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Masters Degrees (Islamic Studies)

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This unique and innovative programme is designed to develop students’ knowledge of the key areas of Islamic Studies. This programme will introduce Islam in terms of its fundamental beliefs, history and development from the Arabian Peninsula to other parts of the world. Read more
This unique and innovative programme is designed to develop students’ knowledge of the key areas of Islamic Studies. This programme will introduce Islam in terms of its fundamental beliefs, history and development from the Arabian Peninsula to other parts of the world. Students will examine the key teachings of Islam as a religion and a civilisation that has come in contact with other cultures and civilisations. They will also explore other areas such as women and Islam, Islamic core sources and Islamic ethics in light of contemporary developments.

This programme is SCQF credit-rated by the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA). It is available on a full-time or part-time basis.

Future Study and Careers

This programme is relevant to any candidate who wants to learn about Islam and its connection with other revealed religions such as Christianity and Judaism.

Through establishing a foundation and some critical thinking on the subject matter, candidates will become confident in addressing various challenges in response to their personal or professional situations through working in a multicultural society.

Additional Information
For students requiring a Tier 4 student visa, an overall score of 6 in IELTS for UKVI (with 6.0 in writing and 5.5 in all other areas) is required.
The programme is comprised of five compulsory units (+ 1 optional unit).

The whole programme is equal to 72 credit points with 12 credit points for each unit. The Advanced Diploma will be awarded to students who successfully pass all units.

The compulsory units are as follows:

Introduction to Islamic Studies will introduce students to Islam, its history, important personalities in the early history of Islam, the development of Islam, its main sources and basic teachings. The students will also be introduced to the skill of transliterating for correct pronunciation of some Arabic/Islamic terms. On successful completion of this unit, students should know the basic teachings and the main sources of Islam. In addition, students will be able to understand some of the similarities and differences between Islam and other religions.

Islamic Core Sources and Approaches will give students a comprehensive understanding of the Islamic core sources and approaches. They will be introduced to the different sciences developed within Islamic studies from exegesis (tafsir) to Islamic law (fiqh) and principles of jurisprudence (usul al-fiqh). On successful completion of this unit, students should know the different methodological approaches developed by Muslim scholars within the Islamic tradition.

Islamic Ethics (Akhlaq) has always been an intrinsic and fundamental part of Islamic thought, manifested in both Muslim jurisprudence and Islamic theology. This unit will look at the centrality of ethics in the Islamic core sources and how early and classical Muslim scholars have conceptualised it. Modern debates about the significance of ethics in Islamic core sources will be critically examined.

Women and Islam is a lively subject used by those in both the Islamic and western worlds. It is a subject often used by critics to portray Islam as a misogynistic and oppressive religion. In their arguments, their first point of reference is the plight of Muslim women in many Islamic societies. The advocates of women’s rights in Islam encourage differentiation between the teachings of Islam and diverse cultural practices.

Research Methodology in Social Sciences and Islamic Studies is designed to strengthen students’ critical thinking while writing or reading scientific research, to familiarise students with theories and the practical application of research methodology, methods, design and strategy while conducting a research proposal. The unit also includes aspects of methodology of Muslim scholars in searching for the truth by considering the revealed knowledge of the Qur’an and Sunnah, evidence from iltizamand qiyas (logic) or even disputed sources

Core Units 

•Introduction to Islamic Studies (SCQF 9)
•Islamic Core Sources and Approaches (SCQF 10)
•Islamic Ethics (SCQF 10)
•Women and Islam (SCQF 10)
•Research Methodology in Social Sciences and Islamic Studies (SCQF 10)”

Optional Units 

•Arabic as a Foreign Language (SCQF 5)
•Arabic as a Foreign Language (SCQF 6)
•Arabic as a Foreign Language (SCQF 7)
•Arabic as a Foreign Language (SCQF 8)
•Arabic as a Foreign Language (SCQF 9)
•Arabic for Special Purposes (SCQF 10)
•Islamic Economics and Finance (SCQF 11)
•Islamic Commercial Law (SCQF 11)
•Applied Islamic Banking and Insurance (SCQF 11)
•Islamic Accounting and Auditing (SCQF 11)

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The MRes Islamic Studies is a dynamic and exciting programme of study, appropriate for all those seeking to further their knowledge in the multidisciplinary academic fields associated with the study of Islam. Read more
The MRes Islamic Studies is a dynamic and exciting programme of study, appropriate for all those seeking to further their knowledge in the multidisciplinary academic fields associated with the study of Islam. It is programme that is divided into a 60 credit taught part and a Dissertation of 120 credits amounting to up to 30,000 words in total.

Course Overview

The programme is taught by experts with diverse interests in Islamic Studies, encouraging students to explore in depth a range of topics relating to the Islam and Muslims in contemporary and historical perspectives. Islamic Studies is a long-standing discipline at the university, and our academic team have contributed to the field through publications, specialist research, and participation in international conferences.

The MRes provides a high quality student experience suitable for those working within – or associated with - Muslim communities, in minority and majority contexts, especially those wishing to develop a greater understanding of the people, cultures and religious perspectives with in which they are working.

The programme is delivered as a full-time and part-time programme of study, and is also available as distance learning. All module content is available through the University’s Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) and students will be supported throughout their studies through regular access to their module tutors, either one to one (by email, skype, phone), in groups (using media such as Skype), or via VLE module discussion forums or wikis.

All students will be supported through their studies particular during the Research phase of their programme which amounts to 120 credits overall. An annual residential graduate summer school is held for all students in July where students are able to experience lectures and seminars covering both issues related to generic learning and subject-specific information and to engage with a number of our research students.

Key Features

-Islamic Studies is a long-standing discipline at the university
-Academic team that contributes to publications, specialist research, and participation in international conferences
-Excellent Continuing Professional Development for those working in the field of Islam or with majority and minority Muslim communities
-Our staff are highly experienced teachers who have taught in different institutions and countries and who bring with them valuable expertise in guiding international students through their programmes of study

Assessment

A range of assessment methods are used from essays and short written evaluation, and reflective pieces. The Dissertation is between 25,000 and 30,000 words.

Career Opportunities

The programme has been designed to attract students interested in developing both their generic as well as their subject-specific skills. It offers opportunities for students who have recently graduated to move on to work at level 7 in their specialist field of study and help prepare them for careers in education, ministry and research. The programme also offers excellent continuing professional development for teachers at various stages of their career, ministers currently in pastoral charge seeking further professional development and other interested parties. In addition, the programme will be attractive to students who wish to study out of personal interest or faith commitment.

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All prospective MPhil applicants are advised to peruse the staff profiles on our website to familiarise themselves with the research and teaching interests of staff members. Read more
All prospective MPhil applicants are advised to peruse the staff profiles on our website to familiarise themselves with the research and teaching interests of staff members. Applicants for this course are expected to have a university qualification in either Hebrew or Arabic (Muslim-Jewish Relations stream) or Persian (Persian Cultural History stream).

Once admitted onto the MPhil in Asian and Middle Eastern Studies (Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies), applicants will have the option of studying one of two streams:

- Muslim-Jewish Relations;
or
- Persian Cultural History

For each of these streams, students are required to choose three papers - courses usually run over two terms - in addition to doing a 15,000-word MPhil dissertation under the supervision of a supervisor. The dissertations are submitted no later than mid-August following the start of the course.

MPhil students attend various training courses offered by the Department in codicology, text reading, and other skills. They are also encouraged to attend fourth-year undergraduate lectures and language courses where relevant. They may attend graduate work-in-progress seminars where they have an opportunity to present their own work to their peers for feedback in a supportive environment.

See the website http://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/directory/amammpmei

Course detail

* Muslim-Jewish Relations*

Students taking the Muslim-Jewish Relations stream will be introduced to the analytical tools required for studying Muslim-Jewish relations, primary sources in translation and original language, bibliographical method, objectivity in the study of interfaith relations and controversial themes. Topics may include the Jewish languages of the Islamic world; key historical documents in the study of Muslim-Jewish Relations; Muslim and Jewish thought; Law and Society and the Arab-Israeli conflict.

* Persian Cultural History*

Students taking the Persian Cultural History stream will be offered readings in Persian cultural history, identifying persisting trends in Persian literature and cultural production from the medieval period down to modern times. These themes revolve around kingship and the image of the ideal prince, theories of justice and good government, and competing sources of secular and religious authority. Similarly, the motif of love, both earthly and divine, is a common thread running through Persian literature and entails also the extensive use of imagery of the natural world. In the modern world, the course examines a number of issues by studying Iranian cinema and focusing on gender, historical adaptation, nation and approaches to narration and resistance to dominant discourses, reflecting also on how the stories and legends of the classical tradition are adapted for contemporary literature and media. In discussing these topics, attention is paid to their visual as well as written representation.

Learning Outcomes

At the end of the MPhil programme, students will be expected to have:
- acquired the ability to read, interpret and translate primary sources in Hebrew, Arabic or Persian;
- acquired a good knowledge of the general scholarship on Muslim and Jewish or Persian culture(s);
- acquired an in-depth knowledge of the secondary literature relevant to the subject of their dissertation;
- developed the ability to formulate original research questions and produce a well-constructed, argument to answer them, in the form - of an independent piece of research based on the use of primary and secondary sources;
- acquired the skills to use library and internet resources independently.

Assessment

The one-year MPhil in Asian and Middle Eastern Studies (Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies) will have the following structure for the (1) Muslim-Jewish Relations option and (2) Persian Cultural History option:

1. Three modules each assessed by an examination or a 5,000 word course exercise
2. A 15,000 word dissertation.

With the approval of the Degree Committee, a candidate may offer, in place of one or more of the examination papers, the same number of essays, each of not more than 5,000 words, including footnotes, but excluding bibliography, or equivalent Alternative Exercises approved by the Degree Committee.

Three written examination papers on subjects approved by the Degree Committee, which shall fall within one of the fields specified in the Schedule to these regulations. With the approval of the Degree Committee, a candidate may offer, in place of one or more of those papers, the same number of essays, each of not more than 5,000 words, including footnotes, but excluding bibliography, or equivalent Alternative Exercises approved by the Degree Committee.

An oral examination on the thesis and on the general field of knowledge within which it falls, but at the Degree Committee’s discretion the requirement for an oral examination may be waived.

Continuing

Applicants for the PhD will be expected to have scored at least 67% or above (or the equivalent from an overseas University) in their Master's degree which should be related to the PhD programme they wish to pursue. All applicants should submit with their GRADSAF (graduate application) a workable and interesting research proposal and demonstrate that they have the required academic knowledge and skills to carry out their project.

Admission is at the discretion of the Degree Committee, which judges each graduate applicant on his or her own merits and in accordance with its own set rules and regulations.

How to apply: http://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/applying

Funding Opportunities

- Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) -

NB: Applicants should check the Faculty's website before the academic year 2016 - 2017 is due to start to see if AHRC funding is available to apply for. Home PhD and MPhil students and EU students who satisfy home residency criteria may be eligible for a full studentship which covers the University Composition Fee and College Fees plus an annual maintenance stipend. EU students are eligible for a fees-only award.

Further information: http://www.cambridgestudents.cam.ac.uk/fees-and-funding/funding/ahrc-funded-students

- Pembroke College Graduate Studentship in Arabic and Islamic Studies -

This studentship covers the University and College fees at the UK Home rate for applicants who are applying for a PhD and MPhil in Arabic Studies, Persian Studies or Islamic Studies and who are affiliated with Pembroke College.
Further information for this studentship can be found at the following web address:

http://www.pem.cam.ac.uk/prospective-students/graduates/fees-and-financial-support/scholarships-and-bursaries/

Find out how to apply here http://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/directory/amammpmei/apply

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Our MPhil programme in Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies is offered as a one-year programme which aims to give graduate students an opportunity to develop their analytical, research and writing skills in preparation for further academic research or entry to professions requiring such skills. Read more
Our MPhil programme in Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies is offered as a one-year programme which aims to give graduate students an opportunity to develop their analytical, research and writing skills in preparation for further academic research or entry to professions requiring such skills.

This MPhil programme is taken by dissertation only. This entails working closely with one supervisor throughout the year on a 25,000 word dissertation to be submitted in mid-August.

See the website http://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/directory/amammpmir

Course detail

At the end of the MPhil programme, students will be expected to have:

- acquired the ability to read, interpret and translate primary sources in Modern and/or Pre Modern Arabic or Persian;
- acquired a good knowledge of the general scholarship on Arabic and/or Persian culture(s);
- acquired an in-depth knowledge of the secondary literature relevant to the subject of their dissertation;
- developed the ability to formulate original research questions and produce a well-constructed, argument to answer them, in the form of an independent piece of research based on the use of primary and secondary sources;
- acquired the skills to use library and internet resources independently.

Format

During the year, MPhil students attend various training courses offered by the Department in codicology, text reading, and other skills. They are also encouraged to attend fourth-year undergraduate lectures and language courses where relevant. They may attend graduate work-in-progress seminars where they have an opportunity to present their own work to their peers for feedback in a supportive environment.

Assessment

For the MPhil in Asian and Middle Eastern Studies by Research (Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies), students will submit a thesis of not more than 25,000 words, including footnotes and appendices but excluding bibliography on a subject approved by the Degree Committee. All MPhil dissertations must include a brief Abstract at the start of the dissertation of no more than 400 words.

Those students who take the MPhil by research will be required to take a viva examination.

Continuing

Applicants for the PhD will be expected to have scored at least 67% or above (or the equivalent from an overseas University) in their Master's degree which should be related to the PhD programme they wish to pursue. All applicants should submit with their GRADSAF (graduate application) a workable and interesting research proposal and demonstrate that they have the required academic knowledge and skills to carry out their project.

Admission is at the discretion of the Degree Committee, which judges each graduate applicant on his or her own merits and in accordance with its own set rules and regulations.

How to apply: http://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/applying

Funding Opportunities

- Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) -

NB: Applicants should check the Faculty's website before the academic year 2016 - 2017 is due to start to see if AHRC funding is available to apply for. Home PhD and MPhil students and EU students who satisfy home residency criteria may be eligible for a full studentship which covers the University Composition Fee and College Fees plus an annual maintenance stipend. EU students are eligible for a fees-only award.

Further information: http://www.cambridgestudents.cam.ac.uk/fees-and-funding/funding/ahrc-funded-students

- Pembroke College Graduate Studentship in Arabic and Islamic Studies -

This studentship covers the University and College fees at the UK Home rate for applicants who are applying for a PhD in Arabic Studies, Persian Studies or Islamic Studies and who are affiliated with Pembroke College.
Further information for this studentship can be found at the following web address:

http://www.pem.cam.ac.uk/prospective-students/graduates/fees-and-financial-support/scholarships-and-bursaries/

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The MA Islamic Studies is a dynamic and exciting programme of study, appropriate for all those seeking to further their knowledge in the multidisciplinary academic fields associated with the study of Islam. Read more
The MA Islamic Studies is a dynamic and exciting programme of study, appropriate for all those seeking to further their knowledge in the multidisciplinary academic fields associated with the study of Islam.

Course Overview

The programme is taught by experts with diverse interests in Islamic Studies, encouraging students to explore in depth a range of topics relating to the Islam and Muslims in contemporary and historical perspectives. Islamic Studies is a long-standing discipline at the university, and our academic team have contributed to the field through publications, specialist research, and participation in international conferences.

The MA provides a high quality student experience suitable for those working within – or associated with - Muslim communities, in minority and majority contexts, especially those wishing to develop a greater understanding of the people, cultures and religious perspectives with in which they are working.

The programme is delivered full-time or part-time through distance learning. All module content is available through the University’s Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) and students will be supported throughout their studies through regular access to their module tutors, either one to one (by email, skype, phone), in groups (using media such as Skype), or via VLE module discussion forums or wikis.

Campus-based students will be supported through lectures, research seminars and public lectures. An annual residential graduate summer school is held for all students in July where students are able to experience lectures and seminars covering both issues related to generic learning and subject-specific information and to engage with a number of our research students.

Key Features

-Islamic Studies is a long-standing discipline at the university
-Academic team that contributes to publications, specialist research, and participation in international conferences
-Excellent Continuing Professional Development for those working in the field of Islam or with majority and minority Muslim communities
-Our staff are highly experienced teachers who have taught in different institutions and countries and who bring with them valuable expertise in guiding international students through their programmes of study

Assessment

Assessment is usually based on written work in the form of long and short essays, reports, book reviews and reflective pieces.

Career Opportunities

The programme has been designed to attract students interested in developing both their generic as well as their subject-specific skills. It offers opportunities for students who have recently graduated to move on to work at level 7 in their specialist field of study and help prepare them for careers in education, ministry and research. The programme also offers excellent continuing professional development for teachers at various stages of their career, ministers currently in pastoral charge seeking further professional development and other interested parties. In addition, the programme will be attractive to students who wish to study out of personal interest or faith commitment.

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This multidisciplinary degree focuses on the politics, religions, cultures and languages of the Middle East and North Africa. Read more

This multidisciplinary degree focuses on the politics, religions, cultures and languages of the Middle East and North Africa. Current political events are covered in depth, alongside historical developments, paths towards democratisation, the role of gender dynamics and the interactions between religious authorities and civil society.

Core modules will introduce you to the complex intersections between Islam, culture and politics across the region. You’ll also choose from a range of optional modules, allowing you to explore issues such as Islam’s encounter with modernity in further depth, or to learn Arabic, Turkish or Persian from beginner level. Through your dissertation, you will carry out independent research on an aspect of the Middle East that particularly engages you.

This is a fascinating and unique opportunity to study and understand a diverse and complex region through a mix of approaches drawn from Area Studies (Middle East and North Africa), Islamic Studies and traditional disciplines including Politics, History and Law.

Specialist resources

At Leeds we have a wealth of resources to help you make the most of your studies. Our archives contain 500 Arabic manuscripts and 10,000 archaeological artefacts, ranging from Pharaonic to early Palestinian eras.

There are also extensive library resources in our world-class Brotherton Library, and our fully equipped Language Centre features digital language labs, audio-video practice booths and Computer Assisted Language Learning (CALL) to help you develop your language skills.

We are committed to helping you to develop skills in critical reading, academic analysis and the presentation of your ideas and research and offer students dedicated sessions on these themes.

This programme is also available to study part-time.

Course content

Core modules will lay the foundations of the programme, introducing you to research methods and bibliography to prepare you for your own research and exploring the relationship between Islam, culture and politics in the Middle East and North Africa. You’ll then choose from a wide range of optional modules, allowing you to pursue your interests.

You’ll be expected to choose at least some modules in Arabic, Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies, which means you could learn Arabic, Persian or Turkish from scratch, explore Arab drama or media or study popular revolts and democracy.

However, you can also choose from relevant modules offered by the School of Philosophy, Religion and History of Science and the School of Politics and International Studies on topics such as Middle Eastern politics, the links between religion and global development or Muslims and multiculturalism among others.

By the end of the programme in September, you’ll be able to showcase the skills and knowledge you’ve developed when you research and write a dissertation on a topic of your choice.

If you choose to study part-time, you'll study over a longer period and take fewer modules in each year.

Course structure

Compulsory modules

  • Dissertation in Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies 60 credits
  • Debating the Middle East: Islam, Politics and Culture 30 credits
  • Principles and Practices of Research 30 credits

For more information on typical modules, read Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies MA Full Time in the course catalogue

For more information on typical modules, read Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies MA Part Time in the course catalogue

Learning and teaching

To help you make the most of our tutors’ expertise, we use a range of teaching and learning methods. Most of your modules will involve lectures and weekly seminars where you’ll discuss your reading and research, while language modules will involve intensive practical classes in small groups.

Assessment

Depending on the modules you choose, you may experience different forms of assessment. Usually these will include essays, exams, oral presentations, practical assessments and even seminar participation.

Career opportunities

This programme will equip you with a deeper understanding of Islamic and Middle Eastern culture, as well political awareness and potentially language skills. You’ll also develop more sophisticated skills in areas such as research, analysis, interpretation and communication which are highly valued by employers in a wide range of careers.

Opportunities are available in a range of careers within and beyond the UK with a Middle Eastern or Islamic dimension. These include journalism, teaching, NGOs and the charity sector, cultural organisations, travel and tourism, business and finance, the media, marketing and advertising and the civil, security and diplomatic services.

Careers support

We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. That’s one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.

The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.



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This Masters programme is designed for graduates with no prior knowledge of Islam as well as those who would like to develop their understanding of this major world faith.Our programme will enable you to acquire a profound comprehension of Islam both as a religious, intellectual and cultural tradition, and as a powerful political ideology. Read more
This Masters programme is designed for graduates with no prior knowledge of Islam as well as those who would like to develop their understanding of this major world faith.Our programme will enable you to acquire a profound comprehension of Islam both as a religious, intellectual and cultural tradition, and as a powerful political ideology.

You will study materials which delineate the core values and doctrines of Islam, and those which elaborate on the diversity of practice and manifold traditions of the Islamic faith. Your ability to analyse materials, contexts and issues - and to engage in informed academic discussion on your conclusions - will be strengthened through the study of methodologies and research tools used today in Islamic Studies by historians, social scientists and cultural anthropologists.

This combination of approaches to the study of Islam will enable you to acquire the analytical tools needed for independent study and interpretation of both medieval and contemporary aspects of Islam, not only within the context of the Middle East, but throughout the world.

Research

Research in the Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies (IAIS) is divided into disciplinary research clusters.

The Islamic Studies cluster(http://socialsciences.exeter.ac.uk/iais/research/clusters/islamicstudies/) includes postgraduate students and staff brought together by a common fascination with the theological, ethical and legal traditions of Islam. They gather under the auspices of the Centre for the Study of Islam(http://socialsciences.exeter.ac.uk/iais/research/centres/csi/), which holds regular study groups, seminars and conferences. The principal project linked to this research group is Islamic Reformulations: Belief, Governance, Violence, funded by the ESRC under the RCUK Global Uncertainties Programme. The project examines the current state and future trajectories of Muslim thought.

Our research newsletter will also give you a flavour of our research (http://socialsciences.exeter.ac.uk/iais/research/researchnewsletter/).

Please see our website for further information on this programme: http://www.exeter.ac.uk/postgraduate/taught/arabislamic/islamicstudiesma

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The MA offers the students the opportunity to concentrate on the Qur'an, the Hadith and other Islamic texts, and so provides a unique training in the translation of Islamic religious material. Read more
The MA offers the students the opportunity to concentrate on the Qur'an, the Hadith and other Islamic texts, and so provides a unique training in the translation of Islamic religious material. The degree is designed to benefit academics, teachers of Islam in other institutions, translators of Islamic material into English in research centres, government departments and da'wa centres. It provides excellent research training and is a useful qualification for those who wish to progress to higher postgraduate degrees.

Visit the website http://www.soas.ac.uk/nme/programmes/maislstud/

Structure

Students take three taught units (one major, two minor) and write a 10,000 word dissertation.

Two courses, including the major, must be taken from Group A. The third unit can be from Group A or B. Normally no more than two translation items may be taken.

English language requirements - http://www.soas.ac.uk/admissions/international/englishrequirements/

MA Islamic Studies- Programme Specifications 2012/13 (pdf; 28kb) - http://www.soas.ac.uk/nme/programmes/maislstud/file80798.pdf

Employment

As a postgraduate student specialising in Islamic Studies, you will gain competency in language skills and intercultural awareness and understanding. Familiarity with the region will have been developed through a combination of the study of language, literature and culture (which can include literature, film, music, art and religion) of various parts of the Middle East.

Graduates leave SOAS not only with linguistic and cultural expertise, but also with a portfolio of widely transferable skills which employers seek in many professional and management careers in both business and the public sector. These include written and oral communication skills, attention to detail, analytical and problem-solving skills, and the ability to research, amass and order information from a variety of sources.

For more information about Graduate Destinations from this department, please visit the Careers Service website (http://www.soas.ac.uk/careers/graduate-destinations/).

Faculty of Languages and Cultures

Six of the academic departments are devoted to teaching and research in the languages, literatures and cultures of Africa, China and Inner Asia, Japan and Korea, the Near and Middle East, South Asia, and South East Asia, with the seventh teaching and conducting research in Linguistics. The Language Centre caters to the needs of non-degree students and governmental and non-governmental organisations. It maintains a huge portfolio of courses, including year-long diploma programmes, weekly evening classes in about 40 different African and Asian languages, and tailored intensive one-to-one courses. The Language Centre also offers courses in French, Portuguese and Spanish.

Their teaching is in three main areas:
- language competence acquisition;

- textual and cultural studies - both comparative and language-specific, and covering not only 'literature' in a strict sense but also visual media, performance, folklore, translation etc.;

- language studies with linguistics at its core - including the prestigious Hans Rausing Endangered Languages Project.

The Faculty is also home to the Centre for Cultural, Literary and Postcolonial Studies (CCLPS) (http://www.soas.ac.uk/cclps/).

While SOAS as a whole represents the most substantial concentration in the Western world of expertise dedicated to African, Middle Eastern and Asian studies, the Faculty of Languages and Cultures is heavily committed to teaching and research grounded in a knowledge of the principal languages and cultures of two thirds of humankind.

Find out how to apply here - http://www.soas.ac.uk/admissions/pg/howtoapply/

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The MA in Middle East and Islamic Studies is highly flexible in that it enables you to select 75 credits of options, followed by a 60 credit dissertation on an approved subject of your choice - thereby creating your own personalised programme. Read more
The MA in Middle East and Islamic Studies is highly flexible in that it enables you to select 75 credits of options, followed by a 60 credit dissertation on an approved subject of your choice - thereby creating your own personalised programme. This award is very well suited to students who need to study for the specific requirements of an employer, as well as those who welcome the opportunity to create an individualised study pathway.

On this programme you will study three core modules, which will bring you into contact with other students on Institute masters programmes. In this way you will be welcomed as a part of our student community and will benefit from contact with a wide range of students with similar interests, no matter which options you later choose.

Please visit our website for further information on this programme: http://www.exeter.ac.uk/postgraduate/taught/arabislamic/mideastislamicma

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Research profile. In this research area, you can pursue interdisciplinary study of Islamic thought and practice, and of historical, theological, ethical and political encounters between Christianity and Islam. Read more

Research profile

In this research area, you can pursue interdisciplinary study of Islamic thought and practice, and of historical, theological, ethical and political encounters between Christianity and Islam.

Staff research interests focus on Islamic theology (kalam), law (shari‘a and fiqh), and philosophy; Qur’an, Hadith, and Tafsir; Muslim views of Christianity and Judaism; Christian theological engagements with Islam; constructive theology and ethics from a Christian or Muslim perspective; Arab Christianity, classic and contemporary; political Islam; political theology; comparative theology; migration, religion and politics.

You can find out more and identify a potential supervisor by looking at the School’s staff profiles, which give details of research interests and publications, and email addresses.

You are encouraged to contact a potential supervisor to discuss your research project before making a formal application.

At the School of Divinity you will join a community of around 150 research students, drawn from around the world, and from a variety of religious and non-religious backgrounds.

You will study in a stimulating environment. The Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014 ranked the School’s research environment at 100% world-leading / internationally excellent, second in the UK on this front in theology and religion. This outstanding result reflects the vibrancy of the School’s research culture.

Masters by Research

If you have academic training in theology or religious studies (or another relevant subject), and would like to develop your interest with a focus on a particular area, the Masters by Research may interest you.

You can study full-time (one year) or part-time (two years). Your pattern of study can either be three supervised research essays followed by a 15,000 word dissertation, or a 30,000 word dissertation. Most students take the ‘research essays + shorter dissertation’ path. All students receive research training.

Training and support

The ethos of the Graduate School is to promote excellence in postgraduate study, within a stimulating and supportive environment. We value equality and diversity in the School community, and an academic culture that is both critical and constructive.

  • At the start of the academic year, you will be invited to Welcome Week, an intensive introduction to study and life in Edinburgh. Some events are especially for international students new to Scotland and the UK, but everything is open to all.
  • In the first weeks, the School provides a general orientation to research skills and to wider opportunities for training and support.
  • From your first days as a PhD or MPhil student, you will work one-to-one with your primary research supervisor.
  • Your progress will be tracked, through regular supervisions and milestone reviews, to ensure that you get the support you need to bring your project to fruition.
  • You will be part of the research seminars in Theology and Ethics, and in Religious Studies, to which visiting speakers are invited and to which postgraduates present work-in-progress.
  • You will be able to follow taught courses that contribute to your interests and research needs, and can also take advantage of opportunities to learn ancient and modern languages.
  • If you are a PhD student, after successful completion of your first year, you will be eligible to apply for tutoring opportunities, to gain teaching experience.

A University review (2015) commended the Graduate School for providing excellent support: responsive to student feedback; proactive in helping new postgraduates to adjust to their studies and to life in Scotland; enthusiastic and practical in promoting career development. The postgraduate student committee works closely with the School to make the research student experience the best it can be.

Facilities

The School of Divinity, one of the largest centres for the study of religion in the United Kingdom, is located in the historic setting of New College, close to Edinburgh Castle and overlooking Princes Street.

Resources for research are excellent. You can draw on the outstanding holdings of New College Library, the University of Edinburgh’s main library, and the nearby National Library of Scotland. New College Library has one of the largest theology collections in the UK, with more than a quarter of a million items and a large and rich manuscript collection. The University library exceeds 2.25 million volumes. The National Library of Scotland – a ‘legal deposit’ library like the British Library in London and the university libraries of Oxford and Cambridge – is just around the corner.

The School provides an extensive programme of weekly research seminars and special guest lectures. In addition, three research centres provide a special focus for activity: the Centre for the Study of Christian Origins; the Centre for Theology and Public Issues; the Centre for the Study of World Christianity.

You will have access to excellent study facilities, dedicated to postgraduates. PhD and MPhil students have access 24/7, and can request an allocated desk. Masters by Research students have shared study space. All areas have printing/scanning and computer facilities. The main postgraduate study wing has a kitchen. New College has an on-site cafe that is open during term time.



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Over the past two or three decades or so, Islamic banking and finance has emerged as another viable way of financial intermediation. Read more

Over the past two or three decades or so, Islamic banking and finance has emerged as another viable way of financial intermediation. It has gained credibility and has spread worldwide and is the preferred way of banking for one fifth of the world's population. This taught MBA offers an opportunity to study the structure of the Islamic banking and finance industry, including its theoretical foundations, products, performance, Islamic financial instruments and risk management issues. These and other topics will be studied within the wider context of the banking and finance industry worldwide. The MBA aims to develop executives who will progress quickly to senior management positions in institutions that transact banking business on Islamic principles.

Course Structure

January intake: Taught modules are undertaken in the period of January to June and September to January and will involve the study of 120 credits. The dissertation (or equivalent) is valued at 60 credits and is undertaken during the period of June to September.

September intake: Taught modules are undertaken in the period of September to June and will involve the study of 120 credits. The dissertation (or equivalent) is valued at 60 credits and is undertaken during the period of June to September.

Compulsory Modules:

Organisations and People: This module examines key issues arising from contemporary research in organisational behaviour (OB) and human resource management (HRM). It provides an integrated analysis of management, organisations and people, developing the conceptual, strategic and practical skills necessary for managers in complex, global organisational contexts.

Management Research: This module analyses the philosophical basis for research in the management sciences, and examines a number of key methodological issues and approaches. Research designs for both quantitative and qualitative research methodologies are developed, including interviews, case studies, focus groups, surveys and experiments.

Islamic Finance: This course provides an insight into topical issues relating to Islamic financial instruments and related risk management issues. The first part of the course examines issues relating to financial contracting, instruments and various intermediation issues. The second part of the course focuses on the role of the capital market in providing Islamic financing and highlights financial engineering issues and well as risk management features of this type of business.

Islamic Banking: This module provides an insight into the key features of Islamic banking business. The first part of the course outlines the theoretical foundations and development of Islamic banking practices. In particular, the main characteristics of various types of Islamic banking products are discussed. The second part of the course examines the operational features of Islamic banks focusing on their performance and how they compete with conventional interest-based banks. The final part of the course outlines contemporary challenges to Islamic banking business.

International Banking: This module examines the origins of international banking, the activities of international banks, the markets in which they participate, and the sources of risk. You will investigate the determinants of the efficiency of international banks, and evaluate the implications for banks' strategic decision-making.

Optional Modules:

International Strategic Management: This module analyses strategic decision-making within business. You will develop a critical understanding of the strategic processes of business management, the interconnections with the functional domains of marketing, human resource management and corporate finance, and the management of knowledge systems.

Marketing Financial Services: This module surveys the tools of modern financial services marketing, focussing on the key methods of financial services marketing in the acquisition of customers and sale and distribution of financial services. The module progresses considering consumer behaviour, the changing customer demands, consumer heuristics and biases and ways in which financial services marketing has succeeded and failed.

Islamic Accounting and Financial Reporting: This module develops a critical awareness of theoretical and practical approaches to Islamic accounting and financial reporting. Islamic accounting standards are compared with IFRS, and the content and impact of academic research in this area is examined.

Contemporary Issues in Management: This module develops several theories and concepts introduced in Organisations and People, critiquing key issues arising from contemporary research in organisational behaviour (OB) and management. It provides a detailed and critical analysis of management, further developing the conceptual, strategic and practical skills necessary for managers in complex, global organisational contexts.

Banking and Development: This module critically evaluates the theory underlying the policy of financial liberalisation, and examines its implementation, primarily in developing countries. The impact of financial liberalisation on the financial systems of developing countries is analysed in depth.

Islamic Insurance: This module analyses the nature and principles of Islamic insurance, and examines the operational modes and practice of Islamic insurance. The structure of Islamic insurance markets is described, and constraints and opportunities for Islamic insurance and Islamic insurance accounting are highlighted.

Marketing Strategy: This module critically evaluates the contributions of various schools of thought in marketing, and examines the relevant analytical models and management practices, with emphasis on the strategic importance of marketing to all organisations.

Merger and Acquisition: This module provides an analysis of incentives and outcomes associated with merger and acquisition deals. It covers the development and execution of an acquisition strategy, the valuation of the target, the conduct of the negotiation, and the implementation of the post-merger integration plan.



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Over the past two or three decades or so, Islamic banking and finance has emerged as another viable way of financial intermediation. Read more

Over the past two or three decades or so, Islamic banking and finance has emerged as another viable way of financial intermediation. It has gained credibility and has spread worldwide and is the preferred way of banking for one fifth of the world’s population. This taught MA offers an opportunity to study the structure of the Islamic banking and finance industry, including its theoretical foundations, products, performance, Islamic financial instruments and risk management issues. These and other topics will be studied within the wider context of the banking and finance industry worldwide. There is also an MSc version of this MA programme, and whilst the MSc is more suitable for candidates with some previous background in mathematics, statistics or econometrics, this MA is more suitable for candidates who prefer a less quantitative approach to their studies.

Course structure

January intake: Taught modules are undertaken in the period of January to June and September to January and will involve the study of 120 credits. The dissertation (or equivalent) is valued at 60 credits and is undertaken during the period of June to September.

September intake: Taught modules are undertaken in the period of September to June and will involve the study of 120 credits. The dissertation (or equivalent) is valued at 60 credits and is undertaken during the period of June to September.

Compulsory modules:

Research Methods: This module develops knowledge of intermediate and advanced research methods, and provides a basis in research methodology for those who may eventually wish to pursue research degrees.

International Financial Markets: This module provides an overview of financial instruments in a multi-currency world, taking account of insights from portfolio theory concerning the relationship between risk and return, the diversification of risk, and the pricing of assets.

Islamic Finance: This module provides an insight into topical issues relating to Islamic financial instruments and related risk management issues. The first part of the module examines issues relating to financial contracting, instruments and various intermediation issues. The second part focuses on the role of the capital market in providing Islamic financing, and highlights financial engineering and risk management features of this type of business.

Islamic Banking: This module provides an insight into the key features of Islamic banking business. The first part of the course outlines the theoretical foundations and development of Islamic banking practices. In particular, the main characteristics of various types of Islamic banking products are discussed. The second part of the course examines the operational features of Islamic banks, focusing on their performance and how they compete with conventional interest-based banks. The final part of the course outlines contemporary challenges to Islamic banking business.

International Banking: This module examines the origins of international banking, the activities of international banks, the markets in which they participate, and the sources of risk. You will investigate the determinants of the efficiency of international banks, and evaluate the implications for banks’ strategic decision-making.

Financial Crises and Bank Regulation: This module examines why banks and financial markets are inherently vulnerable to crises, and analyses the role of policy makers and institutions. The roles of monetary policy, bank supervision and regulation, corporate governance and ratings agencies in mitigating or exacerbating crises are considered.

Optional modules (choose 2):

Islamic Accounting and Financial Reporting: This module develops a critical awareness of theoretical and practical approaches to Islamic accounting and financial reporting. Islamic accounting standards are compared with IFRS, and the content and impact of academic research in this area is examined.

Corporate Risk Management: This module provides an analysis of pure risk and its management.

Bank Financial Management: This module provides a grounding in the nature, strategic context and managerial functions of financial management in banks and other financial services firms. Three key themes are: identification and management of the trade-off between risk and return; improvement of a bank’s value using market models; and external market-based tests of bank performance.

Financial Institutions Strategic Management: This module examines the main theoretical and practical issues concerning banking business. You will develop a critical awareness of the theory of the banking firm, the motives for international banking, and regulatory and structural issues impacting on bank behaviour.

Investment Strategy and Portfolio Management: This module evaluates the development of investment strategies for bonds, equities and derivatives that are designed to achieve optimal risk-return outcomes, and examines the measurement and evaluation of the performance of a portfolio of investments.

Islamic Insurance: This module analyses the nature and principles of Islamic insurance, and examines the operational modes and practice of Islamic insurance. The structure of Islamic insurance markets is described, and constraints and opportunities are highlighted.



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The 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF) confirmed our continuing role as a leading programme for research and study of Islam, the Middle East, and other related subjects. Read more

The 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF) confirmed our continuing role as a leading programme for research and study of Islam, the Middle East, and other related subjects. Over 70% of research activity in Area Studies (IMES and Asian Studies) was classified as world-leading and internationally excellent.

We offer expert supervision for postgraduate studies in Islam, the Middle East and related subjects. You will be studying in an environment that produces world-leading work, with staff who are conducting research of international significance.

A broad spectrum of research areas is available to you as a postgraduate student. Areas include:

  • cinema and media studies of the Middle East
  • comparative historical studies of Islam and Europe
  • cultural studies of the modern Middle East
  • diaspora studies
  • Islamic history
  • Islamic philosophy
  • modern and classical Arabic literature
  • modern and classical Persian literature
  • modern Middle Eastern history
  • Persian, Arabic and Turkish languages
  • politics of the modern Middle East
  • Shi’ism
  • Sufism
  • translation studies

We also offer opportunities for interdisciplinary study across the University.

Training and support

You will have the opportunity to broaden your research perspectives through our workshops and lectures, plus regular conferences and seminars. Inter-school collaborations are also possible, and we will encourage you to create global networks that will aid both your research and employment opportunities.

The activities of the Centre for the Advanced Study of the Arab World, and the Alwaleed Bin Talal Centre for the Study of Islam in the Contemporary World (one of a global network of six centres) will add to your graduate school experience, and bring you into frequent contact with leading researchers from beyond Edinburgh.

Facilities

Computing facilities and a student common room are available. The division's own library is also located on-site.



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The LLM programme is a single subject law programme that may be taken over a period of one year (full-time), or part-time over a period of two, three or four years. Read more
The LLM programme is a single subject law programme that may be taken over a period of one year (full-time), or part-time over a period of two, three or four years. Every student will be required to take modules equivalent to four full units. The assessment of one of the chosen full units (which must be from your chosen specialism) will be by means of a 15,000 word dissertation.

The dissertation must be linked to a module offered at SOAS itself, and attendance on the module will be treated as being part of the process of supervision. With permission of the LLM tutor, students will be entitled to select one complementary subject or the equivalent from comparable Master’s module at SOAS including appropriate language modules. A complementary subject may be chosen in substitution for either a full or a half-subject.

Examinations for all taught modules will be held in May/June of each year and the dissertation will be due for submission during September of the final year of registration. The assessment for each module may vary according to the extent to which the research component of each module is to be stressed.

It is expected that all students will graduate with an LLM in law. It is possible, however, for students wishing to graduate with a ‘specialist’ degree, to do so by way of opting to take three or more modules from the relevant subject groupings below. In each case, the student must undertake a dissertation in that subject grouping.

Visit the website http://www.soas.ac.uk/law/programmes/llm/llmislamiclaw/

Structure

Every student will be required to take modules equivalent to four (4.0) full units. Students who wish to graduate with a specialised LLM are required to take at least three (3.0) of the four (4.0) units within their chosen specialism, including the dissertation. The assessment of one of the chosen full units (within the LLM specialism) will be by means of a 15,000 word dissertation. The fourth unit can be chosen from either the general Law Postgraduate Modules or the following modules associated with the Islamic Law specialisation:

Please note: Not all modules listed will be available every year. Please see the individual module page for information.

Full Module Units (1.0):
- Critical Jurisprudence in Islamic Law and Society - 15PLAC176 (1 Unit)
- Human Rights and Islamic Law - 15PLAC150 (1 Unit)
- Islamic Law - 15PLAC121 (1 Unit)
- Law of Islamic Finance - 15PLAC159 (1 Unit)
- Law and Society in South Asia - 15PLAC129 (1 Unit)
- Law and Society in the Middle East and North Africa - 15PLAC130 (1 Unit)

Half Module Units (0.5):
- Foundations of Comparative Law - 15PLAH031 (0.5 Unit)
- Gender, Law and Society in the Middle East and North Africa - 15PLAH056 (0.5 Unit)
- Religion & Comparative Constitutionalism - 15PLAH052 (0.5 Unit)

Dissertation (1.0):
The dissertation module unit forms part of the required three (3.0) units within the chosen LLM specialism. Please see the dissertation module units below.

- Critical Jurisprudence in Islamic Law and Society - 15PLAD176 (1 Unit)
- Human Rights and Islamic Law - 15PLAD150 (1 Unit)
- Islamic Law - 15PLAD121 (1 Unit)
- Law of Islamic Finance - 15PLAD159 (1 Unit)
- Law and Society in South Asia - 15PLAD129 (1 Unit)
- Law and Society in the Middle East and North Africa - 15PLAD130 (1 Unit)

Faculty of Law and Social Sciences (L&SS)

Welcome to the Faculty of Law and Social Sciences at SOAS. The faculty is the largest in the School in terms of student and staff numbers and consists of the departments of Development Studies, Economics, Financial and Management Studies, Politics and International Studies and the School of Law, as well as the Asia-Pacific Centre for Social Sciences, the Centre for Gender Studies, the Centre for International Studies and Diplomacy, the Centre of Taiwan Studies and a number of department-specific centres. All five departments offer undergraduate programmes, and all but Finance and International Management offer joint undergraduate degrees which can be combined with other disciplines from across the School. Each department also offers a range of masters-level programmes with a regional or disciplinary specialism, as well as a postgraduate research programme. The range of course options and combinations is one of the most distinctive characteristics of studying at SOAS and all students are given the option of studying an Asian or African language, either as part of or on top of their degree.

Staff in the faculty come from all over the world and combine regional knowledge with disciplinary specialisms. Teaching draws heavily on academic staff’s individual research which allows the faculty to maintain a large portfolio of courses, often exploring cutting-edge issues. Many faculty members have played a significant part in public debates and policy-making in relation to Asia and Africa. Academics in the faculty are regularly consulted by governments, public bodies and multilateral organisations including the United Nations and the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank, European Commission, DFID and other country-specific organisations and NGOs.

Find out how to apply here - http://www.soas.ac.uk/admissions/pg/howtoapply/

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In the aftermath of the financial crisis, there is an increasing need among scholars of economics and those working in the field to identify and understand what Islamic economics is and how it can contribute to the western system of finance and multiculturalism. Read more
In the aftermath of the financial crisis, there is an increasing need among scholars of economics and those working in the field to identify and understand what Islamic economics is and how it can contribute to the western system of finance and multiculturalism. This, of course, poses the questions ‘What is the difference between the concept of “Islamic economics and finance” and that of pure “economics and finance”?’ and ‘Is “Islamic economics and finance” capable of contributing to a secular society?’ The four compulsory units of this programme meet the requirements of those who wish to improve their understanding of key Islamic economics, finance and banking concepts and practices that may have significant impact on their work. The programme is available on a part-time or full-time basis, and can also be offered intensively.

This programme is approved and credit-rated by the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA).

Programme Aims

To provide an opportunity for students to acquire critical knowledge and training in Islamic economics, finance and banking.
To train employers/executives in banking, insurance and commercial sectors who wish to specialise in Islamic economics, finance and banking, with an opportunity to explore Arabic language (with specific focus) or Islamic studies which will assist them in expanding this area of the banking and finance industry.
To provide an opportunity for fresh graduates in related disciplines to specialise their knowledge in the area of Islamic economics and finance with the added option of Islamic studies.

Programme Elements

The programme is comprised of four compulsory units:

Islamic Economics and Finance will enable students to identify and understand the concepts and practices of Islamic economics and finance in conjunction with the definition and practical implementation of the western model of economics and finance. From a broader perspective, this unit will also enable students to understand Islamic financial engineering and liquidity management within the capital market context.

Islamic Commercial Law is designed to enable students to understand the sources, concepts and principles of Islamic law (Shari’ah), and its application in commercial transactions. This unit will enable students to analyse the main rulings of Islamic commercial law, including the prohibitions of interest, excessive uncertainty, and their rationale. From a broader perspective, it will enable students to comprehend the legal concepts underlying Islamic insurance products.

Applied Islamic Banking and Insurance will enable students to apply the core concepts of Islamic finance in an Islamic banking and insurance operation, to review and assess the commercial performance of Islamic financial institutions according to underlying Islamic principles, and critically compare the ideal concepts and practical implementation in Islamic and western banking and insurance.

Islamic Accounting and Auditing is designed to offer a comprehensive understanding of accounting for Islamic financial services, to enable students to analytically apply Islamic accounting principles and the related accounting regulatory framework into the context of business and social transactions in Islamic financial services, and review and assess the financial reporting and performance of Islamic financial institutions.

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