SOAS University of London

Department of Politics and International Studies

BA Politics (2022 entry)

Select year of entry: 2022 2021

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Overview and entry requirements

The BA in Politics seeks to give students an excellent grounding in the discipline of Politics with a particular focus on Asia, Africa and the Middle East. Students will be introduced to the core subjects of political theory, comparative politics, political economy, and international relations, which are then applied to the analysis of real world political situations. Through a mix of disciplinary and regional training, students will develop a critical understanding of contemporary geopolitics, transnational social movements, as well as political developments and governance structures in particular countries.

While anchored in the academic field of political science, the programme employs interdisciplinary perspectives on pressing issues of the modern world and offers a wide variety of thematic modules on the politics of culture, nationalism, race, gender, migration, institutions, environmental justice, conflict and war. This range of options helps students to gain a critical understanding of political dynamics in Asia, Africa and the Middle East, while acquiring practical analytical and communications skills.

See Department of Politics and International Studies

Why study BA Politics at SOAS

  • ranked 5th in the UK for Politics (QS World University Rankings 2022)
  • as well as 3rd globally for academic reputation (QS World University Rankings 2022)
  • understanding both mainstream and critical approaches to the study of politics
  • deep knowledge of Asia, Africa, and the Middle East with the option of studying a language
  • non-Western, global perspective on the key issues of domestic and international politics


Programme Code: L202 BA/POL

Start of programme: September

Mode of Attendance: Full-time

Entry requirements

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3 years

Fees 2022/23

Fees for 2022/23 entrants per academic year

UK fees:
Overseas fees:

Please note that fees go up each year. Further details see 'Fees and funding' (tab on this page) or the Registry's undergraduate tuition fees page.




The BA Politics is a three-year degree programme. In each year, students need to take modules to the total value of 120 credits following the below structure. Students have the opportunity to choose from a wide range of disciplinary and regional modules offered within the Politics Department, as well as modules offered in other Departments at SOAS as part of their 'open options'.

Year 1

Compulsory Modules

Students will take the following 3 compulsory modules (90 credits total):

Module Code Credits Term
Introduction to Political Theory 153400001 30 Full Year
Introduction to Comparative Politics 153400079 30 Full Year
Introduction to Political Analysis 153400086 30 Full Year
Optional Modules

Students will take ONE of the following modules OR modules to the value of 30 credits from the Language Open Options list.

Module Code Credits Term
Introduction to Global History 153400084 30 Full Year
Introduction to International Relations 153400085 30 Full Year
Introduction to Political Economy 153400154 30 Full Year

Year 2

Credits must be taken in the following combination;

  • Introduction to Research Methods (153400156) (15 credits) 
  • 30-45 credits from Year 2 Disciplinary options AND
  • 30-45 credits from Year 2 Regional options AND
  • Up to 30 credits to be taken from Second Year Options OR Languages Open Option lists

 Disciplinary Options
Module Code Credits Term
Politics of development 153400042 15 Term 2
Politics of Nationalism 153400057 15 Term 1
Concepts in Political Theory 153400147 15 Term 1
Performance and Politics 153400157 15 Term 2
Political Parties and Elections 153400158 15 Term 2
Regional Options
Module Code Credits Term
Government and politics of the Middle East 153400060 30 Full Year
The state and politics in Africa 153400064 15 Term 1
Government and politics of China 153400071 30 Full Year
Government and Politics of Southeast Asia 153400170 30 Full Year
Politics of South Asia Beyond India 158000214 15 Term 1
Democracy and Authoritarianism in India 158000215 15 Term 2
Second Year Options
Module Code Credits Term
Politics of the World Economy 153400083 15 Term 1
Postcolonial theory 153400160 15 Term 2
Religion and World Politics 153400162 15 Term 1
War and the International 153400167 15 Term 1
Black Atlantic 153402007 15 Term 2

Year 3

Credits must be taken in the following combination;

List A
Module Code Credits Term
Politics of Gender 153400074 15 Term 2
Politics of Culture 153400075 15 Term 2
Environment and Climate Crisis 153400150 15 Term 2
Conflict, Rights and Justice 153402006 15 Term 1
List B
Module Code Credits Term
The state and politics in Africa 153400064 15 Term 1
Palestine/Israel and the International 153400087 15 Term 2
Going Global: An Introduction to International Migration 153400088 15 Term 2
Critical Security Studies 153400148 15 Term 1
Elections, Gender and Social Movements in Taiwan 153400149 15 Term 1
Politics of the "Miracle" Economies 153400159 15 Term 1
Republicanism, empire and revolution 153400163 15 Term 1
Taiwan's International and Cross-Strait Relations 153400166 15 Term 2
Final Year Project in Politics and International Relations 153400169 30 Full Year
Foreign Policy Analysis 158000212 15 Term 2

Programme Specification

Important notice

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.

Teaching and Learning

Teaching & Learning

Most of our modules are taught through a combination of lectures and tutorials. Lectures (50 minutes) provide broad overviews of the topic.

Contact hours

They are accompanied by tutorials (50 minutes) that give students the opportunity to discuss readings and key issues in small groups. In the final year, modules may also take the form of two-hour seminars allowing for deeper engagement with more specialised topics. The programme provides methodological and skills training throughout and allows final year students to undertake an independent research project, such as a dissertation, supervised by an academic member of staff.

By the end of the programme students will have acquired a range of transferable skills. This includes the ability to collect and synthesise information, read and evaluate complex materials, assess the evidence for a range of different positions, construct arguments, exercise independence of judgement and communicate effectively both orally and in writing.

Learning resources

Students also benefit from the vibrant learning environment SOAS provides more broadly. The SOAS Library is one of the world's most important academic libraries for the study of Africa, Asia and the Middle East, attracting scholars from all over the world. Moreover, every year there is a lively events programme that attracts renowned speakers from around the world, allowing students to engage with cutting edge debates on contemporary politics.

Fees and funding



SOAS Politics and International Relations students leave SOAS not only with a knowledge and understanding of the complex political and cultural issues of our time, but also with a portfolio of widely transferable skills which employers seek in many professional and management careers.

Recent graduates from the Department of Politics and International Studies have been hired by:

  • BBC World Service
  • Bloomberg
  • British Red Cross
  • British Council
  • Center for International Peace Operations
  • Channel 4
  • Council for At-Risk Academics (CARA)
  • Department for International Development (DfID)
  • Eversheds LLP
  • Financial Times
  • Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO)
  • Global Policy Institute
  • Go East Consulting
  • Grassroot Diplomat
  • Palestine Red Crescent Association
  • Save the Children
  • UNICEF Ethiopia
  • United Nations

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A Student's Perspective

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Ingrida Kerusauskaite


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