SOAS University of London

Facts and figures

2nd
ranked for overall satisfaction in the UK in the NSS 2016

Research

Teaching

  • Rigorous language training accompanies the study of the cultures of the region, and in the more intensive programmes constitutes the very foundation for the study of all other disciplines.
  • 6th in the UK for East & South East Asian Studies (The Complete University Guide 2018)
  • 6th in the UK for East & South East Asian Studies (Times & Sunday Times University League Table 2018)
  • 9th in the UK and 51 internationally (QS World University Rankings by Subject, 2017)
  • 2nd in UK for Asian Studies (NSS 2016)
  • 86% satisfaction for teaching and 86% for learning resources (NSS 2016)
Japan and Korea
  • One of two only universities in the UK to offer a BA degree in Korean
  • Eight undergraduate Japanese and Korean degrees (single or joint), with or without periods of study abroad
  • Six postgraduate degrees, offering a broad range of disciplinary choices, and a flexible structure
  • Number of Staff: 9 academic, 6 teaching and scholarship, 12 teaching and scholarship (fractional)
China, Inner Asia, and Taiwan
  • Undergraduate applicant/place ratio 9:1
  • The only Tibetan Studies BA in the Anglophone world
  • BA Chinese and BA Tibetan students will spend a year studying in China or Tibet
  • MA Chinese Literature is the only postgraduate programme of its kind in the UK
  • MA in Taiwan Studies is the first and only postgraduate degree focusing on contemporary Taiwan in the English-speaking world.
  • Number of Staff: 8 academic, 7 teaching and scholarship, 14 teaching and scholarship (fractional)

Alumni and student stories

  • "There is some sort of positive vibe that makes this place highly addictive."

    When I first arrived in London, I didn’t know many people but SOAS soon felt like home. As the campus itself is quite small, students develop a strong sense of community, as if they were all part of a large eccentric family. Also, given the nature of our studies, people here are extremely diverse, friendly and open-minded. You can tell that everyone is really passionate and enthusiastic about what they do. It’s very contagious and inspirational.

  • "When I heard about SOAS I immediately knew it was the school for me."

    When I heard about SOAS I immediately knew it was the school for me. An institution like SOAS is the ideal platform for students who want to learn a language and gain insight into a culture. It is also a leading school in Tibetan studies.

  • "SOAS gives you an understanding of non-western languages, cultures and countries which is increasingly important in a globalised world."

    SOAS picks up where other universities leave off. Others might give you knowledge that is predominantly western oriented. SOAS, on the other hand, gives you an understanding of non-western languages, cultures and countries which is increasingly important in a globalised world.

  • "Studying for my MA in Taiwan Studies at SOAS was a wonderful experience"

    Studying for my MA in Taiwan Studies at SOAS was a wonderful experience

  • "I came to study at SOAS because of its good reputation in Mandarin Chinese."

    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.

  • "SOAS was the ideal place for me to study cross-Strait relations"

    With some of the West’s leading experts on Taiwan’s political economy, SOAS was the ideal place for me to study cross-Strait relations

  • "Students come to SOAS with an interest that soon develops into a passion and, in time, an obsession with their discipline."

    You will establish and hone key analytical skills, amass a broad and in-depth knowledge of your chosen field and, from day one, befriend students from around the globe.

  • "Here you’re not only intrigued by the lectures but also by the people around you."

    The best thing about my time here is that there has been a huge improvement in my language skills and I have become more aware of people from various backgrounds. 

  • "There’s a vibe around the campus that relays a closeness, and acceptance."

    There’s a vibe around the campus that relays a closeness, and acceptance. As diverse as her student body is, SOAS provides a common ground for all of us.

  • "Be open to new experiences and bring your appetite."

    One of the most memorable things I did outside of SOAS was to sign up for a homestay – it’s free through SOAS, it’s just for the weekend, and it gives you a taste of English life outside of London.

  • "When you come to London, you don’t just come to exchange ideas with the English, but to exchange ideas and culture with people from all of the world. This is especially true at SOAS."

    In my opinion, I think London is such an interesting city because of the unique composition of its population. It is the most internationally focused place I have ever lived. It is the meeting and merging point of people and cultures from around the world who are eager to share their experiences, backgrounds, and perspectives with you.

  • "In my spare time I enjoy both watching and performing Chinese Opera. "

    I was interested in the BA Chinese course at SOAS because it allowed me to continue Mandarin, but I could also learn Classical Chinese and Cantonese, plus also spend a year studying abroad.

  • "Not only does SOAS have a great reputation for its Japanese department and Japanese library collection, but I also believe that for language students, there’s no better city to live and study in than London"

    Not only does SOAS have a great reputation for its Japanese department and Japanese library collection, but I also believe that for language students, there’s no better city to live and study in than London

  • "SOAS is a unique institution not only through its degrees, but also through the diversity of people that you meet here. "

    SOAS is a unique institution not only through its degrees, but also through the diversity of people that you meet here. My department is more like a family, the teachers are warm and caring, and they know how to maintain our curiosity for learning new things.

  • "The cultural diversity is something rare in the UK and what makes the university experience so much more than studying."

    It’s a melting pot of languages and cultures where your eyes open to new things you might have never heard about on a daily basis.

  • "Here you’re not only intrigued by the lectures but also by the people around you."

    The best thing about my time here is that there has been a huge improvement in my language skills and I have become more aware of people from various backgrounds. 

  • "Lots of students often bypass a chance to study in the UK because they assume it won’t be a culturally “exotic” experience... Think again!"

    Being a city girl, I thought life in London wouldn’t be too much of a culture shock but it actually was! London is very different from cities like New York or Tokyo. It really is one of a kind.

  • "London is amazing. It is a big city, there is always something going on, always something interesting to do."

    London is amazing. It is a big city, there is always something going on, always something interesting to do. Also, you can move around easily and fast. It is a frenetic life, but it is just part of the fun. If you want you can also relax in a park. I particularly love parks as there are not many in my city. You can enjoy art, nature and everything else in the same city. I really think it is amazing!

  • "London is really a city for young people and sometimes you get lost in the sea of possibilities that it offers... I enjoyed living in London, it was magical. "

    My advice would be: go for it! Especially if you are thinking about studying at SOAS because it is a great experience, not only for your CV but for yourself as well because [the] SOAS environment is really as great as the leaflets or the website tell you.

  • "Everyone has an amazing story to tell and SOAS creates an open and engaging environment in which to hear from everyone."

    I really enjoyed the intimate atmosphere of SOAS and the chance to learn just as much from my fellow students as from my lecturers. I also really enjoyed how open and helpful the lecturers were, and was grateful to learn that they honestly cared about my progress in their course. I always felt supported during my time at SOAS.

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