SOAS University of London

Faculty of Languages and Cultures

Personal Advisors - Languages and Cultures Faculty

In the Languages and Cultures faculty, a member of the academic staff is assigned as a first point of reference for individual students to advise them on any personal or general academic matter. The Personal Advisor can provide an initial source of advice for pastoral and welfare matters and alert the relevant student support facilities and teachers if a student is having problems affecting their academic work.  

Your Personal Advisor should contact you in the first week of Term 1.  If you have not been contacted by a Personal Advisor by teaching week two of term one, please contact them directly yourself.  The list of Personal Advisors is listed below.  Please meet your Personal Advisor at least once, even if you do not have any problem, just to make contact. It will make it easier later if you ever have a problem and need help or direction.

Please note that for Masters Students the Personal Advisor is the MA Programme Convenor.

What you can expect from your Personal Advisor

A Personal Advisor should:

  • take an active part in helping you as a new student to settle into the School
  • contact and meet you at regular intervals throughout the academic year, either as a group or individually
  • if you are a continuing student, remind you at the beginning of each year of their interest and availability for meetings/consultations
  • assist with any personal matters that may arise and act as first point of referral to Student Support Services available in the School
  • provide continuity of pastoral and general support and guidance
  • monitor your personal and professional development
  • contribute toward the compilation of a reference, if appropriate
  • inform the Faculty Student Support Office if they feel you are giving ‘cause for care and concern’ so that any problems may be addressed
Africa - All undergraduate programmes

Year 1:  Dr Alena Rettova (
Year 2, 3 and 4:  Dr Chege Githoria (

China and Inner Asia - All undergraduate programmes

Year 1:  Ms Lik Suen (
Year 2:  Mr How Wee Ng ( and Ms Lik Suen (
Year 3:  Ms Gao Wanli (
Year 4:  Dr Cui Yan (

English - Single subject programmes

All Years: Dr Kai Easton (

English - Two subject programmes

All Years: Dr Kai Easton (

Japan - All undergraduate programmes

Year 1: Dr Alan Cummings ( and Dr Griseldis Kirsch (
Year 2:  Dr Barbara Pizziconi ( and Dr Stephen Dodd (

Japan - BA Japanese and BA Japanese and XXX

Year 3:  Dr Akiko Furukawa (
Year 4: Professor Andrew Gerstle (

Japan - BA Japanese Studies/BA Japanese Studies and XXX

Year 3: Professor Andrew Gerstle (

Korea - All undergraduate programmes

Year 1: Mrs Kyung-Eun Lee ( and Ms You-kyung Ju (
Year 2: Professor Jaehoon Yeon ( and Dr Grace Koh (
Year 3: Dr Anders Karlsson (
Year 4: Dr Owen Miller (

Linguistics - All undergraduate programmes

Year 1:  Dr Yan Jiang
Year 2 and 3: Professor Peter Austin

Near and Middle East - BA Arabic/BA Arabic and Islamic Studies/BA Arabic and XXX

Year 1: Mr Mohamed Said (
Year 2: Mr Ahmed Alkhahesm (
Year 4: Dr Marlé Hammond (

Near and Middle East - BA Ancient Near Eastern Studies/BA Hebrew and Israeli Studies/BA Islamic Studies/BA Middle Eastern Studies/BA Persian/BA Turkish (single and two subject degrees)

Year 1: Dr Mark Weeden (
Year 2: Dr Yair Wallach (
Year 3 and 4: Dr Yorgos Dedes (

South East Asia - All undergraduate programmes

Year 1: Dr Rachel Harrison
Year 2: Dr Ben Murtagh
Year 3 and 4: Dr Mulaika Hijjas

South Asia - All undergraduate programmes

Year 1: Mr Naresh Sharma (
Year 2: Dr Amina Yaqin (
Year 3 and 4: Dr James Caron (

Please note , where two names are given for your year, you can contact either person.  If you have any queries regarding the Personal Advisor system, please contact your Faculty office.