Six of the academic departments are devoted to teaching and research in the languages, literatures and cultures of Africa, China and Inner Asia, Japan and Korea, the Near and Middle East, South Asia, and South East Asia, with the seventh teaching and conducting research in Linguistics. The Language Centre caters to the language learning needs of the general public and of any students who wish to study a language additional to their degree. It maintains a huge portfolio of courses, including year-long accredited Certificate/Diploma programmes and weekly evening and Saturday daytime classes in some 40 different African and Asian languages courses, as well as in French, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish. The Centre can provide intensive courses, tailored tuition, for example, in language for business, and one-to-one courses at times to suit the student. The Language Centre also runs Teacher Training programmes in Arabic and Chinese.
The research conducted and published by the academic staff of the Faculty focuses on a wide range of topics in the languages, literatures, and cultures (both classical and popular) of Asia and Africa.
Their teaching is in three main areas:
- language competence acquisition;
- textual and cultural studies - both comparative and language-specific, and covering not only 'literature' in a strict sense but also visual media, performance, folklore, translation etc.;
- language studies with linguistics at its core - including the prestigious Hans Rausing Endangered Languages Project.
The Faculty is also home to the Centre for Cultural, Literary and Postcolonial Studies (CCLPS).
While SOAS as a whole represents the most substantial concentration in the Western world of expertise dedicated to African, Middle Eastern and Asian studies, the Faculty of Languages and Cultures is heavily committed to teaching and research grounded in a knowledge of the principal languages and cultures of two thirds of humankind.
Key Faculty post holders are:
- Dean of Faculty: Professor Lutz Marten
- Associate Dean (Undergraduate) Dr Mustafa Shah
- Associate Dean (Masters) Dr Griseldis Kirsch
- Associate Dean (Research) Dr Tian Yuan Tan
- Senior Tutor: Dr Tamar Drukker
- Associate Head of the Department of Africa Dr Alena Rettova
- Head of the Department of China and Inner Asia and Head of Department of Japan and Korea Dr Barbara Pizziconi
- Associate Head of the Department of China and Inner Asia Dr Tian Yuan Tan
- Head of the Department of Linguistics and Head of Department of Africa Professor Irina Nikolaeva
- Head of the Department of Near and Middle East Professor Stefan Sperl
- Head of the Department of South Asia and Head of the Department of South East Asia Dr Ben Murtagh
- Head of SOAS Language Centre Ms Anne Campbell
The Faculty Office is located on the third floor of the Philips building at the School's Russell Square campus. This Office has replaced individual departmental offices and is the first point of contact for staff and students. (NB The first point of contact for students studying the MA / PG Diploma in International Studies and Diplomacy is the CISD office, room F303, 3rd floor, Faber Building.)
Opening hours for students and visitors are 10am-4pm, Monday to Friday (10am-12noon and 2pm-4pm during vacations).
Key contact points are as follows:
Current students should log into the online Student information Desk to submit an enquiry.
Prospective students, or new students without a 6-digit SOAS ID, should contact the Faculty using the details below.
- 020 7898 4044