SOAS University of London

Department of Religions and Philosophies

MA Religions of Asia and Africa

duration:
Full time: 1 calendar year Part time: 2 or 3 calendar years. We recommend that part-time students have between two and a half and three days free in the week to pursue their course of study.

Fees 2016/17

UK/EU fees:
£7,985
Overseas fees:
£17,215

This is a Band 1 fee. The fees are per academic year. Please note that fees go up each year. Further details can be found in the Fees and Funding tab on this page or in the Registry Postgraduate Tuition Fees page

2017 Entry requirements

  • Normally, minimum upper second class Honours degree from a UK university, or an overseas qualification or equivalent standard. Applicants with qualifications obtained at private or religious institutions should enquire about the School’s position on such qualifications.
  • Interview Policy: We welcome applications from students with non-conventional qualifications and usually determine suitability for the programme on the basis of an interview.

Featured events

  • Overview
  • Structure
  • Teaching and Learning
  • Fees and funding
  • Employment
  • Apply

Overview

Venue: Russell Square: College Buildings

Start of programme: September intake only

Mode of Attendance: Full Time or Part Time

Who is this programme for?:

The MA Religions of Asia and Africa is designed both as an end qualification in itself and as a platform preparing students for more advanced graduate work.

It typically suits students falling into one of the following three categories:

  • students planning to pursue further research, which may involve at a subsequent stage the acquisition of a doctoral degree and a career in higher education;
  • students willing to pursue a career or professional activity, for which advanced knowledge of the religions of Asia and Africa and of the theoretical and practical issues involved in their study is essential: arts, media, teaching, NGOs and charities, interfaith dialogue, consultancy for governmental agencies or the private sector, religious institutions, museums, and more.
  • students who wish to pursue the academic study of religions as a complement to their personal experience and commitments: religious ministers and clerics from all confessions, believers, yoga and meditation practitioners; anyone interested in specific religious traditions or in religion as an essential dimension of life, and in the critical and experiential enhancement that their academic study may offer.

The MA Religions of Asia and Africa at SOAS offers the premier postgraduate curriculum in the U.K. for the study of the religions of Asia and Africa. It covers a wider range of religious traditions than most comparable programmes, whether in the U.K. or abroad: Buddhism in nearly all its doctrinal and regional varieties, Asian and African Christianities, Hinduism, Islam, Jainism, Judaism, Shinto, Taoism, Zoroastrianism as well as the local religious cultures of Asia and Africa.

The programme is strongly interdisciplinary and methodologically diverse, offering advanced learning in theories and methods in the study of religion as well as in historical, anthropological, philosophical, sociological and textual approaches to the study of particular religious traditions. It ensures students can benefit from the unique opportunity to tap cutting-edge academic expertise and library facilities on Asian and African religions as part of a spirited, cosmopolitan student community and within the intense religious and cultural scene of London.

Email: ld16@soas.ac.uk

Phone: 020 7898 4217

Convenors

Structure

Learn a language as part of this programme

Degree programmes at SOAS - including this one - can include language courses in more than forty African and Asian languages. It is SOAS students’ command of an African or Asian language which sets SOAS apart from other universities.

Overview

  1. Students take taught courses (half and/or full units) equivalent to three units in total from the list of taught courses.
  2. The 4th and final unit is a Dissertation.
  3. Languages: Students in the MA Religions of Asia and Africa may substitute one of their taught courses for a language course (most are taught in the Faculty of Languages and Cultures).

Note: Students wishing to take other SOAS courses relevant to their studies but taught outside the department may do so with the written approval of the tutor of the relevant course, the Department's MA Convenor and the Faculty's Associate Dean for Learning and Teaching.

Dissertation
ModuleCodeUnit valueTermAvailability
Dissertation in Buddhist Studies 15PSRC990 1 Unit Full Year
Dissertation in Gender Studies and Religion 15PSRC992 1 Unit Full Year
Dissertation in Indian Religions 15PSRC993 1 Unit Full Year
Dissertation in Japanese Religions 15PSRC994 1 Unit Full Year
Dissertation in the Christianities of Asia and Africa 15PSRC991 1 Unit Full Year
Dissertation in the Study of Islam 15PSRC995 1 Unit Full Year
Dissertation in the Study of Religions 15PSRC999 1 Unit Full Year
Buddhism
ModuleCodeUnit valueTermAvailability
Basic Pali (PG) 15PSRC176 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
Buddhism in Tibet 15PSRH008 0.5 Unit Term 1 Not Running 2016/2017
Buddhism: Theravadin Traditions 15PSRH003 0.5 Unit Term 1 Not Running 2016/2017
Buddhist Arts in Context 15PSRH001 0.5 Unit Term 1 Not Running 2016/2017
Buddhist Meditation in India and Tibet 15PSRC172 1 Unit Full Year
Conflict in Compliance: About the Lives of Buddhist Monks in Ancient India 15PSRH039 0.5 Unit - Not Running 2016/17
East Asian Buddhist Thought 15PSRH018 0.5 Unit Term 2
Features of Buddhist Monasticism 15PSRH014 0.5 Unit Term 1 Not Running 2016/2017
History and Doctrines of Indian Buddhism 15PSRC059 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
Imag(in)ing Buddhahood in South Asia (1) 15PARH078 0.5 Unit Term 1 Not Running 2016/2017
Imag(in)ing Buddhahood in South Asia (2) 15PSRH051 0.5 Unit Term 2 Not Running 2016/2017
Oriental religions in European academia and imagination, 1815-1945 15PSRC168 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
Pali: Intermediate Level 15PSRC053 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
Religious Practice in Japan: Texts, Rituals and Believers 15PSRC071 1 Unit Full Year
The Buddhist Conquest of Central Asia 15PSRH009 0.5 Unit Term 1 Not Running 2016/2017
Theravada Buddhism among the Shan 15PSRH034 0.5 Unit
Chinese Religions
ModuleCodeUnit valueTermAvailability
Chinese Buddhism in Pre-Modern Period 15PSRH053 0.5 Unit Term 2
Chinese Religious Texts: A Reading Seminar 15PSRH038 0.5 Unit Term 1 Not Running 2016/2017
Contemporary Islamism in South Asia: Readings in Sayyid Abu al-A'la Mawdudi 15PSRC170 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
East Asian Buddhist Thought 15PSRH018 0.5 Unit Term 2
Oriental religions in European academia and imagination, 1815-1945 15PSRC168 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
The Great Tradition of Taoism 15PSRH036 0.5 Unit Term 1
Christianity
ModuleCodeUnit valueTermAvailability
Colonialism and Christian Missions in Africa: Readings from the Archives 15PSRH043 0.5 Unit Term 1
Christianity and Social Change in Sub Saharan Africa 15PSRC157 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
Eastern and Orthodox Christianity 15PSRC055 1 Unit Full Year
Eastern Christian Texts On Martyrs and Monks 15PSRC054 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
Gender and Christianity 15PSRH033 0.5 Unit Term 1 Not Running 2016/2017
Preaching, Prayer and Politics: Independent Christians in Southern Africa 15PSRH042 0.5 unit Unit
Christians and Muslims in Syriac Texts 15PSRC175 1 Unit Full Year
East Asian Religions
ModuleCodeUnit valueTermAvailability
East Asian Buddhist Thought 15PSRH018 0.5 Unit Term 2
Oriental religions in European academia and imagination, 1815-1945 15PSRC168 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
Religious Practice in Japan: Texts, Rituals and Believers 15PSRC071 1 Unit Full Year
Gender and Religions
ModuleCodeUnit valueTermAvailability
Critical Theory and the Study of Religions 15PSRC037 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
Gender and Christianity 15PSRH033 0.5 Unit Term 1 Not Running 2016/2017
Judaism and Gender 15PSRH029 0.5 Unit Term 2
Indian Religions
ModuleCodeUnit valueTermAvailability
Avestan I 15PSRC033 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
Conflict in Compliance: About the Lives of Buddhist Monks in Ancient India 15PSRH039 0.5 Unit - Not Running 2016/17
Jainism: History, Doctrine and the Contemporary World 15PSRC024 1 Unit Full Year
Non-Violence in Jain Scriptures, Philosophy and Law 15PSRC062 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
Religious and Philosophical Ideas of Ancient and Medieval India 15PSRC049 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
Text and Context in Classical Hinduism 15PSRC007 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
The Origins and Development of Yoga in Ancient India 15PSRC173 1 Unit Full Year
Vedic Interpretations 15PSRC050 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
Zoroastrianism: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives 15PSRC052 1 Unit Full Year
Islam
ModuleCodeUnit valueTermAvailability
Contemporary Islamism in South Asia: Readings in Sayyid Abu al-A'la Mawdudi 15PSRC170 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
Modern Muslim Thinkers of South Asia 15PSRC169 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
Modern Trends in Islam 15PNMC228 1 Unit Full Year
Muslim Britain: Perspectives and Realities 15PSRC158 1 Unit Full Year
Japanese Religions
ModuleCodeUnit valueTermAvailability
East Asian Buddhist Thought 15PSRH018 0.5 Unit Term 2
Oriental religions in European academia and imagination, 1815-1945 15PSRC168 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
Religious Practice in Japan: Texts, Rituals and Believers 15PSRC071 1 Unit Full Year
Judaism
ModuleCodeUnit valueTermAvailability
Family, Work and Leisure in Ancient Judaism 15PSRH027 0.5 Unit Term 1 Not Running 2016/2017
Jewishness on Screen 15PSRH044 0.5 Unit Term 1 Not Running 2016/2017
Judaism and Gender 15PSRH029 0.5 Unit Term 2
Judaism in the Hellenistic and Roman Period 15PSRC072 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
Religion, Nationhood and Ethnicity in Judaism 15PSRH030 0.5 Unit Term 2 Not Running 2016/2017
The Holocaust in Theology, Literature and Art 15PSRH028 0.5 Unit Term 2 Not Running 2016/2017
Multi-religious/comparative courses
ModuleCodeUnit valueTermAvailability
Death and Religion 15PSRC162 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
Mystical Traditions 15PSRC068 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
Myth and Mythmaking 15PSRC164 1.0 Unit - Not Running 2016/17
Oriental religions in European academia and imagination, 1815-1945 15PSRC168 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
Religion in Britain: Faith Communities and Civil Society 15PSRC163 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
Religions and Development 15PSRH049 0.5 Unit Term 1
Mysticism
ModuleCodeUnit valueTermAvailability
Mystical Traditions 15PSRC068 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
Religion in Africa
ModuleCodeUnit valueTermAvailability
Colonialism and Christian Missions in Africa: Readings from the Archives 15PSRH043 0.5 Unit Term 1
Christianity and Social Change in Sub Saharan Africa 15PSRC157 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
Preaching, Prayer and Politics: Independent Christians in Southern Africa 15PSRH042 0.5 unit Unit
Theoretical Approaches
ModuleCodeUnit valueTermAvailability
Critical Theory and the Study of Religions 15PSRC037 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
Myth and Mythmaking 15PSRC164 1.0 Unit - Not Running 2016/17
Oriental religions in European academia and imagination, 1815-1945 15PSRC168 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
Theory and Method in the Study of Religion 15PSRC010 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
Zoroastrianism
ModuleCodeUnit valueTermAvailability
Avestan I 15PSRC033 1 Unit Full Year Not Running 2016/2017
Pahlavi Language 15PSRC034 1 Unit Full Year
Zoroastrianism: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives 15PSRC052 1 Unit Full Year
Courses taught in other Departments
ModuleCodeUnit valueTermAvailability
Religions on the move: New Currents and Emerging Trends in Global Religion 15PANH055 0.5 Unit Term 1 Not Running 2016/2017

Programme Specification

Disclaimer

Teaching and Learning

Fees and funding

Tuition Fees

Full details of postgraduate tuition fees can be found on the Registry's Postgraduate Tuition Fees page.

This is a Band 1 tuition fee.

The fees below are per academic year. Please note that fees go up each year. 

Full-timePart-time 2 YearsPart-time 3 Years
UK/EU
Students
Overseas
Students
UK/EU
Students
Overseas
Students
UK/EU
Students
Overseas
Students
£7,985 £17,215 £3,993 £8,608 £2,662 £5,738
Scholarships
CSJR Postgraduate Student Bursary

Application Deadline: 2016-06-01 17:00

Felix Non- Indian Scholarship

Application Deadline: 2016-02-12 00:00

Felix Scholarships

Application Deadline: 2016-01-29 17:00

SOAS Master's Scholarships - Faculty of Arts & Humanities

Application Deadline: 2016-02-24 17:00

Santander Taught Master’s Scholarships

Application Deadline: 2016-02-24 17:00

Sasakawa Postgraduate Studentship

Application Deadline: 2016-02-22 17:00

The Prospect Burma - Hla Pe Memorial Scholarship

Application Deadline: 2016-02-24 17:00

For further details and information on external scholarships visit the Scholarships section

Employment

An MA in Religions of Asia and Africa from SOAS equips students with important knowledge and understanding of different cultures, history and beliefs across the regions of Asia and Africa. As well as subject expertise, students develop a portfolio of widely transferable skills which employers seek in many professional careers in the private and public sectors as well as essential skills necessary to pursue further research. These include: the ability to research, amass and order information from a variety of sources - often both in the original or other relevant languages; analytical skills to assess critically the materials relevant to a specific issue; written and oral communication skills to present, discuss and debate opinions and conclusions; and problem solving skills. A postgraduate degree is a valuable experience that provides students with a body of work and a diverse range of skills that they can use to market themselves with when they graduate.

For more information about Graduate Destinations from this department, please visit the Careers Service website.

A Student's Perspective

It proved to be a highly stimulating research environment, fostering my analytical skills and allowing me to get in touch with a number of important personalities in my field.

Tullio Lobetti

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Find out more

  • Contact us
    By phone:
    +44 (0)20 7898 4700
    By email:
    study@soas.ac.uk
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