Program Overview: The Master of Arts in Asia Pacific Studies (MAPS) is designed to serve the needs of recent college graduates and working professionals who wish advanced education in East Asian cultures and societies, and students whose objective is to pursue a career in Asia Pacific affairs through graduate study. This innovative program provides participants with a multidisciplinary liberal arts background that will be useful in a broad spectrum of professions, including careers in business, the public sector, education, international service organizations, and social work. It combines the comparative study of Asian and Pacific cultures and social structures with the humanities, arts, social sciences, and an integral Asian language component.
The Asia Pacific Studies master's program offers a unique learning model built around an interdisciplinary team approach to understanding East Asia and Asia Pacific affairs in a broader Pacific Rim context. The program focuses on the transition from traditional to modern cultures and the emergence of the "new Asia" in the latter half of the 20th century.
This innovative program features:
- An evening program which takes just 21 months to complete.
- Small 'cohort-style' classes, where most students go through the whole program together, providing mutual support and encouragement for all class members.
- A multidisciplinary curriculum exploring the history, philosophy, religion, literature, societies, cultures, politics, and economics of 'Greater' China, Japan, Korea in the broader context of a Pacific Rim which includes South and Southeast Asia, Oceania, and North and South America. Emphasis is on the transition from traditional to modern cultures and the emergence of the 'new Asia' in the latter part of the 20th century.
- Intensive study of either Japanese, Chinese, or Korean, with classes during the first year and a special language-only intensive summer session between the first and second years. The goal of the 12-credit language component is to lay foundations in grammar, conversation, reading, and writing as a basis for further study, or to solidify language abilities already acquired. Language study is mandatory, but students who come to the program with intermediate or advanced competence in an Asian language may choose to continue their language study or to substitute directed research where appropriate.
- Students have the opportunity for their research to be published in the program's own student/faculty online journal, Asia Pacific: Perspectives.
Students also benefit from many professional development opportunities and a voluntary career mentoring program that pairs them with successful professionals in their area of interest.
- Bachelor's degree (or equivalent) from an accredited institution of higher learning.
- Minimum undergraduate cumulative grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 grading scale.
- Official transcripts of all previous undergraduate and graduate work.
A résumé for those applicants with work experience.
- Two letters of recommendation (one professional, one academic, if possible).
- A personal essay of between 1500 and 2500 words describing the applicant's reasons for pursuing a master's degree in Asia Pacific Studies at USF.
- An interview with the MAPS director, either in person or by phone.
- An official TOEFL score (above 580-paper test) for international students.
A total of 36 graduate units in six 16-week seminars, two 16-week language semesters, and one 8-week Asian Language Intensive Summer Session between the first and second years.