A B.A. in Korean is a gateway for students to engage with a culture whose art, music, and technological innovations shape lives around the globe. Students learn to read, write, and converse in Korean through careful and extensive study of Korean literature, popular culture, and linguistics. Distinctive coursework in the major is taught by professors who are leading researchers in their fields. Beyond the classroom, students benefit from language-intensive study abroad opportunities, academic resources such as the East Asia Library, and co-curricular options including a Korean singing and reading club. Alumni, as multilingual professionals with in-demand skills, find an advantage entering business and nonprofit work, STEM fields, graduate programs, and more across the globe.
Introductory Korean language courses are available in the fall or summer quarters. Students should sign up for introductory courses as early as possible in order to fulfill the major’s language requirement. If you have previous experience with Korean, see the department's information on proficiency exams and placement interviews.
Admissions, Advising & Student Resources
Please see our Undergraduate Programs section for information about applying to the program, career paths, scholarships, and other student resources.
NOTE: The below requirements apply to students who declare the Korean major in Winter Quarter 2019 or later. The previous requirements will still apply to those who declared the Korean major before Winter Quarter 2019 unless special provision is made. Please contact a departmental advisor if you are interested in this option.
The Korean Language & Literature major has a requirement of 50-75 credits. The actual number of credits required depends on the level of Korean language attained upon entering the University of Washington.
I. Language Courses:
15-45 credits, with a minimum of 15 credits beyond the second year, drawn from the following courses:
- KOREAN 101, 102, 103 First-Year Korean
- KOREAN 201, 202, 203 Second-Year Korean
- KOREAN 301, 302, 303 Third-Year Korean
- KOREAN 415, 416, 417 Readings in Korean Literature and Culture
II. Area-Related Humanities & Social Science Courses:
30-35 credits. Suggested courses include:
- KOREAN 360 Topics in Korean Literature and Culture
- KOREAN 365 Korean Pop Culture
- KOREAN 435 Seminar in Modern Korean Literature and Culture
- KOREAN 440 Introduction to Korean Linguistics
- KOREAN 442 Special Topics in Korean Language and Culture
- KOREAN 415 Readings in Korean Literature and Culture, 5 credits
- KOREAN 416 Readings in Korean Literature and Culture, 5 credits
- KOREAN 417 Readings in Korean Literature and Culture, 5 credits
- ASIAN 207 Special Topics in the Literature & Culture of Asia (when Korea is the topic)
- ASIAN 263 Great Works of Asian Literature (when Korea is the topic)
- ASIAN 498 Special Topics (when Korea is topic)
- ASIAN 401 Introduction to Asian Linguistics
- ASIAN 404 Writing Systems, 3 credits
- ANTH 448 Modern Korean Society
- HSTAS 212 History of Korean Civilization
- HSTAS 481 History of Traditional Korea: Earliest Times to the Nineteenth Century
- HSTAS 482 History of Modern Korea: 1860 to the Present
- JSIS 484 Special Topics (when Korea is topic)
- JSIS A 212 History of Korean Civilization
- JSIS A 213 The Korean Peninsula and World Politics
- JSIS A 439 Politics of Divided Korea
- JSIS A 448 Modern Korean Society
- JSIS A 466 Comparative Politics and Korea Studies
- POL S 213 The Korean Peninsula and World Politics
- POL S 403 Advanced Seminar in International Relations (when the topic is Korea)
- POL S 439 Politics of Divided Korea
- POL S 480 Comparative Politics and Korea Studies
- LING 400 Survey of Linguistic Method and Theory
You can view an up-to-date list of approved courses here.
Students who only have 15 credits of language must take 35 credits from Area-Related Humanities & Social Science Courses requirement, for a total of 50 credits towards the major.
Courses taken to satisfy the language requirement may not be used simultaneously to satisfy the area-related humanities and social sciences requirement of the major.
Updated: Winter 2019