SOAS University of London

Welcome week programme

Welcome Week provides a range of events to help you get settled at SOAS, which we highly recommend you attend. The programme will be online in a few weeks but for now, here is a description of some of the activities you can participate in.


This is a compulsory part of Welcome Week and is the process of making you an official SOAS student. The below schedule shows when each overall department will have their enrolment, but please do note that you will be sent a more specific time slot at a later date - please ensure you come within the time slot that you will be allocated via email.




Monday 23 September

Morning Session

Afternoon Session

East Asian Languages & Cultures, International Studies & Diplomacy, Centre for Innovation Teaching & Learning

Languages, Cultures & Linguistics, Economics

Tuesday 24 September

Morning Session

Afternoon Session

Gender Studies, Finance & Management, Media Studies

Development Studies, History, Religions & Philosophies

Wednesday 25 September

Morning Session

Afternoon Session


Anthropology & Sociology

Thursday 26 September

Morning Session

Afternoon Session

School of Arts

Politics & International Relations

Friday 27 September

Morning Session

Afternoon Session

Open enrolment

Department welcome talks

These meetings are specific to your degree programme, and this is where you’ll get a chance to meet the department staff and other students doing the same degree as you, as well as getting your questions answered about the structure of your programme.

Date Time

Monday 23 September

09:30-10:00 Languages, Cultures & Linguistics

13:30-14:00 East Asian Languages & Cultures

15:30-17:30 Foundation Year

Tuesday 24 September

09:30-10:00 Economics

10:30-11:30 Postgraduate Development Studies

11:30-12:30 Undergraduate Development Studies

13:00-13:30 Finance & Management

15:00-17:00 Gender Studies 

15:00-17:00 International Studies & Diplomacy 

15:00-17:00 Media Studies

Wednesday 26 September

09:30-10:00 Anthropology & Sociology

10:00-11:00 History, Religions & Philosophies

13:00-15:00 Undergraduate Law

15:00-16:00 Undergraduate (senior status)

Thursday 27 September

09:00-10:30 Postgraduate Politics & International Relations

11:00-12:30 Undergraduate Politics & International Relations

14:00-14:30 School of Arts

15:00-17:00 International Studies & Diplomacy (dissertation talk)

Departmental receptions

Departmental receptions are informal, networking events that give you an opportunity to meet all academics and students studying similar subjects.

Language placement tests

Please note:

  • if you have no prior experience of a language you do not need to take a placement test.
  • there is no need to book a slot for a placement test, just turn up at the test location.  

You can study languages as a part of your degree in two ways mentioned below: 

1) As part of your core subject
2) As an open option 

Language placement tests take place during Welcome Week and are ONLY to be taken by those students who have some prior knowledge of the language. If you have no knowledge of the language, you do not need to take a test. 

Chinese Language placement tests -  Monday 23rd September


  •  BA Chinese Studies and BA Chinese single and combined degree 1st year students who have experience of learning Chinese/taking Chinese exams
  •  Open option students for Ch 300/400 language modules
  •  BA and MA degree open options: Chinese 1A, 1B, Chinese 2, Chinese 3, Chinese 4, Chinese 5, Chinese 6 and Ch 300/400 language modules)

Japanese language placement tests- Monday 23rd September
  •  BA Japanese
  •  MA Intensive

Japanese language placement tests- Tuesday 24th September
  • BA Japanese Studies / BSc International Management (Japan)(Year Abroad)
  • Open option students

Korean language placement tests- Tuesday 24th September

Written language placement test

  • BA Korean
  • BA Korean Studies 
  • MA Intensive Korean
  • Open option students

Speaking language placement test

  • BA Korean
  • BA Korean Studies 
  • MA Intensive Korean
  • Open option students

Stories on the steps

From Monday-Thursday on the Atrium steps, you will have the chance to listen to personal stories from the SOAS Director & Pro-Directors. Come along and learn more about the people behind the roles, their experiences and their mistakes!

International students and study abroad

All international students are invited to attend the International Students talks which will be detailed in the programme. Exchange Students and those on a Study Abroad programme have an Orientation and a drop-in session available for more information about the structure of your stay.

Students’ Union events

The Students’ Union organises the Freshers’ Fayre, where you will get a chance to explore the wide range of student societies and teams the Union holds and sign up for as many as you want. The Students’ Union also hosts several talks about their work, and the official SOAS Freshers’ Party.

Other events:

  • Library tours: Tours of the Library will be taking place at various times during the week. No need to book, just turn up. All tours start just inside the Library entrance on the ground floor of the School. For tour times and other training events see
  • Local area tours: Walking tours of the local area and Russell Square campuses will take place each day during the week. There is no need to book, just turn up and join our student ambassadors.
  • Language tasters: SOAS offers more than 40 languages from Asia, Africa and the Middle East, and you are able to try several of them during Welcome Week. Each taster session is 30 minutes, so be on time.

Questions? Lost? Find a Welcome Week volunteer on campus throughout the week, and they’ll be able to help you on your way! Alternatively, please visit the Student Hub on the lower ground floor of the Paul Webley Wing.