International Programmes 2023/2024

Global East Asia (MAGEA) Global East Asia (MAGEA)

Freie Universität Berlin • Berlin

Master of Arts in Global East Asia
Teaching language
  • English
  • Other teaching language

Seminars and lectures are held in English, with the exception of language courses, which are taught in Japanese, Korean or Chinese.

Programme duration
4 semesters
Winter semester
Additional information on beginning, duration and mode of study

The MAGEA programme requires on-site attendance; however, parts of the MAGEA modules may be offered in a hybrid format.

Studying part-time: Even though MAGEA is designed to be studied full-time, students may apply to be enrolled as part-time students according to their individual study plans.

Beginning: Depending on the admission regulations, students in a higher semester may be admitted to the programme in the summer semester if they have already obtained equivalent ECTS that can be transferred to MAGEA.

Application deadline

Admission deadlines are published on the central programme website of the Student Services Centre as well as on the website of the programme:

Tuition fees per semester in EUR
Combined Master's degree / PhD programme
Joint degree / double degree programme

The Global East Asia MA programme teaches you both discipline-specific and multidisciplinary theoretical and methodological competencies that enable you not only to address complex interdisciplinary issues but also to productively engage with the field of study of "global East Asia" in its historical and contemporary development and to reflect on it from a comparative perspective.

In the course of the MAGEA programme, you will acquire the necessary methodological, interdisciplinary and linguistic competencies for consciously dealing with your chosen focus country (China, Japan, Korea) and the entire region of East Asia and its global entanglements. By engaging with manifold source material on historical, political, economic, social, cultural and linguistic developments, you will strengthen both your intercultural competencies and your creative, independent and responsible action as well as your openness to issues of gender and diversity research.

The successful completion of the MAGEA’s programme qualifies you to take up doctoral studies and pursue an academic career as well as giving you access to other career pathways related to East Asia. The international orientation of the Master's programme provides you with excellent prospects on the international job market.

Course organisation

The MAGEA programme covers three main parts consisting of several modules, one module consists of one or two seminars. The "Integrative Area Global East Asia" is compulsory for all students. In the area of specialisation, three modules must be completed. Students have to select modules from at least two of the three regional specialisations in Chinese, Japanese or Korean Studies. The programme concludes with a Master's thesis. For the three modules in the complimentary area, students are advised to deepen their language skills in Chinese, Korean or Japanese. Students may also choose modules from other Master’s programmes offered at Freie Universität Berlin, such as Political Science, Sociology or Global History. Learn more about the course organisation.

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A Diploma supplement will be issued
International elements
  • International guest lecturers
  • Specialist literature in other languages
  • Language training provided
  • Courses are led with foreign partners
  • Projects with partners in Germany and abroad
  • International comparisons and thematic reference to the international context
  • Content-related regional focus
Course-specific, integrated German language courses
Course-specific, integrated English language courses
Tuition fees per semester in EUR
Semester contribution

In total, the semester contribution amounts to 312.89 EUR. It includes a fee of 198.80 EUR for the transportation ticket contribution. This allows you to use public transportation in Berlin for free. Other costs covered by the semester contribution include a 50 EUR enrolment fee, a 54.09 EUR semester contribution to the student support service ("studierendenWERK Berlin"), and a 10 EUR contribution to the student union.

Costs of living

Compared to other European countries, the cost of living in Germany is quite reasonable. However, the cost of living has also risen somewhat in Germany in recent years. The prices for food, accommodation, clothing, cultural events, etc. are slightly above the EU average. You will need around 950 to 1,200 EUR each month to cover your living expenses. The biggest expense is monthly rent, which is between 400 and 700 EUR in Berlin.

Funding opportunities within the university
Academic admission requirements

To be eligible for admission to the Master’s programme, you need to fulfil the following requirements:

  1. You must hold a first university degree (e.g. a Bachelor’s degree) comprising of at least 180 credit points (ECTS). As part of this degree you have to have earned at least 30 ECTS in courses in East Asian Studies and/or Chinese, Japanese or Korean studies (excluding language training). We check your eligibility based on your transcripts of records where course titles explicitly refer to one or more of these fields of studies. Alternatively, publicly available short descriptions of the courses or term papers written in the context of the respective courses can be submitted alongside the application.
  2. You must provide proof of excellent English language skills (details below).
  3. You must provide proof of proficiency in one of the following languages: Chinese, Japanese or Korean. For more details, please visit our website:

For an explanation of the admission process, please visit this website on applications for Master’s programme at Freie Universität Berlin or refer to the detailed admission regulations in English and German (the latter is the legally binding version).

Please also check the uni-assist website; there you can find a list with country-specific requirements for several countries.

Language requirements
  1. You must provide proof of excellent English language skills (at least level C1 CEFR) if you have not obtained your first university degree in a programme where English is the language of instruction.
  2. You must provide proof of proficiency (at least level B1 CEFR or equivalent) in one of the following languages: Chinese, Japanese or Korean.

Additionally, please see the following link:

Application deadline

Admission deadlines are published on the central programme website of the Student Services Centre as well as on the website of the programme:

Submit application to

Graduates of German universities can apply directly via the application portal of the Freie Universität Berlin. Applicants with foreign university degrees must apply via uni-assist. Documents sent directly to the institute cannot be considered.

Possibility of finding part-time employment

There are many ways of earning money while you study, for example as waiting staff, academic assistants, or private tutors. Knowledge of German will improve your chances of finding a part-time job, but it isn’t necessarily required. However, it is important to be aware of the legal regulations.

The student support service at the university, called studierendenWERK Berlin, and the local representative of the "Bundesagentur für Arbeit" (Federal Employment Agency) can provide information about jobs for students. When searching for a job, look at online job boards, ads in local newspapers, and notice boards on campus.


You have the option to stay in a public/private student dormitory or in a private (shared) apartment. Student dormitories are not administrated by the university itself, so Freie Universität Berlin does not have any on-campus housing. However, it works together with "studierendenWERK Berlin" regarding student accommodation.

If you do not wish to stay in a student dormitory, you can try to find a room or an apartment on the private housing market. Many students in Berlin live in shared apartments ("WGs"). You can find these offers online (e.g. WG-gesucht or Craigslist) or on notice boards on campus.

Available rooms/apartments near the university are rare. Therefore, students mostly commute from other parts of the city. The commute via public transportation usually takes between 30 minutes and an hour, which is considered a normal travel time in Berlin due to the city's size.

Career advisory service

Career Service of Freie Universität Berlin:

Freie Universität Berlin

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"Holzlaube" at Freie Universität Berlin © Lu Bai

Freie Universität Berlin is a leading research institution. It is one of the 13 German universities being funded through the German government’s Excellence Strategy and is part of the only University Consortium of Excellence, the Berlin University Alliance, which consists of four partners in Berlin: Freie Universität Berlin, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Technische Universität Berlin, and Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin.

You can choose from more than 180 subject areas. No matter which area you are interested in, be it archaeology, physics, Jewish studies, law, or psychology, you will find your subject at Freie Universität Berlin.

As an international university, Freie Universität Berlin has partnerships with numerous universities across the world and maintains offices in Beijing, Cairo, Eastern Europe (Tbilisi, Georgia), New Delhi, Moscow, and São Paulo. About 17 percent of the students come from abroad, as do 38 percent of the doctoral students. At Freie Universität Berlin, you will meet people from all over the world.

Various support services are available for students. In particular, students who are new to a German university and to Berlin will profit from these services, for example, the introduction week, the mentorship programme, or the Student Services Centre. UniSport offers programmes ranging from Aikido to Zumba, which are very popular among students. The many cafeterias and canteens on campus offer food and drinks; this also usually includes fair trade, organic, vegetarian, and vegan options. Environmental protection and sustainability are generally important topics at Freie Universität Berlin, and there are many opportunities to get involved in related activities offered by students and the university.

University location

Freie Universität Berlin is one of the major universities in the capital of Germany. It is located in the green district of Dahlem, in the south-western part of the city. There is no other campus in Berlin that is as green as the campus of Freie Universität Berlin. You can simply step out of the university buildings to enjoy outdoor activities: lunch on one of the many terraces and rooftops, swimming in the nearby lakes, or reading between cherry and apple trees. Dahlem is also home to one of the biggest botanical gardens in Europe. By using public transport, you can easily access the heart of Berlin and enjoy its cultural life and diversity. The U3 subway line connects Dahlem with the popular and central districts of Schöneberg, Kreuzberg, and Friedrichshain; however, all of the other districts can also be easily reached.

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