each student will have different preferences.
One valuable skill that students can gain from studying Asian studies is the ability to speak a second language and hold the knowledge of that culture – which is great for business and international perspectives.
Students who attend universities gain a number of vital skills from time management and the ability to work towards a deadline which will prepare them for employment upon graduation. Studying for a degree also increases organisation skills as well as learning to work with others during presentations and group work. Students will also learn critical thinking, IT knowledge and writing skills through assignments.
Many UK degree courses offer tuition for natives of these countries, and home students which ensure a multicultural working environment and a chance to meet others from all areas of life. This degree offers a great insight into the nations of Asia, not to mention Business, Economy, History, Language, Geography, Politics, Media, Culture and Religion.
This degree also works well as part of a joint honours degree and can be paired with politics, management or a foreign language.
It also provides a chance to study abroad, through a single or joint honours degree.
There are lots of employment options for graduates of Asian studies. Career paths which are directly related to your degree course include; consultancy, diplomacy, journalism, finance and banking, politics and international relations and tourism.
More specific job roles available; working at consultancies, offices or even embassies which deal with Asian matters and affairs. Candidates looking to work in journalism or banking should get in contact with financial organisations and specialised newspapers for experience. Narrowing experience and gaining a portfolio of work within one area is helpful; however, general experience invaluable setups won’t harm your chances either
Other employment areas related to this degree course are; arts management, marketing, human resources, international trade, translation and interpretation as well as teaching or further academic study, which in turn can lead to greater employment opportunities.
Most employers value experience within their candidates, especially experience which is relevant an in regards to this degree area that includes working with natives and speakers in Asia. Working in nations within Asia is not necessary, but it can help you when looking for employment (Learn more – how much will it cost to study abroad).
There is an exclusive range of Master’s degree programmes for students who wish to continue with their studies, from South East Asian Studies, Pacific Asian Studies, Chinese Business and the Asia Pacific, and East Asian Regional Development. There are also research degrees available.
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