How to apply to and study in the Asian Programme?


The Asian Programme is an interdisciplinary Bachelor’s level study programme which provides students with basic knowledge of Asia. For students whose study or career plans relate to Asia, this programme provides them with a good introduction to the region. The programme is coordinated by the Finnish University Network for Asian Studies.

The Asian Programme is arranged on the Internet using a learning environment such as Moodle. The courses consist of lecture presentations, literature exams, web assignments and essays. The language of instruction of all courses is English.

Structure of the Asian Programme:

You can either just take individual courses from the Asian Programme or do the whole Asian Programme as a minor by completing at least 25 credits. If you want to complete  Asian Programme as a minor, you have two options: 1) take all the 5 Asian Programme courses and get 27 credits or 2) take at least three Asian Programme basic courses and  also additional advanced Master’s level courses. In total this should add up to a minimum of 25 ECTS.

You can combine courses from the Asian Programme with Master’s level courses. See the list of possible Master’s level courses. You can also use the language courses organised by the Asianet in the Asian Programme.

Completing an online course requires good study skills, self-discipline and active learning and is therefore not recommended for first-year students.

Asian Programme basic courses – autumn 2018 and spring 2019

Please note, that there are separate application periods for autumn and spring courses (see below for more instructions).

    1. Contemporary East Asia (6 ECTS) (autumn term 2018)
      The course provides students with basic knowledge on today’s social and political phenomena in East Asia. In addition to addressing recent developments in individual countries, the course also deals with emerging regional forms of cooperation.
    2. Contemporary Southeast Asia (5 ECTS) (autumn term 2018)
      This course aims to give students an insight into the rapid economic, political and environmental change in contemporary Southeast Asia. Students will study the situational characteristics of the environmental change and state formation processes in the region.
    3. Culture in East and Southeast Asia (5 ECTS) (spring term 2019)
      The course aims to give insight into East and Southeast Asia through the viewpoint of the central values in the region and cultural encounters. Students can learn more deeply about their preferred area when selecting the literature for the book exam and topic for the essay.
    4. Business in East and Southeast Asia (6 ECTS) (Spring term 2019) 
      The course aims to give insight into East and Southeast Asia as a macro region with increasing integration into the global economy. The course focuses on the interplay between the international, national, and sub-national systems in Asia Pacific. Economic and political institutions as well as business environments are discussed leading to an analysis of the region as an operational environment for multinational enterprise
    5. Contemporary South Asia (5 ECTS) (spring term 2019)
      The course aims to construct a holistic view of the societies and cultures of South Asia with a special focus on globalisation. Other topics include politics, religion, gender, development and urbanisation.

If you cannot fit the Asian Programme into your degree, see our 10 ECTS Mini Minor in Asian Studies. In the Mini Minor you can combine one basic level course with advanced level courses. Read more about the Mini Minor.

How to apply?

1. University students who hold a valid study right at one of the University Network’s member universities can apply to courses and take them for free (degree and exchange students). Just fill in the application form during the application period.

Member universities are:
Aalto University
University of Helsinki
University of Jyväskylä
University of Tampere
University of Turku
University of Vaasa
Åbo Akademi University

2. Students at universities of applied sciences can participate for free in the Asian Programme if their school endorses the institutional study fee. Study fees are 700€ for large course package (e.g. the Asian Programme Minor at least 25 ECTS, max. 28 ECTS) OR 350€ for a small course package (max 10 ECTS e.g. Mini Minor) OR 40€/ECTS. Fee for not completed credits is 10€/ECTS. First confirm the endorsement of your study fees from your own institution with this letter of confirmation:(AP_puoltokirje_amk_syksy_2018_kevat_2019.

Send it to the Coordination Unit of the University Network for Asian Studies before the application deadline. Fill in the Asianet application form on Asianet-website before deadline.

3. Self-paying students (other individuals including students from non-member universities and students from universities of applied sciences whose school will not pay the study fee) who are interested in Asian studies can apply to the programme as independent students. With regards to non-Finnish citizens who apply to the Programme as self-paying students, the Network makes the decisions on admission case by case. The study fee for self-paying students is 250 € for (max. 28 ECTS). First, fill in the Asianet application form (from above) and identify yourself as a self-paying student in the questionnaire. Then, fill in this separate application form for non-degree studies at the University of Turku (hakemus_erillisiin_opintoihin verkostoversio 2018_final) and send it to  “Yhteiskuntatieteellisen tiedekunnan opintotoimisto “Asianet” 20014 Turun yliopisto”. After the application period the Coordination Unit will send you instructions on how to pay the study fee to the University of Turku. Please pay the fee before the courses start. Read there the instructions on how to fill in the

When to apply

  • Next application period is in September 2019. The course selection has not yet been confirmed.

Before applying to the courses, students should check if they are able to include these studies in their degree at their home university.