studying BA international relations and japanese @ SOAS

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aneya
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would it be remotely possible for me to study international relations an japanese whilst being a criminology, applied law, n fine art college student? i have no gcse's in languages either... (tho been considering taking a gcse in japanese? tho not sure if it's gonna be too late now...)

my grades r all very good but i understand the courses aren't that relating to the uni courses :/ one of my main interests and loves are definitely languages, specifically non-western ones like japanese, hindi, cantonese, masri, taiwanese, urdu, etc, making SOAS my dream school.......

i want to doing something to do with diplomacy or just working in an embassy abroad (preferably japan), so doing international relations would obviously be a big plus, but i don't do politics or anything so.... would i have a chance if i did the arts and humanities foundation year there?

i would've of also liked to do law and japanese, but the only uni i've found that does that (and doesn't require a language gcse) is birkbeck, but night classes don't really sound like my thing :/ i also know i could study art (or history of art) and japanese since it's probably my best subject, but i just really don't see me having a future career in it..... idk

i feel confident i could figure out a way to link my current subjects to the degree in my PS, as well as including relating super-curriculars, but i'm still not sure it'd be enough aa

anywaysss, any advice for me? i'm happy to provide more details, have a good day ^^
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kathew384
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(Original post by aneya)
would it be remotely possible for me to study international relations an japanese whilst being a criminology, applied law, n fine art college student? i have no gcse's in languages either... (tho been considering taking a gcse in japanese? tho not sure if it's gonna be too late now...)

my grades r all very good but i understand the courses aren't that relating to the uni courses :/ one of my main interests and loves are definitely languages, specifically non-western ones like japanese, hindi, cantonese, masri, taiwanese, urdu, etc, making SOAS my dream school.......

i want to doing something to do with diplomacy or just working in an embassy abroad (preferably japan), so doing international relations would obviously be a big plus, but i don't do politics or anything so.... would i have a chance if i did the arts and humanities foundation year there?

i would've of also liked to do law and japanese, but the only uni i've found that does that (and doesn't require a language gcse) is birkbeck, but night classes don't really sound like my thing :/ i also know i could study art (or history of art) and japanese since it's probably my best subject, but i just really don't see me having a future career in it..... idk

i feel confident i could figure out a way to link my current subjects to the degree in my PS, as well as including relating super-curriculars, but i'm still not sure it'd be enough aa

anywaysss, any advice for me? i'm happy to provide more details, have a good day ^^
Hi!

I don't believe that you need any qualifications in Japanese to study Japanese at SOAS as they make you do elementary Japanese in your first year! I've applied for Chinese at SOAS through UCAS extra and it was only after that I realise I applied for the foundation year (although grade requirement is still ABB-BBB) so maybe that's why they don't expect you to have any prior qualifications (also its a 4 year course). You could always give them a call or send them an email about it. But other than that, it doesn't really say they have a preference in any specific A Levels for the course you're looking at!

Hope this helped a little!
Have a good day
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artful_lounger
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umbrellala did IR with an East Asian language at SOAS (albeit, Korean rather than Japanese) so might be able to comment on the backgrounds of incoming students in those areas that she knew?

I think they may like to see some aptitude for language study which is probably most readily evidenced by a language A-level and/or GCSE, but there are other ways to do this. They will teach the language itself from scratch intensively so you don't need specific knowledge of Japanese though.

Something to note is that the degree will be quite formally academic (especially on the language side - expect a lot of tests) so taking one or more traditionally academic A-level subjects would be highly recommended to prepare you for the degree I think (this would be true of most degrees, in fact).

Also be aware that criminology is not an A-level but a WJEC Certificate and is not accepted by all unis for all courses. I would probably not recommend taking it, honestly...
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moopxo
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I think its possible! you don't need any qualification in japanese, you just need to demonstrate your interest and enthusiasm for it in personal statement. criminology, applied law and languages can all link in some way to your interest in international relations and could lead to a career in diplomacy, etc. i'm interested in this field too :]
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umbrellala
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(Original post by aneya)
would it be remotely possible for me to study international relations an japanese whilst being a criminology, applied law, n fine art college student? i have no gcse's in languages either... (tho been considering taking a gcse in japanese? tho not sure if it's gonna be too late now...)

my grades r all very good but i understand the courses aren't that relating to the uni courses :/ one of my main interests and loves are definitely languages, specifically non-western ones like japanese, hindi, cantonese, masri, taiwanese, urdu, etc, making SOAS my dream school.......

i want to doing something to do with diplomacy or just working in an embassy abroad (preferably japan), so doing international relations would obviously be a big plus, but i don't do politics or anything so.... would i have a chance if i did the arts and humanities foundation year there?

i would've of also liked to do law and japanese, but the only uni i've found that does that (and doesn't require a language gcse) is birkbeck, but night classes don't really sound like my thing :/ i also know i could study art (or history of art) and japanese since it's probably my best subject, but i just really don't see me having a future career in it..... idk

i feel confident i could figure out a way to link my current subjects to the degree in my PS, as well as including relating super-curriculars, but i'm still not sure it'd be enough aa

anywaysss, any advice for me? i'm happy to provide more details, have a good day ^^
Hi there! Thanks artful_lounger for the mention and apologies for the slow reply... This one is a bit complicated if you're planning to go to SOAS so bear with me as this might be bit of a long read

You've got a few options here. The first is to apply for BA Japanese. The A-Level requirements are ABB, but SOAS does accept a range of alternatives which you can find all the info on here. Whilst they do prefer you to have at least a GCSE in a language, it's not an absolute requirement and I do know people who had 0 language qualifications before doing a language at SOAS. It is expected that you've at the very least done some self-study and of course have a demonstrable interest in/aptitude for language learning

Your second option is apply for BA International Relations and Japanese. The A-Level requirements are higher at AAB (full requirements here) and IR at SOAS is extremely popular so can be quite competitive. You also have to fulfil the requirements for BA Japanese in your application, so the same stuff applies as above. There is one pretty big catch with dual honours - you have very very few, if any, open option modules. This means that you have very little free choice in the modules you take, or at the very least you're restricted to modules within your two departments. This then means that if you want to explore other modules such as Mandarin and Urdu you will have very few opportunities to do this. If you're interested in cultures like Taiwan and India in the political sense, though, there will be ample opportunity to study that within IR

A third option is to apply for BA Japanese and switch to BA IR & Japanese either at the start of term if they allow you to, or after year 1. This allows you to understand what your priorities are - whether you're genuinely interested in international relations or if you'd rather explore language. It also bypasses the high entry requirements of IR if that's something you're concerned about

As for the personal statement, my A-Levels were Politics, Biology, Chemistry and an EPQ so not massively related to IR and Korean. There are so many ways you can link the skills from your other subjects to the degree, but more importantly there are so many extracurricular things you can do to demonstrate your interest in much more concrete ways. Let me know if there's anything else I can help with!
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