BA Development Studies (dual degree options)

General

Read more about this program on the school's website

Program Description

Mode of Attendance: Full-time


Have you got a passion for addressing the major issues and challenges facing today’s global community? The BA Development Studies programme draws upon the significant expertise of our academic staff. This exciting programme examines key topics in international development while analysing the roles and impact of a wide variety of regional and international actors. By the time you graduate, you will have cultivated a deep knowledge of the causes of - and responses to - poverty, marginalisation and vulnerability in developing countries and the process of dramatic social, economic and political change.

Additionally, the nature of the Combined Honours degree enables you to develop a specialist niche for yourself by studying a second subject.

The Combined Honours degree may be combined with:

  • Arabic+
  • Chinese+ 
  • East Asian Studies
  • Economics
  • History
  • International Relations
  • Japanese
  • Korean+
  • Languages & Cultures
  • Law
  • Linguistics
  • Middle Eastern Studies, (TL6X BA/MESDVS)
  • Music
  • Politics
  • Social Anthropology

+ 4-year degree with (compulsory) one year abroad
++ 3 or 4-year degree with the option of one year abroad

Why study Development Studies at SOAS?

  • We are specialists within the humanities including in key topics such as international development, gender development, violence and conflict, environmental sustainability, the role of aid and trade in promoting development, as well as refugees and forced migration.
  • Our staff have unrivalled practical knowledge across the discipline and regularly inform organisations such as the UN, NGOs and international governments.
  • As well as the curriculum knowledge you will also obtain a rich historical and cultural knowledge about the countries and regions in which you may work in.
  • You will be able to flexibly structure your programme using our Open Options modules to take advantage of the expertise of our other departments, including the opportunity to learn a 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.

Employment

The degree structure allows students to develop their understanding of the world, other peoples’ ways of life and how society is organised, with a specific focus on violence and conflict, the role of aid, refugees and forced migration.

Skills gained include:

  • The specialist knowledge of human rights, international development and politics
  • The ability to think laterally and employ critical reasoning
  • Analytical skills
  • Problem-solving skills
  • The ability to formulate sound arguments
  • Ability to interpret and explain complex information clearly
  • Communication and presentation skills

Choosing to study a combined degree programme will increase the breadth of your knowledge, and will develop additional skills.

Graduates go on to work in development planning and in government and non-governmental organisations (NGOs). Other career paths include journalism, civil service, banking and social and educational services. Others are interested in specialising further through postgraduate studies, not only in Development Studies but also in Economics, Politics, Social Anthropology, Law, Geography, History and Languages.

Graduates have gone on to work for a range of organisations including:

  • BBC World Service
  • Bloomberg
  • British Council
  • British Red Cross
  • Department for International Development (DfID)
  • Palestine Red Crescent Association
  • Save the Children
  • UNICEF Ethiopia

Types of roles that graduates have gone on to do include:

  • Coordinator of Education
  • Development Policy Officer
  • Freelance Broadcast Journalist
  • Human Rights Officer
  • Manager of Fundraising, Communications and Administration
  • Marketing Analyst
  • Project Support Officer
  • Resourcing Executive

Structure

Students take 120 credits per year composed of Core, Compulsory and Optional modules.

  • Core modules: A core module is required for the degree programme, so must always be taken and passed before you move on to the next year of your programme.
  • Compulsory modules: A compulsory module is required for the degree programme, so must always be taken, and if necessary can be passed by re-taking it alongside the next year of your programme.
  • Optional modules: These are designed to help students design their own intellectual journey while maintaining a strong grasp of the fundamentals.

Year 1

Core Modules

  • Introduction To Development Studies
  • Introduction to Political Economy of Development

Core Modules (Combined Honours degree)

  • Introduction To Development Studies
  • Introduction to Political Economy of Development

Students also take 60 credits from the second subject.

Compulsory Modules

  • Critical Reasoning in Contemporary Development Studies

Plus

Choose Language or Non-Language open option modules to the value of 30 credits.

Year 2

Core Modules

  • Development from Below

Core Modules (Combined Honours degree)

  • Development from Below

Plus

Choose additional compulsory module(s) from Year 2 Development Studies Options list below to the value of 30 credits.

Students also take 60 credits from the second subject.

Compulsory Modules

  • Key Thinkers and Theories in Development
  • Introduction to Development Practice

Plus

Choose additional compulsory module(s) from Year 2 Development Studies Options list below to the value of 30 credits.

Optional Modules

  • Choose a module(s) from Year 2 Development Studies Options list below to the value of 30 credits.

or

  • Choose a module(s) from Year 2 Economics, Politics Options list below or any Level 5 to the value of 30 credits.

or

  • Choose Language or Non-Language open option modules to the value of 30 credits.

Year 3

Route 1

  • Choose modules from Year 3 Development Studies, Economics or Politics Options list below to the value of 120 credits.

Route 2

  • Choose modules from Year 3 Development Studies, Economics or Politics Options list below to the value of 90 credits.
  • Choose Language or Non-Language open option modules to the value of 30 credits.

Year 3 (Combined Honours degree)

Guided Option

  • Choose module(s) from Year 3 Development Studies/Economics or Politics options list below to the value of 30 credits.

Students must also either:

  • Choose module(s) from Year 3 Development Studies/Economics or Politics options list below to the value of 30 credits.

or

  • Choose Language or Non-Language Open Option Modules to the value of 30 credits.

Second Subject

Students then also take 60 credits from their second subject

**Please note that final year students may not take any introductory level modules, including languages.

List of Modules BA Development Studies (subject to availability)

  • Year 2 Development Studies Options
    • Development Communication
    • Development and conflict
    • Introduction to global forced migration studies
    • Governance and development
    • Non-governmental organisations, development and change
    • Political economy of finance, debt and development
  • Year 2 Economics Options
    • Banking and Finance
    • International Economics
  • Year 2 Politics Options
    • Comparative political sociology of Asia and Africa
    • Government and politics of China
    • Government and politics of South Asia
    • Government and politics of the Middle East
    • Political theory
    • Politics of development
    • The state and politics in Africa
  • Year 3 Development Studies Options
    • BA Professional Placement
    • Development Communication
    • Development and conflict
    • Independent study project in Development Studies
    • Introduction to global forced migration studies
    • Natural resources, development and change: putting critical analysis into practice
    • Neoliberalism, Democracy and Development
    • Non-governmental organisations, development and change
    • Governance and development
    • Issues in Borders and Development
    • Issues in gender and development
    • Issues in global commodity chains, production networks and informal work
    • Issues in Cities and Development
    • Issues of the working poor and development
    • Principles of Marxist Political Economy
    • Security (BA)
  • Year 3 Economics Options
  • Year 3 Politics Options
    • Comparative political sociology of Asia and Africa
    • Government and politics of China
    • Government and politics of South Asia
    • Government and politics of the Middle East
    • Political theory
    • Politics of development
    • The state and politics in Africa

List of Modules BA Development Studies Combined Honours degree (subject to availability)

  • Year 2 Development Studies Options
    • Development and conflict
    • Development Communication
    • Introduction to Development Practice
    • Governance and development
    • Introduction to global forced migration studies
    • Non-governmental organisations, development and change
    • Political economy of finance, debt and development
    • Key Thinkers and Theories in Development
  • Year 2 Economics Options
    • Banking and Finance
    • International Economics
  • Year 2 Politics Options
    • Comparative political sociology of Asia and Africa
    • Government and politics of South Asia
    • Government and politics of China
    • Government and politics of South Asia
    • Government and politics of the Middle East
    • Political theory
    • Politics of development
    • Southeast Asian government and politics
    • Taiwan's Politics and International Relations
    • The state and politics in Africa
    • Level 5 Language Module
      • Choose a level 5 language module
  • Year 3 Development Studies Options
    • Development and conflict
    • Development Communication
    • Governance and development
    • Independent study project in Development Studies
    • Issues in Cities and Development
    • Introduction to Development Practice
    • Introduction to global forced migration studies
    • Issues in Borders and Development
    • Issues in gender and development
    • Issues in global commodity chains, production networks and informal work
    • Issues of the working poor and development
    • Natural resources, development and change: putting critical analysis into practice
    • Neoliberalism, Democracy and Development
    • Non-governmental organisations, development and change
    • Political economy of finance, debt and development
    • Principles of Marxist Political Economy
    • Security (BA)
  • Year 3 Economics Options
  • Year 3 Politics Options
    • Comparative political sociology of Asia and Africa
    • Government and politics of South Asia
    • Government and politics of the Middle East
    • Southeast Asian government and politics
    • Political theory
    • Politics of development
    • The state and politics in Africa

Important notice

The information on the programme page reflects the intended programme structure against the given academic session.

Admissions and Applications

To apply for an undergraduate degree at SOAS (including students wishing to transfer from another university) you must apply through the UK's central universities application organization, UCAS. An application form and details of courses can be found on their website. UCAS charges an applicant's fee for handling the application.

You can apply to up to five choices of higher education institutions or course on the UCAS form. How you utilise the choice is up to you. In other words, you could apply to do the same subject, for example, economics, at five different universities, or five different courses at the same university, or any combination of subject and institution. Nor do you have to use up all five choices. Whatever you choose you should list your choices in the order they appear in the UCAS handbook.

Entry Requirements

Applicants are not required to have studies Religions at A-level, although a deep interest in the subject is essential.

  • A-Levels: AAA-AAB
    IB: 37 (6/6/6)

Alternative entry requirements

  • BTEC: DDD
  • Access to HE: Minimum of 30 Level 3 Credits at Distinction
  • Scottish Highers: AAAAA
  • Scottish Advanced Highers: AAA
  • Irish LC: 360 points from 5 Higher level subjects at grade C1 or above
  • Advanced Placement: 4 5 5 (Two semesters - UCAS Group A) plus US HSGD with GPA 3.0
  • Euro Bacc: 85%
  • French Bacc: 15/20
  • German Abitur: 1.5
  • Italy DES: 85/100
  • Austria Mat: 1.5
  • Polish Mat: Overall 80% including 3 extended level subjects

English Language Entry Requirements

You must be able to show that your English is of a high enough standard to successfully engage with and complete your course at SOAS. Please note that we take our English language requirements seriously and failure to meet them exactly may well result in your application to SOAS being rejected. It is not possible to negotiate if your scores are below our required levels, with the expectation that because they are 'close enough' they will be accepted. It is important that you plan appropriately, well in advance, so that your English language test comes in good time and so that you have time to retake the test if necessary. We do not accept reasons of inconvenience or financial hardship for not submitting or retaking an English test.

International students

For EU and International students who need a visa, if unconditional entry scores are achieved we accept qualifications from several countries, as well as a range of international qualifications and tests.

If a Tier 4 entry visa is required then a SELT, such as UKVI IELTS may be needed. For this reason, we recommend all Tier 4 visa students to choose the UKVI IELTS Academic test as the test of first resort.

Last updated Jul 2020

About the School

SOAS University of London welcomes the brightest minds to study on its central London campus with like-minded individuals who feel passionately about contemporary world issues.

SOAS University of London welcomes the brightest minds to study on its central London campus with like-minded individuals who feel passionately about contemporary world issues. Read less
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