Dissertation in African Studies

Key information

Start date
End date
Year of study
Module code
FHEQ Level

Module overview

The dissertation is a core component of all Masters programmes at SOAS. The supervised dissertation research requires the ability to work independently on an original piece of research, to demonstrate familiarity with the relevant literature and present the resulting dissertation in a clear and organised format.

The research and writing of the Masters dissertation is a crucial component of Research-based Masters training.

The dissertation has a 10,000 word limit and counts for 33% of the overall degree. For details on presentation and submission dates, see the Postgraduate Taught Masters Handbook.

Objectives and learning outcomes of the module


At the end of the module, student should have:

  • The ability to apply their subject knowledge and methodology to a specific problem in their area of specialism;
  • The skills required to pursue independent research in an academic context;
  • The ability to present their work to different audiences in a clear professional form.




Total of 8 hours contact throughout the year consisting of up of 3 hours individual supervision and 5 hours of seminars.


Scope and syllabus


The students will attend five preparatory seminars over the course of the academic year, in which they will be familiarised with research methods and with what is expected of a postgraduate dissertation in Area Studies.


Method of assessment


  • Dissertation of 10,000 words, to be submitted in September following final year of study (exact date determined by School) worth 100%
  • The exact assessment deadline dates are published on the relevant module Moodle/BLE page



Dr Carmen McCain

Dr Ida Hadjivayanis


Important notice regarding changes to programmes and modules