Chinese Language and Culture

Chinese Language and Culture


Western's Chinese Language and Culture program provides students with the opportunity to become competent communicators in Chinese language and culture, shared by 1.3 billion people, approximately one-fourth of the world’s population. 

Chinese Language and Culture program students engage in a rigorous curriculum with the goal of obtaining a competitive position in our increasingly globalized world. The study of Chinese Language and Culture focuses on communicative skills and cultural awareness, which are essential for success in career pursuits such as business, education, public service, and technology related to China, Chinese people, and Chinese language. With the addition of a teaching endorsement, this program prepares students to become successful language teachers at the secondary education level. 

The Modern and Classical Language Department is part of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences.

Portrait of Zachary New

“In the Chinese program, each and every professor has a personal connection with the students they are teaching. They are willing to go above and beyond to help you get where you would like to go and are passionate about their students.” 

Zachary New
Chinese Language and Culture Major

Beyond the Classroom

Students who have taken one or two years of Chinese are encouraged to study Chinese abroad, especially when faculty-led programs are available. Students also have the opportunity to teach student-led workshops for Western's Employee Language Program, or get involved with Chinese Language study groups. The Chinese Student Association organizes an annual Chinese New Year Celebration and a calligraphy exhibit of student works.

Careers and Graduate Studies

In the last few years, a clear trend has appeared among students studying Chinese at Western: more than half are interested in pursuing a career related to China in such fields as business, finance, environment, or public service. To prepare those students to succeed in reaching their career goals, it is essential for them to develop not only language competence but more importantly cultural competence so as to warrant effective intercultural communication.

Around half of the students in the program are double majors in Chinese and Business; the other half either major solely in Chinese or double major in another subject such as, one of the sciences, Linguistics, Education, East Asian Studies, Economics, Political Science, or History. Chinese Language and Culture Studies lends itself to a variety of educational and career goals. 


Sample Jobs

  • Jobs involving businesses in Chinese-speaking countries
  • Interpreter
  • Foreign Correspondent
  • Foreign Service Officer
  • FBI Agent
  • Educator
  • Linguist
  • Travel Writer
  • All careers involving communication

Requirements and Course Details

To learn more about this program, including grade requirements, a course listing, how to declare the major, and more, see the Program of Study Details.