Taught course

Social Anthropology

SOAS University of London · Department of Anthropology and Sociology

Entry requirements

We will consider all applications with a 2:2 (or international equivalent) or higher in a social science or humanities subject. In addition to degree classification we take into account other elements of the application such as supporting statement. References are optional, but can help build a stronger application if you fall below the 2:2 requirement or have non-traditional qualifications.

See international entry requirements

Months of entry


Course content

Are you interested in how different people around the world do things differently? Have you ever questioned the taken for granted assumptions about what is “normal” behaviour in your culture, your workplace, or in powerful institutions? Have you got an interest in culture, behaviour, cultural heritage, or social justice? If so, then anthropology is the subject for you.

Social anthropology is the study of people, cultures and societies around the world. It takes cultures on their own terms, and values the importance of culture to helping us understand the world we live in. Social Anthropology gives us the tools that we need to understand human cultural and social difference, and to really start to make sense of how people, groups and organisations think about the world.

Social anthropology at SOAS is an introduction to the discipline of anthropology and its history, its theories, and methods. You do not need to have studied anthropology before to get the most out of this programme. It is the perfect introduction to the anthropological way of seeing the world and global problems or would be the perfect way to convert into the discipline if you wish to pursue a research degree later.

If you have studied anthropology before, a postgraduate degree at SOAS will allow you to develop your specialisms and research interests even further, including the possibility of learning a new language and delving deeper into a topic through a self-designed research project on our Dissertation module

Why study MA Social Anthropology at SOAS?

  • SOAS is ranked 5th in the UK and 10th worldwide (QS World University Rankings 2022)
  • we are ranked 4th in the UK (2023 Times/Sunday Times League Table)
  • SOAS Anthropology is ranked 2nd among Anthropology departments in the UK (REF 2022)
  • draw on the exceptional regional expertise of our academics in languages, cultures and politics, many of whom have joined us with a practical working knowledge of their disciplines
  • join our thriving community of alumni and academics who have an impact on the outside world of academia
  • flexibly structure your programme using our optional modules and/or the optional modules from other departments, including the opportunity to learn a regional language
  • we are specialists in the delivery of languages; your command of a language at SOAS will set you apart from graduates of other universities
  • our focus on the culture, politics and cultural communication are areas of growing global concern and significance among private, public and international institutions; our emphasis on skills, communication and methodology gives graduates a clear advantage with employers in the job market

Information for international students

For details, including English language requirements, please see SOAS website

Fees and funding

For details of postgraduate fees, please see SOAS website

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • MA
    full time
    12 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
    part time
    24-36 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

Postgraduate Study
+44 (0)20 3510 6974