Education About Asia (EAA), the teaching journal of The Association for Asian Studies (AAS), is celebrating 20 years of providing assistance to professors and teachers to integrate the study of Asia into the courses they teach. Educators in many academic disciplines, including the humanities, social sciences, and business, have accessed the journal.
The Association for Asian Studies (AAS), the oldest and largest academic organization in the world dedicated to the study of Asia, initially provided approval and funding of the teaching journal, according to Dr. Lucien Ellington. Ellington was named editor and in 1996, the first issue was published.
“In the beginning we published primarily for high school and undergraduate survey instructors. Now, thanks both to an intentional effort on our part, and also to technology, we also publish articles intended for students as well as teachers and professors. We were originally a print journal but over the years despite limited resources, AAS staff and board members have worked with us to develop what is now a significant digital presence.”
Ellington, UC Foundation Professor of Education and Director of the Asia Program/Center for Reflective Citizenship at UTC, invites teachers and students to explore the website to see the current issue as well as back issues of the journal.
EAA focuses on the continent where 60 percent of the world’s people live. China and Japan are the world’s second and third largest economies, according to Ellington. South Korea, Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, and Viet Nam have either rapidly growing economies or a strong standard of living.
“The U.S. is faced with a host of geopolitical issues considered vital to our national interests on the Korean peninsula, in the East and South China Seas, and in South, Southeast, and Southwest Asia. Examples of Asian geopolitical problems which the U.S. cannot ignore range from the containment of North Korea to China’s assertiveness regarding maritime and territorial questions that its neighbors contest, to the continued American and international efforts to check international terrorism,” Ellington explained.
While demography, economics, and geopolitics are important, Ellington believes understanding Asian culture “is an essential part of liberal education given the rich literary, artistic, and philosophical traditions that emanate from Asia and that have enriched the human experience for 5,000 years.”
Interest in the journal has grown significantly. In the first two years, hard copies of the journal were published twice annually, then beginning in 1998, three times annually.
In 2014, the AAS Board of Directors offered the journal online as an open access journal, in addition to retaining a printed version for a modest subscription cost.
“Approximately 1,500 readers subscribe to the print issue and since October 2014, 9,844 unique visitors have accessed EAA,” Ellington said. “Unique visitors are the number of different individuals or organizations monthly who visit the EAA web site. We expect the number of readers for the journal to steadily grow.”
Ellington is thankful for the hard work of many people including the editorial board members, the AAS staff and board of directors, the graphic designer, contributors, referees, and readers.
Support from several foundations and organizations include the United States-Japan Foundation, the Freeman Foundation, The National Geographic Society, and the Korea Foundation.
“I am also grateful to UTC, and particularly to our College of Health, Education, and Professional Studies, for unwavering support for EAA for two decades. Last but not least, publishing an international journal demands hard working support staff. I’ve been fortunate to have worked with several hard working and competent EAA associates including some great students and Jeff Melnik, our current managing editor,” Ellington said.
Visit http://www.asian-studies.org/EAA/ for more information.