This Program has been cancelled for Summer 2022 but may be offered again in the future:

Global Seminar: ASIA 4300 Excavating Taiwanese History (Taipei, Taiwan)

This program was offered virtually during Maymester 2021 (May 9 - May 24). 

This course will be taught by Professor Timothy Weston.


  • Travel around the island of Taiwan, exploring Taipei, and other cities such as Kaoshiung, Taidong, and Tainan
  • Learn the history of claimants to power over Taiwan including the island's aboriginal peoples, the Dutch Empire, the Spanish Empire, a multi-ethnic pirate regime, the Qing dynasty, the Japanese, the Chinese Nationalist Party, and the Chinese Communist Party.
  • Examine Taiwan's past to understand the nature of and reasons for the great tension that exists over its status in our own time. 
  • This program is funded by the Tang Foundation and each student will receive a generous scholarship to cover much of the program cost.

Read about student experiences during past Global Seminars here.

Past Global Seminars (may be offered again in the future)

Global Seminar: China Speed: Modernity, Memory & Heritage (Virtual) (2021)

This program was offered virtually during Maymester 2021 (May 12 - June 2). Courses will take place from 6-8 (or 9pm) M-F.

The course will be co-taught by Tim Weston and Tim Oakes. The theme for the first half will be "Modernity and Memory", covering memorialization and silence in Beijing with lectures and visits to places such as Tiananmen Square, Museum of Modern History, Forbidden City, campus of Beijing University, and Babaoshan (the cemetery where Communist heroes and martyrs are buried.

The theme for the second half of the program will be "Rural Urbanization and Infrastructure Development". Tours of new towns and special economic zones might include Shenzhen, Guangzhou Higher Education Mega Center (Guangdong), Gui’an New Area (Guizhou), or Zhengdong New Area (Henan). This part of the course will also look at new intrastructures such as high speed rail stations, the Hong Kong – Zhuhai – Macau Bridge, and expressways and bridges in Guizhou. Finally, the course will consider villages as heritage and tourist sites with possible visits to minority villages in Guizhou or heritage ‘water towns’ near Shanghai.

Global Seminar: Cultural Transformations in Indonesia (Bali & Siberut, Indonesia)

Spend May in Indonesia studying the incredible cultural diversity of a country that consists of more than 16,000 islands!  Trek in the jungles of Sumatra to visit indigenous people.  Enjoy the beaches of Bali while learning about Hindu-Buddhism and religious politics.  Marvel at vibrant and global urban centers in a predominantly Muslim country.  This program is great for students in anthropology, the social sciences, humanities, and CMCI, or anyone with an interest in culture, religion, and politics in Asia.  It's also great for students with an interest in field-based research and documentary video production. 

The program takes the opportunity to contrast a variety of locations and cultures in Indonesia. Explore the Mentawai Islands on a multi-day excursion, living with indigenous people and experiencing the tropical rain forest and scenic beaches. You will then transit through the bustling city of Padang, famous for its cuisine and unique local culture. You will also experience to the famed island of Bali and discover life beyond the tourist destinations.

The program is led by Dr. Christian Hammons, an Instructor in Anthropology & Critical Media Practices. You will earn three credits for the class “Exploring Culture and Media in Southeast Asia.” Classes will be taught in the field. Students will keep a daily journal in lieu of exams, and produce videos and other media in lieu of essays. The course will culminate in a capstone media project based on the ethnographic research that students conduct in the Mentawai Islands.

Self-Awareness & Images of the Other (Xi'an, China)

On this program, you will explore questions of cultural identity. During the Tang dynasty Xi'an was the largest and probably most important city in the world, marking the eastern end of the legendary trade route between the Orient and the West, the Silk Road. By studying Shaanxi's rich literature and history on site, you will understand where China was yesterday, where it is today, and where it will be tomorrow.

The program will begin with a series of four preparatory evening classes held in Boulder during the month of April. During these classes, you will learn about the practical details of the trip, Xi'an's history and culture, and the intellectual context of the course.

In Xi'an, your daily schedule will be similar to that of a Chinese student. You will attend classes in the morning and go on local excursions in the afternoon. You are required to be in attendance for the entire period and to attend all lectures and/or excursions. All instruction will be in English. You will be given the opportunity to attend a class on Mandarin in the morning. This optional class is designed for CU students and will be conducted by an instructor from Jiaotong University.

The strength of this program is that classes are held on a regular Chinese university campus which will give you plenty of opportunities to interact with Jiaotong students in an academic as well as personal environment.

The course is designed to have plenty of opportunities to interact with Chinese students in intellectual and casual environments. The course includes optional after school activities on campus such as Tai Chi, Calligraphy, informal discussion tables and ballgames.

Summer 2018 Global Seminar: Discovering Urban China (Beijing, Xi'an, Shanghai & Hangzhou, China)

Spend your Maymester in China exploring the cultural identity of four of China's most famous and historic cities: Beijing, Xi'an, Shanghai and Hangzhou. Interact with Chinese peers both in and outside the classroom and gain firsthand knowledge on the ways modernity has affected urban China! Earn 3 upper-division credits for ASIA 3900, approved for the Asian Studies major requirement and Engineering Humanities/Social Sciences credits. This is a competitive program due to the generous Tang Fund scholarship through the Center for Asian Studies available to all admitted participants. You can also learn more by contacting the faculty director, Colleen Berry

Global Seminar: Doing Business in China (Beijing & Shanghai, China)

Directed by CU Professor Tracy Jennings, Summer 2013 - Present

Program highlights:

  • Learn about critical success factors for operating a business in China.
  • Hone your business meeting skills.
  • Learn and practice culturally appropriate behavior in a business setting.
  • Translate your knowledge from study of the Chinese business environment into recommendations to improve business practices.
  • Learn more about this program: Video

For more information, please visit:

Global Seminar: International Operations (Hong Kong, China)

Directed by CU Professor Lori Seward, Summer 2014 - Present

Program highlights:

  • Study Operations Management in one of the largest trading centers in Asia
  • Engage in daily site visits to local businesses
  • Learn first-hand about manufacturing in mainland China during a field trip to Guangdong Province
  • Live in one of two Special Administrative Regions of the People's Republic of China
  • Missed the interest meeting? Check out the info here!
  • Check out Asia Institute’s Snapshot of the 2015 program!

For more information, please visit:

Jews & Muslims: The Multi-Ethnic History of Istanbul (Istanbul, Turkey)

Directed by Nan Goodman, Professor of English, Summer 2015 - Present

Program highlights:

  • Earn Major credit during your summer abroad
  • Immerse yourself in the contemporary issues, history and culture of Jewish-Muslim relations
  • Learn alongside local Turkish students
  • Explore the cultural heritage of Istanbul through visits to local Synagogues, Mosques, museums, concerts, a Greek Monastery and a Dervish Lodge

For more information, please visit

Shanghai: Window on China

Directed by Tim Weston, CAS Associate Director and Associate Professor of History.

This Global Seminar was awarded funding by the Center for Asian Studies through the Tang Fund. A generous scholarship will cover most participant expenses. Program highlights:

  • Discover how Shanghai’s and Nanjing's rich history has shaped modern China
  • Live in one of the most dynamic and important cities in China and East Asia
  • Visit transformed treaty port neighborhoods, the site where the Chinese Communist Party was founded, traditional gardens, and the center of China’s financial world
  • If you are a History major or Asian Studies major or minor, fulfill an upper division major/minor requirement.

Global Seminar: Justice, Human Rights, and Democracy in Israel (Jerusalem, Israel)

Program highlights:

  • Acquire new academic knowledge about the history and sociology of Israel and the West Bank
  • Do a service learning project with non-profit organizations working in justice, democracy, or human rights
  • Network and learn from experts working in areas of social justice, human rights, and environmental issues in Israel and the Middle East
  • Visit the Old City, Hebron, Tel Aviv and Bethlehem on guided tours
  • Participate in cultural outings (concerts, museums, restaurants, cultural events, religious services in different faith traditions)

For more information, please visit:

Jews & Muslims: The Multi-Ethnic History of Istanbul

Directed by Nan Goodman, Professor of English.

Program Highlights:

  • Earn Major credit during your summer abroad
  • Immerse yourself in the contemporary issues, history and culture of Jewish-Muslim relations
  • Learn alongside local Turkish students
  • Explore the cultural heritage of Istanbul through visits to local Synagogues, Mosques, museums, concerts, a Greek Monastery and a Dervish Lodge

For more information, please visit

Global Seminar: China Thru TIME

Interested in participating on a unique Global Seminar in Beijing, conducted by Journalism Professor Meg Moritz?  You will study news accounts of China from TIME magazine and other US and Chinese media while visiting media outlets and universities, and meeting local journalists and students. You will also visit key sites in and around Beijing an spend a day in the city of All participants will receive a generous scholarship funded by the Tang Fund and the Center for Asian Studies. Open to all majors.

Global Seminar: Doing Business in China

On this new Global Seminar: Doing Business in China, you will explore important topics related to succeeding in China’s business environment,  meet with business leaders, visit industrial sites and universities, and seek to understand challenges faced by businesses operating in China. In addition, you will discover key cultural features of China ranging from village life to the Great Wall. Finally, you will be working on a single project that requires integration and application of both the academic materials and the experiential components of the Global Seminar. Business students who are admitted to the program will receive a $1,000 scholarship from the Leeds Business school. Open to all majors.

Contemporary Representations of Culture in East Asia (China & Japan)

Directed by CU Professors Terry and Faye Kleeman, Summer 2011

The course will focus on three aspects of the construction of Chinese and Japanese identities, each exemplified by sites visited during the course. The first is the construction of self-identity through the identification of a common historical and cultural heritage. In China, visits to the tomb of third century hero Liu Bei, the memorial to Sun Yat-sen, and that to the eighteenth century Taiping rebel Hong Xiuquan will reveal both how traditional China deified its cultural defenders and how the modern PRC has found new "peasant" heroes to fill the ranks of its venerated shrines. In Japan, the ancient palaces and temples of Kyoto and the Imperial Palace and Meiji Shrine in Tokyo will reflect the orthodox interpretation of Japan's traditional identity, whereas a visit to the site of the atomic bomb explosion in Hiroshima will reveal Japan's reconstituted, postwar identity as a country of peace with a unique, personal experience of the horrors of war.

The second aspect of the course centers on the representation of ethnic otherness as a way of delimiting distinct, alien identities for all the surrounding peoples who do not adequately fit the self-image of the day. To understand the process of ethnic othering, we will visit the Jinsha museum of the Ba-Shu culture in Chengdu, a museum of the most significant Han Chinese internal minority, the Hakka, and a Japanese ethnographic museum. We will also take note of the way that ethnic otherness is elided at the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom Museum, the atomic bomb site, and a Korean-Japanese ethnic community.

The third aspect of identity formation focuses on the privileging of time-honored handicrafts and belief systems as a way of asserting the value of traditional civilization in the face of an onrushing modernity. Tiger Balm Gardens will show how belief in an afterlife of heavens and hells is supported through a theme-park style presentation, while more authentic patterns of religious practice have been preserved (or reconstructed) in the temples and monasteries of Green Castle Mountain and Kamakura, Japan. We will see a range of handicrafts represented in the antique market in Chengdu and the night market of Nanjing, but the best example of the elevation of a simple craft to the status of an ethnic marker will be our visit to the brocade factory in Kyoto and the papermaking workshop near Tokyo. We will also take this opportunity to compare the distinct aesthetic sensibilities of Chinese and Japanese cultures.

Beijing: Window on Modern China

Directed by Associate Professor Tim Weston, Summer 2012

Beijing will be the historical backdrop against which CU students will learn modern (1895 to the present) Chinese history as it played out in China's capital city (which Beijing was for all but two decades of the time that will be covered by the course).  Beijing is a city rich with all sorts of historical sites, some well known, others far less so.  The course will cover a range of topics, including: Late Imperial Beijing - the layout of the city as a political and cultural symbol, Sites of political activism in the late Qing and the foreign diplomatic presence, Boxer Rebellion, The 1911 Revolution - its meanings and imprint on the city, Modernization of the city in the 1910s, 1920s, and 1930s, The 1949 Communist Revollution and the consequent changes to the layout of the city, Tiananmen Square as a site of numerous nationally important instances of political theater and political demonstrations, The development of Beijing in the reform era (1980s - present), The development of the Beijing-Tainjin megapolis, and the relationship of Beijing to Shanghai, Hong Kong and Nanjing.