MAJORS | Duke Kunshan University



Requirements for All Majors

All students regardless of their choice of major will be required to take the following courses. Other specific major requirements are listed under each major.

Common Core (12 Credits)

Course Code Course Name Course Credit
GCHINA 101 China in the World 4
GLOCHALL 201 Global Challenges in Science, Technology, and Health 4
ETHLDR 201 Ethics, Citizenship & the Examined Life 4

Distributional Requirement and Quantitative Reasoning Course Requirement (16 Credits)

Please see details in Part 3: The Curriculum.

Requirements Course Credit
Arts and Humanities Distributional Requirement 4
Social Sciences Distributional Requirement 4
Natural Sciences Distributional Requirement 4
Quantitative Reasoning Course Requirement 4

Language Courses (8-16 Credits)

Students in the English for academic purposes (EAP) track are required to take eight credits of EAP courses - EAP 101A to EAP 102B; they can also take 200+ level EAP elective courses or WOC courses to further develop their academic English skills.

Students in the Chinese as Second Language (CSL) track need to take 8-16 credits of CHINESE courses appropriate to their Chinese skill level. 

Students in the Third Language track can satisfy their foreign language requirement by taking 8 credits of written and oral communication (WOC) courses or Third Language (TLANG) independent study courses through the Language Learning Studio.

Two Signature Work Capstone Courses (8 credits)

Course Code Course Name Course Credit
CAPSTONE 495 Signature Work Capstone I 4
CAPSTONE 496 Signature Work Capstone II 4

Required Experiential Learning

1 Non-credit Mini-Term Course
1 Signature Educational Experience: Research, Internships, Community-Based Field Work, Civic Engagement

Undergraduate students will declare their majors in their second year. Duke Kunshan currently offers 15 majors approved by the Chinese Ministry of Education, and more majors are under development. Some of the MOE approved majors have multiple tracks.

China in the World

China in the World focuses on the historical and contemporary commercial, intellectual, and scientific exchanges between China and multiple locations around the world. The course invites students to think about the engagement of China in the world and the world in China from an interdisciplinary perspective. We investigate how contemporary China has been shaped by key historical events and processes including science, trade and war. Finally, we consider together how these histories will influence China’s future engagement with the wider world.

Global Challenges in Science, Technology, and Health

Science and technology play a vital role in addressing today’s challenges such as environmental, energy, health issues, and resources management at both the local and global scale. Key developments in fields such as biotechnology, nanotechnology and information technology are important to address these challenges. Novel technologies are being applied to health in many ways, such as linking mobile phones to low-cost peripherals allows for portable, fast and cheap diagnosis of common diseases, especially in low income countries; biopharmaceuticals manufactured in living organisms through the use of recombinant technology, and stem-cell based tissue replacement and repair enabled by advances in biotechnology. The rapid change in environmental setting due to social and economic development and the global migration of rural populations to mega-cities has also created health issues associated with air pollution, water contamination, and inadequate sanitation. In many parts of the world, energy development is directly linked to water and air pollution, and consequently to human health degradation. The ability to continue developing energy resources and providing clean water and air is one of the major challenges of the 21st century and the key for the sustainability of the economic development. New functional materials from nanotechnology are becoming more important in addressing environment and energy challenges. This course will explore these challenges, but also will be forward-looking, as you prepare for your lives in a dynamic world, in which you must confront these global challenges.

Ethics, Citizenship and the Examined Life

Ethics, Citizenship and the Examined Life explores several related themes. It attends to traditional Asian and Western ideals and contemporary analyses of moral self-cultivation, personal achievement and meaning; to obligations beyond the self – to family, community, religion, party, nation, and humanity – and whether it is possible to reconcile the criteria for “doing the right thing” across cultures and ages; and to the ways in which Asian and Western philosophical and political traditions have addressed the relationship between a meritocratic elite and democratic forms of government.