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Support Services at SOAS


The Bloomsbury Learning Environment (BLE)

The BLE is SOAS’s Virtual Learning Environment.  It is an online space, personal to you, which exists to support and extend your learning beyond the classroom.  Your lecturers will often put important material on the BLE such as reading lists, copies of lecture notes and presentations, or podcasts (audio) recordings of lectures.  Lecturers may also ask you to submit your coursework assignments via the BLE and to collaborate online with your fellow students outside the classroom (eg via a discussion board).

Simply go online to BLE and enter your SOAS username and password to log in. If you want to know what your username or your password is or you wish to change it, please see A Quick Guide to IT Services for Students.

General information and downloadable help guides for students are available on the SOAS website and you can email us at ble@soas.ac.uk.

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Faculty Support

Each faculty has a student support office where staff can help you with any questions you might have about your course and can put you in contact with key faculty members, such as course convenors and personal tutors.

These offices are all situated in the main building at Russell Square:

Details of courses and programmes can be found on the Academic section of the website.

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The Registry is located at the Vernon Square campus and is responsible for matters relating to registration, regulations, fees and scholarships. The Doctoral School Section is located at 53 Gordon Square. The Admissions teams for Undergraduates and Postgraduate Taught (Masters) programmes are located at Russell Square.

Registry staff can provide you with general advice and can also direct you to alternative sources of information where needed.

The office is open Monday to Friday between 10am and 4pm (closed between 12pm and 2pm during vacations) for personal enquiries and staff are available to answer your queries by telephone (+44 (0)207 074 5105) Monday to Friday between 9am and 5pm.

Registry teams can be contacted by email as follows:

Full details of our services can be found on the Registry section of the website.

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Academic Development Directorate (ADD)

The Learning and Teaching Team in the Academic Development Directorate offers a wide range of academic support, skills training and development opportunities for all students at SOAS.

As well as interactive, online support through the BLE, we provide a programme of skills workshops covering themes such as essay writing, critical approaches to reading, time management and preparing for your dissertation.

In addition, one-to-one tutorials, given by specifically trained SOAS PhD students, are available on all aspects of essay and dissertation writing.


■ Pop into the ADD (RG01, Main Building)
■ See our programme of workshops: Study Skills
■ Take a look at Skills for Success (study skills on BLE Support):
■ Contact: add@soas.ac.uk

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SOAS Library

The SOAS Library is a National Research Library for the study of Africa, Asia and the Middle East. Based at the Russell Square campus, the Library houses more than 1.2 million volumes, together with significant archival holdings, special collections and a network of electronic resources. The Library webpages include information about the Library, the collections, IT provision, and Multimedia and Print Services.

Virtual and self-guided Library tours are available from the Library website. Guided tours, induction sessions and other support will be available during Welcome Week.

Further information on our Library can be found on the Library section of the website or by email to libenquiry@soas.ac.uk

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IT Services

The Student IT Guide contains all the information you will need, including how to use your SOAS email account, the locations of computer labs throughout the School and how to connect to the campus-wide wireless network.

You can obtain a paper copy of this from the Computer Support Desk in Library Reception (Floor E), or download .

Further information can be found on the Library and IT section of the website. Any IT problems should be reported to itservicedesk@soas.ac.uk.

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Student Services

The Student Advice and Wellbeing department (based on the 3rd floor of the Vernon Square campus) offers confidential and practical information on matters such as Immigration, financial, disability and personal issues.

Various events will be held during Welcome Week by the Student Advice and Wellbeing Team, including drop-in sessions at Russell Square.

Full details of the services offered can be found on the Student Advice and Wellbeing section of the website. The team can be contacted by email on studentservices@soas.ac.uk.

Within Student Advice and Wellbeing, there are specific teams to assist students at SOAS:

Counselling Service

The SOAS team of counsellors can assist you with managing your studies when this process is interrupted or affected by emotional, personal or psychological pressures.  Other common concerns include anxiety about progress on the course, loneliness, low self-confidence, relationship problems or adjusting to a new environment.

The Counselling section of the website provides full details of the services offered, including how to book an appointment and what to do if you need assistance when the service is closed.  It also contains lots of self help information which is available at all hours. The team can be contacted by email on studentservices@soas.ac.uk.

Disability Advisers

These advisers offer confidential advice, information and assistance to students with disabilities and students with learning difficulties (such as dyslexia).  They will discuss any concerns you may have regarding disability-related barriers to study and liaise with teaching and support staff concerning your support needs or adjustments.

The Disability section of the website provides full details of the services offered, links to external sites that might be of assistance, a list of events that they hold for students and a full list of useful SOAS contacts.  The team can be contacted by email on studentservices@soas.ac.uk.

International Student and Welfare Adviser

This service provides impartial and confidential advice on all aspects of student welfare.  Areas of expertise include:

  • Finance
  • Budgeting and hardship
  • Visas and immigration
  • Special needs
  • Accommodation
  • Childcare and welfare benefits

The Student Advice and Wellbeing section of the website provides full information on the service we can provide and the team can be contacted by email to studentadviceandwellbeing@soas.ac.uk.

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There are various forms of accommodation available in London, including university halls of residence and flat-shares.  There are two housing services that you can contact for information and they will have links to a wide variety of accommodation:

Sanctuary Students

To apply for accommodation in halls of residence you should contact Sanctuary Students . They manage the SOAS halls of residence and also allocate places to SOAS students in the University of London halls of residence.

University of London Housing Services

Private accommodation is managed by the University of London Housing Services. They can provide lists of flats available for students, as well as lists of students looking for other students to share flats with.

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English Language Support

IFCELS offers in-sessional language support to non-native speakers of English.  This department is located in the Faber Building at the Russell Square campus.

Full details are available on the IFCELS section of the website and the team can be contacted by email at ifcels@soas.ac.uk.

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Careers Service

The Careers Office is currently located in room G12 of the main building at the Russell Square campus but will be based in room R101 from 15 September. Staff are able to offer advice to students about all aspects of job hunting and career management and will even help with practice interviews.  

The Careers section of the website provides further information. The team can be contacted by email on careers@soas.ac.uk.

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SOAS Alumni Relations

The Alumni Relations team is dedicated to providing SOAS alumni with a wide range of services, communications, and support which will enable you to maintain a personal and professional ink with the School and fellow alumni long after you graduate. There is a current global network of over 40,000 former SOAS students in more than 150 countries.

All students are welcome to join SOAS Alumni and can register on the Alumni site – come and join us!

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