MA Social Anthropology

General

Read more about this programme on the school's website

Programme Description

Mode of Attendance: Full-time or part-time


Our MA Social Anthropology programme is designed on a modular basis offering different pathways to suit three categories of students:

  • Students with a degree in social anthropology wishing to pursue more specialist topics and/or more regional and language-based study;
  • Students with little or no previous knowledge of social anthropology wishing to acquire a broad knowledge of the discipline;
  • Students with little or no previous knowledge of social anthropology wishing to take the degree as a conversion course before proceeding to a research degree in anthropology.

Why study MA Social Anthropology at SOAS

  • Our Anthropology Department is ranked 6 in the UK and 16 in the world in the 2019 QS World University Rankings.
  • We draw on the exceptional regional expertise of our academics in Asian, African, and Middle Eastern languages and politics, many of whom have joined us with practical working knowledge of their disciplines.
  • You will be joining our thriving community of alumni and academics who have an impact on the outside world of academia.
  • You will be able to flexibly structure your programme using our optional modules and/or the optional modules from other departments, including the opportunity to learn a regional language.
  • We are specialists in the delivery of languages. Your command of a language at SOAS will set you apart from graduates of other universities.

This programme has a first-rate graduate employability record, with graduates moving on to find employment in lectureships and professorships throughout the world in areas such as information and technology, government service, the media and tourism.

Employment

A Masters in Social Anthropology helps you to understand the world, other peoples’ ways of life and how society is organised.

This programme will endow you with a specialist understanding of producers, audiences, and other cultural and social aspects of mass media. Over the years the SOAS department has trained numerous leading anthropologists who have gone on to occupy lectureships and professorships throughout the world. Equally, students gain skills during their degree that transfer well to areas such as information and technology, government service, the media and tourism.

Postgraduate students leave SOAS with a portfolio of widely transferable skills which employers seek, including analytical and critical skills; ability to gather, assess and interpret data; high level of cultural awareness; and problem-solving.

A postgraduate degree is a valuable experience that provides students with a body of work and a diverse range of skills that they can use to market themselves with when they graduate.

Graduates have gone on to work for a range of organisations including:

  • Africa Practice
  • Alastair Coey Architects
  • Bank of America, Tokyo branch
  • Citizenship Foundation
  • CNN
  • Department for Culture
  • Foreign Commission Office
  • General Medical Council
  • IBM
  • Institute of Ismaili Studies
  • Leonard Cheshire Disability
  • Mediacom
  • MMMF, the World Bank Group
  • Oriental Institute, University of Oxford
  • Salaam Bombay Foundation and Samaskaara
  • Street Children Africa
  • The Freud Museum
  • The Prince's Youth Business International
  • University of Gadjah Mada
  • World Society for the Protection of Animals

Types of roles that graduates have gone on to do include:

  • Consultant
  • Global Client Service Associate
  • PhD student
  • Secretary for the Minister for Communications
  • Social Researcher
  • Producer/Director
  • Lawyer
  • Business Analyst
  • International Trusts Manager
  • Research Fellow
  • Marketing Specialist
  • Overseas Programmes Director
  • Archives Officer
  • Director - Network Expansion
  • Health Promotion Consultant
  • Senior Lecturer
  • Online Marketing Officer

Structure

The programme consists of 180 credits in total: 120 credits of modules and a dissertation of 10,000 words at 60 credits.

All students are expected to take the core and compulsory modules listed below, except for students with a previous Anthropology degree, who are not required to take the Theoretical Approaches to Social Anthropology module but may wish to select this as part of their 120 credits from the options lists.

All students must audit the compulsory module, Ethnographic Research Methods during term 1. This will not count towards the 180 credits. Students will be expected to attend only lectures and do not attend seminars or submit any assessments. Students may choose to take this module (worth 15 credits) as part of their 120 credits from the option lists.

Students with a previous Anthropology degree are required to take 30 credits from the Anthropology and Sociology options.

All students can select the remaining credits from the Department of Anthropology and Sociology or relevant options from other departments or a language module.

Dissertation

Students must complete a Dissertation (10,000 words).

  • Dissertation in Anthropology and Sociology

For students without previous Anthropology degree

Core Module

  • Comparative Studies of Society and Culture

Compulsory Modules

  • Ethnographic Research Methods
  • Theoretical Approaches to Social Anthropology

and

Guided Option

Choose modules from the List of Anthropology & Sociology modules below to the value of 60 credits.

or

Choose modules from the Postgraduate Open Options List to the value of 60 credits.

For students with previous Anthropology degree

Core Module

  • Comparative Studies of Society and Culture

Compulsory Module

  • Ethnographic Research Methods

and

Guided Option

Choose modules from the List of Anthropology & Sociology modules below, OR from the Postgraduate Open Options List to the value of 30 credits.

and

Choose modules from the List of Anthropology & Sociology modules below to the value of 60 credits.

or

Choose modules from the Postgraduate Open Options List to the value of 60 credits.

List of modules (subject to availability)

  • Anthropology and Sociology
    • African and Asian Cultures in Britain
    • African and Asian Diasporas in the Modern World
    • Anthropology of Globalisation (PG)
    • Anthropology of Human Rights (PG)
    • Anthropology of Law
    • Issues in Anthropology of Media
    • Culture and Society of China
    • Culture and Society of East Africa
    • Culture and Society of Japan
    • Culture and Society of South Asia
    • Culture and Society of South East Asia
    • Culture and Society of Near and Middle East
    • Culture and Society of West Africa
    • Ethnographic Research Methods
    • Issues in Anthropology and Film
    • Issues in Mind, Culture and Psychiatry
    • Issues in the Anthropology of Gender
    • Media Production Skills (Group B)
    • Perspectives On Development
    • Religions on the move: New Currents and Emerging Trends in Global Religion
    • Therapy and Culture
    • Tourism and Travel: A Global Perspective
  • Religions and Philosophies
    • Death and Religion
  • South Asia
    • Culture and Conflict in Nepal
  • South-East Asia
    • Genders and Sexualities in South East Asian Film
    • Post-crisis Thai Cinema (1997-2007)
    • (Post) Colonialism and Otherness in South East Asia on Screen

Learn a language as part of this programme

Degree programmes at SOAS - including this one - can include language courses in more than forty African and Asian languages. It is SOAS students’ command of an African or Asian language which sets SOAS apart from other universities.

Important notice

The information on the programme page reflects the intended programme structure against the given academic session.

Admissions and Applications

You can apply for this course via the online application form.

We aim to assess a complete application and provide a decision within a 5-week time frame. Overseas students who require a Tier 4 visa and wish to join SOAS should bear in mind visa applications can take several weeks, so you should apply as soon as possible.

Consideration of Application

The whole application, including transcript and references, is considered before a decision is reached. You are therefore advised to submit a complete application including references and transcript (where required). An incomplete application will add considerable delays to the decision-making process.

Students will receive an acknowledgement of their application. Each application is carefully considered and although we try and respond as quickly as possible, we do ask that students should expect to receive a response within five weeks of receipt.

Candidates who are available in the United Kingdom may be called for an interview. The absence of academic members of staff (or instance on study leave) may affect the timing of decisions.

Entry Requirements

Minimum upper second class honours degree (or equivalent).

English Language Entry Requirements

Minimum upper second class honours degree (or equivalent).

International students

For EU and International students who need a visa, if unconditional entry scores are achieved we accept qualifications from several countries, as well as a range of international qualifications and tests.

If a Tier 4 entry visa is required then a SELT, such as UKVI IELTS may be needed. For this reason, we recommend all Tier 4 visa students to choose the UKVI IELTS Academic test as the test of first resort.

Last updated Nov 2019

About the School

SOAS University of London welcomes the brightest minds to study on its central London campus with like-minded individuals who feel passionately about contemporary world issues.

SOAS University of London welcomes the brightest minds to study on its central London campus with like-minded individuals who feel passionately about contemporary world issues. Read Less
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