The aim of the four-semester program is to build solid country, linguistic and methodological competencies for comparative cultural, inter- and transnational work and research in Europe and East Asia. The program is designed to lead to a Master's degree at the degree at the University of Bonn and a second Master's degree at either the Japanese or the Korean partner university. The program therefore includes mandatory one-semester study visits to Japan and Korea. For the successful completion at the respective partner university, additional achievements outside the core curriculum described below are still required, which are not part of this study program description.


The program builds on linguistic and methodological knowledge and skills acquired in a Japan- or Korea-related undergraduate program. This knowledge is extended to a second country – for Japanologists: Korea; for Koreanists: Japan – as well as to a European perspective. In their research, students examine both countries, preferably from a comparative perspective that includes Europe.

Program Structure

All TEACH students take the core curriculum, which consists of three fields of study:

  1. Regional Studies
    In this field of study, students deepen their knowledge of the history and culture of Germany and Europe, Japan, Korea, and East Asia. They learn to discover and classify commonalities, but also divisive developments between these countries and regions.
  2. Joint Research Studies
    Germany, Japan and Korea have been connected in many ways since their modernization in the 19th and 20th centuries, but they have also developed differently. These connections and developments are the focus of the Joint Research Studies. They are jointly organized by lecturers from all three universities. Here, regional integration, cultural comparison, and international relations are examined. In the joint discussions and supervised written papers, students also practice exchanging their scientific findings in the three languages involved.
  3. Language Studies
    Bonn students expand their knowledge of their first East Asian language (Japanese or Korean) and acquire or deepen their knowledge of the other language. Communication in the joint courses can therefore take place in any of the three languages. To bridge the gap, all universities also offer courses in English. In this way, the success of the study program is ensured at all places of study.

The didactic focus of the program is on seminars, in which teachers and students jointly explore scientific issues. In the linguistic field, the skills of cultural studies reading and writing scientific texts are strengthened.


All compulsory modules are credited with 10 LP. Elective modules consist of three modules of language instruction in Japanese and Korean. Thus, compulsory modules account for 60 LP, while elective modules account for 30 LP. Another 30 LP can be earned in the department through the master's thesis, which is scheduled for the fourth semester.

This results in the following study structure:

  • 1st Semester:
    „German and European Studies“ and „Cultural Comparison“ modules in the compulsory area, one Japanese or Korean module in the compulsory elective area.
  • 2nd Semester:
    Modules „Japanese and East Asian Studies“ and „International Relations“ in the compulsory area, one module Japanese or Korean in the elective area.
  • 3rd Semester:
    „Korean and East Asian Studies“ and „Regional Integration“ modules in the compulsory area, one module Japanese or Korean in the elective area.

Sample Study Plan English Module Handbook (inofficial translation)

Didactic Concept

In the course types seminar and exercise, the teaching is oriented towards the following overarching didactic goals:

  • Development of scientific knowledge through individual knowledge acquisition.
  • Development of questions and discussion of scientific knowledge in groups.
  • development of individual learning strategies.
  • Goal-oriented reflection and control of the learning process according to personal and professional objectives.
  • Reflected application of the acquired knowledge and associated skills for self-directed learning.

Module final examinations

The term paper represents an exercise in academic writing in an assessed manner in preparation for the Master's thesis. Decisive emphasis is placed on independence and originality in the choice of topic and question, completeness of sources and representations to be selected, and consideration of the current state of research. Presentations as admission to the examination also comply with this didactic concept.


Applications to the program in Bonn are possible for the winter semester only; in Korea and Japan, for the summer (spring) semester only.