BA International Management and South East Asian Studies (3 years)


Read more about this program on the institution's website

Program Description

Mode of Attendance: Full-time

Interested in a career in business or banking with a specific focus in South East Asia? Then BA International Management and South-East Asian Studies could be the perfect fit for you. In this programme, you will gain a strong grounding in management science including modules in accounting, finance, managerial economics, marketing, corporate governance, research methods and international business strategy. While we also offer specialist modules that draw on SOAS's expert knowledge of the historical and cultural context of the region, as well as optional language modules.

After the first year, students can choose whether to pursue language learning further or to focus exclusively on non-language modules related to South East Asia. Introductory language modules taught in Year 1 assume no previous knowledge of the chosen language. These modules focus on all four linguistic skills – understanding, speaking, reading and writing.

Students who find they wish to concentrate more fully on South-East Asian languages are encouraged to apply for or transfer to one of the four-year programmes in South East Asian language, which include a year abroad of intensive language-learning in the third year.


  • SOAS is unique as the only higher education institution in the UK specialising in the study of Asia.
  • As the economies of South-East Asia continue to expand, knowledge of the language and culture will be a big asset in the world of commerce and international trade.
  • We expertly apply theoretical concepts to real issues facing businesses and other organisations that operate in South East Asia.
  • We are specialists in the delivery of language courses. Given the importance of at least some language competence when doing business in the region, all students will have the opportunity to study Burmese, Indonesian, Thai or Vietnamese.
  • 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 new language.


Studying BA International Management and South-East Asian Studies will provide students with a firm grasp of international management disciplines.

Skills gained include:

  • A coherent and solid knowledge of management and finance, with direct reference to Asia.
  • Broad knowledge and understanding of South-East Asian culture.
  • Competence in speaking, reading and writing a South-East Asian language to a level which will be of practical use.
  • The ability to think laterally and employ critical reasoning.
  • Analytical skills.
  • Communication and presentation skills.

Graduates from the Department have pursued successful careers in business, banking, consulting, media and other industries, especially in companies or organisations that operate in or do business with Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, Malaysia, Indonesia or Burma.

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

  • Deloitte
  • Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ
  • KPMG
  • Euro Monitor International
  • Santander
  • Investec
  • HM Treasury
  • Western Securities Co. Ltd
  • Nomura
  • UBS

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

  • Trainee Chartered Accountant
  • Business Relationship Manager
  • Financial Analyst
  • Market Research Executive
  • Management Consultant
  • Vice-President
  • Foreign Exchange Trading Business Manager
  • Deputy Chief Executive Officer
  • Events Manager


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

  • Core modules: These are mandatory and must be passed in the year they are taken before the student can progress to the next year.
  • Compulsory modules: These are mandatory but in the case of a failure, students may carry this into their next year provided that they retake and pass the failed element or exam.
  • 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 South and South East Asia
  • South-East Asia on Film

Please choose one of the following modules:

  • Management in China: Domestic and international developments
  • Management in Japan and Korea: Domestic and International Developments
  • Principles of Management

Compulsory Modules

Please choose modules to the value of 30 credits from the following:

  • Introduction to accounting
  • Principles and management of marketing
  • Understanding company accounts and reports
  • Quantitative and analytical techniques for managers


30 credits of a South-East Asian language at a suitable level (Burmese, Indonesian, Vietnamese, Thai). This should typically be level 1 of the language chosen.

Year 2

Core Modules

  • Cultural Studies of Mainland South-East Asia
  • Cultural Studies of Island South-East Asia

Compulsory Modules

Choose modules to the value of 60 credits from the list below:

  • Corporate finance and financial accounting
  • Managerial accounting
  • International business strategy
  • Managerial economics
  • Qualitative and case study research
  • International marketing 1: the environment
  • Business Ethics and Corporate Social Responsibility


A continuation of year 1 SEA language or modules to the value of 30 credits from List A or C.

Year 3

  • Independent study project in international management

Compulsory Modules

Please choose modules to the value of 30 credits from the following:

  • Financial strategy
  • Finance in China
  • Finance in Japan and Korea
  • Contemporary issues in the Chinese economy
  • Contemporary Issues in the Japanese and Korean Economies
  • International marketing 2: global markets
  • International human resource management
  • Corporate governance

Plus a continuation of year 2 SEA language or modules to the value of 30 credits from List A.

Plus 30 credits from List A, C or an open option.

List A: South East Asian Language Modules

  • Burmese Language 1 A
  • Burmese Language 1 B
  • Indonesian Language 1 A
  • Indonesian Language 1 B
  • Khmer (Cambodian) Language 1 A
  • Khmer (Cambodian) Language 1 B
  • Thai Language 1 A
  • Thai Language 1 B
  • Vietnamese Language 1 A
  • Vietnamese Language 1 B
  • Burmese Language 2
  • Indonesian Language 2
  • Thai Language 2
  • Vietnamese Language 2
  • Burmese Language and Texts
  • Indonesian Language 3
  • Thai Language 3
  • Vietnamese Language and Texts
  • Thai Language 4
  • Indonesian Language 4
  • Vietnamese Literature

List B: South East Asian Non-Language Modules

  • Thailand on Screen (post '97)
  • Indonesia on Screen
  • Vietnam on Screen
  • Queer Cinema in Asia
  • English Literatures of South East Asia
  • Under Western Eyes: European Writings on South-East Asia
  • War, Revolution and Independence in South East Asian Literatures in Translation
  • The City and the Countryside in South East Asian Literatures
  • Jawi and the Manuscript Tradition
  • Independent Study Project in South East Asian Studies

List C: South East Asian Related Modules

  • Arts of the Buddha in Southeast Asia
  • Southeast Asian government and politics
  • Music and Religion in South East Asia
  • H353 The Creation of Modern Burma 1852-C.1941 (I)
  • H398 - The Vietnam War and Asia I
  • Intercultural communication and interaction
  • Introduction to Translation Theory
  • Language, Society and Communication

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 without A-level Maths (or equivalent) must have a minimum of Grade B (grade 6 in the new structure) in GCSE Maths.

  • A-Levels: AAB - ABB
    IB: 35 (665 at HL)

Alternative entry requirements

  • Access to HE: Minimum of 30 Level 3 Credits at Distinction
  • Scottish Highers: AAABB
  • Scottish Advanced Highers: AAB
  • Irish LC: 340 points from 5 Higher level subjects at grade C1 or above
  • Advanced Placement: 4 4 5 (Two semesters - UCAS Group A) plus US HSGD with GPA 3.0
  • Euro Bacc: 80%
  • French Bacc: 14/20
  • German Abitur: 2.0
  • Italy DES: 80/100
  • Austria Mat: 2.0
  • Polish Mat: Overall 75% 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 Oct 2019

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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