Taught course

Middle Eastern Literary and Cultural Studies Pathway - Modern Languages

University of St Andrews · School of Modern Languages

Entry requirements

A good 2.1 Honours undergraduate degree in a Modern Language or Comparative Literature in the relevant pathway subject. Secondary pathway subjects cannot be taken at beginner's level.

If you studied your first degree outside the UK, see the international entry requirements.

Months of entry


Course content

Deepen your knowledge of classical and modern Arabic and Persian literatures and cultures, including music, drama and film, as a prelude to professional work in the arts and culture of the area or as a sound basis for progression to PhD study.

The teaching is in English, but applicants must be fluent in either Arabic or Persian to be able to engage with a variety of cultural products taught in the programme. Students explore a broad range of subjects in Middle Eastern literary traditions (Arabic, Persian, and occasionally Kurdish) before focusing on a topic, medium or genre of their choice.

Within the Middle Eastern studies pathway, the optional modules allow you to acquire advanced knowledge of classical and modern Arabic and Persian literatures and cultures, including music and film. You may also undertake guided study on a specialised topic drawing on research expertise in the Department of Arabic and Persian.

The final part of the programme is a supervised research project in which you will explore a topic in depth. Research specialisms within the Department of Arabic and Persian include:

  • Classical (medieval) and modern Arabic literature
  • Arab history and culture
  • Islamic studies
  • Modern Persian language, literature, and drama
  • Persian song, cinema, and visual culture.


  • Study a single-subject pathway or combine two pathways to create a programme that reflects your academic interests and ambitions.
  • Small class sizes of no more than 20 students provide a close-knit postgraduate community and friendly academic environment.
  • Teaching is geared towards encouraging and directing independent research.
  • Students receive training in traditional and new research methodologies and have the opportunity to broaden their language portfolios.

Fees and funding

UK students
International students

The University of St Andrews is committed to attracting the very best students, regardless of financial circumstances. Find out more about the scholarships and postgraduate loans available.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • MLitt
    full time
    12 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

School of Modern Languages