SOAS University of London

Why Study Here?

  • The School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) is the only Higher Education institution in the Europe specialising in the study of Asia, Africa and the Near and Middle East.
  • On the one hand, this means that SOAS remains a guardian of specialised knowledge in languages and periods and regions not available anywhere else in Europe.
  • On the other hand, it means that SOAS scholars grapple with pressing issues – democracy, development, human rights, identity, legal systems, poverty, religion, social change – confronting two-thirds of humankind.
  • This makes SOAS synonymous with intellectual enquiry and achievement. It is a global academic base and a crucial resource for London. We live in a world of shrinking borders and of economic and technological simultaneity. Yet it is also a world in which difference and regionalism present themselves acutely. It is a world that SOAS is distinctively positioned to analyse, understand and explain.

What Do International Students Study?

English Language Requirements

To ensure that SOAS students have a sufficient standard of academic English to study effectively, all non-native English speaking applicants are required to submit evidence of their current level of academic English. Current requirements are:

  • IELTS: overall 7, with at least 6.5 in all sub scores.
  • TOEFL iBT: 105.
  • Further details are available on request from the International Foundation Courses and English Language Studies (IFCELS) department. 

Fees and Funding

The following are the typical annual course fees for overseas students submitted to us by the university (Reddin Survey of University Tuition Fees 2016–2017):

Type of Course Undergraduate Taught Postgraduate
Classroom £16,250 £17,895
Mixed - -
Laboratory - -
Clinical - -

Bursaries and Scholarships

  • Although SOAS offers a wide-range of scholarships, bursaries and awards to support students undertaking our undergraduate degree programmes, they are only for UK or EU students.
  • At postgraduate level, SOAS offers a range of scholarships to support Masters level study.

Pre-Arrival and Welcome

  • SOAS organises a Welcome Week programme to help new students settle in. It takes place in the week before classes start and provides a valuable introduction to academic and social life in London, and involves academic staff, student services and the Students’ Union.
  • There are special sessions for international students but most activities are for all students. This ensures that all students feel part of the wider school community.
  • The aim of all of the activities is to introduce students to SOAS staff and fellow students, and to offer our new students an overview of what they can expect from the school.
  • In addition, special talks for disabled and mature students are offered. 
  • A team of Student Ambassadors are on hand to offer advice and guidance. Further details are posted on the website close to the start of the academic year.

Accommodation for International Students

  • SOAS students have exclusive access to two residences – Dinwiddy House and Paul Robeson House, located on Pentonville Road adjacent to the Vernon Square campus and a 20-minute walk from Russell Square.
  • SOAS students are also entitled to apply for a place in one of the seven intercollegiate residences owned and maintained by the University of London (approximately 190 places are allocated to SOAS students). This offers a valuable opportunity to mix with students from other colleges of the university.
  • All new undergraduates from outside London are advised to apply for a place in a student residence. We have around 1,000 bed spaces available each year and while we try to offer accommodation to as many new students as possible, unfortunately we are unable to guarantee campus housing for all new students. In practice all international students who apply by the deadline do manage to get accommodation.
  • Dinwiddy House and Paul Robeson House are self-catering with shared kitchen facilities. The Intercollegiate Halls of residences all provide catering, offering breakfast and evening meals on weekdays and meals at weekends. All accommodation has internet access.
  • International students are spread evenly throughout the accommodation, rather than clustered together.
  • Students are usually only required to move out during the summer term, at the end of the academic year.
  • Current weekly cost at Dinwiddy and Paul Robeson is £147.28 per week (2014–15).

Organisations for International Students

  • As nearly 50% of our students are from outside the UK, all our student activities are fully integrated.
  • There are currently over 160 different societies and clubs catering for all tastes. A full list can be found on our website.