SOAS University of London

Department of Anthropology and Sociology

MA Anthropology of Media and Intensive Language (not running 2018/19)

Please note that that this degree will NOT be running in 2018/19

One calendar year (full-time) Two or three years (part-time, daytime only) 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. The expectation in the UK is of continuous study across the year, with break periods used to read and to prepare coursework.

Fees 2018/19

UK/EU fees:
Overseas fees:

Fees for 2018/19 entrants. 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

2018 Entry requirements

  • The minimum of an upper second-class BA degree (or equivalent). Some exceptions are made for those with significant experience in a relevant media related career.

Featured events

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


Start of programme: September intake only

Mode of Attendance: Full-time or Part-time

Who is this programme for?: A wide range of students with different interests and backgrounds come to this programme from world over in order to explore why media matter. They are highly qualified with very diverse international interests. It is particularly suitable for:

  • Students with a degree in media or cultural studies
  • Students with a degree in the social sciences or humanities wishing to acquire a broad understanding of media and cultural studies with special reference to Asia or Africa
  • People with professional experience in film, television, journalism, advertising or public relations
  • Students with a degree in social anthropology wishing to pursue more specialist media-related topics along with regional or language-based study
  • Students without a previous degree in Anthropology looking for an MA conversion degree to serve as a qualification for pursuing a further research degree in anthropology

Please note that that this degree will NOT be running in 2018/19

Our world is inescapably and continuously transformed through a proliferation of media. The MA in Anthropology of Media at SOAS takes up the challenge of understanding how and why media matter. The programme uniquely combines anthropology, media and cultural studies with specific regional expertise in Asia, Africa and the Middle East. It provides students with critical skills, research methods, a wide-ranging understanding of media and the opportunity to pursue original research projects. The MA in Anthropology and Media is the first and still the only programme in Europe that specialises in bringing together contemporary anthropological concerns with media and cultural studies.

The MA in Anthropology of Media is a recent and rapidly growing field within the larger academic discipline of Anthropology. It both incorporates and challenges the well-established anthropological concerns with visual culture and ethnographic film through a more extensive examination of contemporary media practices. Along with the parallel disciplines of media and cultural studies, Anthropology of Media is now widely recognized as playing an increasingly important and critical role in current debates about media. It provides an alternative approach, which puts the emphasis upon studying the multiple relationships between people and media and thus seeks to anthropologise media and cultural studies. More than just focussing on media texts or technology, Anthropology of Media is marked by the centrality of people and how they relate to media.

The SOAS programme in Anthropology of Media is designed to provide a detailed introduction to the study of media in Asia, Africa, the Middle East and their diasporas. We also use the theoretical and methodological contributions of Anthropology to build upon and challenge Euro-American media and cultural studies. The programme stresses ethnographic approaches to media as cultural practices in social and political contexts where people inhabit, create and engage with media worlds.

Special Features

The Department cultivates several specialist strengths which distinguish it from other anthropology departments in the UK. The most obvious of these is that all members of the Department are specialists on Africa and Asia. Particular attention is given to teaching and researching regional ethnographic areas of expertise. All staff members are simultaneously attached as anthropologists to this Department and as regional specialists to their appropriate regional studies centre within the School.

SOAS also offers strong interdisciplinary support for the study of media including the Centre for Media and Film Studies and a highly regarded Department of Music. We have a dedicated multi-media suite, a radio station and satellite access to a wide range of world television. Further, the Library houses a major collection of books and journals on world media as well as extensive audio-visual materials.



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.

Programme Overview

The programme consists of 315 credits in total: 255 credits of modules and a dissertation of 10,000 words at 60 credits.  180 credits will be taken in the Department of Anthropology and Sociology; 135 credits, in the Intensive Language specific discipline.

The programme can be taken as a full-time study over 2 years or part-time over 4 years.

All students are expected to take all the core and compulsory modules.

For students who are undertaking study of this programme without a prior degree within the discipline of Anthropology, it is compulsory to take the Theoretical Approaches in Social Anthropology module. This will be worth 30 credits and count towards the 315 credits needed for the programme overall.

All students must audit the compulsory module, Ethnographic Research Methods module.  This will not count towards the 315 credits.  Students will be expected to attend only lectures and do not attend seminars or submit any assessments.  Students may choose to take this module (worth 15 credits) as part of their 255 credits from the option lists.

The remaining credits can be selected from the relevant lists in the Department of Anthropology and Sociology or other departments.  See below for a detailed programme structure.

Programme Detail

Compulsory Elements
Module Code Credits Term Availability
Comparative Media Studies 15PANC009 30 Full Year
Dissertation in Anthropology and Sociology 15PANC999 60 Full Year
Foundation Course
Module Code Credits Term Availability
Theoretical Approaches to Social Anthropology 15PANC008 30 Full Year
Option Courses
Half Unit Anthropology Options
Module Code Credits Term Availability
African and Asian Cultures in Britain 15PANH009 15 Term 2 Not Running 2018/2019
African and Asian Diasporas in the Modern World 15PANH010 15 Term 1
Anthropology of Human Rights (PG) 15PANH058 15 Term 2
Anthropology of Globalisation (PG) 15PANH061 15 Term 2 Not Running 2018/2019
Anthropology of Law 15PANH056 15 Term 2 Not Running 2018/2019
Anthropological approaches to agriculture, food and nutrition 15PANH053 15 Term 2 Not Running 2018/2019
Ethnographic Research Methods 15PANH002 15 Term 1
Issues in Mind, Culture and Psychiatry 15PANH032 15 Term 2
Issues in Anthropology and Film 15PANH022 15 Term 1
Issues in the Anthropology of Gender 15PANH024 15 Term 2
Media Production Skills 15PANH050 15 Term 2
Religions on the move: New Currents and Emerging Trends in Global Religion 15PANH055 15 Term 1
Therapy and Culture 15PANH027 15 Term 1
Tourism and Travel: A Global Perspective 15PANH059 15 Term 1 Not Running 2018/2019
Asia and Africa On Display: Objects, Exhibitions and Transculturism 15PARH043 15 Term 1 Not Running 2018/2019
Aspects of African film and video 2 15PAFH007 15 Term 2 Not Running 2018/2019
Diaspora Contexts and Visual Culture 15PARH042 15 Term 2 Not Running 2018/2019
Digital traditional broadcasting communication 15PMSH022 15 Term 2
Gender and Development 15PDSH010 15 Term 1
Genders and Sexualities in South East Asian Film 15PSEH011 15 Term 2
Indian Cinema: Its History and Social Context 15PSAH001 15 Term 1
Indian Cinema: Key Issues 15PSAH002 15 Term 2
International Political Communication 15PMSH009 15 Term 2
Japanese Post-War Film Genres and the Avant-Garde 15PJKH008 15 Term 2 Not Running 2018/2019
Japanese Transnational Cinema: From Kurosawa to Asia Extreme and Studio Ghibli 15PJKH007 15 Term 1
Mediated Culture in the Middle East: Politics and Communications 15PMSH003 15 Term 1 Not Running 2018/2019
Modern Chinese Film and Theatre (MA) 15PCHH001 15 Term 1
Modern Film from Taiwan and the Chinese Diaspora 15PCHH002 15 Term 2
Post-crisis Thai Cinema (1997-2007) 15PSEH008 15 Term 2 Not Running 2018/2019
(Post) Colonialism and Otherness in South East Asia on Screen 15PSEH010 15 Term 2 Not Running 2018/2019
Sound Recording and Production 15PMSH025 15 Term 1
Theoretical Approaches to International Journalisms 15PMSH006 15 Term 1
Transnational Communities and Diasporic Media:Networking, Connectivity, Identity 15PMSH004 15 Term 2
Full Unit Anthropology Options

May include a language unit taught in the Faculty of Languages & Cultures.

Module Code Credits Term Availability
Culture and Society of China 15PANH062 15 Term 1
Culture and Society of East Africa 15PANH063 15 Term 2
Culture and Society of Japan 15PANH065 15 Term 1
Culture and Society of South Asia 15PANH064 15 Term 1
Culture and Society of South East Asia 15PANH066 15 Term 2
Culture and Society of Near and Middle East 15PANH067 15 Term 2
Culture and Society of West Africa 15PANH068 15 Term 2
Film and Society in the Middle East 15PNMC230 30 Full Year
Japanese Television since 1953 15PJKC006 30 Full Year Not Running 2018/2019


This is the structure for 2018/19 applicants

If you are a current student you can find structure information on Moodle or through your Department.

Programme Specification


Teaching and Learning

Teaching & Learning

Contact Hours

All Masters programmes consist of 180 credits, made up of taught modules of 30 or 15 credits, taught over 10 or 20 weeks, and a dissertation of 60 credits. The programme structure shows which modules are compulsory and which optional.

As a rough guide, 1 credit equals approximately 10 hours of work. Most of this will be independent study, including reading and research, preparing coursework, revising for examinations and so on. It will also include class time, which may include lectures, seminars and other classes. Some subjects, such as learning a language, have more class time than others. At SOAS, most postgraduate modules have a one hour lecture and a one hour seminar every week, but this does vary.

More information is on the page for each module.

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.

Fees for 2018/19 entrants. The fees below are per academic year. Please note that fees go up each year. 

Full-time Part-time 2 Years Part-time 3 Years
£9,225 £18,980 £4,613 £9,490 £3,075 £6,327
Felix Non- Indian Scholarship

Application Deadline: 2018-01-29 00:00

Felix Scholarships

Application Deadline: 2018-01-29 00:00

Tibawi Trust Award

Application Deadline: 2018-06-05 00:00

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


A Masters in the Anthropology of Media at SOAS develops students’ understanding of the world, other peoples’ ways of life and how society is organised.  This programme will endow students with specialist understanding of producers, audiences, and other cultural and social aspects of mass media. Over the years the SOAS department has trained numerous leading anthropologists who have gone on to occupy lectureships and professorships throughout the world.  Equally, students gain skills during their degree that transfer well to areas such as information and technology, government service, the media and tourism.  

Postgraduate students leave SOAS with a portfolio of widely transferable skills which employers seek, including analytical and critical skills; ability to gather, assess and interpret data; high level of cultural awareness; and problem-solving.  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

You will establish and hone key analytical skills, amass a broad and in-depth knowledge of your chosen field and, from day one, befriend students from around the globe.

David Whittaker


How to apply

Please note that that this degree will NOT be running in 2018/19

You may be interested in one of our other Anthropology programmes.

If you still have any questions please contact us:

By phone: +44 (0)20 7898 4700
Or via our online form

Find out more

  • Contact us
    By phone:
    +44 (0)20 7898 4700
    By email:
  • Got a question?

    If you still have questions about this programme or studying at SOAS get in touch.

    Ask a question

  • Apply

    Please note this programme isn't running for the 2018/19 session.