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MSc International Politics

Course Description

The Department of Politics and International Studies offers seven linked masters programmes in politics and the international politics of Asia and Africa. The MSc in International Politics might be classified as a disciplinary MSc. In it, the objective is to give the student the opportunity to undertake a rigorous training in political theory, with special reference to the study of politics outside Europe and America. At Masters level there is particular emphasis on seminar work. Students make full-scale presentations for each unit that they take, and are expected to write substantial papers that often require significant independent work.

Visit the website http://www.soas.ac.uk/politics/programmes/mscintpol/

Teaching & Learning

Courses are taught by a combination of methods, principally lectures, tutorial classes, seminars and supervised individual study projects.

The MSc programme consists of three taught courses (corresponding to three examination papers) and a dissertation.

- Lectures

Most courses involve a 50-minute lecture as a key component with linked tutorial classes.

- Seminars

At Masters level there is particular emphasis on seminar work. Students make full-scale presentations for each unit that they take, and are expected to write papers that often require significant independent work.

- Dissertation

A quarter of the work for the degree is given over to the writing of an adequately researched 10,000-word dissertation. Students are encouraged to take up topics which relate the study of a particular region to a body of theory.

Learning Resources

- SOAS Library
SOAS Library is one of the world's most important academic libraries for the study of Africa, Asia and the Middle East, attracting scholars from all over the world. The Library houses over 1.2 million volumes, together with significant archival holdings, special collections and a growing network of electronic resources.


SOAS MSc International Politics students leave SOAS not only with a knowledge and understanding of the complex political and cultural issues of international politics, but also with a portfolio of widely transferable skills which employers seek in many professional and management careers, both in business and in the public sector.

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 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.

-Excellent student satisfaction for Faculty of Law and Social Sciences
The Faculty of Law and Social Sciences (LSS) at SOAS, University of London has performed extremely well according to the 2014 National Student Survey (NSS).

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

Visit the MSc International Politics page on the SOAS University of London website for more details!

(Student Profile)

Berkay Gulen

Why did you choose SOAS?
Before coming to SOAS, my main aim was to be a part of an academic atmosphere which deals with the Middle East and regional studies. I believed that SOAS would be a perfect venue to realize all my goals due to its diversified curriculum and multinational academic staff.

What did you enjoy most about your academic studies at SOAS?
Discussions with Professors before starting to write assignments and their feedback on students’ viewpoints throughout the tutorials were very helpful on the way of learning. Moreover, analyses on daily political events in lectures which are related with the historical background of Middle East politics encouraged me to link up theoretical perspective with “real politics”.

How would you describe the experience of living in London?
It was wonderful! Meeting up with the people coming from different backgrounds and hearing different viewpoints about events were a great opportunity for me. It was also a new experience in terms of re-thinking my ideas about the world and future plans. On the other hand, London streets, its museums and its events on every corner as well as academic organizations around Bloomsbury made this year perfect. I should also mention the relaxed atmosphere around St. James Park and Angel.

How did you spend your time outside of the classroom?
Mostly in the library! Throughout the semesters, travelling around England, Scotland and Northern Ireland was the best way to not to think about responsibilities of the courses.

Any advice for students thinking about studying at SOAS?
Specifically for students coming from Turkey, SOAS is an interesting experience that you cannot compare any university in Turkey. If you are looking for alternative approaches and think that “another way is possible”, SOAS can be the right choice. For international students, I think, SOAS is one of the best schools that you can be the witness of meeting of the West and the East. Please do not restrict your expectations with the content of the courses or academic stuff. SOAS is also a “breathing area” with its lively debates, parties at SOAS Bar and free organizations.

What are your future plans?
After a gap year, I would like to come back to the UK for doing my PhD on foreign policy analysis and Middle East politics.


Canon Collins Scholarships - No. of awards TBC

These scholarships are for Masters study in any subject field.
The application process normally opens in December and closes in February, for study commencing in September the following year. Please go to the Canon Collins website and click "Apply for A Scholarship" and then "Canon Collins Scholarship for Masters Study in the UK" for further information on how to apply.

Value of Scholarship(s)

See website


Country/Nationality: Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, Zambia, Zimbabwe

Application Procedure

See the website

Further Information



SOAS Master's Scholarships - Faculty of Law and Social Sciences - 16 Awards

There are six SOAS Master's scholarships available in the Faculty of Law and Social Sciences. Each is valued at £16,765 each in total. Fees will be deducted from this amount and the remainder will be used toward maintenance. In addition to these six SOAS Master's scholarship, the Faculty will offer an extra 10 scholarships, each valued at approximately £1,500.Candidate Assessment:
- Candidates will be assessed on academic merit by an Advisory Panel consisting of at least three academic members of the Faculty. - The assessment of your application will be based on the information provided in your scholarship application and in your on-line admission application for admission. Selectors will be looking at the degree results and also at academic references, statement and other relevant information.Scholarship Application Deadline
- Scholarship applications must be received no later than 17:00 (UK local time) on 24 February 2016. - In order to be considered for this scholarship, you must ALSO submit a complete online application to the degree programme as soon as possible and then submit an application for the scholarship. Applicants applying for scholarships must also submit an application for admission well in advance. Please note that complete applications for admission can take up to 4 weeks to be considered by the Department, although this duration can vary depending on the time of year. - You should prepare to wait up to 6 weeks in busy periods.

Value of Scholarship(s)



- Applicants must possess or expect to be awarded a First Class Honours Degree or equivalent. Students with a non-UK degree to be adjudged in the top rank by their referees and transcript.
- This scholarship is open to UK/EU applicants only.
- Applicants must have an offer of admission to pursue one of the eligible full-time masters programmes at SOAS by the scholarship application deadline.
- The scholarship cannot be held along with any other major scholarship or studentship.

Application Procedure

You must apply for this scholarship via the on-line scholarship application form

Further Information


Entry Requirements

The qualification for entry is normally a first or upper-second class honours degree (or equivalent) in Politics or International Relations, or a related social science discipline. Applicants without such a background may be considered for admission depending on their academic training and undergraduate performance.

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