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Department of Anthropology and Sociology

MA Anthropological Research Methods and Intensive Language

Duration: 2 year full-time or 4 years part-time. The expectation in the UK is of continuous study across the year, with break periods used to read and to prepare coursework.

Overview

Minimum Entry Requirements: Minimum upper second class honours degree (or equivalent) in Social Anthropology or a taught Masters degree in social anthropology. This Masters is designed for students wishing to pursue a PhD in Social Anthropology. Exceptionally this course may be taken as a conversion MA. Students who would like to take this path must demonstrate a solid grounding in the discipline as well as the regional and language expertise necessary for continuing onto a PhD.

Start of programme: September

Mode of Attendance: Full Time or Part Time

Who is this programme for?:

This Masters is designed for students wishing to pursue a PhD in social anthropology. The programme might also be taken as a stand-alone MA for those wanting training in anthropological research methods for professional development or practical application.

It can also be taken with an intensive language pathway over two years, therefore making this programme unique in Europe.

It is intended for students with a good first degree (minimum of a 2.1) in social anthropology or a taught Masters degree in social anthropology.  Students who would like to take this path must demonstrate a solid grounding in the discipline as well as the regional and language expertise necessary for continuing onto a PhD.

Exceptionally this course may be taken as a conversion MA. Students wishing to take this path must demonstrate a solid grounding in the discipline as well as the regional and language expertise necessary for continuing onto a PhD.

The MA in Anthropological Research Methods (MA Res) may be taken either as a free standing MA or as the first part of a PhD [e.g. as a 1 + 3 research training programme]. In the latter case, the MA Res therefore serves as a shortcut into the PhD. It is designed to train students in research skills, including language training, to the level prescribed by the ESRC’s research training guidelines.

Most students would be expected to progress to PhD registration at the end of the degree.

The Japanese pathway is available for students who have an intermediate level of Japanese. Students will be required to take a placement exam in the week before classes begin in order to determine if their level is suitable. Please contact Professor Drew Gerstle (ag4@soas.ac.uk) for further information.

The Korean pathway is designed for beginner learners of Korean. Students with prior knowledge of Korean are advised to contact the programme convenor, Dr Anders Karlsson (ak49@soas.ac.uk). Students will take four course units in the Korean language, one of them at a Korean university during the summer after year 1.

The Arabic pathway is designed for beginner learners of Arabic. Students will take four units of Arabic, one of them at the Qasid Institute in Jordan or another partner institution during the summer after year 1.  Programme convenor: Dr Mustafa Shah (ms99@soas.ac.uk)

Structure

The student must successfully complete the following core course:

Research Methods in Anthropology (15 PAN C011)
This full unit course is composed of  Ethnographic Research Methods (15 PAN H002, a 0.5 unit course) and Introduction to Quantitative Methods in Social Research (15 PPO H035, a 0.5 unit course, offered by the Department of Politics and International Studies).  

MA Anthropological Research Methods students and first year MPhil/PhD are also required to attend the Research Training Seminar which provides training in the use of bibliographic/online resources, ethical and legal issues, communication and team-working skills, career development, etc. The focus of the Research Training Seminar is the development and presentation of the thesis topic which takes the form of a PhD-level research proposal.

The MA dissertation is submitted no later than mid-September of the student’s final year of registration.

A typical program of study would involve enrolling and passing three full units (this includes the two half units on research methods) and submitting a dissertation.

In the two-year language pathway, students take 2 intensive language units and Research Methods in Anthropology (1 unit) in their first year.  During the summer, they will participate in a summer school abroad.  Upon their return, they will take one intensive language unit in their second year and two optional anthropology units.  In the intensive-language pathway, the same rules apply as for the usual MA.

Students can choose to study any African or Asian language that is normally available to students taking one of the taught masters programs.

The two-year Intensive Language pathway is directed at students who want to engage with a country in a professional as well as academic way, as the intensive language course will enable them to reach a near proficient knowledge of the language.

Programme Specification

Teaching & Learning

Year abroad

Yes (Summer of Year 1)

Teaching & Learning

The student must successfully complete the following core course:

Research Methods in Anthropology (15 PAN C011)
This full unit course is composed of  Ethnographic Research Methods (15 PAN H002, a 0.5 unit course) and Introduction to Quantitative Methods in Social Research (15 PPO H035, a 0.5 unit course, offered by the Department of Politics and International Studies).  

MA Anthropological Research Methods students and first year MPhil/PhD are also required to attend the Research Training Seminar which provides training in the use of bibliographic/online resources, ethical and legal issues, communication and team-working skills, career development, etc. The focus of the Research Training Seminar is the development and presentation of the thesis topic which takes the form of a PhD-level research proposal.

The MA dissertation is submitted no later than mid-September of the student’s final year of registration.

A typical program of study would involve enrolling and passing three full units (this includes the two half units on research methods) and submitting a dissertation.

In the two-year language pathway, students take 2 intensive language units and Research Methods in Anthropology (1 unit) in their first year.  During the summer, they will participate in a summer school abroad.  Upon their return, they will take one intensive language unit in their second year and two optional anthropology units.  In the intensive-language pathway, the same rules apply as for the usual MA.

Students can choose to study any African or Asian language that is normally available to students taking one of the taught masters programs.

The two-year Intensive Language pathway is directed at students who want to engage with a country in a professional as well as academic way, as the intensive language course will enable them to reach a near proficient knowledge of the language.

A Student's Perspective

The campus is just one big condensed version of the globe itself for students from all kinds of ethnic and professional backgrounds!

Heidemarie Jahn