BA Modern Sinology

The BA in Modern Sinology is a so-called “Mono-BA”, i.e. a single-subject BA (as opposed to a two-subject BA, or double major). In this degree program the mayor Chinese is combined with a minor (“subject-external area of competence”) such as religion, political sciences or economics. It is aimed at those students who wish to study China in all its linguistic and cultural facets. This study program requires very high levels of motivation and resilience, as students are required to learn the modern Chinese language in both its spoken and written forms, master the basics of classical Chinese and complete both introductory and advanced seminars on topics relating to modern China.

Only those will truly gain insight into the complex developments and structures of modern and contemporary China who have not only profound linguistic competence, but also cultural competence along with a basic knowledge of Chinese history, economics, society, intellectual history, law and politics. However, it’s almost impossible to penetrate Chinese thought without knowledge of pre-modern Chinese. Therefore, the BA Modern Sinology combines intensive language training with an introduction to pre-modern China and an examination of topics relevant to modern China. A minor subject (subject-external area of competence) allows for further individual profiling and can be chosen from a range of subjects such as History of Religion, Social and Cultural Anthropology, Sociology, Political Sciences, Law, Economics and others.

Excellent language teaching is one of the major advantages of studying Sinology in Göttingen. Language courses are taught exclusively by native Chinese speakers and in groups of less than 15 students. To help you consolidate and expand your language skills in a Chinese-language environment, we will advise and support you both in preparation for and during your stay abroad. Thanks to our long-term partnerships with universities in mainland China and Taiwan, as well as to regular evaluations of the progress our students make there, we also ensure that program participants attain optimal language training abroad.

In addition to the benefits of the program, the BA in Modern Sinology you will receive upon graduation is a recognized degree from an internationally respected university. The University of Göttingen and its associated institutes regularly occupy top spots in national and international university rankings.

Distribution of program content BA Modern Sinology

This graph shows the approximate distribution of the degree program content.

General Information
  • Degree: Bachelor of Arts
  • Standard period of study: 6 semesters
  • Starting semester: Winter semester
  • Admission to the winter semester:
    1st subject semester: open admission (enrolment without previous application);
    2nd to 6th subject semester: open admission (enrolment without previous application)
    International applicants (non-EU): (Göttingen International and Team of the International Office)
Degree program description

The course of studies in the bachelor’s degree program “East Asian Studies/Modern Sinology” is divided into the areas of language training, knowledge transfer, theory and methodological training, research and preparation for further studies as well as preparation for professional careers.

Language Training:
The students develop basic qualifications in modern, standard Chinese language (spoken and written) as a prerequisite for the mastery of everyday communication. There is an introduction to the pre-modern literary language. The fifth semester is spent at a Chinese or Taiwanese partner university.

Knowledge transfer:
Students acquire introductory qualifications in the fields of history and philosophy/religion. Additionally, students choose three from the following five fields to acquire introductory qualifications: politics, society, economics, and law of modern China and linguistics of modern Chinese. These introductory qualifications enable students to understand processes in modern and contemporary China.

Theory and methodological training:
The course provides a critical understanding of important cultural and social science theories and methods in their application to the subject of China.

Academic research work and preparation for advanced degree programs:
Students obtain the ability to deepen the knowledge acquired independently and to develop knowledge of the current state of research. They acquire the capability to take a differentiated approach to reflection regarding modern China and are introduced to scientific work on issues that arise in this context.

Minor subject (subject-external area of competence):
A minor subject (subject-external area of competence) allows for further individual profiling and can be chosen from a range of subjects such as History of Religion, Social and Cultural Anthropology, Sociology, Political Sciences, Law, Economics and others.

Career Prospects

The BA in Modern Sinology provides students with intensive language training students and the opportunity to analyze modern China with respect to the fields of history, philosophy, religion, politics, society, economics and law. Graduates are thus effectively prepared for any career requiring excellent language skills and specialized knowledge of the development of modern China. In addition to research activities, these include careers in media, foundations, government agencies, NGOs and the economic sector. The program focuses on collecting and critically interpreting China-related data on the basis of Chinese source texts.

Language of the program

The Language of the program is German.

Knowledge of English and one other modern foreign language is recommended, at least at the level B2 of the common European framework of Reference for languages, in each case.