SOAS University of London

Department of Anthropology and Sociology

Advanced Ethnographic Study

Module Code:
Unit value:
Year of study:
Year 3
Taught in:
Full Year

This course provides final-year Anthropology students the opportunity to write an extended essay focusing on a particular ethnographic region and related topic. To take the course, students must have passed the relevant ethnography course in the second year and sought agreement (preferably by the end of the second year, but no later than the first week of term in the final year) from a member of staff with relevant expertise to supervise the project.

Students taking the course must attend the AES workshop in weeks 1 and 2 of the first term, as well as in weeks 2 and 3 of the second term. Only students meeting this requirement will be permitted to submit their essays.

Students will meet with their supervisors three times. In the first meeting, ideally in week 3 of term 1, they will agree a topic for their essay and discuss relevant bibliographic sources. In the second meeting, ideally in week 8 of term 1, they will discuss an outline of their essay. In the final meeting, ideally in week 4 of term 2, they will discuss a draft of their essay. These drafts will also have been presented and discussed by all member of the class in either week 2 or 3 of term 2.  


Successful completion of the relevant Ethnography of a selected region module at second-year level is a prerequisite for this course.

Objectives and learning outcomes of the module

Students will develop the skill to work independently on the region of Africa, Asia, or the Middle East that they studied at BA2 level. To do this they will identify an area of interest to them and define a research question, refine and pursue that question via library research (possibly augmented by personal experience), and write an argued extended essay with an apparatus of footnotes and references in standard professional format.

Method of assessment

100% coursework.  Please check current module outline for the deadline for submission of the final dissertation. Students are encouraged to submit their work well before this deadline. The work must be typed in a legible font, double-spaced, with a word count. Maximum length for extended essays/dissertations (including quotations, footnotes, titles, summaries and tables of contents; excluding appendices and bibliographies) is 5,000 words. School policy on plagiarism will be strictly enforced.


Important notice regarding changes to programmes and modules