MSc Contemporary India Studies

Duration: 12 months (full-time); Two or three years (part-time)

Minimum Entry Requirements: Minimum upper second class honours degree (or equivalent)

Start of programme: September

Mode of Attendance: Full Time or Part Time

The MSc Contemporary India Studies degree offers a critical, cutting-edge study of present-day India. The programme takes an interdisciplinary approach and provides analytical training.

Students have the opportunity to choose to study contemporary India topics, issues and challenges in the following subjects: anthropology, cinema, culture, development studies, history, law, literature, politics, the study of religions and languages.

The MSc Contemporary India Studies programme:

  • introduces students to recent topics, methods and debates in the study of India
  • prepares students at an advanced level to pursue research interests
  • allows students to opt in for language training in Bengali, Hindi, Nepali, Panjabi and Urdu

The MSc Contemporary India Studies is based in the South Asia Institute which has an active schedule of events and seminars throughout the year and attracts renowned speakers and scholars not only from India but also internationally.

Placements opportunity

The MSc Contemporary India Studies degree offers students the opportunity to take up a 2-4 week placement in India or with a London-based organisation during the course of their studies. This is an optional and self-funded opportunity.

Opportunities for placements fall within three broad areas: NGOs and development; business and economics; and media and journalism.

The MSc Contemporary India Studies is designed to appeal to those interested in understanding current events and developments in India and who want to gain a deeper understanding for academic or commercial purposes such as business, industry, government departments or NGOs.


Students take 180 credits, 60 of which are a dissertation and a 120 from taught modules. Of the taught modules, students must take the core module Contemporary India: Issues, Methods and Approaches (30 credits) and a further 90 credits are chosen from a list of approved optional modules.

In addition, students write a 10,000-word dissertation on Contemporary India. The dissertation will include the option of undertaking a 2-4 week internship during the summer months either arranged by students to be approved by the course director or through the Careers Office who have a database of organisations offering internship positions in India as well as the UK in terms of diaspora activities.

Core Module

  • Contemporary India: Issues, Methods and Approaches 15PAIC003 (30 credits) Full Year

Optional Modules

Anthropology and Sociology Department

  • Religions on the move: New Currents and Emerging Trends in Global Religion 15PANH055 (15credits) Term 1


  • Indian Cinema: Its History and Social Context 15PSAH001 (15credits) Term 1
  • Indian Cinema: Key Issues 15PSAH002 (15credits) Term 2


  • Contemporary Punjab: Society and Culture across Borders 15PAIC001 (30 credits) Full Year
  • Agrarian Development, Food Policy and Rural Poverty 15PDSH026 (15credits) Term 1
  • Aid and Development 15PDSH027 (15credits) Term 1
  • Borders and Development 15PDSH023 (15credits) Term 2
  • Civil society, social movements and the development process 15PDSH001 (15credits) Term 1
  • Development Practice 15PDSH013 (15credits) Term 2
  • Environment, Governance and Development 15PDSH050 (15credits) Term 1 Not Running 2017/2018
  • Gender and Development 15PDSH010 (15credits) Term 1
  • Global Commodity Chains, Production Networks and Informal Work 15PDSH024 (15credits) Term 2 Not Running 2017/2018
  • Global Health and Development 15PDSH051 (15credits) Term 2 Not Running 2017/2018
  • Issues in Forced Migration 15PDSH015 (15credits) Term 2
  • Migration and Policy 15PDSH029 (15credits) Term 1 Not Running 2017/2018
  • Natural resources, development and change: putting critical analysis into practice 15PDSH031 (15credits) Term 2
  • Neoliberalism, Democracy and Global Development 15PDSH054 (15credits) Term 1
  • The Working Poor and Development 15PDSH030 (15credits) Term 2
  • Understanding Economic Migration: Theories, Patterns and Policies 15PDSH032 (15credits) Term 2 Not Running 2017/2018
  • Water and Development: Conflict and Governance 15PDSH049 (15credits) Term 2


  • Gender, law and the family in the history of modern South Asia 15PHIH030 (15credits) Term 2



  • Literature & Colonialism in North India (Masters) 15PSAH005 (15credits) Term 1 Not Running 2017/2018
  • Narratives of Mobility in Contemporary Hindi Literature (Masters) 15PSAH006 (15credits) Term 2 Not Running 2017/2018


  • Government and politics of modern South Asia 15PPOC003 (30 credits) Full Year
  • The Indian Ocean in World Politics 15PPOH032 - Not Running 2017/18

Study of Religions

Language Options

  • Bengali Language 1 (PG) 15PSAC303 (30 credits) Full Year
  • Hindi Language 1 (PG) 15PSAC295 (30 credits) Full Year
  • Nepali Language 1 (PG) 15PSAC298 (30 credits) Full Year
  • Punjabi Language 1 15PSAC320 (30 credits) Full Year
  • Urdu Language 1 (PG) 15PSAC300 (30 credits) Full Year
Program taught in:

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Last updated January 23, 2019
This course is Campus based
Start Date
1 - 3 years
9,225 GBP
Full-time UK/EU Fees: £9,225; Full-time Overseas Fees: £18,980 per academic year
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