BA Middle East Studies

UCAS codeT604
Duration3 Years
Typical offerAAB-BBB; IB: 34-30
DisciplineArab and Islamic Studies
Location Streatham (Exeter)

Overview

No previous knowledge of Arabic is required.

This degree programme will help you to achieve a high level of social scientific understanding of the Middle East. No language study is required, although you are free to study Persian or Arabic if you wish. In the case of Arabic, students with no prior knowledge may take elementary modules, and students with some knowledge of the language will be assessed to find their level. Compulsory and optional modules cover Middle Eastern ethnography, economy and economic development, gender and identity, politics, culture and arts, and religion and society.

Programme structure

The modules we outline here provide examples of what you can expect to learn on this degree course based on recent academic teaching. The precise modules available to you in future years may vary depending on staff availability and research interests, new topics of study, timetabling and student demand.

The BA Middle East Studies degree programme is made up of compulsory (core) and optional modules, which are worth 15 or 30 credits each. Full-time undergraduate students need to complete modules worth a total of 120 credits each year.

Depending on your programme you can also take up to 30 credits each year in another subject, for instance a language or business module, to develop career-related skills or just widen your intellectual horizons.

Year 1

You will study the history, politics, society and economics of the Middle East, as well as the basic principles of Islam.

CodeModuleCredits
ARA1036Histories of the Middle East, 600-1800 C.E. 15
ARA1010Politics and Economy of the Contemporary Middle East 15
ARA1018Introduction to Islam 15
ARA1021Introduction to Persian History and Culture 15

Optional modules

CodeModuleCredits
ARA1013Elementary Persian 15
ARA1020Elementary Persian 215
ARA1030Introduction to Islamic Archaeology15
ARA1032Elementary Turkish II15
ARA1015Arabic for Beginners30
ARA1016Reading and Translation15
ARA1031Elementary Turkish I 15
ARA1034Elementary Indonesian 115
ARA1035Elementary Indonesian 215

Year 2

You will choose 120 credits of optional modules to continue your study of history, politics, society and economics of the Middle East, as well as the philosophy, theology, practices, traditions, poetry and law of Islam.

Optional modules

 
CodeModuleCredits
ARA2130Society and Empire in the Modern Middle East 1798-1914 15
ARA2131M.E.20C Colonialism Revolution and Beyond15
ARA2118Gender-Identity and Modernity in the Middle East15
ARA2135Conflict and Peacemaking Palestine/Israel15
ARA2150Muslims in Britain15
ARA2160Islamic Movements: From the Muslim Brothers to Al-Qa'ida15
ARA2162Political Economy of Development in the Middle East15
ARA2166Revolution, Reform or Status Quo15
ARA2132Islamic Law and Society15
ARA2143Classical Persian Poetry in Translation 15
ARA2145Sufism and Islamic Devotional Life15
ARA2141Intermediate Persian15
ARA2146Islamic Theological Traditions15
ARA2151Intermediate Persian II15
ARA2118Gender-Identity and Modernity in the Middle East15
ARA2121Themes in the Arabic Short Story15
ARA2131M.E.20C Colonialism Revolution and Beyond15
ARA2132Islamic Law and Society15
ARA2135Conflict and Peacemaking Palestine/Israel15
ARA2139Intermediate Arabic Language II 30
ARA2141Intermediate Persian15
ARA2144Reading Qur'anic Arabic 15
ARA2146Islamic Theological Traditions15
ARA2148Arabic for Beginners II 30
ARA2150Muslims in Britain15
ARA2151Intermediate Persian II15
ARA2152Persian Literature 15
ARA2160Islamic Movements: From the Muslim Brothers to Al-Qa'ida15
ARA2161The Historiography of the Arab-Israeli Conflict15
ARA2162Political Economy of Development in the Middle East15
ARA2164Intermediate Turkish I15
ARA2165Intermediate Turkish II 15
ARA2166Revolution, Reform or Status Quo15
ARA2222Career Planning Workshops (Level 2)0

Year 3

The centre-point of the final year is the dissertation. This provides you with the opportunity to explore an area of interest and to demonstrate what you have learned over the previous years of your degree.

Compulsory modules

CodeModuleCredits
ARA3106Dissertation 30

Optional modules

CodeModuleCredits
ARA2118Gender-Identity and Modernity in the Middle East15
ARA2130Society and Empire in the Modern Middle East 1798-1914 15
ARA2131M.E.20C Colonialism Revolution and Beyond15
ARA3129Nationalisms in the Middle East15
ARA3136The History and Political Development of Iraq15
ARA2135Conflict and Peacemaking Palestine/Israel15
ARA2150Muslims in Britain15
ARA2162Political Economy of Development in the Middle East15
ARA3136The History and Political Development of Iraq15
ARA3146Iranian History, 1500 - the Present15
ARA3149Ethno-Politics: Theoretical Considerations and Case Studies15
ARA3152Folklore and Identity in the Middle East15
ARA3154EU Democracy Promotion in the Middle East and North Africa15
ARA2132Islamic Law and Society15
ARA2143Classical Persian Poetry in Translation 15
ARA2145Sufism and Islamic Devotional Life15
ARA2146Islamic Theological Traditions15
ARA2141Intermediate Persian15
ARA2151Intermediate Persian II15
ARA3141Islam and Persianate Culture in South Asia15
ARA3158Armed Islamist Movements: Jihadism and Beyond15
ARA3159The Orientalist Debate15
ARA3161Islamic Art and Architecture15
ARA3162Britain in the Middle East, 1798-197715
ARA3163Politics and Reform in the Gulf15
ARA3103Advanced Arabic Language 30
ARA3107Politics of Semi-democratic and Authoritarian Countries30
ARA3129Nationalisms in the Middle East15
ARA3136The History and Political Development of Iraq15
ARA3138Foundational Islamic Texts: Qur'an and Hadith15
ARA3144Advanced Persian Language I15
ARA3145Advanced Persian Language II15
ARA3146Iranian History, 1500 - the Present15
ARA3149Ethno-Politics: Theoretical Considerations and Case Studies15
ARA3152Folklore and Identity in the Middle East15
ARA3158Armed Islamist Movements: Jihadism and Beyond15
ARA3159The Orientalist Debate15
ARA3160Intermediate Arabic Language I30
ARA3161Islamic Art and Architecture15
ARA3162Britain in the Middle East, 1798-197715
ARA3163Politics and Reform in the Gulf15
ARA3185EU and US Democracy Promotion in the Middle East and North Africa30
ARA3186The History and Political Development of Iraq30

Entry requirements 2017

Typical offer

AAB-BBB; IB: 34-30

International students

International students should check details of our English language requirements and may be interested in our Foundation programmes.

Further information

Please read the important information about our Typical offer.

For full and up-to-date information on applying to Exeter and entry requirements, including requirements for other types of qualification, please see the Applying section.

Learning and teaching

Our teaching methods make full use of seminars, study groups and web-based learning. Language modules take place in small interactive classes of about 15-20 students, using the language laboratory, satellite TV, the internet and computer-assisted language learning. Non-language modules are delivered through small group lectures, seminars and textual study, tutorials and discussion.

You'll get on average ten contact hours per week with tutors (teaching time) in language-based programmes. You are also expected to invest a lot of time in independent study outside of these contact hours; this involves individual study, contact with your study-group (for example, in preparation for seminars), and contact with your personal tutor. The exact amount of time spent working independently varies from module to module, but you should expect your total workload to average 40 hours per week during term time.

A flexible system of module choice allows you to tailor your programme to your particular interests as you progress. We'll teach you to work independently, to research, analyse and synthesise new and unfamiliar material and to communicate clearly using both the written and spoken word. In seminar presentations you'll acquire the skill of confidently delivering coherent and precise arguments to an audience, as well as learning how to receive comments and criticism and develop the ability to lead in a team/group situation.

We're actively engaged in introducing new methods of learning and teaching, including increasing use of interactive computer-based approaches to learning through our virtual learning environment, where the details of all modules are stored in an easily navigable website. You can access detailed information about modules and learning outcomes and interact through activities such as the discussion forums.

All students have a Personal Tutor who is available for advice and support throughout their studies.

Research-inspired teaching

Research-inspired teaching ensures lectures are up-to-date and relevant so that you will benefit from access to the latest thinking, equipment and resources. All staff teach third year options which are linked to their own interests, which include the study of history and social sciences in the Middle East and Muslim world, Islamic studies, and language and literature including studies in Persian and Kurdish.

Assessment

You will be assessed by exam and coursework, including essay writing and a dissertation (in the last year of study). An informal element of continuous assessment is also in place so you can gain on-going feedback on your progress. You must pass your first year assessment in order to progress to the second year, but the results do not count towards your degree classification. For three-year programmes, the assessments in the second and third years contribute to your final degree classification. For four-year programmes the assessments in the second, third and fourth years all contribute to your final degree classification.

Careers

Your brilliant career

Find out how we can help you build your brilliant career.

A degree in Middle East Studies gives you an appreciation and understanding of the culture, history and language of the Middle East. You will develop analytical and research skills as well as an awareness of different interpretations of issues and events, develop opinions and use effective communication skills to put forward your ideas and conclusions. You will also develop your time-management skills.

All these skills are valued by employers from many different fields and can open up career paths in a wide variety of areas from academic research and government work to more commercially-based careers in law and business.

Many students take part in the Exeter Award and the Exeter Leaders Award. These schemes encourage you to participate in employability related workshops, skills events, volunteering and employment which will contribute to your career decision-making skills and success in the employment market.

Exeter has an excellent reputation with graduate recruiters and our students and graduates compete very successfully in the employment market. Many employers target the University when recruiting new graduates.

Graduate destinations

Below are a few examples* of initial jobs undertaken by graduates of University of Exeter Arab and Islamic Studies undergraduate programmes. Please note that, due to data protection, the job titles and organisations are listed independently and do not necessarily correspond.

Job title Organisation
Acting Head of Middle East and Africa Team
Associate Professor
English Teacher
Graduate Management Trainee
Hydrocologist
Intern: Parliamentary Assistant for an MP
Officer Cadet
Research Associate
Royal Marine Officer
Teacher
Writer

Anglo-Continental School of English
Queen Elizabeth Hospital
Cognolink Limited
Exeter College
International School of Choueifat
MP Labour 'Labour Friends of Palestine'
HM Government
Royal United Services Institute
The University of King Abdulaziz

Further study

Further study is a popular choice for a number of students following graduation. Below are a few examples* of further study undertaken by recent graduates of undergraduate programmes. Please note that, due to data protection, the subjects of study and institutions are listed independently and do not necessarily correspond.

Subject area Institution
MA Kurdish Studies
MA Near and Middle Eastern Studies
MA Modern Middle Eastern Politics,
MA International Studies with Diplomacy
MPhil Middle Eastern Studies
Arabic and Islamic Studies
MA Translation
PhD Arabic Literature
PhD Semitic Studies
PhD Islamic Studies

University of Oxford
University of Exeter
SOAS University of London
University of Durham
University of Leeds
University of Edinburgh
Harvard University
University of Chicago
Cairo University

Find out more

Further information about the opportunities the University of Exeter offers to maximise our graduates’ employment prospects can be found on the CareerZone website.

* This information has been taken from the Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE) Survey



You will be encouraged to research and reflect on a range of work-related questions such as the nature of an organisation and your role within it,  employment practices including induction, health and safety procedures, self-appraisal and continuing professional development.

By practising specific skills for employment, including the writing of CVs, application forms and supporting statements, you will become better prepared for the world of work beyond university.

Contact us

Exeter

Email: ssis-admissions@exeter.ac.uk
Phone: +44 (0)1392 723192

Website: Visit the Arab and Islamic Studies website

How to apply Get a prospectus Visit subject website 2016 degrees

Studying at the Institute

Find out why studying at the Institute is an excellent choice.

View our Arab and Islamic Studies brochure

Download PDF