Our MA in Migration and Diaspora Studies is a broad-based degree for students who want to receive research training in Migration, and Diaspora, as well as Humanitarian and Refugee Studies, including a relevant language as part of the specialisation.
The degree prepares you to proceed to advanced postgraduate research or to work as practitioners in fields related to Migration, Refugees and Humanitarian relief.
This two-year intensive language pathway is directed at students who want to engage with a country in a professional as well as academic way, as the intensive language courses will enable them to reach a near proficient knowledge of the language.
This MA Migration and Diaspora Studies is designed for students who:
- wish to know more of the transnational nature of the modern world
- wish to engage with critical theories to understand the management of mobility and the impact of humanitarian relief
- wish to understand the role of migration in the major political and cultural processes of the contemporary world
- come from other disciplines, such as Law or Politics, and now wish to incorporate an anthropological perspective on issues of migration and diaspora
The degree offers students a chance to pursue their specific areas of interest by a selecting from optional modules. You will have the option of studying the degree from either:
- a broad-based perspective enhancing your knowledge in light of continuing contemporary research
- a specific area, allowing you to study diaspora and migration issues in depth in relation to a particular discipline or region
The MA in Migration and Diaspora Studies is considerably enriched by the SOAS Centre for Migration and Diaspora Studies, which runs seminars, films and public lectures and also hosts a number of international scholars. The Centre is also a part of a migration research network of London colleges including LSE and UCL. Students on the programme therefore have unparalleled access to a critical body of scholars and scholarship on migration and diaspora related issues.
This programme has a first-rate graduate employability record, with graduates moving on to find employment in lectureships and professorships throughout the world in areas such as information and technology, government service, the media and tourism.
Prospective students are encouraged to contact the Programme Convenor, Dr Ruba Salih, at an early stage of their application to seek advice on the most appropriate options for study. For more information email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Start of programme: September
Mode of Attendance: Full-time or Part-time
- Minimum upper second class honours degree (or equivalent)
- 2 years full time, 4 years part time
- UK/EU fees:
- Overseas fees:
Fees for 2020/21 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
May be combined with:
The following Intensive Language pathways are available with the MA Migration and Diaspora Studies
Students must take 315 credits in total, comprised of 255 taught credits (45 of which are taught abroad as part of a Summer School) and a 60-credit dissertation as outlined below.
In their first year, students on the two-year Intensive Language programmes take 60 credits of intensive language instruction and 60 credits in the discipline. During the summer, they participate in a Summer School abroad. In the second year, they take another 30 language credits as well as 60 credits in the discipline; they also complete their dissertation in the discipline.
Students are also required to audit 15PANH002 Ethnographic Research Methods, i.e. to attend lectures for this module (without attending seminars or submitting any assessments). The module does not count towards the total of 315 credits.
For information on the programme structure for the four-year part-time version of the programme, please see the pdf programme specification at the bottom of this page.
Please see the relevant web pages in the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures and in the School of Languages, Cultures and Linguistics for information on the Intensive Language part of the programme.
Year 1 (two years full time)
Guided Module(s) from any of the lists below, OR modules from the Postgraduate Open Options List, to the value of 30 credits.
Students take 60 credits in the selected language.
Students participate in a Summer School abroad for the selected language.
Year 2 (two years full time)
Guided Module(s) from any of the lists below, OR modules from the Postgraduate Open Options List, to the value of 60 credits.
Students take 30 credits in the selected language.
All students are required to take the compulsory dissertation module worth 60 credits.
List of Modules (subject to availability)
Anthropology and Sociology
Modules in Other Department
The information on the programme page reflects the intended programme structure against the given academic session. If you are a current student you can find structure information on the previous year link at the top of the page or through your Department. Please read the important notice regarding changes to programmes and modules.
Teaching and Learning
Teaching & Learning
SOAS also has a large range of options on migration and diaspora related issues across the school. Teaching methods and assessment vary across these options, and their availability will depend on appropriate staff being available in the relevant academic year.
In addition, students are required to attend the weekly seminars held by the Centre for Migration and Diaspora Studies, where they will hear international scholars give papers on a variety of migration and diaspora related topics. The seminars provide an invaluable backdrop for the transdisciplinary approach of the programme overall. Students are also encouraged to apply to the London in Motion workshop: https://www.soas.ac.uk/anthropology/
The student learning experience is also be enhanced by the public lectures, films and workshops the Centre organises.
During the academic year, teaching is centred mainly around lectures and seminars. For the core module in the first term, there is a one hour thematic lecture, followed by a 1 hour tutorial. Lectures and seminars are often taken by different teachers to provide a variety of angles on the subject. The majority of the student’s time will be through their own independent study. Students become more active in class through their reading and essay-writing and should greatly enhance their participation in discussion groups.
These are taken by final-year students only, its aim is to provide an opportunity for students to conduct original historical research on their own initiative, to engage in in-depth analysis of particular subjects and to use a range of primary historical sources. It is assessed by a single 10,000-word dissertation (including notes but excluding bibliography).
The Language Entitlement Programme
While you may take a language module for credit, all SOAS MA students, regardless of department or degree, are also entitled to register for non-credit free courses in a single language through the Language Entitlement Programme (LEP). Languages normally available include Arabic, Chinese, French, Hebrew, Hindi, Japanese, Korean, Persian, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Swahili, Turkish and Urdu. Others may also be offered.
Aims and Outcomes
to introduce students to important areas of contemporary social theory which deal with issues of migration, globalisation, the postcolonial world, and cultural transformations
to ground students in the historical basis of these issues
to encourage transdisciplinary thinking on issues of migration
to enable students to translate theoretical perspectives for practical application in the material world
to provide students with a near proficient ability in a language
Fees and funding
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 2020/21 entrants. The fees below are per academic year. Please note that fees go up each year. 2 year full-time programmes have 2 years of full-time fees - the fee in the second year will be higher than the fee for the first year (the full time fee below is for the first year only).
For further details and information on external scholarships visit the Scholarships section
A Masters in Migration and Diaspora Studies helps you to understand the world, other peoples’ ways of life and how society is organised.
This programme will endow you 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 visit our Graduate Destinations page.
A Student's Perspective
The professors' investment in their courses and accessibility outside them; the camaraderie among similarly passionate students; the number of events on campus and nearby--and indeed the opportunity to live and study in London--all delivered on my greatest hopes.