Postgraduate study

Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies MSc

Awards: MSc

Study modes: Full-time, Part-time

Funding opportunities

On this taught programme, you will gain an advanced, interdisciplinary understanding of the history, modern politics and culture of the Islamic Middle East, and explore the paradigms behind the various disciplines within this field.

Why Edinburgh

Recognised in the UK and internationally as a leading institution for research and undergraduate and postgraduate study, our department is well resourced.

We are home to the Alwaleed Centre, part of an international network of centres devoted to the promotion of better mutual understanding between the World of Islam and the West.

We boast an impressive library of current and archival material.

The programme will combine:

  • seminar work
  • oral presentations
  • essays

Over two semesters, you will complete:

  • one compulsory course
  • two research courses
  • three option courses

This will be followed by an independently researched dissertation.

Your option courses can be chosen from within Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies (IMES) or from other disciplines such as history, divinity, politics or international relations.

You may also take additional language courses in introductory:

  • Persian
  • Turkish
  • Arabic

Courses

Compulsory courses:

  • Critical Readings in Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies
  • Research Skills and Methods in IMES
  • Research Methods and Problems in IMES

Option courses may include:

  • Ideology and Political Practice in the Modern Middle East
  • Gender and Media in the Arab World
  • Cinema and Society in the Middle East
  • Muslims in Britain: Migration, Faith and Identity
  • Of Wine, Love and Loss: Reading Iran through Classical Persian Literature
  • The Qur'an - Islam's Holy Book
  • The Syrian War and the Strategic Meltdown of the Middle East
  • Modern Persian Literature and 'Modern' Iran
  • The Arab-Israeli Conflict: Nations in Collision

The aim of this programme is to provide you with the knowledge and skills you need to advance to doctoral study, and perhaps an academic career.

You may also choose to apply your skills to a role that involves the Islamic community, or use your transferable communication, research and other skills in an unrelated area.

A UK 2:1 honours degree, or its international equivalent, in a relevant discipline.

International qualifications

Check whether your international qualifications meet our general entry requirements:

English language requirements

You must demonstrate a level of English language competency at a level that will enable you to succeed in your studies, regardless of your nationality or country of residence.

English language tests

For 2021 entry we will accept the following English language qualifications at the grades specified:

  • IELTS: total 7.0 (at least 6.5 in each module)
  • TOEFL-iBT (including Special Home Edition): total 100 (at least 23 in each module). We do not accept TOEFL MyBest Score to meet our English language requirements.
  • CAE and CPE: total 185 (at least 176 in each module)
  • Trinity ISE: ISE III with a pass in all four components

Your English language qualification must be no more than three and a half years old from the start date of the programme you are applying to study, unless you are using IELTS, TOEFL or Trinity ISE, in which case it must be no more than two years old.

Degrees taught and assessed in English

We also accept an undergraduate or postgraduate degree that has been taught and assessed in English in a majority English speaking country, as defined by UK Visas and Immigration:

We also accept a degree that has been taught and assessed in English from a university on our list of approved universities in non-majority English speaking countries.

If you are not a national of a majority English speaking country, then your degree must be no more than three and a half years old at the beginning of your programme of study.

Find out more about our language requirements:

AwardTitleDurationStudy mode
MSc1 YearFull-timeTuition fees
MSc2 YearsPart-timeTuition fees

Featured funding

UK government postgraduate loans

If you live in the UK, you may be able to apply for a postgraduate loan from one of the UK’s governments.

The type and amount of financial support you are eligible for will depend on:

  • your programme
  • the duration of your studies
  • your tuition fee status

Programmes studied on a part-time intermittent basis are not eligible.

Other funding opportunities

Search for scholarships and funding opportunities:

  • School of Literatures, Languages & Cultures
  • 50 George Square
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9LH
Programme start date Application deadline
13 September 2021 31 July 2021

We encourage you to apply at least one month prior to entry so that we have enough time to process your application. If you are also applying for funding or will require a visa then we strongly recommend you apply as early as possible.

You must submit one reference with your application.

The online application process involves the completion of a web form and the submission of supporting documents.

Find out more about the general application process for postgraduate programmes:

Further information

  • School of Literatures, Languages & Cultures
  • 50 George Square
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9LH