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Department of the Languages and Cultures of South East Asia

BA South East Asian Studies and ...

Programme Code: See 'May be Combined with ..' Duration: 3 years

Overview

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Ben Murtagh

Ben Murtagh

Convenor

2015 Entry Requirements

  • A Levels: AAB
  • A Level language preferred
  • IB: 35 (6/6/5)
  • BTEC: DDM
  • Access to HE: Minimum of 30 Level 3 Credits at Distinction
  • Scottish Highers: AAABB
  • Scottish Advanced Highers: AAB
  • Irish LC: 340 points from 5 Higher level subjects at grade C1 or above
  • Advanced Placement: 4 4 5 (Two semesters - UCAS Group A) plus US HSGD with GPA 3.0
  • Euro Bacc: 80%
  • French Bacc: 14/20
  • German Abitur: 2.0
  • Italy DES: 80/100
  • Austria Mat: 2.0
  • Polish Mat: Overall 75% including 3 extended level subjects

Minimum Entry Requirements: Languages at SOAS are taught ab initio, and no prior knowledge is required. A foreign language at A-level or equivalent is preferred but not essential.

Subjects Preferred: No

Interview Policy: Candidates with 'non-standard' qualifications are encouraged to apply, and will usually be invited for an interview

Start of programme: September

Mode of Attendance: Full Time

BA South East Asian Studies (Combined Honours) is a three-year programme that strikes an exciting balance between the study of a South East Asian language (Burmese, Indonesian, Khmer, Thai or Vietnamese), the cultures of the region and a second subject in another discipline. 

Competence in a South East Asian language is developed as a tool for exploring the culture for which a spoken language is a vehicle. This degree is ideal for students who do not seek the intensive engagement with language demanded by the four-year degrees, but who desire a working knowledge of the language to enhance their engagement with the diversity of South East Asian culture.

Combinations

May be combined with

* Taught at King's College, London

Structure

Students must take four units in each year.

NB: Not all courses are available every year. Your choice of courses is subject to the approval of the undergraduate tutor and, in some cases the individual course convenor.  Some courses listed may be subject to a pre-requisite.

Year 1
Core Courses
Compulsory Course

A SEA language unit at an approved level (Burmese, Indonesian, Khmer, Thai, Vietnamese). Typically level 1 of the language chosen.

Other Subject

Students take 2 units in their other subject or open option units.

Year 2
Core Course

These courses run in alternate years.

Core Course

Choose a half unit from List A. This course will be considered core.

Optional Course

A continuation of Year 1 SEA language OR one unit from List A or List B at an approved level.

Other Subject

Students take 2 units in their other subject or open option units.

Year 3
Compulsory Courses

Students have the choice of; writing an Extended Essay in SEA studies (half unit) and taking a further half unit from List A, OR undertaking an Independent Study Project in SEA studies (1 unit).

Optional Course

A continuation of Year 2 SEA language OR courses to the value of one unit from List A or List B.

Other Subject

Students take 2 units in their other subject or open option units.

List of Approved Courses
List A
List B

Before selecting a course, student's must first check that the course is at the correct level. They must also ensure that they meet any pre-requisites.

Programme Specification

Teaching & Learning

Year abroad

There is no year abroad requirement on this programme.  If you are interested in taking a year abroad in South East Asia as part of your degree, then please look at the named language degrees and the BA South East Asian Studies (including year abroad).

Teaching & Learning

Course Information

Introductory and intermediate courses in a South East Asian language use a wide variety of learning experiences and techniques. Most other units are taught by formal lecture and with related tutorials. Assessment is by a combination of written examination and coursework.

Special Features

The School's teaching is backed up by the South East Asia collection within the SOAS library, one of the world's major collections of information in the field of South East Asian studies. The South East Asia collection now contains over 6500 books and pamphlets and 550 periodical titles as well as substantial collections of microfilms and manuscripts.

Pre Entry Reading

Suggestions for preliminary reading
  • Baker, C. and Pasuk Phongpaichit. 2009.  A history of Thailand. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
  • Cornwel-Smith, P. 2005. Very Thai. Bangkok: River Books.
  • Hellwig, T. and Tagliacozzo, E. (eds). 2009. The Indonesia reader: history, culture, politics. Durham: Duke University Press.
  • Mulder, N. 2000. Inside Thai society: religion, everyday life, change. Chiangmai: Silkworm Books.
  • Owen, N. (ed.). 2005. The emergence of modern Southeast Asia. Honolulu: University of Hawaii.
  • Ricklefs, M.C., Lockhart, B. Lau, A. Reyes, P. and Maitrii Aung-Thwin. 2010. A new history of South East Asia. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Robson, S.O. 2004. Welcome to Indonesian, a beginner's survey of the language. Boston: Tuttle.
  • Taylor, J.G. 2003. Indonesia: peoples and histories. New Haven:Yale University Press.
  • Vickers, A. 2005. A history of modern Indonesia. New York:Cambridge University Press.

Destinations

As a graduate who specialised in the South East Asian region, you will have gained competency in language skills and intercultural awareness and understanding. Familiarity with the region will have been developed through a combination of the study of language, literature, history, cinema, politics, economics or law. Graduates leave SOAS not only with linguistic and cultural expertise, but also with a portfolio of widely transferable skills which employers seek in many professional and management careers, both in business and in the public sector. These include: written and oral communication skills; attention to detail; analytical and problem-solving skills; and the ability to research, amass and order information from a variety of sources.

Graduates have gone on to work for a range of organisations including:

Atkins Heritage
Burmese Refugee Project
Dept for Environment, Food and Rural affairs
Evergreen Energy
Foreign & Commonwealth Office
JP Morgan
Karenni Student Development Programme
LCC Children's Services

Ministry of Foreign Affairs, The Netherlands
Pepperdine University
Semporna Islands Project
Suzhou Education Bureau
Medical Defence Union
Xoom Corporation
Climatechange.org
Child in Need Institute

Types of roles that graduates have gone on to do include:

Senior Heritage Consultant
Project Manager
Policy Advisor
Consul
Lecturer
Country Director
Company Director
Diplomat

Professor of History
Writer
English Language Assistant
Learning and Development Officer
SVP Business Development
Consultant
International Marketing Executive
Support Worker

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

A Student's Perspective

Not only does SOAS offer a first class education with top scholars in the field, it also offers a great professional and social network. Upon graduation, my professional career path was wide opened. The SOAS experience has taught me to be a specialist in different fields, not only politics, but also development, gender and migration, and good governance.

Dinita Setyawati