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School of Arts

The School of Arts

The School of Arts is a world-leading centre for study and research into visual and sound arts, material and intangible cultures, media industries and digital cultures of Asia, Africa and the Middle East, and their global diasporas. It brings together scholars and students from three units at SOAS: the Department of the History of Art & Archaeology (HAA), the Department of Music and the Centre for Media Studies. It is a unique concentration of experts, with some thirty full-time academic staff members, unsurpassed in scale and reach by any other institution worldwide.  

In an era of globalization and digitization, with its rapid movement of people and ideas and an increasing questioning of traditional boundaries, the School of Arts embodies a determination to integrate an understanding of historical and cultural specificity between academic disciplines with critical analysis of contemporary complexities. It is a place of research, teaching and enquiry across disciplines, exploring relationships between heritage and innovation in art, archaeology, music and media, and a centre for music performance.  

The School of Arts benefits from interaction with other disciplines at SOAS, including Asian and African languages, Anthropology, Development, Study of Religions and History. Our students have access to a range of multi-media provision including a media lab, SOAS Radio and recording studio, as well as the Brunei Gallery and the world-class SOAS Library. Our location in central London gives students access to an unparalleled range of concerts and festivals, galleries and museums, media and cultural enterprises.

Our Head of School Says

Anna Contadini


The School of Arts is a progressive and timely response to a changing world. We are one of the very few centres globally specialising in the vital and increasingly important developments taking place in the cultural industries of Asia, Africa and the Middle East. Our degree programmes focus on historical and contemporary contexts, combining disciplinary rigour and innovative interdisciplinary exchange.

Professor Anna Contadini

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Further Information

For further information on the School of Arts please see our flyer.

Key Facts

  • With more than 30 full time academic staff, the School of Arts is a unique concentration of experts on the arts and cultures of Asia, Africa and the Middle East.
  • The School has almost 700 students on its undergraduate and postgraduate programmes and courses. It offers disciplinary-specific degrees in contemporary and historical arts as well as innovative cross-disciplinary programmes combining art, archaeology, music and media.
  • The outstanding quality of the School of Arts’ research was recognised in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework. The Department of Music’s research outputs were rated the best in the country and the Department of History of Art and Archaeology’s were placed fourth. More than 80% of research outputs were judged world-leading or internationally excellent.
  • A range of scholarships is available for students wishing to study in the School
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Department of the History of Art & Archaeology

Department of Music

Centre for Media Studies


If you are interested in studying in the School of Arts contact the Student Recruitment Office:

Telephone: +44(0)20 7898 4700

Email: study@soas.ac.uk

For other enquiries contact Robert Ivermee:

Email: ri3@soas.ac.uk
Telephone: +44(0)20 7898 4610

Follow the School of Arts on Twitter and Facebook:

Twitter: @SOASArts