Islam is the religion of almost a quarter of all human beings alive today.
The Islamic Studies degree at Edinburgh combines the study of the rich intellectual heritage of Islam, with the study of the religion and culture of Islam in the modern world.
The MA Honours Islamic Studies degree programme is designed to give students a thorough grounding in the history and traditions of Islam, as well as the ability to think critically and comparatively about Islam and other religious traditions.
The first and second year of the Islamic Studies MA Honours degree provide a basic grounding in Arabic, Turkish or Persian, as well as an introduction to the Islamic religion through the core course, 'Introduction to Islam'. Students can also choose to study additional courses on the history of Islam and the Middle East, or can choose optional subjects from across the University's curriculum for first and second year students.
In the fourth year Islamic Studies students take optional courses in small seminar groups on the religion, culture, literature history and politics of the Islamic world. Most of these courses are taught in the department of Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies, but students may also choose relevant options from Divinity, Politics, Social Anthropology, History of Art, History and Classics..
A final-year dissertation allows students to develop a deeper understanding of a specific aspect of the Islamic world or the Middle East of their choosing.
During the third year students have the possibility of going to Istanbul Bilgi University, on an Erasmus exchange programme for one or two semesters where they will take courses in history and politics, and may choose to study Turkish as a foreign language.
At present, Islamic Studies is available only as a single honours degree.