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Course content

Our MA in Middle Eastern Studies provides expert research-led teaching in the politics, anthropology and sociology of the modern Middle East and North Africa. We offer a broad choice of modules that allow you to pursue your own interests and deepen your understanding and knowledge of one of the most contested and important regions in the world today. We offer a broad choice of modules that allow you to pursue your own interests and deepen your understanding and knowledge of specific topics.

Key benefits

  • Additional academic development, mentoring, and time to develop your intellectual interests.
  • Wide range of optional modules taught by world leading scholars in modern Middle Eastern Studies.
  • Engagement with leading practitioners, including from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the British Council, the media, civil society organisations.
  • Exposure to latest debates through regular public lectures organised by the department and its research clusters.
  • Opportunity to study Arabic, Turkish, Farsi or Hebrew through King’s Modern Language Centre.
  • Skills workshops with professionals working on the region to enhance employment opportunities.
  • Strong intellectual and methodological foundations for further research.
  • Opportunity to develop communication skills by presenting and disseminating research in written and oral forms to classmates, tutors, and the wider academic community.


Our course will introduce you to cutting-edge debates in the social sciences as they relate to the politics and society of the modern Middle East and North Africa (MENA). Our world-leading faculty have extensive experience of conducting research in the region and the course regularly attracts a dynamic student body who have lived and worked in the MENA. This diversity will expose you to new perspectives, and prepare you for a career specialising in the region.

In addition to the expertise that our Department offers, you can draw on the knowledge of a number of departments across King’s, including International Development, Political Economy, European and International Studies, War Studies, History, Theology & Religious Studies and the Russia Institute.

If you are interested in developing your knowledge of the main political, socio-economic and cultural trends in the Middle East, from the legacies of colonialism and continuing international interventions, to the dynamics of political contention over state legitimacy, citizen rights and everyday survival, to the challenges thrown up by the Syrian refugee crisis, then our course is ideal for you.

Course purpose

Our course aims to provide students with an overview of the key debates and issues in regional politics and society, using concepts and theories from social science – from the legacies of colonialism to the ongoing refugee crisis. The emphasis is on familiarising students with a wide range of social and political phenomena in preparation for the optional modules and the MA dissertation.

Course format and assessment


For every 20-credit module, we will provide you with two hours of teaching a week during term time, and we expect you to undertake 180 hours of independent study. For your dissertation, we will provide you with 24 hours of methodology training, spread over two terms. You will also undertake 580 hours of independent study.

Taught modules: Full-time students can typically expect six hours of lectures/seminars per week and part-time students can expect four hours of lectures/seminars per week in the first year and two hours of lecture/seminar per week in the second year, plus the dissertation methods course and the dissertation module. 

Dissertation module: You can typically expect 12-sessions worth of the Research Methods course and four contact hours of consultation with a supervisor. 

For self study, the approximate workload for a 20-credit module taught by Middle Eastern Studies is 20 hours of lectures and seminars and 180 hours of self-guided learning. For the dissertation (60 credits), you can expect 580 hours self-study and project work

As part of the two-year schedule, part-time students would usually aim to take the required taught module and two optional modules in Year 1, and two optional modules and the Dissertation module (including the Research Methods course) in Year 2.


We assess The Politics of the Contemporary Middle East through essay and class participation. We assess our optional modules through essays and, at the discretion of the mosdule convener, through class participation.

Career prospects

The skills and knowledge which you develop through our course will enhance your employability in an increasingly important field. We will support you in finding work through our excellent career service, and the Department of Middle Eastern Studies hosts its own careers fair. Our students go on to pursue careers at the United Nations, European Union, diplomatic services, journalism, government and a wide variety of different NGOs, or further research in our PhD programme.

Visit the Middle Eastern Studies - MA page on the King’s College London website for more details!






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