Your complete guide to a PhD in Middle Eastern Studies

Everything you need to know about studying a PhD in Middle Eastern Studies

part of Social Sciences

What are Middle Eastern Studies?

By pursuing a Middle Eastern Studies degree you will explore the languages, history, culture, and politics of the Middle East. Such a programme offers a deep understanding of the diverse and rich heritage of Middle Eastern countries, from ancient civilisations to contemporary societies.

Middle Eastern Studies Specialisations

There are several specialisations within Middle Eastern Studies programmes. A list of the most common specialisation in Middle Eastern Studies often includes:

  • Middle Eastern History,
  • Islamic Studies,
  • Middle Eastern Politics.

These specialisations are typically pursued in both undergraduate and postgraduate degree programmes, allowing both Master’s and Bachelor’s students to focus on their interest in Middle Eastern cultures and histories.

What will you learn during a Middle Eastern Studies programme?

Choosing to study Middle Eastern Studies is an inspired decision for those interested in the rich history, vibrant cultures, and complex political landscapes of the Middle East. You'll learn about the historical events that shaped these nations, their unique literary traditions, and more. The skills you can get from Middle Eastern Studies courses are wide-ranging, including:

  • proficiency in one or more middle eastern languages,
  • understanding of middle eastern cultures and histories,
  • analytical and critical thinking skills,
  • research skills,
  • cross-cultural communication.

Some of the popular courses you’ll most likely take during a Middle Eastern Studies degree are:

  • History of the Middle East: Covers the historical developments, political events, and cultural transformations of the region from ancient times to the present.
  • Politics and International Relations of the Middle East: Explores the political systems, state dynamics, and foreign policies of Middle Eastern countries, as well as regional conflicts and alliances.
  • Religion and Society in the Middle East: Examines the role of religion, including Islam, Christianity, and Judaism, in shaping Middle Eastern societies, politics, and culture.
  • Arabic Language and Literature: Offers instruction in the Arabic language, including reading, writing, and conversation, as well as the study of classical and modern Arabic literature.
  • Middle Eastern Culture and Society: Explores various aspects of Middle Eastern culture, including art, music, literature, film, gender dynamics, family structures, and social traditions.

These skills are not only applicable to academia but also to a variety of careers, making Middle Eastern Studies a versatile and valuable degree.

Skills required for a degree in Middle Eastern Studies To excel in Middle Eastern Studies, you'll need a strong interest in languages and cultures. Good communication skills, both written and verbal, are also essential. Middle Eastern Studies degree requirements often include a willingness to learn new languages and an interest in history and literature.

What can you do with a Middle Eastern Studies degree?

The jobs you can get with a Middle Eastern Studies degree are diverse and fulfilling. With a Bachelor's degree, you could work in international relations, tourism, or education. A Master's degree opens up opportunities for roles such as cultural advisor, foreign correspondent, or translator. Here are some popular jobs:

  • Cultural Advisor,
  • Foreign Correspondent,
  • Translator,
  • International Relations Specialist,
  • Tour Guide.

A career after the most common specialisation in Middle Eastern Studies, such as Middle Eastern History or Islamic Studies, can be incredibly rewarding. You'll have the opportunity to bridge cultural gaps, promote understanding, and contribute to global cooperation, making a Middle Eastern Studies degree worth it for many.

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View all PhDs in Middle Eastern Studies. Keep in mind you can also study an online PhDs in Middle Eastern Studies.

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