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Department of Politics and International Studies

MRes Politics with (Language)

Duration: Two calendar years (full-time).

Overview

Minimum Entry Requirements: The qualification for entry is normally a first or upper-second class honours degree (or equivalent).

The MRes Politics with [Language] is a two-year degree programme designed to prepare students for further research, particularly PhD research, in politics with an area specialism. It allows students to combine the study of politics with advanced methodological training in the social sciences and extensive study in an African/Asian/Middle Eastern language. As such, the programme provides two years of intensive language study at SOAS (e.g. Arabic, Chinese, Swahili, etc.) along with two years of high-level social science methodology training at neighbouring Birkbeck College. Applicants are also invited to apply for ESRC funding to support a 2+3 programme of MRes/PhD study.

Structure

Year 1 - TWO courses from List A, ONE course (or TWO half-courses) from List B and ONE course (or TWO half-courses) from List C
List A - TWO Compulsory Research Methods Courses (taught by Birkbeck College)
Qualitative Social Research
Quantitative Social Research
List B - ONE Language Course (or TWO half-courses) offered by the Faculty of Languages and Cultures (taught by SOAS)
Students should choose the language they wish to take from the list below. They should then make contact with the relevant Course Convenor during welcome week who will assess which level of course would be appropriate, and will advise re. changing course enrolments if necessary.
List C - ONE Course or TWO Half-Courses offered by the Department of Politics and International Studies (taught by SOAS)
Year 2 - ONE course (or TWO half-courses) from List D, ONE course (or TWO half-courses) from List E, ONE course from List F and the Dissertation in Politics with (language).
List D - ONE Language Course (or TWO half-courses) offered by the Faculty of Languages and Cultures (taught by SOAS)
Students should choose from the languages under list B above. The level of the Y2 language course will follow on from the level of course taken in Y1.
List E - ONE Course or TWO Half-Courses offered by the Department of Politics and International Studies (taught by SOAS)
Students should choose from the options under list C above. Courses taken in Y1 may not be taken again in Y2.
List F - ONE compulsory research methods course (taught by Birkbeck College
Masterclass in Social Research
Compulsory Dissertation (undertaken at SOAS)

Programme Specification

Teaching & Learning

Teaching & Learning

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

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 25,000-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.

A Student's Perspective

I came to SOAS because I wanted to gain a detailed insight into the politics and political systems of the developing world, but I’ve got so much more than that

Joe Buckley