Summer East Asian Language Studies (SEALS)

For more than fifteen years, the Department of East Asian Languages and Literatures has offered intensive language training in Japanese during summer months. Called Summer East Asian Language Studies (SEALS), it continues to offer a concentrated mix of intensive training in language and culture. Enrollment permitting, we also offer SEALS Chinese and SEALS Korean.

A successful language program must have at least two components: explicit knowledge about the target language and culture and a large amount of practice in context. We address the first component through daily lecture on linguistic facts and through a series of cultural activities built into the curriculum. As for the second, we recognize that we do not acquire the full range of language use through studying the language by looking at example sentences in the textbook. All moves we make in language, including utterances and communicative behavior, must be securely pinned to the culture of that language.

These summer courses challenge your resolve but reward you with rapid language acquisition with a strong proficiency in aural comprehension and oral communication in addition to basic reading and writing skills.


JPNSE 1061 First Year Japanese is equivalent to two semesters of first year Japanese at Pitt (i.e., JPNSE 0001 and JPNSE 0002). Likewise, JPNSE 1062 is equivalent to two semesters of second year Japanese (JPNSE 0003 and JPNSE 0004), and JPNSE 1066 is equivalent to two semesters of third year Japanese (JPNSE 1020 and JPNSE 1021). These classes typically have a special ten-week span, and starting and ending dates often do not follow the regular start and end dates for Pitt summer courses.

A number of scholarships are available to enable first and second year students to take SEALS Japan. See the “SEALS Japan Scholarships” section below. 

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the SEALS Kansai trip will not be held in the summer of 2022. However, SEALS Japan language classes will be held. These classes will be held in an in-person format.

Past SEALS Japan faculty included lecture teachers Junzo Oshimo and Sachiko T. Howard. If you have a question, please contact Stephen Luft.


Learn First Year Chinese in 10 weeks with SEALS China. Over the course of 10 weeks, students will complete CHIN0001 and CHIN0002, which is equivalent to two semesters of first year Chinese at Pitt. 

For more information, plase contact Yi Xu or view the SEALS China flyer


SEALS Korea offers an intensive eight-week Korean language course that is one year worth of 1st Year Korean 1 (KOREAN 0001) & 2 (KOREAN 0002) for beginners. After successful completion of the course, you can take the 2nd Year Korean 1 in fall semester. In 2022, the course will meet remotely via Zoom. If you have a question, please contact Mi-Hyun Kim.

Click here for the SEALS Korea Summer 2022 flyer. 

SEALS Japan Scholarships

EALL has a number of tuition awards to enable first and second year students to take SEALS Japan.

The online application for SEALS Japan tuition awards is usually made available in early January. The deadline to apply for a SEALS Japan tuition award is usually the end of February.

Important information about the scholarships and the application is available here.