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School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) Reviews

115 Reviews by Students

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Ratings and Reviews

Overall

3.56 / 5 from 115 verified student reviews

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Most helpful review

I've been at SOAS for just over a month and so far I have really enjoyed studying here. I love the library because there are so many study areas and of course the impressive collection of books available, on virtually any topic of study. I was able to join countless amazing societies which host a multitude of interesting events, therefore I am never bored even if I am done with classes and assignments.

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By member594085
On 27th October 23
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School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) Hall Rankings


Somerset Court #1
Bloomsbury Janet Poole House #2
Elizabeth Croll House #3
Piccadilly Court #4
Camden Hawley Crescent #5
AXO Camden #6
Spring Mews #7
Dinwiddy House #8
Pavilion Court #9
Goldsmiths House #10

*Minimum 10 reviews required to be ranked.


Students' Union at School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS)

StudentCrowd Students' Union score: 3.41 / 5

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Ratings and Reviews

Overall

3.56 / 5 from 115 verified student reviews

How do we calculate ratings?
Campus / Facilities
Clubs and Societies
Students Union
Careers Service
Internet / Wifi
Most helpful review

I've been at SOAS for just over a month and so far I have really enjoyed studying here. I love the library because there are so many study areas and of course the impressive collection of books available, on virtually any topic of study. I was able to join countless amazing societies which host a multitude of interesting events, therefore I am never bored even if I am done with classes and assignments.

Campus / Facilities
Clubs and Societies
Students Union
Careers Service
Internet / Wifi
By member594085
On 27th October 23
verified Verified student
Read all reviews

Applying to School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS)

Entry Requirements

96-144 UCAS Points

Average range for School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) entry requirements. Varies depending on the course.


Offer and Acceptance Rates
Offers:
3,565
÷  
Applications:
3,960
=
Offer rate:
90%
Acceptances:
870
÷  
Applicants:
3,630
=
Acceptance rate:
21.97%

This is the latest available data, published by UCAS - 9th January 2023. All data is based on UCAS standard definitions.


Q&A


Q
What courses and lectures will have only face to face teaching? I do not want to do online teaching and lectures
By member968284 On 18th April 22
Q
I am from India. Wish to pursue masters in development studies. How good is this programme at SOAS. Is it better than Sussex
By mani78 On 17th February 19
Q

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Read School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) Reviews


Student Review: 5 /5
By member7110293 On 4th June 24 verified Verified student

The location was good. Welcoming staffs and kind people

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Student Review: 3.2 /5
By member5110223 On 3rd June 24 verified Verified student

The university is small, compact and quiet on most days. The student union in this academic year could have done a lot to improve SOAS and students' experiences more but hopefully with the newly voted candidates this changes.

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Student Review: 2 /5
By member11110186 On 3rd June 24 verified Verified student

Decent campus and facilities.The WiFi isn’t great and it’s difficult to get Eduroam to actually work.

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Student Review: 2.2 /5
By member12108717 On 15th May 24 verified Verified student

I’m grateful regardless - but I would make improvements if I were in charge !

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Student Review: 3.2 /5
By member12108464 On 11th May 24 verified Verified student

Good environment for the students.

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Student Review: 3.8 /5
By member9108432 On 10th May 24 verified Verified student

I enjoy SOAS, and think the community is very uplifting.

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Student Review: 1.4 /5
By member6108419 On 10th May 24 verified Verified student

poor and few facilities for students eg catering, no gym, study spaces especially quiet places for online meeting and online class. The security guards and the reception staffs are very rude and unhelpful. It is ridiculer not allowing students eat nearing the main gate, no enough space for students to have their lunch.

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Student Review: 3.2 /5
By member9104227 On 15th March 24 verified Verified student

Wish there was more studying spaces and space outside to sit at. Wifi can be quite iffy.

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Student Review: 2.8 /5
By member499930 On 9th February 24 verified Verified student

SOAS is a great uni…as long as you’re neurotypical, have great mental health and don’t require any help or support from them because they will leave you to drown. Software and tech issues mean you’ll be enrolled weeks late and have issues submitting exams and assignments which will cause unnecessary added stress. Some lecturers can’t be bothered to reply to queries and then scold you for not contacting them. Some leave feedback that isn’t at all helpful nor does it indicate how to improve. If you email SOAS, regardless of department, you’ll either get a response within a few weeks to a month or not at all, unless it regards SOAS taking money from you, then they respond at the speed of light which tells you all you need to know about this university. They’re in the business of making money and view students not as human beings, but walking ATMs. They will not lift a finger to help and support students and tell you to just get on with it or leave, essentially. They also lie.

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Student Review: 3.2 /5
By member1398859 On 1st February 24 verified Verified student

Brill uni if you enjoy what they specialise in. I would expect to ask a lot of people where places or facilities are. But overall a good place to study

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Student Review: 3.4 /5
By member1198846 On 1st February 24 verified Verified student

Good location and fun classes. Very small campus.

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Student Review: 3.2 /5
By member594569 On 6th November 23 verified Verified student

I am studying anthropology, and the courses are excellent. SOAS is a small university so the students and lecturers are close and it's easy to ask questions or book office hours.

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Student Review: 3.8 /5
By member694233 On 30th October 23 verified Verified student

Great school, it is great to be surrounded by students with similar aspirations

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Student Review: 4.4 /5
By member1394228 On 30th October 23 verified Verified student

I’m still new tk gauge the experience fully but so far I’m enjoying it

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Student Review: 3.2 /5
By member494216 On 29th October 23 verified Verified student

The campus does what is has to. It’s quite small, but it has a nice library and a few places to purchase food and drink which is nice.

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Student Review: 3.4 /5
By member494199 On 29th October 23 verified Verified student

The campus is tiny but good for building up connections with students.

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Student Review: 3.2 /5
By member694193 On 29th October 23 verified Verified student

Nice campus, there's lots of clubs and societies, wish they could be advertised more

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Student Review: 3.4 /5
By member694089 On 27th October 23 verified Verified student

There needs to be provision of 24-hour study spaces with coffee vending machines.

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Student Review: 4.6 /5
By member594085 On 27th October 23 verified Verified student

I've been at SOAS for just over a month and so far I have really enjoyed studying here. I love the library because there are so many study areas and of course the impressive collection of books available, on virtually any topic of study. I was able to join countless amazing societies which host a multitude of interesting events, therefore I am never bored even if I am done with classes and assignments.

Campus / Facilities
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Students Union
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Student Review: 4.6 /5
By member894076 On 27th October 23 verified Verified student

Overall its been great. The building is not as artsy as gothic campuses, but it’s nice and totally functional. The positive thing of relatively small campus is you don’t really have to run from one class to another. The library is a nice place to study. There’s a canteen, but we can also bring out own meal and heat in in the microwave at Student Union Centre which is great! Overall, it’s been nice!

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Student Review: 5 /5
By member994074 On 27th October 23 verified Verified student

Great space to learn. Amazing critical focus on every topic and full of diversity. I made the right choice studying here.

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Student Review: 5 /5
By member494049 On 27th October 23 verified Verified student

I am having a great time here at Paul Robeson. The staffs here are so friendly and helpful also. The garden area is amazing for hanging out with friends. In a nutshell, the entire management system is doing a great job.

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Student Review: 4.2 /5
By member794044 On 27th October 23 verified Verified student

It is good to have the number of events going on the campas, held by the Student Union or the university. Personally very helped by Careers Service, for example receiving advices upon CV, cover letter. We sometimes have trouble with connecting to Wifi.

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Student Review: 2.8 /5
By member694036 On 27th October 23 verified Verified student

Good uni and I’m enjoying my course but I believe that more could be done to make the student experience better

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Student Review: 2.6 /5
By member1394030 On 27th October 23 verified Verified student

I love it overall, but it could use some better amenities and more reliable internet. The education is great, the other stuff not so much.

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Student Review: 3.8 /5
By member694029 On 27th October 23 verified Verified student

Friendly and supportive community

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Student Review: 4.2 /5
By member694008 On 27th October 23 verified Verified student

My experience with SOAS exceeded my expectations in a big way.

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Student Review: 3.6 /5
By member1093999 On 27th October 23 verified Verified student

To be honest, I haven't fully made use of all the career services, but from what I have seen it seems reasonable and there is good communication of it.

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Student Review: 3.6 /5
By member693952 On 27th October 23 verified Verified student

It's only been a month. The experience has been overall nice so far.

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Student Review: 4.2 /5
By member1093945 On 27th October 23 verified Verified student

My first 2 years at SOAS were during Covid so now in-person classes. My 3rd year was abroad when things were getting back to normal and I'm back at SOAS for my 4th year in person. The campus is small but the buildings are comfortable. Some rooms are quite modern and upto date whereas some rooms feel a little outdated. I'm not very sure about the student union or some of the other facilities because I don't usual use them but overall quite nice. The management as SOAS is something that definitely needs to be improved and I'm sure many students can agree with me.

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Student Review: 5 /5
By member893934 On 27th October 23 verified Verified student

It has been a great experience of being able to socialise at a very multi cultural institution in the heart of London.

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Student Review: 3.6 /5
By member1393933 On 27th October 23 verified Verified student

It's a wonderful university but quite small. You have a lot of socs available.

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Student Review: 1.8 /5
By member693913 On 27th October 23 verified Verified student

Good enough. Bad admin, no societies to join and bad SU

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Student Review: 4 /5
By member793887 On 27th October 23 verified Verified student

A small community, especially for a music student, with both pros and cons. Could be more facilities in terms of spaces for storing, practising, and recording instruments. More tutors interested in Africa!

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Student Review: 3.8 /5
By member593869 On 27th October 23 verified Verified student

It's all great, so far so good.

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Student Review: 5 /5
By member1393864 On 27th October 23 verified Verified student

A place where diversity and inclusiveness exist.

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Student Review: 3.8 /5
By member1190837 On 6th September 23 verified Verified student

Amazing uni, had a great time here. Teaching is great. Only complaint is the shocking admin

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Student Review: 4.6 /5
By member1390829 On 6th September 23 verified Verified student

It's a great school, everything about it is perfect

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Student Review: 2.6 /5
By member1189347 On 27th July 23 verified Verified student

The university has many institutional issues that will affect students with no compensation.

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Student Review: 2.4 /5
By member989322 On 26th July 23 verified Verified student

Assignments are narrow and intellectually limiting. Feedback is rarely provided in a timely manner and is usually brief and unhelpful. Catching someone during their office hours if you need to talk to them is a matter of luck, as nobody has any time for you. IT systems regularly break down or undergo 'upgrades' that cripple them for weeks or even months. Admin staffing levels are dismal and support staff seem to spend much of their time apologising for the latest institutional foul-up. Online journal access is severely limited and there is little or no access to eBooks.

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Student Review: 4.6 /5
By member989312 On 26th July 23 verified Verified student

Nice campus - interesting people to meet everywhere

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Student Review: 3.8 /5
By member1389298 On 25th July 23 verified Verified student

Im going into my third year at soas. Overall I have experienced a good experience. Socially I have not found many people that I have linked with, but the university tries its best to create events and make students feel welcomed and included.

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Student Review: 3.2 /5
By member1089284 On 25th July 23 verified Verified student

I like this university very much. It has a great atmosphere and there are lots of friendly people here.

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Student Review: 1.6 /5
By member989280 On 25th July 23 verified Verified student

SOAS is an incredibly diverse school. This is the only thing positive I have to say about SOAS

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Student Review: 3.8 /5
By member1389277 On 25th July 23 verified Verified student

Nice little university. People are generally enthusiastic about their field of study (specifically postgraduates and teachers), yet the school is less competitive in terms of resources provided.

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Student Review: 4.2 /5
By member1088662 On 5th July 23 verified Verified student

SOAS will always mean the people I met for me. Some part of me was underwhelmed because I was possibly expecting more radical politics and less of the dilution I was met with, but it was a learning experience of the global north for me. I enjoyed my time here, learnt from some great professors and incredible peers, made some of the best friends of my life, and found a complicated home in this space because of it.

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Student Review: 1.6 /5
By member588520 On 1st July 23 verified Verified student

A university with poor care for both staff and students. Constant late deadlines for giving work back to students, teachers not engaging within lessons, and inadequate feedback for essays to improve. A student union ran by past students that have outstayed their welcome and disruption to students in the library either by construction maintainence and lack of an internet connection.

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Student Review: 4.4 /5
By member488371 On 29th June 23 verified Verified student

Great uni. amazing students and teachers

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Student Review: 4.2 /5
By member888335 On 28th June 23 verified Verified student

I am overall very pleased with SOAS. The university in general has a big focus on postcolonialism, and I get the feeling that there’s room for everybody, no matter their background. The admin has had cuts to their budget so it’s quite slow and somewhat unreliable. I particularly like the library and the canteen, which have nice architecture and lots of natural light.

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Student Review: 4 /5
By member1388308 On 28th June 23 verified Verified student

Good University, get the job done.

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Student Review: 3.8 /5
By member1388302 On 28th June 23 verified Verified student

The campus is too small but at least it can do what it should. More fans or air-conditioners could be installed in the library. The SU can be more proactive with student and school issues.

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Student Review: 4.6 /5
By member788254 On 28th June 23 verified Verified student

SOAS was my top university choice, and it really lived up to my expectations. Book that were banned or unavailable in my country, I could find here. As we speak, I just issued books at the library regarding conservative ‘Hudood’ laws in my country. I have connected well with most teachers, and the course has been academically enriching. There is great food available, with at least 2 halal options in the menu, or more, whenever I go - which is wonderful and is probably one of the very few, if not the only, university that does this.

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Student Review: 1.8 /5
By member1087425 On 10th June 23 verified Verified student

Terrible university. The administration is poor and slow - (i) student enrolment took weeks which created issues with student finance as student status was unconfirmed and a hack to their system left students unable to access library content, (ii) eduroam Internet is unreliable as sometimes there will be no Internet connection, (iii) lecture halls are not big enough to accommodate student capacity (there were occasions where students had to sit on the stairs), (iv) societies are mostly centred on politics so there are little/no societies for hobbies e.g. no art society, and (v) the exam period was the most stressful period because of the university's incompetence (my exam experience consisted of a 90 minute delay, invigilators not providing PCs for an online exam and an exam paper being released late but no extra time was given. SOAS broke me.

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Student Review: 1 /5
By member486806 On 25th May 23 verified Verified student

The university is very diverse and welcoming

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Student Review: 4 /5
By member685356 On 28th April 23 verified Verified student

I enjoyed my time at SOAS, though it was significantly disrupted by strikes.

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Student Review: 3.8 /5
By member884608 On 20th April 23 verified Verified student

SOAS is a good uni, a lot of nice spaces to do work and to chill out and friendly staff. The admin side of things is a bit of a joke and nothing gets done on time but I love SOAS

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Student Review: 3 /5
By member784606 On 20th April 23 verified Verified student

SOAS has been very good for me. They’ve assisted me in getting a dyslexia diagnosis and extra time for exams, understood the time I needed mitigating circumstances and my teachers, especially in Japanese, are amazing. Although the wifi can drop a lot in the library for me which isn’t great but doesn’t happen too often.

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Student Review: 4.2 /5
By member684601 On 20th April 23 verified Verified student

Highly enjoy it. Definitely a little niche, but if your interests are in Africa and Asia, it is great. Library fantastic. Lecturers are generally amazing. Maybe avoid the area studies department until they fix that mess; many who started in there ended up swapping into either the history, politics, or anthropology departments. A great community feeling. Soas has a reputation of being extreme-left politically, which sort of exists, but isn't as pervasive as the reputation implies. Administration tends to be mixed, at the lower levels some are good and some are useless, but the higher administration seems to be uniformly not fantastic. If all goes well, you won't need to interact with them but the administration is the one big issue.

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Student Review: 4.2 /5
By member1179207 On 22nd February 23 verified Verified student

I am happy with my experience at the University of SOAS, especially the good resources and teaching quality. What I did not fancy were the people there some of them with very extreme socio-political views which sometimes felt like a narrative everyone there must follow. Also, the teaching was often done in a specific narrative with not much space for other points of view. Apart from that, the library, the canteen and the societies made my experience there positive.

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Student Review: 3.6 /5
By member475368 On 20th January 23 verified Verified student

SOAS is a great school. The faculty are knowledgeable and friendly; I enjoy classes with them. As for the programs, it's a hit or miss. For the master's degree, the combine both UG and PG students, which shouldn't happen. The MA program just feels like an extension of my UG program, and I'm only taking eight classes that only focus on modern history. I'd say the programs are better for the UG. MA students might want to look elsewhere for a more in-depth and focused program that doesn't combine separate levels of academics. The grading scheme is weird as well. For American students, grades over 80% are for publication only! Anything in the 70% range is equal to an "A" level grade! Just a forewarning. Societies and Clubs, there are only a few I was interested in, but they haven't done anything interesting in a while, or the meeting times are during my classes. Wish they had more sports teams. SOAS only has three, and they were basic.

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Student Review: 4.2 /5
By member1065369 On 12th January 22 verified Verified student

If you want to be constantly at war with the management of your uni come to SOAS, where everything is done in the most disorganised and inefficient way possible and lecturers and students alike share a shared dislike for the management's decisions.

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Student Review: 5 /5
By member1154025 On 9th February 21 verified Verified student

Amazing university, great staff

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Student Review: 5 /5
By member751206 On 18th September 20 verified Verified student

stayed in Goldsmiths house from 2019-2020,it had been such a wonderful experience. I heard alot about horrible accomodations and flats,but this place wasn't. I came from a very socially connected family and country to study my master in the UK,and I was expecting myself to struggle with being lonely and not having the real sense of family,but it didn't happen. Can you imagine that I really started to miss my family back home when I moved out of Goldmiths?!. This is because the family atmosphere that I felt while living there. Also,this place has everything that you need make out the best of your studies for many reasons: Firstly,it is always clean,all the common areas are sparklingly clean all the day because of the very dedicated staff who are always there and they clean on a daily basis. The only thing you need to take care of is your room. Secondly, The availability of the quite study room helped me alot while searching for a place to focus and not sleep

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Student Review: 4 /5
By member549086 On 5th June 20 verified Verified student

SOAS is a great place for cultures and languages, you will not be disappointed with the level of teaching. I feel like I have gone from zero to fluent in my target language. I wish they had their own gym/sports hall, but there is a student gym 2 minutes away, so it's not a big issue. There are many clubs and societies, but some of them can be quite disorganised. The SU is great, really involved, runs a shop and a bar and organises amazing events. I think SOAS offers a very unique uni experience you won't find anywhere else in the UK.

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Student Review: 2.4 /5
By member1136478 On 11th March 19 verified Verified student

Great career fairs - well done

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Student Review: 4.6 /5
By samcarlton3577 On 19th May 16 verified Verified student

Unique, and honestly quite niche university. World class lecturers in some subjects, less so in others, but if you have a good idea of what it is you want to do, and SOAS does that well, SOAS is a fantastic institution. There language tuition and area studies expertise is second to none in the UK

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Student Review: 3.8 /5
By member815237 On 4th September 15 verified Verified student

Unique university with an amazing vibe.

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