SOAS University of London

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

MA Advanced Chinese Studies (2019 entry)

Select year of entry: 2019

  • Structure
  • Teaching and Learning


The two-year MA Advanced Chinese Studies offers comprehensive language-based training across a wide range of disciplines in the humanities and social sciences.

Students on the programme take four taught modules at SOAS during their first year, including a team-taught core modules provided by a range of SOAS China experts. In addition, students take a text-reading seminar, allowing them to integrate their Chinese reading skills into their disciplinary studies, or an approved language-based module. Further modules can be selected from available disciplines including Anthropology, Art and Archaeology, Cinema, Cultural and Regional Studies, Economics, History, Law, Literature, Music, Politics, and Study of Religions.

In their second year, students will undertake an extended period of study at Zhejiang University, where they will follow a tailor-made bilingual programme in Chinese Studies. The second half of the second year will be taken up with the writing of the dissertation under close supervision back in London.

The programme is aimed at students pursuing careers in the academic world, business, government and the media that require a skill set which encompasses disciplinary rigour, comprehensive area knowledge and cultural and linguistic fluencies. Applicants should have at least intermediate-level proficiency in modern Chinese (HSK Level 4). The language element of the training will be tailored to meet the needs of students’ existing language skills. Alternative elements are available for applicants not in need of further Chinese language training, such as native speakers of Chinese.

Venue: Russell Square: College Buildings

Start of programme: September

Mode of Attendance: Full-time

Entry requirements

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2 Year Full Time



In the first year at SOAS students on the programme take the module Approaches of Chinese Studies - 15PCIC001.  In addition, students take Reading Seminar in Chinese Studies - 15PCIC003 or an approved language-based module from List A (30 credits). The remaining 60 credits are taken from List B (Taught Module Component).

In their second year, students will undertake a Period of Postgraduate Study in China - 15PCIC004 at Zhejiang University, where they will follow a tailor-made bilingual programme in Chinese Studies. The second half of the second year will be taken up with the writing of the dissertation under close supervision back in London (Extended Dissertation in Chinese Studies -15PCIC999).

These modules should be chosen in close consultation with the programme convenor.

Year 1: Taught Component at SOAS

Core Modules

All students will take

Guided Option

All students will take 30 credits EITHER from List A (Language) OR the Reading Seminar

Module Code Credits Term
Reading Seminar in Chinese Studies 15PCIC003 1

All students will take 60 credits EITHER from List B (below)

Year 2

Taught Component Abroad and Dissertation

All students will take the following two modules

Module Code Credits Term
Period of Study at Partner University (China) 15PCIC004
Extended Dissertation in Chinese Studies 15PCIC999 2 units

Options (subject to availability)

List A: Language
Module Code Credits Term
Practical Translation: Chinese to English 15PCHH004 15 Credits
Reading Seminar in Chinese Studies 15PCIC003 1
Chinese 4 (PG) 15PCHC012 30 Full Year
List B (Non-language based disciplinary modules)
China and Inner Asia
Module Code Credits Term
New Taiwan Cinema and Beyond (PG) 15PCHH002 15 Term 1
Taiwan Studies
Module Code Credits Term
Culture and Society of Taiwan (PG) 15PCHH003 15 Term 1
Art and Archaeology
Module Code Credits Term
Ceramics in Chinese Culture: 10th - 18th Centuries 15PARH046 15 Term 1
Anthropology and Sociology
Module Code Credits Term
750B Ethnographic Locations: East Asia 15PANH062 15
Media and Film Studies
Module Code Credits Term
Connections and Intersections: Core Aspects of East Asian Studies 15PJKH025 15 Term 1
Development Studies
Politics and International Studies
Module Code Credits Term
China And International Politics 15PPOC018 30 Credits
Northeast Asian Politics and Society: Japan, Korea and Taiwan 15PPOC253 30 Credits
State And Society In The Chinese Political Process 15PPOC012 30 Credits
Taiwan's Politics and Cross-Strait Relations 15PPOC252 30 Credits
Module Code Credits Term
Pop and Politics in East Asia (Masters) 15PMUH014 15 Term 1
Religions and Philosophies
Module Code Credits Term
East Asian Buddhist Thought 15PSRH018 15 Term 2


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

  • General knowledge of the main debates in, and scholarly approaches to the study of China, by both Anglophone and Sinophone scholars
  • Research methods and strategies relevant to individual disciplines as used in the context of Chinese Studies
  • In-depth and nuanced understanding of Chinese society, history, and culture.
Intellectual (thinking) Skills
  • Evidence-based critical and thinking
  • Interdisciplinary approach to regional studies
  • Reflexive awareness of cultural bias and its effects
  • Bilingual research and analytical skills
Subject-based Practical Skills
  • Bilingual competence in gathering information, formulating and orally presenting informed opinion within the broader context of Chinese Studies
  • Ability to appreciate and assess academic writing in Chinese and English
  • Academic writing skills in English and Chinese
  • Research techniques specific to dealing with Chinese-language material
Transferable Skills
  • Essay and dissertation writing skills
  • Effective structuring and communication of ideas
  • IT and library research skills
  • Translation skills
  • Cross-cultural awareness

Find out more