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Department of the Languages and Cultures of Japan and Korea

Key Facts

  • Six undergraduate Japanese and Korean degrees (single or joint), with or without periods of study abroad.
  • Eight postgraduate degrees, most of which with a flexible structure, offering a broad range of disciplinary choices.
  • Outstanding, research-driven expertise in the fields of classical and modern literature, social, economic and intellectual history, popular culture, film and media studies, translation theory, linguistics and applied linguistics.
  • Rigorous language training accompanies the study of the cultures of the region, and in the more intensive programmes constitutes the very foundation for the study of all other disciplines.
  • One of two only universities in the UK to offer a BA degree in Korean
  • SOAS joining the global elite for Modern Languages in the recent QS World University Rankings by Subject, where it has been ranked sixth in the UK and 32nd internationally

Two New Taught Masters Degrees

The Japan and Korea Department is offering two new taught Masters Degrees in the new academic year 2014/15: MA ... with Intensive Japanese, and MA ... with Intensive Korean. Read more about our degree programmes here.

Our Strengths

SOAS is unique in the depth and breadth of its regional specialisation and is home to the largest collection of Japan specialists outside of Japan, and the largest concentration of Korean specialists in Europe.

More about us… 

The diversified expertise of the Japan and Korea departments allows you to gain focused specialist knowledge in the regions of your interest, both in their classical traditions as well as their contemporary developments, together with more or less intensive study of their languages, both at SOAS and at our many prestigious partner universities in Japan and Korea. In the study of each discipline, we combine theoretical and textual approaches, and cross-examine critically both the western intellectual tradition as well as the regional ones.

Undergraduate student profile

Rosamund Graham

I cannot stress enough just how well-run the Japan and Korea department at SOAS is. Courses are well structured across the board and support is always available from teaching staff, be it through the language clinics, or a even a friendly email. 

Rosamund Graham – BA Japanese
Read Rosamund's full profile

Contact us

Japan and Korea Department, SOAS Thornhaugh Street, Russell Square, London WC1H 0XG

Tel: +44(0)20 7637 2388

Fax: +44 (0)20 7898 4699

Facts and Figures

  • Applicant/place ratio: 7:1
  • We rank 2nd in the UK in the Times & Sunday Times University League Table 2015, 5th in the Complete University Guide 2015 (East & South East Asia)
  • 21st in the Guardian 2015 Guide (Languages and Linguistics combined)
  • 86% satisfaction for teaching in the NSS 2013-14
  • NSS - Asian Studies departments ranked 4th in UK
  • Number Of Staff: 9 academic, 6 teaching and scholarship, 12 teaching and scholarship (fractional)
  • BA Japanese and BA Korean students will spend a year studying in Japan or Korea
  • SOAS offers the most comprehensive  MA in Japanese Studies available  anywhere in Europe.
  • Two-year MA programmes which combine the study of a discipline with intensive language training both at SOAS and in Japan or Korea.
  • The SOAS Library has extensive collections covering Japan and Korea
  • Staff research interests include literature, drama, language, contemporary culture, history, linguistics, cinema and politeness
  • 80% research output judged to have ‘outstanding’ and ‘very considerable’ impact (REF2014)
  • Ranked 1st in the UK in the Times and Sunday Times University League Table 2015 for Research Quality (East and South Asian Studies)



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