SOAS University of London

Department of the History of Art and Archaeology, School of Arts

MA History of Art and/or Archaeology (2020 entry)

Select year of entry: 2020 2019

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

Overview

Introduction

This programme is a unique opportunity to study the History of Art and/or Archaeology of Asia, Africa and the Middle East. Students concentrate on architecture, sculpture, painting and the decorative arts and have the option of pursuing topics and approaches more archaeological in focus. They consider theoretical and methodological questions and are invited to question the relevance of the disciplinary distinction between History of Art and Archaeology to the study of the non-Western world. Courses cover a time period spanning from antiquity to present-day, contemporary art.    

The Department of the History of Art and Archaeology contains some of the world’s leading experts in Asian and African art history and archaeology, whose ground-breaking research informs and is informed by their teaching. Students benefit from the unparalleled knowledge and enthusiasm of staff. As members of the School of Arts, they profit from the insights of scholars and students studying the Music, Film and Media of Asia, Africa and the Middle East in historical and contemporary contexts. They can also select from modules in other departments, taking advantage of SOAS’s unrivalled expertise in the languages, history, religions and cultures of Asia and Africa.

A Masters from the Department of the History of Art and Archaeology provides students with expertise in the History of Art and/or Archaeology of Asia, Africa and the Middle East. Our postgraduates progress to work in arts, culture and heritage roles, including in galleries, museums, archives, conservation, publishing and arts administration. The large portfolio of transferable skills they acquire enables them to forge careers in a range of other fields across the world. Our Masters programmes are also an excellent foundation for MPhil/PhD research.

Venue: Russell Square: College Buildings

Start of programme: September intake only

Mode of Attendance: Full-time or Part-time

Entry requirements

  • 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.

Featured events

duration:
One year (full-time). Two or three years (part-time, daytime only)

Fees 2020/21

UK/EU fees:
£10,170
Overseas fees:
£20,930

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

Convenors

Structure

Occasionally the availability of optional modules changes as a result of staffing and other circumstances. Students who had signed up for such modules will be notified as soon as possible and given the opportunity to choose from available alternatives.

Students must complete 120 credits of MA taught modules in addition to the compulsory dissertation (60 credits).

Students may be allowed to study for the MA on a part-time basis.

  • The part-time MA may be taken over two years, in which case the student takes two 30 credits modules (or equivalent 15 credits modules) in the first year, and two 30 credits modules (or equivalent 15 credits modules) and the dissertation in the second year.
  • Alternatively, it can be taken over three years, in which case the student can distribute the 120 credits modules evenly in each of the three years. The dissertation can be written in year two or three, but it is strongly recommended that this be undertaken in the final year of the programme. It must be submitted in September of the year in which the student registers for it.
Dissertation
Module Code Credits Term
Dissertation in Art and Archaeology 15PARC999 60 Full Year
Taught Component
AND
  • 45 credits from the List of Art & Archaeology modules AND/OR List of Options in Other Departments AND/OR modules from Postgraduate Open Options if approved by the programme convenor.
List of Art & Archaeology modules
Module Code Credits Term
Arab Painting 15PARH054 15 Term 2
Arts of Goryeo and Joseon Korea 15PARH059 15 Term 1
Arts of Modern and Contemporary China (since 1800) 15PARH055 15 Term 2
Asia and Africa On Display: Objects, Exhibitions and Transculturism 15PARH043 15 Term 1
Ceramics in Chinese Culture: 10th - 18th Centuries 15PARH046 15 Term 1
China and the Silk Road: Art and Archaeology 15PARH093 15 Term 2
Chinese Porcelain: Trade, Transfer and Reception 15PARH064 15 Term 2
Contemporary Art and the Global 15PARH085 15 Term 1
Curating Cultures Cohort A 15PARH079 15 Term 1
Curating Cultures Cohort B 15PARH088 15 Term 2
Discourses on Modern and Contemporary Art of the Middle East 15PARH096 15 Term 2
Interpreting Visual Expressions of the Mandala 15PARH086 15 Term 2
Islam and the West: Artistic and Cultural Contacts 15PARH034 15 Term 1
Art and Architecture of the Seljuks and Ottomans (12th -15th centuries) 15PARH070 15 Term 2
Issues in Contemporary Southeast Asian Art 15PARH083 15 Term 2
Modern and Contemporary Arts in Africa 15PARH048 15 Term 1
Modern and Contemporary Korean Art 15PARH060 15 Term 2
Popular Practice in the Edo Period Arts 15PARH008 15 Term 2
Shogunal Iconography in the Edo Period 15PARH007 15 Term 1
Southeast Asia's Art Histories I 15PARH087 15 Term 1
Southeast Asia's Art Histories II 15PARH100 15 Term 2
The Indian Temple 15PARC034 30 Full Year
Theory and Method in Art History 15PARH097 15 Term 1
The Silk Road and its Origins: Art and Archaeology 15PARH095 15 Term 1
Tibetan Buddhist Monuments in Context 15PARH075 15 Term 1
Themes in the Visual Arts of Dynastic China (before 1800) 15PARH051 15 Term 1
Options in Other Departments
Anthropology
Module Code Credits Term
Culture and Society of East Africa 15PANH063 15 Term 2
Culture and Society of Near and Middle East 15PANH067 15 Term 1
History
Module Code Credits Term
Gender and Empire in Early Modern China 15PHIH024 15 Term 1
Nationhood and Competing Identities in Modern China 15PHIH022 15 Term 2
Study of Religions
Module Code Credits Term
Buddhist Meditation in India and Tibet 15PSRC172 30 Full Year
Pahlavi Language 15PSRC034 30 Full Year
Religious Practice in Japan: Texts, Rituals and Believers 15PSRC071 30 Full Year
The Origins and Development of Yoga in Ancient India 15PSRC173 30 Full Year
Zoroastrianism: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives 15PSRC052 30 Full Year
Media Studies
Module Code Credits Term
Mediated Culture in the Middle East: Politics and Communications 15PMSH003 15 Term 2
Music
Module Code Credits Term
Music, Place and Politics in Cuba 15PMUH015 15 Term 1
Musical Traditions of East Asia (Masters) 15PMUH016 15 Term 2
Africa
Module Code Credits Term
African Philosophy (PG) 15PAFH008 15 Term 2
China and Asia
Module Code Credits Term
Modern Chinese Film and Theatre (PG) 15PCHH001 15 Term 1
Chinese 1 A (PG) 15PCHH031 15 Term 1
Chinese 1 B (PG) 15PCHH032 15 Term 2
Chinese 2 (PG) 15PCHC011 30 Full Year
Chinese 3 (PG) 15PCHC009 30 Full Year
Chinese 4 (PG) 15PCHC012 30 Full Year
Japan and Korea
Module Code Credits Term
Japanese 1 A (PG) 15PJKH035 15 Term 1
Japanese 1 B (PG) 15PJKH036 15 Term 2
Korean 1 A (PG) 15PJKH037 15 Term 1
Korean 1 B (PG) 15PJKH038 15 Term 2
Japanese Post-War Film Genres and the Avant-Garde 15PJKH008 15 Term 2
Japanese Traditional Drama (PG) 15PEAH013 15 Term 1
Trajectories of Modernity in Korean Literature (PG) 15PJKH006 15 Term 1
Near & Middle East
Module Code Credits Term
Classical Ottoman Texts (PG) 15PNMC385 15 Term 1
Classical Persian Poetry: Texts and Traditions (PG) 15PNMC401 15 Full Year
Critical Perspectives on Palestine Studies I: History and Politics 15PNMH006 15 Term 1
Critical Perspectives on Palestine Studies II: Culture and Society 15PNMH007 15 Term 2
Iran: History, Culture, Politics 15PNMC405 30 Full Year
Ottoman Turkish Language (PG) 15PNMC397 30 Full Year
South Asia
Module Code Credits Term
Bengali Language 2 (PG) 15PSAC304 30 Full Year
Culture and Conflict in Nepal 15PSAH017 15 Term 1
Hindi Language 1 A (PG) 15PSAH022 15 Term 1
Hindi Language 1 B (PG) 15PSAH023 15 Term 2
Hindi Language 2 (PG) 15PSAC296 30 Full Year
Hindi Language 3 (PG) 15PSAC297 30 Full Year
Indian Cinema: Its History and Social Context 15PSAH001 15 Term 1
Indian Cinema: Key Issues 15PSAH002 15 Term 2
Literature & Colonialism in North India (Masters) 15PSAH005 15 Term 1
Sanskrit Language 2 (PG) 15PSAC306 30 Full Year
The Politics of Culture in Contemporary South Asia 15PSAC314 30 Full Year
Urdu Language 2 (PG) 15PSAC301 30 Full Year
South and South East Asia
Module Code Credits Term
Burmese Language 2 (PG) 15PSEC045 30 Full Year
Genders and Sexualities in South East Asian Film 15PSEH011 15 Term 2
Indonesian Language 2 (PG) 15PSEC033 30 Full Year
Thai Language 2 (PG) 15PSEC041 30 Full Year
Vietnamese Language 2 (PG) 15PSEC037 30 Full Year

 

Programme Specification

Important notice

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

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.

Teaching

Teaching consists of a combination of lectures and seminars. Classes are normally between two and three hours per week for each module. Teaching methods include lectures with discussion, seminars (at which students present papers) and museum visits. Students at all levels are expected to take an active part in class presentations. A particularly important element is the training of the student's visual memory.

In addition to their studies on the MA programme, students at SOAS can participate in a wide range of research seminars, lectures and conferences that regularly take place in the School and in the University of London.

Assessment

For each of the three taught modules, the student will be expected to submit two or three pieces of written work usually around 3,000 to 4,500 words – for a total of 9,000 words per module. The emphasis is on developing essay skills during the session in preparation for the dissertation. In some modules the assessment is 100% on written work. On other modules, assessed course work forms 75% of the student’s final grade and an additional 25% is determined by slide quizzes, projects or other forms of assessment. The 10,000 word dissertation is submitted in September.

Learning Resources

SOAS Library is one of the world's most important academic libraries for the study of Africa, Asia and the Middle East, attracting scholars from all over the world. The Library houses over 1.2 million volumes, together with significant archival holdings, special collections and a growing network of electronic resources.

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 2020/21 entrants. The fees below are per academic year. Fees go up each year, therefore, your tuition fee in your second & subsequent years of study will be higher. Our continuing students, on the same degree programme, are protected from annual increases higher than 5%.

Full-time Part-time 2 Years Part-time 3 Years Part-time 4 Years
Intensive Language only
UK/EU
Students
Overseas
Students
UK/EU
Students
Overseas
Students
UK/EU
Students
Overseas
Students
UK/EU
Students
Overseas
Students
£10,170 £20,930 £5,085 £10,460 £3,390 £6,975 £5,085 £10,460

Scholarships
Felix Non- Indian Scholarship

Application Deadline: 2020-01-31 15:00

Felix Scholarships

Application Deadline: 2020-01-31 15:00

International Postgraduate Scholarship – East Asia

Application Deadline: 2020-05-31 00:00

International Postgraduate Scholarship – Ghana

Application Deadline: 2020-05-31 00:00

International Postgraduate Scholarship – India

Application Deadline: 2020-05-31 00:00

International Postgraduate Scholarship – Japan

Application Deadline: 2020-05-31 00:00

International Postgraduate Scholarship – Nigeria

Application Deadline: 2020-05-31 00:00

International Postgraduate Scholarship – Pakistan

Application Deadline: 2020-05-31 00:00

International Postgraduate Scholarship – South Korea

Application Deadline: 2020-05-31 00:00

John Loiello AFSOAS FISH Scholarship

Application Deadline: 2020-02-20 15:00

SOAS Master's Scholarships

Application Deadline: 2020-02-20 15:00

Saraswati Dalmia Scholarship

Application Deadline: 2020-04-02 15:00

Sasakawa Postgraduate Studentship

Application Deadline: 2020-02-20 15:00

Sochon Foundation Scholarship

Application Deadline: 2020-04-02 15:00

Tibawi Trust Award

Application Deadline: 2020-06-05 15:00

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

Employment

A Masters from the Department of the History of Art and Archaeology provides students with expertise in the History of Art and/or Archaeology of Asia, Africa and the Middle East. Our postgraduates progress to work in arts, culture and heritage roles, including in galleries, museums, archives, conservation, publishing and arts administration. The large portfolio of transferable skills they acquire enables them to forge careers in a range of other fields across the world. Our Masters programmes are also an excellent foundation for MPhil/PhD research.
Graduates have gone on to work for a range of organisations including:
Asia House
Bonhams
British Museum
Christie's Hong Kong
Design Museum
Dr. Bhau Daji Lad Mumbai City Museum
Hong Kong Museum Of Art
India Foundation For The Arts
Museum of East Asian Art
National Gallery
National Museum of Singapore
People Projects Culture & Change
Schoeni Art Gallery
Sotheby's
Taiwan Embassy
The Alliance for Global Education
The British Embassy
The Chester Beatty Library
The National Museum Of Korea
The Royal Collection
Types of roles that graduates have gone on to do include:
Manager of Communications
Culture Programme Coordinator
Research Assistant
Social Anthropology Lecturer
Specialist - Indian Art
Architect
Art Historian
Development Specialist
Archivist
Gallery Director
Innovation Programmes Learning Manager
Creative Director
Organisational Consultant
Travel writer
Art Collector
Chinese Painting Specialist
Professor of Silk Road History
Rights and Reproductions Officer
Public Education Coordinator
Senior Curator of Photographs
For more information about Graduate Destinations from this department, please visit the Careers Service website.

A Student's Perspective

The insight provided, knowledge delivered and understanding transmitted during lectures, seminars and conferences at SOAS is impressive and requires real personal involvement in the topics.

Xavier Fournier

Apply

Find out more

  • Contact us
    By phone:
    +44 (0)20 7898 4700
    By email:
    study@soas.ac.uk
  • Got a question?

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

    Ask a question

  • Apply

    Postgraduate programme applications should be made through our online application system.

    Start your application