Simultaneous B.A./M.A. Degree

It is possible to complete a simultaneous B.A./M.A. degree in East Asian Studies, but it is a very demanding process. By pursuing a simultaneous bachelor’s and master’s degrees in East Asian Studies, a student is extending his or her undergraduate program into the graduate level of study. Study at this level is demanding. It requires significant preparation before entering the program and a high degree of dedication on the part of students who must be able to complete advanced courses while meeting the general requirements for graduation from Yale College.

To succeed in the program, students must progress steadily from undergraduate- to graduate- level research and writing. Thus, while students may not concentrate all of their graduate-level coursework in the final year, they are expected to complete certain foundational work before enrolling in classes at the graduate level. For the same reason, students’ work in graduate-level classes is expected to display more sophistication in linguistic and analytical skills than expected for undergraduate courses. Only those students who have reached advanced levels of language study in Chinese or Japanese early in their careers at Yale and have completed coursework that qualifies them to gain admission to graduate courses in the area(s) of their disciplinary concentration within East Asian Studies (e.g., Chinese or Japanese literature, History, History of Art, Anthropology, Economics, Political Science, or Sociology) by the junior year should consider applying for the simultaneous degree.

To be eligible for the simultaneous award of the Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees, applicants must by the end of their fifth term of enrollment have achieved at least two-thirds A or A– grades in all of their course credits as well as in all of the course credits directly relating to their major.

While the formal proposal to pursue simultaneous degrees is due by the last day of classes in their fifth term of enrollment in Yale College, he or she should begin consulting with the East Asian Studies Director of Undergraduate Studies (DUS) and the Director of Graduate Studies (DGS) during the sophomore year and must begin developing a formal proposal during the fall of the junior year. If the DUS and DGS approve the proposal, it is forwarded to the Yale College Dean’s Office, where a joint committee of Yale College and the Graduate School acts upon the department’s nomination and notifies the student of acceptance into the program. Proposals must meet all of the requirements outlined in YCPS regarding academic achievement and the pattern of enrollment in graduate courses.

General requirements

Graduate work must not be entirely concentrated in the final two terms, and students in the program must take at least six term courses outside the major during their last four terms at Yale and at least two undergraduate courses during their last two terms. 

Students may not enroll in Yale College for more than eight terms in order to qualify for the simultaneous award of both degrees. It is possible to earn both degrees in fewer than eight terms, but not by the use of acceleration credits. Upon acceptance into the program, a student who has accelerated by the use of acceleration credits will automatically be decelerated, and may not, so long as the student remains in the simultaneous degree program, subsequently employ the credits to accelerate.

Number of courses required

In addition to the normal requirements for the B.A. in East Asian Studies published in Yale College Programs of Study (YCPS), students must complete eight graduate-level courses with grades of A in at least two term courses (or in one year course) and with a B average in the remaining ones.

Students enrolling in a course that carries both an undergraduate and a graduate number must do so under the undergraduate number. Students planning to apply to the program who enroll in such a course may request the permission of the instructor to complete the graduate-level requirements of the course and petition to have it converted to the graduate number on the academic record if they are subsequently admitted to the program. The petition, which is made to the director of the program, must be accompanied by certification that the course instructor has approved the student’s proposal to complete the course at its graduate level.

Language study requirements for application

Students must complete the equivalent of the third year of study of modern Chinese or Japanese by the end of the summer of their sophomore year in order to be eligible to apply for the simultaneous B.A. and M.A. degrees.

Approval of course schedules

Following notification that they have been accepted into the Program for the Simultaneous Award of the Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees, students must have their course schedules approved each term both by the director of undergraduate studies and by the director of graduate studies.

Courses counted toward both the B.A. and M.A. degrees

Students may count up to two courses toward fulfillment of both the undergraduate and graduate portions of the requirements for the simultaneous degree.

Up to two term courses in Chinese or Japanese language numbered above 150 may be counted toward the eight graduate courses required

This includes literary Chinese or Japanese. (The Department of East Asian Languages & Literatures language courses are no longer double-numbered, except for courses in literary Chinese and Japanese.)

Directed Readings

Directed Reading courses (usually numbered 900 in the departments in which they are offered) are not intended to substitute for graduate seminars in meeting the graduate portion of the requirements. These courses may only be used to fulfill the graduate requirements when staffing conditions, such as faculty leaves, limit the number (not the topic) of graduate seminars available to students pursuing the simultaneous degree.

Additional requirements and expectations

Students electing to fulfill the requirements of the simultaneous B.A./M.A. degree in East Asian Studies will be expected to fulfill the senior year requirement for the major by electing the senior essay option for the major (i.e., a one-term senior essay in EAST 480a or b or a one-credit, two-term, senior research project in EAST 491 culminating in an essay). However, a graduate seminar that is not double-numbered and that requires a substantial research paper, taken in either term of the senior year, may count toward fulfillment of the senior requirement with permission of the DUS.

General Regulations for eligibility and the requirements for Simultaneous Award of the Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees can be found online here.