The Department of East Asian Languages and Literatures offers courses in Chinese, Japanese, and Korean languages, literature, film, theater, and culture.

In our highly rated language classes, students will learn to develop all language skills and use them with fluency and accuracy.

Because linguistic skills alone are not sufficient, students also learn about culture and how to behave appropriately in that culture. Students will also learn about other equally important cultural frameworks through courses on literature, culture, and film courses. EALL is a core department in the Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences that researches and teaches about East Asia (China, Japan, and Korea). About 1200 students study in our Department every year.

Why study East Asian languages and cultures?

  • Studying these languages poses a great deal of intellectual challenge, which provides a seed for personal growth. If you're a student who values challenges and thrive on them, choose one of our languages.
  • In career planning, you will obtain a professional advantage over those who have not studied language. Spanish, Chinese, French, and Japanese are most in-demand, in that order, according to a recent MLA survey.
  • Studying a foreign language facilitates developing an intercultural sensitivity and diversity.
  • Asia is the wave of the future!
    • Chinese is spoken by one out of four people in the world. Japanese ranks ninth in the world; Korean ranks thirteenth. Wouldn't you like to get in on what these 1.2 billion people are talking and reading about?
    • China and Korea are two of the fastest-growing economies in the world. Japan is an economic power, third only to the United States and China in size.
    • Asian companies are everywhere.
  • East Asia requires our attention now.
    • China is the cradle of one of the oldest civilizations.
    • What insights do China, Japan, Korea offer in the arts, literature, and cinema?
    • Why is Asian popular culture enjoyed so much around the world?
    • Understanding Asia is crucial for issues relating to international security.

Regardless of your major, competence in one of our languages will distinguish your list of job credentials. If you're interested in becoming a person with an understanding of the diversity of the world or having an eye toward a future career in politics, business, government, law, computer science, military service, or engineering, you will benefit from studying in our department.

Students who aren't sure about majoring in one of these languages, but would like to add an East Asian perspective should minor in Chinese, Japanese, or Korean minor programs. Consider also enrolling in the Asian Studies Certificate Program

To gain firsthand exposure to East Asia, EALL students will have a good chance of obtaining financial assistance. Every year, more than a dozen students receive financial assistance to study in Asia. You may also apply for internship positions in Asia or in companies in the United States where you can use the skills and knowledge you will acquire in our department.

Mission/Program Description

Our mission is to educate our students to gain fluency, competence, and critical knowledge of the languages and cultures of East Asia. Our faculty produces new knowledge about this region of Asia through talks and publications on cultural artifacts of literature, historical memory, visual studies, translation, and SLA.

Department History

A program in Chinese studies began in the early 1960s and a fulll-fledged department came into existence in 1965. It served only a small number of Chinese and Japanese students then. The Korean language program was moved from the Linguistics Department in the early 2000s. Many renowned scholar-teachers called this Department home, among them Yi-T’ung Wang, J. Thomas Rimer, and Keiko McDonald. Now the Department houses one of the largest Chinese, Japanese, and Korean programs in the northeast.

World Class Facilities

The University of Pittsburgh is one of the leading centers of study relating to East Asia. Our Asian Studies Center promotes, coordinates, and supports a variety of activities, including conferences, workshops, cultural events, research, and teaching on campus and in the region.

The Hillman Library is the home of one of the largest East Asian libraries in the United States, with a total collection of over 430,000 Chinese, Japanese, and Korean books and periodicals. In addition, Hillman Library Media Center has a large collection of East Asian films, which include rare North Korean films, videos, and DVDs, numbering over 5,600 titles.