Developed in the Centre for the Advanced Study of the Arab World (CASAW) – a ground breaking UK government initiative established here at Edinburgh – and housed in the department of Islamic & Middle Eastern Studies (IMES), this two-year programme offers a unique opportunity for in-depth study of Arabic language and region-specific culture, history and politics.
Formed with the aim of creating the UK’s leading resource for Arab world expertise, the resources and high profile of CASAW and IMES will see you graduate with a strong and prestigious qualification.
You will have access to some of the UK’s leading experts in the field of Arab-world social and political sciences, arts and humanities, and will experience a four-month immersion in language and culture in an Arab country.
The first eight months of the programme are delivered in Edinburgh, with an intensive focus on language skills and a discursive core providing a survey of the field of Islamic and Middle Eastern studies. You then spend four months at an approved institution in an Arab country, further developing your skills. The second year includes training in research skills and completion of your dissertation. Throughout the programme you will participate in seminars and tutorials.
Option courses can be chosen from those offered by IMES, from elsewhere within the School or across the University. Among these are:
By the end of this programme you will have:
As the West’s engagement with the Arab world deepens, graduates with expertise in the field are increasingly sought after. This degree will give you the opportunity to take your interest to the doctoral level with further research, and perhaps an academic career. You could also pursue a career in an area such as education, policy or any of the social sciences.
The MSc in Arab world Studies is intended to provide rigorous, research-driven, interdisciplinary, masters-level education and training. It is committed to providing a supportive learning environment that seeks to combine critical and practical reasoning so as to attain the following aims:
Optional modules in previous years have included:
At the beginning of the academic year, students go through five-day induction events in which they are informed about University, the School, the MA/MSc programmes and the facilities available for their learning.
This MSc programme is spread across two-years. In the first year 100 credits is divided into three core and one/two optional modules and then in the second year 175 credits is divided into one core and five optional modules. Furthermore, students have to submit a dissertation of 60 credits of not more than 12,000 words. Most of the modules are delivered during the first two terms and students spend the remaining time to write the dissertation.
Usually a module has 18 contact hours spread over 9 weeks and 132 hours of self-directed learning. The modules are mainly delivered through weekly 2 hours sessions which can either take the form of seminars or one hour of lecture and one hour of tutorial. The form in which seminars are conducted can differ from one module to another. Typically modules would have elements of lectures, discussions, and presentations from students—the extent of each of these components would differ from one module to another.
All modules have written exercise for formative assessments. Upon getting feedback on these assignments, students can meet their lecturers to discuss their marks before then eventually completing a summative assessment. Typically summative assessments are 3000 word essays but some modules may be assessed by examination. Students can also meet their module coordinators during their weekly contact hours or by making an appointment. When students are working on their dissertations during the later half of the year, they meet their assigned supervisors for a minimum of 6 hours. Students also have access to the academic advisors whenever there is a need.
SGIA has a wide variety of resources available to students such as: computer room/work room with networked PC’s, printing facilities including scanner and photocopier, audio system, Wi-Fi and a relaxation area with satellite television system.
SGIA conducts weekly seminars and organises lectures and conferences which all postgraduate students can attend. These events provide students the opportunity to engage with, and debate, the most important issues in current political and international studies.
Towards the end of the programme students can contact the Careers Office of the University to get advice on available job prospects and get assistance on applying for these.
Our students go on to a wide range of successful careers including civil service and other government agencies, UN/INGOs/CSOs, journalism, media, teaching, law, banking and finance, diplomatic services and risk analysis.
The Master in Advanced European and International Studies - Mediterranean studies (MAEIS) provides an overarching and extensive view of the political, social, economic and cultural issues of the globalised world. The MAEIS is an international, interdisciplinary and itinerant programme which aims to educate the next generation of Euro-Mediterranean decision-makers. Following the slogan "Learning and living the Mediterranean", the participants rotate each trimester, moving their place of studies from Nice to Tunis and then Istanbul including a workshop in Rome. The programme is structured into three terms and is taught in English and French.
The first term (October to January) starts in the European Union, in Nice, France. It encompasses classes on the basics of the five modules (Conflict Management and Peace Making, Sustainable Development and Globalisation, Regional Integration and Transformation, Mediterranean Politics and Societies as well as Professional Skills Workshops). Studying in France helps the students to analyse the Mediterranean region and Euro-Mediterranean relations from an EU perspective. Courses will introduce to the institutional architecture of the EU and its neighbourhood policy. They will also discuss the shared risks of populism, terrorism and climate change. Mid-term exams will take place in December. The trimester concludes with a simulation exercise.
The second term (January to April) starts off in Tunis, Tunisia. Our cooperation partner, the Université Internationale de Tunis, is famous for its integration of international students in Tunisia. Thanks to our partner, the Institut de Recherche sur le Maghreb Contemporain (IRMC), students will have access to the expertise and the library of one of the most renowned think tanks in the Maghreb. Researchers from the region will analyse transformation processes in the Southern and Eastern Mediterranean in times of globalisation. Studying in Tunisia will provide the students with a unique experience of a historic democratisation process that turns the nobelpeace-prize winning country into a role model throughout the MENA region. For non-Arab speakers an Arab language course is compulsory.
A study trip to Rome will take place during the 2nd or the 3rd term. Here, a special focus will be given to Foreign Policy Analysis (EU, Russia, US, Iran), as well as migration, poverty and food security, including visits of relevant UN institutions and conférences at our Partner, the renowned think tank, Istituto Affari INternazionali (IAI).
The programme concludes in Istanbul, Turkey (April to July) where the courses are organised in cooperation with our long-term partner, the Istanbul Bilgi University. Courses will deal with the changing EU-Turkey relations. Students will have the opportunity to advance in their research work, as they are free of obligations from mid-May to mid-June to work on their thesis. The programme concludes with the defence of the thesis and oral exams. With their graduation on the Bosphorus, students become part of CIFE’s worldwide Alumni network.
The Mediterranean is a case study par excellence for Peace and Conflict Studies. Understanding and explaining questions of war and peace has been at the heart of „International Relations“ as an academic discipline – from its very beginning, after the First World War. In the last two decades Mediterranean societies have been significantly affected by inter-group violence and inter-state conflicts: from the Western Balkans to Cyprus, from Israel to Palestine, from Syria to Lybia. Mediterranean conflicts are partly characterised by external interventions. The module will focus at causes and dynamics of escalation and de-escalation, including international law and peace-making in a multiperspective approach. Theories on violence and peace will help to analyse the case studies proposed.
The Mediterranean in the 21st century faces unprecedented economic, environmental and social challenges. As economic development exercises increased pressure on limited resources, deteriorates the environment and creates growing inequalities, Mediterranean economies struggle to find their way through these challenges. An introduction into economics as an academic discipline will set the ground for a regional analysis of sustainable development, energy policies, climate action and demographic dynamics.
The European Union became a model of regional integration. Nation states agreed to transform their sovereignity into a multi-level governance system sui generis to keep regional peace, increase welfare and economic power. How is the dynamic architecture of European institutions functioning – in times of both Europeanisation and Euroscepticism? And to what extent are the Arab League or the Union for the Mediterranean comparable models of regional integration?
Regional integration is primarily an elite-driven, government-sponsored transformation process. However, socio-economic and political change can be triggered by civil society and social movements, as the „Arab Spring“ has shown transregionally in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). Change and continuity differ significantly in the MENA-region. Why? And which repercussions for the Union for the Mediterranean?
Mediterranean Politics are shaped by an interplay of different policy fields and policy actors. Theories of International Relations (i.e. Foreign Policy Analysis, Migration Theories) will help to understand the dynamics of policy making towards and in the Mediterranean region. Migration constitutes a challenging and complex policy field throughout the Mediterranean.
In a second part of this module we will approach Mediterranean societies with a generational focus upon „youth“. The current number of youth in the Mediterranean is unprecedented. Meanwhile, youth unemployment is a phenomenon that nearly all Mediterranean societies have in common. At the crossroads of theory and practice this module will identify solutions to the challenges the young generation faces in the Mediterranean.
The participants will take part in negotiation and mediation trainings, simulation games and follow career workshops as well as workshops on project cycle management and intercultural communication.
Candidates can submit their application via the online application form. They should also include all the relevant documents, or send them by post or e-mail. An academic committee meets regularly in order to review complete applications.
A limited number of scholarships can be awarded to particularly qualified candidates. There are different funds available for this programme.
The application deadline is 15 May 2018.
This two-year programme offers a unique opportunity for in-depth study of Arabic language, region-specific culture, history and politics. It is intended for students who already have some knowledge of the Arabic language (approximately 400 hours of previous study or CEF level B1 or B2).
This programme takes a combined and communicative approach to the language, teaching all the skills of reading, writing, listening and speaking in parallel, combining both spoken ‘dialect’ and more formal Modern Standard Arabic, bringing learners to an advanced level in all skills.
You will have access to some of the UK’s leading experts in the field of Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies and will experience a three-month immersion in language and culture in an Arabic-speaking country.
Graduates of the postgraduate Arabic programme at the department of Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies have gone on to use their language and regional expertise in a wide variety of roles, including business, government, charities and NGOs and academia.
The first eight months of the programme are delivered in Edinburgh, with a combination of language training, survey and option courses. You then spend three months at an approved institution in an Arab country, further developing your skills. The second year includes specialisation through further optional courses as well as training in research skills and extensive support in preparation for the final dissertation.
Option courses can be chosen from those offered by IMES, from elsewhere within the School or across the University. Among these are:
Expertise in the Arabic language and Middle Eastern Studies are increasingly sought after. Graduates of this programme will be well-placed to use their language skills in - for example - business and commerce, governments, NGOs and charities, and academia.
You will gain an advanced, interdisciplinary understanding of the history, modern politics and culture of the Islamic Middle East, and explore the paradigms behind the various disciplines within this field.
Recognised in the UK and internationally as a leading institution for research and undergraduate and postgraduate study, our department is well resourced. We are home to the Alwaleed Centre, part of an international network of centres devoted to the promotion of better mutual understanding between the World of Islam and the West. We boast an impressive library of current and archival material.
The programme will combine seminar work, oral presentations and essays. You will complete one compulsory course, two research courses and three option courses over two semesters, followed by an independently researched dissertation.
Your option courses can be chosen from within IMES or from other disciplines such as history, divinity, politics or international relations. You may also take additional language courses in introductory Persian, Turkish or Arabic.
Option courses may include:
The aim of this programme is to provide you with the knowledge and skills you need to advance to doctoral study, and perhaps an academic career. You may also choose to apply your skills to a role that involves the Islamic community, or use your transferable communication, research and other skills in an unrelated area.
This interdisciplinary MA explores the processes through which actors have attempted to define and build peace in areas affected by war and violence, particularly since the end of the Cold War. Drawing on expertise from the fields of history, politics, anthropology and the arts, this newly revamped course will offer students the opportunity to engage with conflict management, conflict resolution, conflict transformation, peacebuilding and statebuilding theories and practices.
Moreover, the programme will critically address the conceptualization of peace and the implementation of peacebuilding projects by global, regional, national and local actors, including the UN, the International Financial Institutions, development agencies and donors, INGOs, and local organisations in conflict-affected environments. In particular, it will focus on social agency for peace, the question of the nature of the `peaceful state', and the ever-fraught question of the reform of the international system. The dynamics of these various contributions to peace will be the focus of a guided engagement, via local partner organisations, with the range of peace and conflict management actors present in either Bosnia Herzegovina or Cyprus (in Semester II).
Students will be able to show a critical understanding of:
1. Key issues and debates related to the theories of peace and practices of peacebuilding, statebuilding, conflict management, resolution, and transformation. They will become familiar with the range of international actors and organisations, their policies and practices, and their pros and cons.
2. The range of social science topics that influence peacebuilding, statebuilding, conflict management, etc., (including political, historical, anthropological understandings of peace and related programming strategies). Students will become familiar with the methodological and normative underpinnings of these disciplines.
3. The analytical and policy literature concerning peacebuilding, international governance structures, statebuilding, and the role of key actors and institutions including NGOs and military and other security actors. Concurrently, students will be able to evaluate the theory and policy tools in the context of the recent history of peacebuilding and statebuilding since the end of the Cold War, in a range of examples, including across the Balkans, Cambodia, Timor Leste, Cyprus, Northern Ireland, Afghanistan, the recent and various Arab Revolts, and others.
4. An understanding of local approaches to peacebuilding, including an awareness of the problems and critiques associated with `bottom up' approaches. Students will examine current debates on the nature of everyday peace and hybrid forms of peace, related questions about `local agency' and forms of resistance, activism, and social mobilisation.
5. Students will experience the on-the-ground realities of peacebuilding and statebuilding through a guided research visit to the range of actors involved in Bosnia-Herzegovina or Cyprus. This will form a key part of one of the core modules of the programme and will be run in association with local partners.
6. The development of a range of academic and professional/transferrable skills through both independent and group-based work.
7. A detailed understanding of a specific conceptual and/or policy-related area of peacebuilding along with the implications and limitations of research findings on this subject, and of how to produce an original piece of academic research. This will be delivered via the dissertation.
The Institute is developing a novel configuration for research and teaching which will uniquely associate practitioners, non-governmental organisation (NGO) partners, theoreticians, policy makers and analysts in sustained intellectual engagement. Combining a targeted programme of research with the provision of timely analysis on current emergencies and conflicts, the institute will seek to develop new methodologies in the emerging field of humanitarian and conflict response research.
Additional voluntary workshops and events throughout the year further enhance study including:
The evidence of objects, a trip to the Imperial War Museum (North)
Other Case Briefings (e.g., Cyprus, Arab Uprisings)
Policy Sessions: UN system and INGOs (Professor Dan Smith, International Alert)
Manchester Peace and Social Justice Walk
Working with Governments (Professor Dan Smith, International Alert)
Regular `Leading Voices' workshops, with key thinkers in the field
Students studying this programme will also benefit from possible additional activities, such as:
Student organised trips to London (International Alert ), New York (UN/IPA ) and Brussels
Case Study Internships
Attendance at the annual Peacebuilding conference in Manchester and potential participation in student panels.
Delivery of the course will take a range of forms, including lectures, seminars, tutorials, directed reading, a guided walk, a museum trip, a field trip and independent study. Much of the delivery will be problem based/enquiry based learning.
This MA will be influenced and informed by the research of both staff and postgraduate research students at the Institute including research projects on:
Students completing this MA may consider a wide range of career choices, including careers with:
Southern Europe is a region that finds itself at the cutting edge of key global challenges. South European Studies offers the stimulating experience of studying and training in three different European countries in the region and the opportunity to acquire advanced language, research and professional skills.
The programme is taught over 24 months and includes three mobility periods. In semester 1 you gain an overview of the subject in Glasgow, followed by a choice of mobility partner in semester 2 (Athens or Madrid). Here you will follow a geographical pathway that situates the region in its broader neighbourhood context. Semester 2 also includes an online research and training course. A summer school featuring dissertation/project workshops and meetings with the supervisory teams will be held at the end of semester 2 in Lisbon.
In semester 3 you will have the choice of four thematic pathways along the research track in Athens, Madrid, Aix-en-Provence or Rome. Alternatively, you may follow a professional track that includes a lengthy work placement available in Madrid or Aix-en-Provence. You will spend semester 4 with the same semester 3 mobility partner researching and writing your dissertation or professional project under the guidance of a supervisory team made up of members of staff from each of your chosen mobility partners. If on the professional track you will also undertake a substantial work placement in S4. Please note semesters 3 and 4 cannot be spent with the same partner as semester 2.
Teaching will be via lectures and small group seminars utilising a wealth of theoretical and methodological approaches drawn from the humanities and social sciences. Assignments and coursework include individual and group presentations, structured debates, simulation exercises and role play, reflective logs, fieldwork and study trips. Language courses in all major South European languages are available with each mobility partner over the two years of the programme.
University of Glasgow – Overview
National and Kapodistrian University of Athens – Greece and the Balkans
Universidad Autónoma de Madrid* – Spain and the Arab world
Introduction to quantitative and qualitative methods in the social sciences (online)
Instituto de Ciências Sociais da Universidade de Lisboa – Dissertation workshops (summer school)
National and Kapodistrian University of Athens – Crisis and change
Universidad Autónoma de Madrid* – Nationalism
Aix-Marseille Université – Borders
LUISS Guido Carli –Democratisation
Universidad Autónoma de Madrid
Athens/Madrid/Aix-en-Provence/Rome – Dissertation
Universidad Autónoma de Madrid
*Additonal courses available in English and Spanish.
Career prospects include the civil service, diplomacy, regional organisations such as the Union for the Mediterranean and the European Union, international organisations such as NATO and the United Nations, journalism, public opinion and market research, non-governmental organisations and charities, teaching, academic research, business, tourism and international trade.