SOAS University of London

African Studies, M.A.

  • Application Deadline
  • 36 months
    Duration
  • Tuition Fee
    18075 GBP/year
    Tuition fee
    8785 GBP/year
    Tuition fee
  • English
    Language
The MA in African Studies at SOAS University of London provides an unrivalled programme of advanced courses on Africa; one of the world’s most fascinating and challenging regions. The opportunity for interdisciplinary study of the continent is a particular advantage of the degree.

About

Students can choose from a range of about 30 courses in fourteen disciplines. Our former students have chosen to study Africa at this level for a wide range of reasons.

For some a deep interest in the history and culture or political economy of a particular region is sufficient motivation, but for many students the programme has, in addition, been followed with the intention of furthering their career opportunities. Some go on to work either in Africa or in fields related to Africa. The opportunity to combine study of particular African subjects with an African language is very useful, although some evidence of competence in learning a foreign language is usually required.

Employment

A postgraduate degree in African Studies from SOAS University of London provides students with competency in language skills and intercultural awareness and understanding.  Familiarity with the region will have been developed through a combination of the study of language, literature, history, cinema, politics, economics or law. 

Postgraduate students gain linguistic and cultural expertise enabling them to continue in the field of research or to seek professional and management careers in the business, public and charity sectors. They leave SOAS with a portfolio of widely transferable skills which employers seek, including written and oral communication skills; attention to detail; analytical and problem solving skills; and the ability to research, amass and order information from a variety of sources. 

Some MA African Studies graduates leave SOAS to pursue careers directly related to their study area, while others have made use of the intellectual training for involvement in analysing and solving many of the problems that contemporary societies now face. Among a variety of professions, career paths may include: Academia; Charity; Community; Government; NGOs; Media; Publishing and UN Agencies. 

Graduates have gone on to work for a range of organisations including:

  • BBC News
  • British Embassy
  • Canon Collins Educational Trust for Southern Africa
  • Goal Nigeria
  • Government of Canada
  • Hogan Lovells International LLP
  • International Institute for Environment and Development
  • Kenyan Government
  • Mercy Corps
  • Migrant Resource Centre
  • Mo Ibrahim Foundation
  • The London MENA Film Festival
  • The University of Tokyo
  • The World Bank
  • Think Africa Press
  • U.S. Embassy
  • United Nations
  • University of Namibia
  • World Vision UK
  • Zanabazar Museum of Fine Arts

Types of roles that graduates have gone on to do include: 

  • Development Producer
  • Africa Editor
  • Copywriter
  • Director of Trade and Investment
  • Projects and Fundraising Manager
  • Head of Desk, Africa
  • Senior Investment Manager
  • Sports Writer
  • Knowledge Management Projects Coordinator
  • Project Director
  • Presidential Advisor
  • Commodity Manager
  • Publisher
  • Tutor
  • Creative Consultant
  • Lecturer in African Arts and Cultures
  • East Africa Analyst
  • Youth Volunteer Advisor
  • Southern Region Educational Manager
  • Head Specialists Giving + Insights

Programme Structure

Courses include:
  • Culture and Society of West Africa 
  • Culture and Society of East Africa 
  • African and Asian Diasporas in the Modern World 
  • African and Asian Cultures in Britain 
  • Arts and Society in sub-Saharan Africa
  • Modern and Contemporary Arts in Africa 
  • Economic development in Africa 
  • Colonial Conquest and Social Change in Southern Africa 
  • Social and Cultural Transformations in Southern Africa Since 1945 
  • Warfare and the Military in African History 
  • Slavery in West Africa in the 19th and 20th Centuries 
  • Historical Perspectives on Gender in Africa 
  • Literatures in African languages 
  • Travelling Africa: Writing the Cape to Cairo 
  • Realism and Magical Realism in the Afrophone Novel 
  • African Philosophy 
  • Afrophone Philosophies 
  • Preaching, Prayer and Politics: Independent Christians in Southern Africa
  • African Missionaries 
  • Religions and Development 
For more information, please visit programme website.

Detailed Programme Facts

  • Programme intensity Part-time
    • Average part-time duration 36 months
    • Intensity Flexible
    • Part-time variant
      Flexible
    • Duration description

      One calendar year (full-time); Two or three years (part-time, daytime only)

  • Credits
    180 alternative credits
  • Languages
    • English
  • Delivery mode
    On Campus
  • More information Go to the programme website
Check if you match the admission requirements

English Language Requirements

You only need to take one of these language tests:

  • Minimum required score:

    6.5

    The IELTS – or the International English Language Test System – tests your English-language abilities (writing, listening, speaking, and reading) on a scale of 1.00–9.00. The minimum IELTS score requirement refers to which Overall Band Score you received, which is your combined average score. Read more about IELTS.

    Take IELTS test

    StudyPortals Tip: The UK government has confirmed new English-language testing requirements for visa and immigration purposes. Learn more

  • Minimum required score (Grade B):

    193

    The CAE test – or the Cambridge Advanced English – is an exam for applicants who wish to get a Certificate in Advanced English. To receive the Advanced certificate, test-takers must score between 142 and 210 on the Cambridge English: Advanced test. Read more about CAE.

    Note: degree programmes and applications may require a more specific minimum score for admission.

  • Minimum required score:

    620

    The TOEFL – or Test OF English as a Foreign Language – offers a paper-based test (PBT). The final, overall PBT score ranges between 310 and 677, and is based on an average taken from the three test components (listening, structure, and reading). The writing part of this test is scored separately on a scale of 0-6. Read more about TOEFL (PBT).

  • Minimum required score:

    100

    The TOEFL – or Test Of English as a Foreign Language – offers an internet-based test (iBT). The final, overall iBT score ranges between 0 and 120, and includes a scaled average from the four components (reading, listening, speaking, and writing). Read more about TOEFL (iBT).

Academic Requirements

You need the following GPA score:

Required score: Upper Second Class
Recommended score: First Class

Applicants for graduate programs must have the equivalent of a bachelor’s degree with a minimum GPA equivalent to Upper Second Class on the UK Honour scale. Admitted applicants typically have an undergraduate GPA of First Class or better on the UK Honour scale. No exam grade should be lower than 4.5 (European grade scale) or D (American grade scale).

Your GPA (Grade Point Average) is calculated using the grades that you received in each course, and is determined by the points assigned to each grade (e.g. for the US grading scale from A-F).

Admission Requirements:

Applicants should have a first or good second class honours bachelors degree from a UK university, or equivalent, in a subject appropriate to that of the programme to be followed. As an approximate comparison, an equivalent BA from a US university would have a Grade Point Average of either 3.3 or 3.5 depending on the awarding university. If an applicant does not have a bachelors degree in an appropriate field s/he may be required to complete a qualifying year or a one year diploma before entering the masters programme. 

Tuition Fee

  • International

    18075 GBP/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 18075 GBP per year and a duration of 36 months.
  • EU/EEA

    8785 GBP/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 8785 GBP per year and a duration of 36 months.

Part-time 2 Years:

  • UK/EU fees: £4,393
  • Overseas fees: £9,038

Part-time 3 Years:

  • UK/EU fees: £2,928
  • Overseas fees: £6,025

Living costs for London

684 - 830 GBP/month
Living Costs

The living costs include the total expenses per month, covering accommodation, public transportation, utilities (electricity, internet), books and groceries.

Funding

    Scholarships
    • Allan and Nesta Ferguson Scholarships
    • Felix Non- Indian Scholarship
    • Felix Scholarships
    • John Loiello AFSOAS FISH Scholarship
    • The Prospect Burma Scholarship
    For more information, please visit programme website.

          StudyPortals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.

          Request free information from SOAS University of London directly

          The fastest way to get answers from the university.