MA Global Media and Postnational Communication


Read more about this program on the school's website

Program Description

Mode of Attendance: Full-time or part-time

This programme focuses on the dynamic developments in media and communications within Asia, Africa and the Middle East. It examines the growing significance of these regions as the locations of new media players and new cultural genres, of complex audience involvements with mediated communication and as the sites of critical and creative responses to globalization processes. It challenges Eurocentric approaches to the study of media and provides a unique opportunity to study the media and communications environments of the non-Western world.

Students consider the dynamics of globalization and its critiques, the roles and nature of communications technologies and mediated content within these processes, and consequent changes in the nature of political, economic, financial, social and cultural activity. They develop advanced knowledge and understanding of the theoretical, methodological and empirical issues involved in the analysis of non-western media and communications within historical and contemporary contexts, and explore media dynamics in global civil society. A particular focus is the role that media have played in both defining and challenging processes of nation-building and providing spaces for the articulation of other forms of identity-formation, including those among minority ethnic, diasporic, exilic and refugee populations.

The programme suits anyone with an interest in non-Western media and communications; journalists who wish to take time out to analyse critically their profession; NGO and development practitioners who wish to better understand the role of media in political and social change; and students who wish to continue on to MPhil/PhD research in Media and Communications.

Please note that not all optional modules are available every year.


A postgraduate degree in Media from SOAS gives students expertise in media, communications and film production within a global framework. It is a valuable experience that provides students with a body of work and a diverse range of skills that they can use to market themselves with when they graduate. Media and Film Studies students develop a portfolio of transferable skills which employers seek in many professional and creative capacities including communication skills, interpersonal skills, teamwork, flexibility and dedication. Department graduates have gone into a wide range of careers and to complete research degrees.

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

  • Associated Press
  • Breakthrough Breast Cancer
  • British Film Institute
  • Comic Relief
  • Cordoba African Film Festival
  • Discovery Communications
  • European Commission
  • Hackney Film Festival
  • Institute of Ismaili Studies
  • International Channel Shanghai
  • Merlin
  • Pfizer Pharmaceuticals
  • Royal College of Art
  • The Princess Royal Trust for Carers
  • United Nations
  • Zanan TV

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

  • Research & Communications Manager
  • Senior Publicist
  • Teacher
  • Events Manager
  • Advisor
  • Designer
  • Journalist
  • International Program Coordinator
  • Creative Assistant
  • Consultant
  • Communications Officer
  • Policy Advisor
  • e-Learning Co-ordinator
  • Director of Academic Studies
  • Staff Writer
  • Online Editor
  • Public Information Officer
  • Video Journalist
  • Product Manager


Students must take 180 credits comprised of 120 taught credits (including core/compulsory and optional modules) and a 60-credit dissertation as outlined below.

In choosing their modules, MA students are advised to pay careful attention to the balance of coursework across the two terms to ensure a manageable workload. A significant imbalance of modules - and therefore coursework - between terms is only possible with the written permission of the convenor of the degree.


  • Dissertation in Media Studies

Taught Component

Core Modules

  • 15PMSH036 Theoretical Issues in Global Media and Postnational Communication (15 credits) and
  • 15PMSH037 Topics in Global Media and Postnational Communication (15 credits) - details forthcoming.

Compulsory Module

All students will take the following compulsory module:

  • Qualitative Research Methods

Optional Modules

All students will take the modules to the value of 30 credits from List 1 below.


All students will take modules to the value of 45 credits from List 3 and List 4 below.

List of Modules (subject to availability)

List 3

  • Media Studies
    • International Political Communication
    • Media Spectacle and Urban Space in East Asia
    • Mediated Culture in the Middle East: Politics and Communications
    • Topics in Global Digital Cultures
    • Studies in Global Digital Cultures
    • Studies in Media, Information Communication Technologies and Development
    • Theoretical Issues in Media and Cultural Studies
    • Theoretical Approaches to International Journalisms
    • Transnational Communities and Diasporic Media: Networking, Connectivity, Identity

List 4

  • Digital traditional broadcasting communication
  • Cinemas of Asia and Africa
    • Japanese Post-War Film Genres and the Avant-Garde
    • Censoring Japan: A Socio-Cultural History of Japanese Television
    • Genders and Sexualities in South East Asian Film
    • Media Spectacle and Urban Space in East Asia
    • (Post) Colonialism and Otherness in South East Asia on Screen
    • Indian Cinema: Its History and Social Context
    • Indian Cinema: Key Issues
    • The Story of African Film: Narrative Screen Media in Africa
    • Curating Africa: African Film and Video in the Age of Festivals
    • Modern Chinese Film and Theatre (PG)
    • Modern Film from Taiwan and the Chinese Diaspora (PG)
  • Social Anthropology
    • Culture and Society of China
    • Culture and Society of East Africa
    • Culture and Society of Japan
    • Culture and Society of South Asia
    • Culture and Society of South East Asia
    • Culture and Society of West Africa
    • Culture and Society of Near and Middle East
    • Anthropology of Development
    • Perspectives On Development
  • Development Studies
    • Civil society, social movements and the development process
  • Economics
    Please check with the module convenors about prerequisites.
  • Politics
    • Government and politics of modern South Asia
    • Government and politics of modern South-East Asia
  • Religions and Philosophies
    • Jewishness on Screen
  • History of Art and Archaeology
    • Photography and the Image in Africa

Important notice

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

Admissions and Applications

You can apply for this course via the online application form.

We aim to assess a complete application and provide a decision within a 5-week time frame. Overseas students who require a Tier 4 visa and wish to join SOAS should bear in mind visa applications can take several weeks, so you should apply as soon as possible.

Consideration of Application

The whole application, including transcript and references, is considered before a decision is reached. You are therefore advised to submit a complete application including references and transcript (where required). An incomplete application will add considerable delays to the decision-making process.

Students will receive an acknowledgement of their application. Each application is carefully considered and although we try and respond as quickly as possible, we do ask that students should expect to receive a response within five weeks of receipt.

Candidates who are available in the United Kingdom may be called for an interview. The absence of academic members of staff (or instance on study leave) may affect the timing of decisions.

Entry Requirements

Minimum upper second class honours degree (or equivalent).

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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