ASAP Communiqué

…for students in the IMAS and IDAS programs at NCCU.

Archive for the month “August, 2012”

A brief “Hello!” from the IMAS student rep

Hello, everyone! 

I’d like to formally introduce myself in the capacity of IMAS student representative for the incoming academic year.  As the IMAS student rep, I’m interested in being a soundboard for your ideas on how to develop and enhance the program, as well as helping to figure out how the resources we have available here can be put to better use to satisfy your needs and solve your problems.  Any and all input I receive will reach the IMAS Program Committee during their regular meeting times (or sooner, for urgent matters), so don’t hesitate to contact me with your input.  With your participation, all important decisions related to the program will incorporate student perspectives and concerns.  


I also pledge to continue the IMAS tradition of schooling IDAS students in paintball

Cheers 😉





Weeklong Seminars on Cultural Diplomacy » (Berlin, September 17th – 21st, 2012)

Weeklong Seminars on Cultural Diplomacy » (Berlin, September 17th – 21st, 2012)


“ICD Academy Sessions are weeklong programs that explore the role of cultural diplomacy in contemporary international relations. Each program features lectures, seminars and workshops lead by experts from the fields of international politics, diplomacy, academia, civil society, and the private sector. During their time in Berlin participants will also have the opportunity to take part in cultural and social activities and to visit institutions such as the German Foreign Office, the German Parliament, the Berlin City Hall, cultural institutions and Berlin-based embassies.”


The program is open to applications from governmental and diplomatic officials, civil society practitioners,  young professionals, students and scholars, private sector representatives, journalists, and other interested stakeholders from across the world.

If you would like to read more information and reserve a position please visit:

Call for panels — Singapore conference

Thanks to Kevin for this one — The Inter-Asia Cultural Studies Society (IACSS) Conference  2013 is looking for panel applications. The theme of the conference is “Beyond the Culture Industry.” according to their website:

“In the past two decades, the cultural sphere of rising Asian economies has increasingly shifted from being marked by the politics of authoritarianism and democratization to being pervaded by the market logic of deepening capitalism. The development of Asian culture industries has come under increasing scrutiny in cultural studies. However, we note that the emphases have been on the cultural policy of developmental states and the production of the cultural economy. For the 2013 conference, we seek to move beyond these emphases and inquire into the politics of culture that accompanies the neoliberalization of the cultural sphere.”

Kevin suggests that some Taiwan-specific topics can be found in, “the idea of ‘neoliberalizing the cultural sphere’ (conference’s quotation) brings to mind what Taiwan’s first minister of culture (龍應台) has been saying all this while… When all is said, a few papers can be presented in this panel proposal that revolve around the idea of cultural rejuvenation since Taiwan’s martial law times, and perhaps even as a breakthrough to Taiwan’s present ‘FTA quagmire.’

They’re looking for panel proposals of 3-4 papers by 1 December, 2012. It looks like an ideal fit for a small group of IDAS/IMAS students to go and hang out in Singapore for a few days.  (tip: if you get accepted, don’t chew gum)

Here is the online application form.

Deciphering Registration

Registration time again. For those of you who are new to the program and who haven’t done this yet, I’m sure by now you have received the appropriate instructions and information from the university administrators.

You will have received by now a document titled “Class Selection Schedule for 2012 First Semester.” That document can be a bit, um, busy. There’s a lot in there about “blocked courses,” “course correction with irresistible reasons,” and even mention of a PE course for senior students (?!?). I have no idea what any of that means, so don’t let it intimidate you.

A few dates that you don’t want to lose in the jumble are:


Aug. 27 – Aug 29: Course selection 1

(log into the system during this window to, well, select your courses.)

Sept. 3 – Sept 5: Course selection 2

(same as above – you can make changes to your selection during this window)

Sept. 11: Confirmation

(check the website to make sure you got into the courses you picked.)

Sept. 17-24: Add/Drop period

(Add the courses you want: drop the courses you don’t. Easy peasy.)


Now, when you are trying to put your schedule together, it helps to know what time of day the classes are held. You might, for example, see a course being held at “thu234” and think “Oh, that course must be held on Thursdays from 2 to 4.”

Would that it were so easy.

In fact, this is a simple substitution cipher that you must first decode in order to get the required information. The university doesn’t like things to be too easy for us. I am lucky enough to be in possession of an old Enigma machine, and have used it to work out this chart to help you decode the class times. Without it, hours would seem like days.






























So, for example, “thu234” actually means that the class is held Thursdays, from 0910 to 1200. “monD56” is a class on Mondays, from 1:10 PM to 4 o’clock in the afternoon. And so on, and so forth.

For the new students, I suggest you choose courses listed on the IDAS menu, especially for your first semester. For example, you should all register for the Research Methods class (265002001), and perhaps Introduction to Statistical Analysis (265933001).

For second and third-year students, keep in mind there are a LOT of English courses available at NCCU. A complete (well, almost complete – I can’t find Dr. Narayanan’s course on there) list is available here.

Oh, and it’s come to my attention that there aren’t any course descriptions on some of the courses on the list of IDAS courses in the online registration system.  Keep in mind that there is some additional information available on the IDAS/IMAS website, such as, for example, email addresses for the professors.

OK, I hope this has been helpful!

Webmaster position

Is there anyone out there who is pretty good with HTML and who maybe has some experience working with websites? The IMAS/IDAS website has need of a webmaster (nothing major — just periodic updates with news items, etc… and the occasional page updates) to administer the program’s web presence. This wouldn’t be a full-time job, but I think there might even be some money in the budget to pay you for your time. If you are interested, contact me or Prof. Berman.

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