Information for prospective students from the United States

Students from the USA

We have gathered information for American students interested in studying at SOAS University of London.

Meet the World at SOAS - talking to US students

Contact us

Phone:: +44 (0)20 7898 4700

Study Abroad: or call +44 (0) 20 7898 4125.
Summer School: Online Academic Summer School enquiry form

If you would like to contact Alberto Demo, our International Recruitment Manager for North America, please email him directly at

For information about future SOAS staff visits to the US, please see events in your country. There is an open invitation to visit SOAS if you are ever in London.

Study options

SOAS offers a wide range of study options to students, from 3-year undergraduate degrees to 3-week summer courses. Follow the links below to find out more about each of our entry points;

Minimum entry requirements

These are guidelines only and do not guarantee entry. Each application will be judged on its own merits.

Undergraduate study

For information on entry requirements for undergraduate programmes, please visit our undergraduate criteria.

Please contact Undergraduate Admissions ( for further information.

Our CollegeBoard code is 7348.

Our ACT code is 7797.

All applications for undergraduate programmes (including transfers) are made through the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS).

Postgraduate study

For information on entry requirements for postgraduate programmes, please visit our postgraduate criteria.

Applicants should also refer to the individual programme web pages, which may specify any additional requirements.

Although we do not require GRE scores as part of our assessment we will take scores into account on a case-by-case basis.

Research applicants would normally be expected to have completed a qualification equivalent to a UK Masters degree.



Applications are made through UCAS (Universities and Colleges Admissions Service). UCAS provides a guide for international students.

The UCAS application form is made of six sections;

  • Personal details
  • Choices – you can apply for up to five courses
  • Education – your current and pending qualifications
  • Employment – work (paid or unpaid) that you have undertaken
  • Personal Statement – see below for more information
  • Reference – a letter of recommendation from your teacher or counsellor.

Personal statement

The personal statement is a key component of your application. There are many differences between the UK and US systems of higher education; a significant one being that in the UK you must select a course when submitting an application.

As a result, the focus of your personal statement should be the subject you are applying to study. It is not advisable to use the same personal statement for applications to US and UK institutions.

The key topics to cover in your personal statement are;

  • Why you want to take the course
  • Your enthusiasm for the subject
  • Specific areas within the field that interest you
  • How you have furthered this interest through extra-curricular activities

There is a short guide to writing a personal statement on the UCAS website.

Understanding your offer

Once you have applied you will be able to view our response through ‘UCAS Track’. There are two types of offers made to students:

  • Conditional – for students who have not yet taken their final examinations. This offer is subject to your final marks meeting our entry requirements.
  • Unconditional – for students who have already met our entry requirements.

You then choose one of the following responses to an offer through UCAS:

  • Decline
  • Firm Acceptance (first choice)
  • Insurance Acceptance (back up)

Postgraduate Taught and Research

Applications are made through our online Postgraduate Application System. We recommend you submit an application and all supporting documentation by 30 June.

If you have not yet completed your current degree we will consider and assess the application based on your current transcript and grades received so far. Any offers made will be conditional on your final results meeting our entry requirement.

Study Abroad

Applications are made through our Study Abroad Application Form. The deadline for full-year and term 1 applications is 30 June. Term 2 & 3 applicants should submit by 30 October.

Summer School

Applications are made through our online SOAS Academic Summer School application form.

Distance Learning

Application forms are available through the links below;

Financial Aid

Eligible American students can apply for Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loans, Plus Loans and private loans to cover their tuition and maintenance costs. To find out more, please go to funding your studies..

Our School Federal Direct Loan Code is G06694.


SOAS offers scholarships, bursaries and awards to support students undertaking our degree programmes. A number of scholarships are also provided by the University of London, the British government and other organisations, like the British Council. To find out more about these schemes then please visit Scholarships and Bursaries.

The following external awards are specific to American students:

AFSOAS Scholarship

The John Loiello AFSOAS FISH Scholarship was set up by the American Friends of SOAS in order to give an American student the chance to study a Masters Program at SOAS.

Marshall Scholarships

Marshall Scholarships finance up to forty young Americans of high ability to study for a degree in the United Kingdom every year. You need to be at UK graduate level, but you can apply for any field of study.

Each scholarship is held for 2 years.

Fulbright Scholarships

The Fulbright Program aims to increase mutual understanding between the peoples of the United States and other countries, through the exchange of persons, knowledge, and skills. You can apply for this scholarship if you are a graduating senior, hold a B.S./B.A. degree, are a master's or doctoral degree candidate, or are a young professional or artist. Visit the Fulbright Program website for more information.

The Thouron Award

The Thouron Award is a graduate exchange program between British universities and the University of Pennsylvania. This scholarship programme aims to reinforce the "special relationship" between the U.S. and the U.K. Students receive full support (tuition and generous stipends) to pursue the graduate degrees of their choice.


If you would like to speak to an alum of SOAS who is currently in the US then there are a number who would be happy to answer your questions. Please visit SOAS Alumni.

The US is home to our largest group of alumni outside of the UK. In 2011 American Friends of SOAS (AFSOAS) was officially established, bringing together former students and friends who volunteer their expertise, time and effort toward a broad range of alumni and fundraising activities.

US graduates enjoy the professional, academic, career, and social benefits of a strong network of 3,000 friends and alumni.

Useful links

  • The British Council is the British Government's international organisation for educational and cultural relations. Their American website is designed for those seeking information and advice on education and contemporary arts in the UK.
  • Education UK is produced by the British Council to help international students interested in a UK course or qualification.
  • UKCISA - The UK Council for International Students Affairs provides information on many aspects of studying overseas, including visas and working while studying.
  • UK Visas and Immigration also has up to date information on immigration and visa requirements.
  • UCAS - The Universities and Colleges Admission Service is the body through which all applications for undergraduate study must be made.