Explore cultures, texts and languages that have existed for more than three thousand years, while simultaneously evaluating the current social, political and economic climate.

Foster skills that go beyond the ability to simply speak or read another language. Develop an awareness that prepares you to adapt and communicate in an ever-evolving world. Whether you choose a major in Chinese Language and Literature or minors in Chinese language or Japanese language, immerse yourself in the policy, sustainability, art and history of a cultural region within a global context.

Earl Simons leans against a white column, holding a trumpet and smiling at the camera.

Student Perspective

“I want my experience in Japan to enlighten me about new opportunities I could take. That’s what I am most excited for; I want to be inspired to do more things.”

Earl Simons, Jr. ’22
Government, Trumpet Performance, Japanese
Cambria Heights, New York


Unbagging First-Year Studies

Martyn Smith, director of First-Year Studies, unbags the 10 works being used in First-Year Studies during the 2021-2022 academic year.

Close-up of intermediate Chinese textbook.

History of the Chinese Language (in English)

Discover the history of the Chinese language, including the structural characteristics of the language, invention and evolution of the writing system, general survey of the major dialects, dichronic changes, spread and influence of the Chinese lexicon in East Asia.

In addition to a broad range of language courses, you can also learn about the diverse history and cultures of China and Japan.

View the requirements for a major in Chinese language and literature or a minor in Chinese or Japanese language.

Learn more about the expertise of Chinese and Japanese faculty members.

Image of the Shanghai skyline at night

Go Global

You can go deeper and explore China or Japan yourself through several study abroad options. Visit Asia with one of Lawrence's affiliated programs.

Students study and relax in a lodge

Full Immersion

Take part in immersive weekend language retreats at Björklunden, Lawrence’s beautiful estate on the shores of Lake Michigan.

The Chandler Senior Experience

As a senior, you'll spend an one-term independent study that culminates in the completion of a substantial paper or project derived from previous coursework in your areas of interest. If you are sufficiently advanced in your Chinese language skills, you are encouraged to use some Chinese language sources in carrying out your research.

Recent Senior Experiences include:

  • An Analysis of Chinese Practices of Financial Management
  • Lives of Sustenance Farmers, Migrant Workers and Individuals of Minority Ethnic Groups in Southwest China
  • Creative Writing in Chinese: Nirvana High
Japanese woodblock art

Hands-on History

Interact with important artifacts as you explore Lawrence’s broad and deep collection of Japanese woodblock prints.

Students fist-bump at Commencement

Chinese & Japanese Outcomes

Linguistic and cultural proficiency prepares you for a global career or graduate study.

Can you picture yourself at Lawrence? Apply for admission.

The best way to find out if Lawrence is the university for you is by visiting.

Your virtual tour starts at the Arch but be sure to check out Main Hall, to explore language learning spaces.