The MA Global Media and Communication is unique in that it offers a critical appraisal and critique of Western Media and Communication theories and approaches through focusing on the complex specificities of Asia, Africa and the Middle East and their diasporas. Drawing on the grounded expertise of staff, it offers a specialised study of the global media environment in relation to Asian, African and Middle Eastern societies and cultures, together with rigorous training in and questioning of contemporary media and communication theory.
We ask what concerns and hopes the people of the regions we study have; how should we address comparatively the global role of mass and digital media in contemporary politics and conflict, as well as processes of exclusion, inequalities, development, participation and empowerment. By considering how, where and by whom media is produced, consumed and used, students develop advanced knowledge and understanding of the theoretical, methodological and empirical issues involved in the analysis of non-western media and communications within historical and contemporary contexts. Students will address alternative ways to situate mediated articulations of agency and subjectivity in non-Western contexts through engaging with various texts challenging the hegemonic claims of mainstream Western media theory that insists the rest of the world subscribe to a narrow exclusive vision of the world.
The SOAS MA Global Media and Communication will appeal to students with a variety of backgrounds and objectives:
- those coming from a media or journalist background who wish to engage more deeply with global media and communication theory in relation to regional specialisation, especially, but not exclusively, the societies of Asia, Africa and the Middle East;
- those coming from Asian, African or Middle Eastern Studies who wish to incorporate the study of global media and communication into their own areas of expertise; and
- those having previously trained in other disciplines, such as Anthropology, politics, international relations, Religious Studies, History, etc.
- those wishing to pursue further study through doctoral research
Prospective students should contact the MA Convenor, Dr Dina Matar (firstname.lastname@example.org), at an early stage of their application in order to seek advice on the most appropriate options for study.
Please note that not all optional modules are available every year; more information can be found on the "Structure" tab and in the online module sign-up system.
Venue: Russell Square: College Buildings
Start of programme: September intake only
Mode of Attendance: Full-time or Part-time
- We will consider all applications with a high 2:2 (or international equivalent) or higher. In addition to degree classification we take into account other elements of the application including supporting statement and references.
- 1 Year Full Time, 2 or 3 Years Part Time
Introducing Global Media and Communications
Global communications and digital technologies are at the centre of intellectual and public debates around the role of media in society in the 21st century. Dr Dina Matar, Chair of the Centre for Global Media and Communication underlines the relevance of the MA Global Media and Communications at SOAS University of London.
What does the course involve?
With the expansion of digital technologies and other changes in global media institutions, forms and content, there is a need to recognise and critically address the concomitant transformations in social, cultural and political lives, particularly in the Global South. The MA Global Media and Communications at SOAS engages with critical debates around these transformations, the political economy of the media, the digitalisation of the global and the relevant debates around nations, identities, representation, voice, empowerment and disenfranchisement, as well as protest movements in the digital age. The degree offers a unique opportunity to consider these issues using critical theories and solid methodological approaches, while also opening options in international journalism, political communication, media and the Middle East, critical media, media and development, as well as other modules offered across the School of Interdisciplinary Studies and across SOAS.
What kind of students will the course appeal to?
Prospective students will typically be interested in pursuing careers as practitioners, managers, consultants, policy advisers and entrepreneurs in the creative and cultural industries. Others are more concerned with developing academic research in the expanding field of global media, political communication, media and development and critical journalism studies.
What is special about the programme at SOAS?
The course allows students to pick modules that fit their interests while at the same time providing students with the theoretical and methodological skills to address some of the most pertinent questions in modern times, the increasing mediation of lives. The regional focus offers students the chance to meet leading experts on politics, development, international relations, culture and traditions of Africa, the Middle East and Asia. Alongside critical analysis and regional expertise, students can choose from a number of practical hands-on modules, in sound recording, podcasting and broadcasting, that will enable them to enhance their skill-set.
What facilities are available?
SOAS offers strong interdisciplinary support for the study of media including the Centre for Media and Film Studies and the Department of Anthropology. We offer off-site visits to media institutions, invite media and other speakers to our popular research seminars, and offer practical digital training workshops at the end of term two each year. Further, the Library houses a major collection of books and journals on world media, as well as extensive audio-visual materials.
What do students do after graduating?
The course provides a focused, knowledge-based approach to transformations in global media and digital technologies in a global context as well as expert knowledge in media in Asia, Africa and the Middle East. It also provides students with the ability to read, write and assess critically in the fields of media and communication, film and the arts.
Students of Media Studies at SOAS have found employment in broadcasting and print, film and video production, international development, UN agencies such as UNDP and UNICEF, public relations, political marketing, human rights, as well as in education.
Toby Miller and Marwan Kraidy, Global Media Studies, London: Polity, 2016.
David Singh Grewal, Network Power: The Social Dynamics of Globalization, Yale University Press, 2008.
Daya Thussu (ed.) Internationalizing Media Studies, London: Routledge, 2009.
Philip Howard, The Digital Origins of Dictatorship and Democracy: Information Technology and Political Islam. Oxford University Press, 2010.
John Thompson. Media and Modernity, Polity, 1995
David Faris, Dissent and Revolution in the Digital Age, London: I.B. Tauris, 2014.
Students must take 180 credits comprised of 120 taught credits (including core, compulsory and option modules) and a 60 credit, 10,000 word dissertation. All students must take the core modules in addition to Qualitative Research Methods in Media and Communication.
Further options include a wide range of media and media-related courses from a comprehensive list offered by the Centre for Global Media and Communication and other constituent units in the School of Interdisciplinary Studies. All courses are assessed via written assignments.
All students will take the following core modules:
All students will take the following compulsory module:
All students will take modules to the value of 30 credits from List 3 below
Modules to the value of 45 credits from List 4
List of modules (subject to availability)
Cinemas of Asia and Africa
Please check with the module convenors about prerequisites.
Religions and Philosophies
History of Art and Archaeology
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.
A postgraduate degree in Media from SOAS gives students expertise in media, communications and film production within a global framework. It is a valuable experience that provides students with a body of work and a diverse range of skills that they can use to market themselves with when they graduate. Media and Film Studies students develop a portfolio of transferable skills which employers seek in many professional and creative capacities including communication skills, interpersonal skills, team work, flexibility and dedication. Department graduates have gone into a wide range of careers and to complete research degrees.
Graduates have gone on to work for a range of organisations including:
Breakthrough Breast Cancer
British Film Institute
Cordoba African Film Festival
Hackney Film Festival
|Institute of Ismaili Studies
International Channel Shanghai
Royal College of Art
The Princess Royal Trust for Carers
Types of roles that graduates have gone on to do include:
|Research & Communications Manager
International Program Coordinator
Director of Academic Studies
Public Information Officer
For more information about Graduate Destinations from this department, please visit the Careers Service website.
A Student's Perspective
The Centre for Media and Film Studies has been a turning point in my academic, professional, and epistemological life. I will never read, watch or receive information or media products as before.