Imagine(ing) Migration: The Aesthetics of Borders and Resistance
Overview and entry requirements
Our MA 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.
The MA in Migration and Diaspora Studies is a highly interdisciplinary program, taught from a Global South perspective and uniquely committed to anthropology and other disciplines' accountability towards the subjects they study.
The MA programme is engaged and practice oriented and offers the possibility of creative assignments along with conventional assessment forms. It is enthused by the belief that knowledge and practice produced by diaspora and migrants' grassroots organisations, activists, practitioners and artists should be intertwined with academic knowledge, and validated as part of a real decolonising effort.
Students enrolled in the MA programme have the unique chance to carry out internships while studying through the module From Theory to Practice and Back: Work-placements in Migration Research. The internships aim to bridge theory and practice in the fields of migration, diaspora and humanitarian practice.
The course is available exclusively to students enrolled in the MA Migration and Diaspora Studies. The course is organised in the form of internships and independent study projects, along with some class seminars in collaboration with the organisations, with whom we partner. Students have the opportunity to work with a broad range of organisations operating in areas as varied as migrants' support and refugees’ legal protection, activist and political campaigns and networks, as well as galleries and art collectives promoting diaspora and BAME cultures, identities, and arts. You may also be interested in this degree if you come from other disciplines, such as Law or Politics, and now wish to incorporate an anthropological perspective on issues of migration and diaspora.
Why study Migration and Diaspora Studies at SOAS
- SOAS in ranked 5th the UK in the 2021 QS World University Rankings for Anthropology, and 16th worldwide
- the MA Migration and Diaspora Studies programme has a first-rate graduate employability record
- increase your knowledge of the transnational nature of the modern world
- engage with critical theories to understand the management of mobility and the impact of humanitarian relief
- understand the role of migration in the major political and cultural processes of the contemporary world
- unique opportunity of internships to bridge the gap between theory and practice.
The degree offers students a chance to pursue their specific areas of interest by selecting from optional modules:
- 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.
Prospective students are encouraged to contact the Programme Convenor, Dr Ruba Salih (firstname.lastname@example.org), at an early stage of their application to seek advice on the most appropriate options for study.
Testimonial: Jorge Rodriguez Solorzano
"My time in the Migration and Diaspora Studies MA programme at SOAS helped me expand my intellectual and creative horizons in very exciting ways. The programme’s interdisciplinary structure allows students to pick up many skills along the way and facilitates access to opportunities to engage in extracurricular projects, such as the London in Motion Documentary Film Workshop. The programme is headed by a compelling group of scholar-teachers. These foster an approach to the study of mobility and migration that is unique among Anthropology departments: you will read Paul Gilroy, Avtar Brah and Didier Fassin in the same module! In addition to pursuing exciting coursework in Anthropology, I took a rigorous full-year course in Modern Standard Arabic and also joined a module in Postcolonial thought with a phenomenal professor in the Law department. Professionally, the MA in Migration and Diaspora Studies is highly regarded in the academy, in the UK and transnationally. I am set to start a PhD in Anthropology in my top school in the U.S. this fall, which would have been unthinkable without this enriching intellectual experience. SOAS itself is an incredibly dynamic institution because of the global composition of its study body and the inherently political ethos of the school. Finally, the dissertation component of the MA trains you to be an independent researcher while giving you room to explore. I would definitely recommend this department to prospective students, particularly if you hope to continue on to a PhD".
Jorge Rodriguez Solorzano, PhD student Columbia University
Start of programme: September only
Mode of Attendance: Full-time or Part-time
- We will consider all applications with 2:ii (or international equivalent) or higher. In addition to degree classification we take into account other elements of the application including supporting statement and references.
- One calendar year (Full-Time) Two or three years (Part-Time, daytime only) The expectation in the UK is of continuous study across the year, with break periods used to read and to prepare coursework. 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.
Professor Ruba Salih Convenor