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Buddhism in South and Southeast Asia


Admission requirements



This course provides a general introduction to the doctrine and social settings of Buddhism from its Indian origins to its later popularity in other areas of South and Southeast Asia, with special emphasis on Sri Lanka, Vietnam, Thailand and Indonesia. We will read primary sources in translation in addition to secondary studies of these sources.

Topics include:

  • Origin(s) of Buddhism

  • Sects

  • Canons

  • Monastic Law

  • Meditation

  • Text transmission

  • Mahāyāna Buddhism

  • Buddhism in a Digital Age

Course objectives

In this course we will learn to think critically about what Buddhism is and what Buddhists do, and how the tradition has changed over both time and space. We shall examine carefully the various texts, art, social habits, and other phenomena associated with the Buddhist tradition, in order to come to a more comprehensive understanding of Buddhism, and more broadly, religion as a whole.


Visit MyTimetable.

Mode of instruction


Assessment method


  • Multiple choice examination for both midterm and final exam

  • Submission of written weekly assignments

  • Resit: 5Q on entire course

The final mark is made up of both multiple choice examinations and weekly assignments.

In order to pass the course, students must obtain an overall mark of 5.50 (=6) or higher.

The course is an integrated whole. The final examination and the assignments must be completed in the same academic year. No partial marks can be carried over into following years.


  • Midterm multiple choice exam: 40%

  • Final exam: 50%

  • Written weekly assignments: 10%


The resit consists of 5 questions on the entire course.

Exam Review

If a student requests in writing a review of his/her examination answer script within 30 days after publication of the exam results, an exam review will be organized

Reading list

To be announced.


Enrolment through uSis is mandatory.
General information about uSis is available on the website

Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs

Registration Studeren à la carte
Registration Contractonderwijs


For substantive questions, contact the lecturer listed in the right information bar. * For questions about enrolment, admission, etc, contact the Education Administration Office: Vrieshof