Chinese Studies is an arts subject offered by the School of Modern Languages, Literatures and Cultures at Maynooth University. It is available in BA Arts Joint Honours (MH101) and also the following degrees BBS International Business (MH404), BBA Business and Languages (MH409) and BA International Finance and Economics (MH401). Students can take Chinese Studies either in the three-year BA degree as a major subject or the four-year BA International with the third year spent at one of Maynooth University 's partner universities in Beijing or Shanghai or other cities in China. Students will graduate with a BA degree awarded by the National University of Ireland or a BA International if they spend a year studying abroad.

The programme is for beginners. No prior knowledge of Chinese is required. In first year students can take Chinese studies with two or three other subjects. In second and third year, Chinese Studies can be carried on as joint honours or as a minor subject in certain programmes.

Further information regarding the Modules can be found in Coursefinder.

Chinese can be taken as an elective module if you are a second year student in certain programmes. The elective module is called CN260 and can be found in Coursefinder. Please also see the following link regarding Elective Modules.

In the age of globalisation, more and more European countries (including Ireland) are entering into exchanges with China, the new economic powerhouse of the world. Increasingly, specialists with a deep knowledge of Chinese language, culture, and society are required to conduct a meaningful dialogue with the relevant Chinese partners. The MA Chinese Studies can deliver much-needed knowledge and skills in this field. The programme is designed for those who want to pursue a professional career in the field of Chinese-EU (and Irish) relations in business, pedagogical, cultural, and related fields. It aims to provide students who already have a background in Chinese language at undergraduate level with academic, analytical, creative, reflective, and presentation skills, and foster interest and involvement in the field of Chinese studies. The programme is also open to native speakers of Chinese who wish to improve their translation and intercultural communication skills. Our graduates are now working in Ireland’s higher education sector, business consultancy firms and other related companies and organisations. The School of Modern Languages, Literatures and Cultures at Maynooth University welcomes you to embark on this exciting academic journey.

The programme involves two elements: a set of modules (60 ECTS) on which students will be examined in January (30 ECTS) and in May/June (30 ECTS), and a dissertation (Minor Thesis) which students complete after their second semester (30 ECTS).
1. In each semester, students are obliged to take one language module (5 ECTS) and two content modules offered by Chinese Studies.
2. Students have to take three content modules offered by the SMLLC: Research Skills 1: Data Collection CFA603 (5 ECTS), Introduction to Intercultural Studies GN612A (5 ECTS) and Theories of Second Language Acquisition ALIS620 (5 ECTS).
3. The Viva Voce Examination (conducted – at least partly – in mandarin Chinese) is in early June. Normally, the external examiner, the Head of Chinese Studies and the thesis supervisor will all be present and act as examiners so as to ensure international standards.
4. The minor thesis will be supervised by SMLLC full-time members of staff after consultation with the student.


The Postgraduate Diploma/Postgraduate Certificate/Professional Certificate in Mandarin Chinese for Teaching at Post-Primary Level aims to provide domestic and international candidates with an opportunity to engage in an accelerated programme of studies specifically tailored to meet the Teaching Council of Ireland’s requirements for registration as an accredited teacher of Mandarin Chinese at post-primary level. It is intended for candidates who already possess a Professional Masters of Education (PME) or equivalent or those who intend to pursue a PME upon completion of this postgraduate diploma. The proposed programme follows a two-pronged approach by offering intensive studies areas in both Mandarin Chinese language and Chinese literary and cultural studies. As a result, students’ knowledge and understanding of important concepts in Chinese culture and society will be enhanced.


The PhD in Chinese Studies offers research degree opportunities for students with specific interest in the fields of Chinese language, literature and culture. The research profiles of staff members are varied, covering cultural and literary analysis with particular emphasis on: Chinese nationalism and quest for national identity; the conflict and communication between China and the West; China’s sport policy and practice; Chinese martial arts; Chinese Buddhism; comparative philosophy; philosophy in literature.

If you have ever wondered what language is and how language shapes and is shaped by human existence or if you have ever asked the question what is culture and how culture shapes and is shaped by increasing intercultural and cross-cultural interaction, then this is the programme for you! Through the degree, you’ll learn about how we acquire and learn different languages in the real world and the classroom setting; how language shapes and is shaped by things like age, gender, race, biological sex, identities, sexuality etc; how the global move towards English is affecting and affected by multilingualism and multiculturalism.
By engaging with different areas of Applied Linguistics and Intercultural Studies and other students on the programme, you’ll get a well-rounded education in the disciplines. Through in-class discussions, group work, presentations, and essay and thesis writing, you’ll develop strong interpersonal skills, written and spoken communications skills applying deep critical thinking and develop original ideas and approaches to existing and new topics. Language evolves on a daily basis so there’s a never-ending number of new developments to explore!
Past graduates from this programme have gone in multiple areas of further study and employment, ranging from PhD studies at Maynooth University, as well as Georgetown University and Yale University in the USA, to teaching at post-primary and university levels nationally and internationally as well as in industry in the areas of publishing, working on natural language processing (e.g. Alexa and Google Home) for large global companies as well as international client relationship management in financial services and global commerce.