EAST4530 – Topics in East Asian Culture and History

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Course content

This course focuses on one or more central topics in the field of East Asian culture and history. Such topics may include literature, film, cartoons and other artistic expressions, history and historiography, thought, philosophy and religion.

East Asia is a region with strong historical and cultural links but also with many historical and cultural traits particular to each of the East Asian cultures and regions (Chinese, Japanese, Korean and Tibetan). You are encouraged to approach the study of East Asia comparatively across Japan, Korea, China and/or Tibet.

During the course, you will study topics in the context of major theoretical approaches relevant to the analysis of East Asian culture and history. The course includes reading, analysis and discussion of East Asian sources in English translations. Training in essay writing and oral presentation is an integrated part of the course.

Learning outcome

  • You will learn to identify, summarize, and analyze sources directly relevant to the study of key topics in the field of East Asian culture and history.
  • Through teacher guided writing of an essay you will learn to present academic knowledge in a written form.
  • Through class presentations and discussions you will learn to present and debate academic knowledge.


Students who are admitted to study programmes at UiO must each semester register which courses and exams they wish to sign up for in Studentweb.

If you are not already enrolled as a student at UiO, please see our information about admission requirements and procedures.


Formal prerequisite knowledge

Please see the admission requirements defined by one of the relevant programme options, East Asian Culture and History, Chinese Society and Politics or Modern Japan.


The course is taught through a combination of lectures and seminars organised as 10 classes of 2 hours each throughout the semester. The detailed schedule will be updated before semesterstart.

Obligatory activity

  • Active participation and at least 80 per cent attendance in class is required. 
  • An oral presentation related to their final essay. Within a given deadline before their presentation the students need to submit an outline of their paper including a bibliography. The draft is to be submitted in Canvas within a given deadline.

An approved draft is only valid for one semester.

In accordance with the Faculty's guidelines, all compulsory tuition activities are prerequisites for being allowed to sit for the final examination. In the event of illness, you must submit documentation showing that your illness has prevented you from participation in the activity in question. Contact the student advisor the same day as the activity is taking place. Documentation must be submitted to the student advisor within three working days.


A preliminary draft of the final essay must be approved by the teacher in order to take the exam (see "Teaching").

The exam consists of an essay of 10 pages (2300 characters per page (excluding spaces), plus bibliography) on a subject approved by the teacher.

The essay is to be submitted in Inspera within the given deadline.

Grading guidelines

Submit assignments in Inspera

You submit your assignment in the digital examination system Inspera. Read about how to submit assignments in Inspera.

Use of sources and citation

You should familiarize yourself with the rules that apply to the use of sources and citations. If you violate the rules, you may be suspected of cheating/attempted cheating.

Examination support material

No examination support material is allowed.

Language of examination

The examination text is given in English, and you submit your response in English.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

Withdrawal from an examination

It is possible to take the exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, this will be counted as an examination attempt.

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.


The course is subject to continuous evaluation. At regular intervals we also ask students to participate in a more comprehensive evaluation.

Periodic evaluation Autumn 2012

Periodic evaluation Spring 2019

Facts about this course






Offered on an infrequent basis


Offered on an infrequent basis

Teaching language