Undergraduate applicants - 2024 Entry

After your degree

Where might our programmes take you? Read more about career options and be inspired by our alumni.


Skills and experience

Completing a degree programme in Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies demonstrates that you're a good communicator, and someone open to other cultures and new ideas – what employers value as Intercultural Competence.

Beyond the language skills you will develop on our programmes, and the nuanced understanding you will gain of diverse cultures and societies, graduating with a four-year Master of Arts degree from the University of Edinburgh shows intellectual maturity, resilience, and flexibility.

The skills you will be able to demonstrate to employers when you graduate include the ability to understand, analyse and articulate complex concepts, and to manage your time to meet deadlines on different types of project, both independently and as part of a group.

Opportunities across sectors

Our programmes are an excellent primer for a range of careers.

Within the private, public, not-for-profit, and for-benefit sectors, previous graduates have gone on to work in:

  • business, finance and commerce
  • communications, marketing, advertising and public relations
  • education, outreach, advocacy and training
  • journalism, broadcasting and media
  • leisure, tourism and travel
  • politics, policy work, diplomacy, civil service and law
  • publishing, culture, heritage and the arts
  • research, development and venture acceleration
  • translating and interpreting

Home and away

With increasing migration in response to changing global dynamics, there is demand for our graduates both at home and abroad.

Wherever you are based in the world, the ability to communicate in Arabic, Persian or Turkish, and to understand the cultures to which they open doors, will make you stand out.


More than 350 million people are native speakers of Arabic. It is the sixth most widely spoken language in the world, the lingua franca of the 22 countries in the Arab League, and one of the six official languages of the United Nations.


Collectively, Persian, Dari and Tajik are the first language of more than 120 million people in the Middle East and Central Asia. This ranks Persian and its variants among the world’s 20 most widely spoken first languages.


Spanning the continents of Europe and Asia, Turkey occupies a strategic position on the world stage, both culturally and geographically. Turkish is spoken in eight countries and by over 85 million people as their first language.

Alumni stories

Studying Arabic and French was not just about learning a language, although that was a big part of it. My studies undoubtedly shaped my worldview, and made it clear to me that communication and collaboration would have to be at the heart of anything I do going forward.

The blended approach of learning a language together with culture, politics, history, and literature gave me a wide range of skills that I believe have enabled me to stand out in an ecosystem where humanities students are underrepresented.

Zara Zaman, Arabic and French MA (Hons), 2021Co-founder and Director of Edventure, the largest pan-European university venture builder and accelerator

Read our interview with Zara

Be inspired by other alumni in literatures, languages and cultures

Careers advice

Throughout your time with us, we will encourage you to identify and hone your employability skills.

As part of the School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures (LLC), we have a dedicated Careers Consultant within the University's excellent Careers Service.

You can book one-to-one appointments and practice interviews, access a range of online resources, and attend themed fairs such as the Creative and Cultural Careers Festival.

Popular peer support includes Life After LLC, a panel event where you can draw inspiration from our recent graduates.

Find out more about the Careers Service

Further study

The enhanced research skills you will develop on a four-year programme, particularly in your honours years, are a valuable asset if you wish to continue studying at postgraduate level.

At the University of Edinburgh, for example, we typically offer both a taught MSc and a Masters by Research programme in Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies.

Our interdisciplinary taught MSc programmes typically include:

  • The Globalised Muslim World
  • Comparative Literature
  • Intermediality

Find out more about postgraduate study in Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies