Faculty of PhilosophySouth Asian Studies – Bachelor 75%

Degree programmes in South Asian studies at Heidelberg University offer students in Europe a unique opportunity to study geographical, social and economic aspects of South Asian culture, in combination with historical and philological aspects. Alongside the linguistic and cultural traditions of South Asia, degree programmes consider a broad field of contemporary, modern regional studies. 

Facts & Formalities

DegreeBachelor of Arts
Type of programmeUndergraduate
Start of programmeWinter semester only
Standard period of study6 semesters
Language(s) of instructionGerman, English, possibly south asian languages
Fees and contributions171.75 € / Semester
Application procedureSubjects with no admission restrictions
Application deadlinesInformation about deadlines can be obtained after you have put together a degree program.
Part-time optionYes

Course Content

South Asian studies focusses on the historical, current political and economic developments, events, languages and media, religions and geographical processes which characterise and influence countries in South Asia. Countries considered include Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, the Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka as well as Tibet and the Indian Himalayan region. 

From the very start of the degree programme, students are encouraged to develop multi- and interdisciplinary working methods which will enable them to work effectively in multilingual and multicultural environments. Students therefore select an area of specialism and combine this with specialist modules from other disciplines, they learn at least one language spoken in South Asia and are able to specialise in a specific region where they might spend a semester. 

Intensive language courses ensure that students are able to understand and methodically process texts written in their chosen regional language. Students are able to attend introductory and advanced language courses offered as part of the Institute’s Summer School programme.

Course Structure

The major subject with a weighting of 75% consists in four course elements: 

  1. Compulsory elements include a one-year lecture series entitled, “An Introduction to South Asia”, a work placement spent abroad in a South Asian country, a period of study abroad or a period of field research in the fifth semester, as well as a final oral examination and a Bachelor’s thesis, which are completed in the sixth semester.  
  2. A second compulsory elective element requires that students study a language. Students attend intensive language courses in one of the languages offered.  
  3. An additional compulsory elective element necessitates that students select a further area of specialisation from the subjects on offer. In total, students must complete three subject modules. 
  4. In the elective element, students may select one further language or subject module. Students may also select a regional module. 
  5. The fifth element consists in generic competences, for which students must complete the course, “Academic Working Methods” in the first semester, as well as the practice class entitled, “Reflecting on Practice” following a period spent abroad in the fifth semester.  Students may select additional courses in this area from those offered by the University.