[skip to content]

Department of Anthropology and Sociology

Key facts

  • BA Social Anthropology and combined BA, nine Taught Masters programmes, research degrees
  • unique focus on peoples and diasporas of Africa, Asia and the Near and Middle East.
  • SOAS, University of London has been ranked in Europe’s top ten universities for Arts and Humanities, according to the 2014 Times Higher Education (THE) World University Ranking, which ranked SOAS ninth in Europe and 26th in the world.

Department ranked 4th nationally for research outputs

18 December 2014: SOAS research outputs in Anthropology ranked 4th in the UK. Find out more...

Our strengths

As part of the largest concentration of Africa and Asia scholars in the United Kingdom, we benefit from close working relations with experts in Asian and African languages, as well as on the full range of arts and social sciences applied to Africa and Asia.

Facts and figures

  • 8th in the UK (Complete University Guide 2014)
  • 9th in the UK (Guardian University Guide 2014)
  • 93% student satisfaction and 93% satisfaction with teaching – well above the national average
  • UG Applicant/Place Ratio 5:1
  • Number of Staff: 20 academic, 10 teaching and scholarship (fractional)
  • MA Anthropology of Travel, Tourism, and Pilgrimage – the only programme of its kind in Europe
  • MA in Anthropology of Media is the first and still the only programme in Europe that specialises in bringing together contemporary anthropological concerns with media and cultural studies.
  • The Department is among the largest and, and it has more students enrolled for Master’s degrees than any other department in the country.
  • 1st equal in the UK for research (Complete University Guide 2014)
  • Lively research community: 50% of our students are registered for postgraduate degrees
  • Anthropology studied through different lenses – development, medicine, media, diaspora, travel, tourism and pilgrimage, food.
  • Research Centres: Centre for Migration and Diaspora Studies and the SOAS Food Studies Centre.
  • MA Anthropological Research Methods and Nepali is the only Masters-level programme offered anywhere in the world that provides students who intend to proceed to conduct anthropological research (broadly defined) in Nepal with the necessary skills (disciplinary, linguistic, methodological).
  • RAE 2008: Placed second nationally together with LSE: 95 per cent of the work of the Department was rated as world-leading, internationally excellent or internationally recognized

Our Head of Department says:

David Mosse

Our Department is among the most respected in the field of social and cultural anthropology in the UK. Students can draw on the exceptional regional expertise of SOAS anthropologists while gaining a broad education in the subject, and an irrepressible curiosity about the world. At SOAS, Anthropology is at the heart of the university, one of its largest and most important subjects. It is central to the shared objective of widening horizons, fostering cross-cultural perspectives, challenging taken-for-granted assumptions, and critical engagement with urgent issues.

David Mosse, Professor of Social Anthropology

Forthcoming Events



For further information contact the Arts and Humanities Faculty Office
Telephone +44 (0)20 7898 4020
E-mail: anthropology@soas.ac.uk

Department ethics statement

The Department of Anthropology has established review procedures designed to assure its members that all research undertaken by us, whether as staff or students, and the funding streams drawn upon to carry out that research, are ethically acceptable to us as a community of concerned scholars.

Applicants should be aware that we monitor the funding environment closely and reserve the right collectively to decide when we do not wish to participate in particular funded initiatives.