SOAS University of London

China & Inner Asia Section, Department of East Asian Languages & Cultures

BA Chinese and... (2022 entry)

Select year of entry: 2022 2021

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


Overview and entry requirements

The BA Chinese combined honours degree aims to give a broad understanding of Chinese culture through the study of its language, history and literature from earliest times up to the present, in combination with a solid grounding in another language or discipline.

See China and Inner Asia Department

Combine Chinese with other subjects

You may combine Chinese with other disciplines such as Development Studies, Economics, History, History of Art, International Relations, Law, Linguistics, Music, Politics, Social Anthropology, World Philosophies.

Why study Chinese combined honours at SOAS

  • Ranked 13th in the UK in the 2022 QS World University Rankings for Modern Languages
  • we have a range of expertise at SOAS, not only in East Asian studies, but also with regard to languages and literatures of other regions - unique in UK institutions.
  • along with proven excellence in other disciplines, such as religious studies, anthropology, art and archaeology, and history, we offer students an unparalleled range of options in choosing their second subject of study.
  • flexible entry requirements for students with various levels of Chinese proficiency, from absolute beginners to GCSE and A-level Chinese.


See SOAS China Institute

See Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures

Follow us:

Venue: Russell Square: College Buildings

Start of programme: September

Mode of Attendance: Full-time

Entry requirements

Featured events

4 years

Fees 2022/23

Fees for 2022/23 entrants per academic year

UK fees:
Overseas fees:

Please note that fees go up each year. Further details see 'Fees and funding' (tab on this page) or the Registry's undergraduate tuition fees page.


Please see the Unistats data for the various combinations of this programme under the Combinations tab.


May be combined with:

Key Information Set data

Click on a combined programme to load KIS data



Year 1

Students will take modules to the value of 120 credits from the two subjects

Core Module

This module must be passed in order to proceed to the following year.

Module Code Credits Term
Ch 100: Elementary Chinese 155901440 60 Full Year


Second Subject

60 credits are taken from the syllabus of the second subject.

Year 2
Core Module

This module must be passed in order to progress to the following year of study

Module Code Credits Term
Ch 200 Intermediate Chinese 155901467 30 Full Year
Compulsory Modules

Students will take the modules below

Module Code Credits Term
Contemporary Chinese Society 155901478 15 Term 1
East Asian Imperialisms 155901481 15 Term 2


Second Subject

60 credits are taken from the syllabus of the second subject.

Year 3

*Year 3 (from 20/21) Year Abroad: For more information on the year abroad in China, please see the Teaching & Learning tab.

Year 4
Compulsory Modules

Students will take the modules below

Module Code Credits Term
History and Memory in East Asian Cultures 155903015 15 Term 2
Ch 400: Advanced Chinese 155901468 15 Term 1

Guided Option

Choose modules from List A/List B or Central options (at the relevant FHEQ level for your academic year of study) to the value of 30 credits


Second Subject

60 credits are taken from the syllabus of the second subject.

Year 4 - List A: Guided Option Modules
Module Code Credits Term
Ch 401: Chinese-English Translation 155901469 15 Term 2
Chinese for Business 155903010 15 Term 2
Ch 305: Elementary Cantonese 155901228 30 Full Year
Independent Study Project in East Asian Studies 155901483 30 Full Year
Culture and Society of Taiwan 155903020 15 Term 1
Literature, Politics and National Identity in Modern China 155903017 15 Term 1
Chinese Cinema (UG) 155901474 15 Term 2
Year 4 - List B: Language Modules
Module Code Credits Term
Japanese 1 A 155906026 15 Term 1
Japanese 1 B 155906027 15 Term 2
Japanese 2 155900875 30 Full Year
Korean 1 A 155906028 15 Term 1
Korean 1 B 155906029 15 Term 2
Korean 2 155901404 30 Full Year
FHEQ Level 6
Module Code Credits Term
Korean 3 155900843 30 Full Year
Korean 4 155901486 30 Full Year
Japanese 3 155901345 30 Full Year
Japanese 4 155901346 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

Modern language teaching involves classroom work and independent study. A few non-language modules are taught by formal lecture. The single and combined degree modules are examined through oral and written examinations and coursework or reports.

Contact hours

All full-time undergraduate programmes consist of 120 credits per year, in modules of 60, 30 or 15 credits. They are taught over 10 or 20 weeks. The programme structure shows which modules are taught over one term or the full year. It also shows which modules are compulsory and which are optional.

As a rough guide, 1 credit equals approximately 10 hours of work. Most of this will be independent study (see Approaches to teaching and learning at SOAS). 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.

More information is on the page for each module.

Year abroad

Students spend the third year of their BA Chinese degree at Beijing Normal University (BNU) or in Taiwan.  Single-subject degree students are required to take the following modules: 

  • Newspaper Reading (baokan 报刊)
  • Reading and Writing (duxie 读写) 
  • Conversation (huihua 会话)
  • Listening (tingli 听力)

In order to proceed to the final year, students must pass all four of the language modules taken at BNU. If a student fails one language module, they will be offered a re-entry test in September of the same academic year, to determine whether or not they can continue to Year 4.

SOAS Library

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.

Pre-entry readings

  • Ebrey, Patricia: The Cambridge Illustrated History of Chinese Civilization. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1996/2010.
  • Mair, Victor H.: The Columbia History of Chinese Literature. New York: Columbia University Press, 2001.
  • Shei, Chris: Understanding the Chinese Language. London and New York: Routledge, 2014.

Further suggestions

  • Goldman, Merle, Leo Ou-Fan Lee (eds.): An Intellectual History of Modern China. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002.
  • Hong Zicheng: A History of Contemporary Chinese Literature. Leiden: Brill, 2007.
  • Lau, Joseph S. M., Howard Goldblatt (eds.): The Columbia Anthology of Modern Chinese Literature. New York: Columbia University Press, 2007.
  • Lovell, Julia: The Great Wall: China Against the World. 1000 BC - AD 2000. New York: Grove Press, 2006.
  • Minford, John, Joseph S. M. Lau (eds.): Classical Chinese Literature: An Anthology of Translations. New York: Columbia University Press, 2000.

Fees and funding



Graduates from the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures develop competencies in intercultural awareness, analysis and communication. Demand for specialists with advanced proficiency in the languages of China, Japan and Korea has significantly increased in recent years, and graduates with these skills are highly sought after by employers.

Recent Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures graduates have been hired by organisations including:

  • Accenture
  • Amazon
  • Bloomberg LP
  • Department for Work and Pensions
  • European Alliance for Human Rights in North Korea
  • European Commission
  • Google
  • ITN
  • Japanese Government
  • Korea Trade Centre (KOTRA)
  • KPMG
  • Mizuho Bank
  • Nagahama Board of Education
  • Nanjing Museum
  • Pinsent Masons LLP
  • PwC
  • Seoul Metropolitan Government
  • Shelterbox
  • UNDP

Find out about our Careers Service.

A Student's Perspective

If I were to describe SOAS in one sentence it would say that you will hear at least six different languages on the same day while you casually walk through the corridors of the university.

Stephanie Koch


Find out more