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The MA in Migration and Diaspora Studies is a broad-based degree for students who want to receive research training in Migration, and Diaspora, as well as Humanitarian and Refugee Studies, including a relevant language as part of the specialization. The degree will prepare students to proceed to advanced postgraduate research or to work s practitioners in fields related to Migration, Refugees and Humanitarian relief.

This MA is designed to appeal to students from a variety of backgrounds who:

  • Wish to know more of the transnational nature of the modern world;
  • Wish to engage with critical theories to understand the management of mobility and the impact of humanitarian relief;
  • Wish to understand the role of migration in the major political and cultural processes of the contemporary world;
  • Come from other disciplines, such as Law or Politics, and now wish to incorporate an anthropological perspective on issues of migration and diaspora.

The degree offers students a chance to pursue specialist interests by a considered selection of courses to suit their individual needs. It provides:

  1. A broad-based MA for students who wish to enhance their knowledge in light of continuing contemporary research;
  2. A special interest MA, enabling students to study diaspora and migration issues in depth in relation to a particular discipline or region.

The programme attracts students from around the world. It encourages a transdisciplinary approach to issues of migration and diaspora, providing historical depth as well as perspectives from anthropology, politics, sociology, and de-colonial studies. The programme also works closely with a number of departments across the school, such as Development Studies, the Centre for Gender Studies as well as Law and Politics, which also run migration and diaspora related courses. Most of these courses are available as options on the programme, making it a unique MA in terms of both its breadth and depth. The program seeks to facilitate a bridge between academia and work realities including advocacy, relief, arts and culture, as well as activism on the ground.

In the recent past, our students have been highly successful in going on to further study and a number have received scholarships for research degrees at SOAS and elsewhere. Many have also gone on to work with NGOs and in the public sector as well as arts organizations. We have a good staff-student ratio, which ensure the best support for personal academic development and training which enhances future career prospects.

The MA in Migration and Diaspora Studies is considerably enriched by the SOAS Centre for Migration and Diaspora Studies, which runs seminars, films and public lectures and also hosts a number of international scholars. The Centre is also a part of a migration research network of London colleges including LSE and UCL. Students on the programme therefore have unparalleled access to a critical body of scholars and scholarship on migration and diaspora related issues.

Prospective students are encouraged to contact the Programme Convenor, Dr Ruba Salih, at an early stage of their application to seek advice on the most appropriate options for study. The programme consists of four elements, three examined courses and a 10,000-word dissertation on an approved topic.

Structure

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

Students are expected to take all the core and compulsory modules listed below.

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

All students are required to take 30 credits from the Department of Anthropology and Sociology list.

The remaining credits can be selected from the relevant lists in the Department of Anthropology and Sociology or relevant options from other departments or a language module. See below for a detailed programme structure.

Employment

Studying an MA in Migration and Diaspora Studies at SOAS develops students’ understanding of the world, other peoples’ ways of life and how society is organised. This programme with give students specialized research training in Migration and Diaspora Studies, including a relevant language. Over the years the SOAS department has trained numerous leading anthropologists who have gone on to occupy lectureships and professorships throughout the world. Equally, students gain skills during their degree that transfer well to areas such as information and technology, government service, the media and tourism. 

Postgraduate students leave SOAS with a portfolio of widely transferable skills which employers seek, including analytical and critical skills; ability to gather, assess and interpret data; high level of cultural awareness; and problem-solving. A postgraduate degree is a valuable experience that provides students with a body of work and a diverse range of skills that they can use to market themselves with when they graduate. 

For more information about Graduate Destinations from this department, please visit the Careers Service website.


Visit the Migration and Diaspora Studies - MA page on the SOAS University of London website for more details!

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