Bachelor of Arts in Buddhist Studies with Himalayan Language
The Centre for Buddhist Studies offers a four-year program in Buddhist Studies with Himalayan Language leading to the degree of Bachelor of Arts (BA). The courses in the BA program fall within two main areas of study: Buddhist Philosophy, History, and Culture, and Himalayan Language. For the BA degree, approximately two thirds of the courses concern Buddhist philosophy while the remaining third consists of courses in Himalayan languages such as Tibetan, Sanskrit, and Nepali, although students can choose to emphasize philosophy over language or vice versa.
By the end of the BA program, successful students will have developed a broad knowledge of the Indo-Tibetan Buddhist tradition and its historical and philosophical development, and a deep knowledge of the Tibetan approach to Buddhist philosophical study. In terms of language ability, depending on the emphasis placed by each student, he or she will be conversant in modern Tibetan and Nepali, able to read classical Tibetan and Sanskrit, and follow teachings directly in Tibetan, or possess some combination of these skills.
For a detailed description of the program, including Admission Requirements, please download the BA Course Description.
BA Application and Admission
Candidates who have completed Higher Secondary School (10+2) are eligible to apply for the program and should visit the Admissions Section of this website before applying.
Please note that applications for the BA program are only accepted for a Fall semester start.
*Attention: Applicants who are required to take the English Language Proficiency Exam (ELPE) must apply by April 17.
English Language Proficiency
International applicants who do not hold a BA degree from an English-medium university should submit documentation establishing their English language proficiency. TOEFL and IELTS exam results are acceptable. For admittance to the BA program, applicants must have a TOEFL score of at least 550, or a score of 80 on the iBT. Alternatively students may submit an IELTS result with an overall score of 6.0 and no score lower than 5.0 on any one band.
Local Nepalese and Tibetan students should plan to take an English language proficiency exam at the RYI office. Check the dates for this year’s exam here.
In accordance with University guidelines, RYI course fees are determined by each student's home base and nationality. A three-tier system is in effect which covers (i) Nepali students, (ii) SAARC students and (iii) other international students. Please select below to find out the fees structure for your particular circumstances.
Several of the Buddhist philosophy courses are taught by Tibetan professors (Khenpos and Lopons) and translated into English. Here the classics of the great philosophical thinkers of Buddhism, such as Nāgārjuna, Asańga, Candrakīrti, and Śāntideva are studied and analyzed, with an eye toward both intellectual and spiritual growth. Other philosophy courses are taught by international professors who approach the material from a contemporary academic perspective, examining the historical developments of the Buddhist traditions and schools of thought and helping students to learn critical thinking and interpretive skills.
Modern spoken Tibetan and classical Tibetan are offered from the first year of the program. By the third year of classes, students who have focused on spoken and classical Tibetan will have gained a sufficient level of Tibetan to follow philosophical teachings offered directly in Tibetan by our Khenpos and Lopons. In the second year, Sanskrit is introduced, giving students a broad introduction to two important Buddhist languages. Nepali is offered during each year of the program, to enable students to participate more fully in the life and culture of Nepal.
Meet a Student
"The program is very well projected and planned. It can help you not only as a practitioner but also to be a good person. The main reason I am here is to learn Tibetan and to receive Dharma teachings. I want to be able to understand the practice texts and Dharma talks in Tibetan as it is one of the main languages that transmits the Dharma.
During the annual seminar Chökyi Nyima Rinpoche's advice really helps to put itall into practice and there are so many helpful activities around related to RYI that you can participate in. For example, Street Dog Care and (helping) people with their health (through Shenpen)."
Miguel Perez, Spain
First Year BA