Undergraduate Degree & Course Catalog

Japanese - Overview

Department of Linguistics

Contact Information

College of Arts and Sciences
609 Baldy Hall
North Campus
Buffalo, NY 14260-1030

Phone: 716.645.2177
Fax: 716.645.3825
Web Address: http://arts-sciences.buffalo.edu/linguistics/undergraduate/language-degrees/japanese.html
Jean-Pierre Koenig
Mitsuaki Shimojo
Program Director


*Not a baccalaureate degree program
While English continues to be the primary language for international communication, the Japanese language is acquiring status as a major foreign language, particularly for those who aspire to pursue relationships with East Asia as well as Japan. The Japanese language is spoken by the entire population of Japan - about 125 million - and ranks ninth among the languages of the world in terms of the number of native speakers. It is also studied widely as a foreign language in East Asia. Contrary to a common belief that asserts the uniqueness of the Japanese language, it is a very typical human language with respect to grammatical structure.

The Japanese curriculum provides a solid foundation for an understanding and appreciation of the rich and diverse culture of Japan. The language, culture, linguistics, technical Japanese, and pedagogy courses offered are useful to students who aspire to an East Asia-related academic or professional career in education, government, communications, or business, as well as in other fields in the United States and abroad.

The curriculum of the Japanese program includes:
Courses designed to develop or improve competence in spoken and written Japanese through the advanced level;
Courses on Japanese culture, linguistics and pedagogy;
Courses that examine Japanese business culture and vocabulary, and science and technology topics in Japanese.

Special Major
For students who want to further their studies in East Asian languages, a special major in Chinese, Japanese, or Korean can be arranged in consultation with the Language Program director and Special Major Services (275 Park Hall). For more information, see Special Major Services.

Last updated: February 22 2022 21:08:39