2024-2025 Courses

Fall 2024 

Faculty: Lauran Hartley
This course seeks to introduce the sweep of Tibetan civilization and its history from its earliest recorded origins to the present. The course examines what civilizational forces shaped Tibet, especially the contributions of Indian Buddhism, sciences and literature, but also Chinese statecraft and sciences. Alongside the chronological history of Tibet, we will explore aspects of social life and culture.


Faculty: Gray Tuttle

This course is designed for students interested in gaining a broad view of Tibetan history in the 20th century. We will cover the institutional history of major Tibetan state institutions and their rivals in the Tibetan borderlands, as well as the relations with China, Britain, and America. Discussion sessions throughout the semester will focus on important historical issues. 

GU4815: Faith and Empire: Art and Politics in Tibet

Faculty: Karl P Debreczeny

Tibetan Buddhism offered a divine means of power and legitimacy to rule in Inner Asia and China. This class will explore the intersection of politics, religion and art in Tibetan Buddhism. Images were one of the primary means of political propagation, integral to magical tantric rites, and embodiments of power.

TIBT UN1600: First Year Modern Colloquial Tibetan I

Faculty: Sonam Tsering 

This is an introductory course and no previous knowledge is required. It focuses on developing basic abilities to speak as well as to read and write in modern Tibetan, Lhasa dialect. Students are also introduced to modern Tibetan studies through selected readings and guest lectures.

TIBT UN2603: Second Year Modern Colloquial Tibetan I

Faculty: Sonam Tsering 

Completion of UN 1600: First Year Modern Colloquial Tibetan or the equivalent required.

TIBT UN3611: Third Year Modern Colloquial Tibetan I

Faculty: Sonam Tsering 

For those whose knowledge is equivalent to a student who’s completed the Second Year course. The course develops students’ reading comprehension skills through reading selected modern Tibetan literature. Tibetan is used as the medium of instruction and interaction to develop oral fluency and proficiency.

TIBT UN1410: First Year Classical Tibetan I

Faculty: Sonam Tsering Ngulphu

This course is designed to meet the needs of both first-time learners of Tibetan, as well as students with one year or less of modern colloquial Tibetan. It is intended to lay the foundation for reading classical Tibetan writings, including religious, historical, and literary texts. By focusing on basic grammatical constructions and frequently used vocabulary, this class offers an introduction to the classical Tibetan language.

TIBT UN2412: Second Year Classical Tibetan I

Faculty: Sonam Tsering Ngulphu

This is the second year in the Classical Tibetan language progression. Students will work with faculty to read classical Tibetan texts from various genres and learn to read a variety of classical Tibetan scripts and seals. Prior completion of UN1410: First Year Classical Tibetan or the equivalent required.

TIBT UN2710: Advanced Literary Tibetan

Faculty: Sonam Tsering Ngulphu

This course focuses on helping students gain greater proficiency in reading Tibetan Buddhist philosophical and religious historical texts. Readings are selected primarily from Tibetan Buddhist philosophical texts (sutras) such as shes rab snying po, thu’u bkan grub mtha’ and other Tibetan canonical texts.