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Postgraduate Study


Students are expected to work closely with their supervisor throughout the year on a thesis of not more than 25,000 words which is submitted in August.

During the year, MPhil students are also encouraged to attend Masters-level taught papers, including Theory and Method in Middle Eastern Studies, as well as fourth-year undergraduate lectures and language courses where relevant. They are also encouraged to participate fully in the wider academic life of the department and the university -- various training courses, reading groups and seminars, including the department's fortnightly research seminar and the seminars of the Centre for Islamic Studies.

One to one supervision

Ten hours per year.

The University of Cambridge publishes an annual Code of Practice which sets out the University’s expectations regarding supervision.

Seminars & classes

24 hours per year (MESM1 Theory and Method in Middle Eastern Studies).

Literature Reviews

Three formative assignments (not part of the final summative degree assessment) of 5,000-words in total for MESM1 Theory and Method in Middle Eastern Studies.

Posters and Presentations

At least two formative workshop presentations in MESM1 Theory and Method in Middle Eastern Studies.


Students will receive feedback on their work throughout the year from regular one-on-one supervisions with their supervisor. Supervisors will produce feedback via termly online supervision reports.

In addition students will receive feedback on formative assignments in MESM1 Theory and Method in Middle Eastern Studies.


Thesis / Dissertation

Students will submit a thesis of not more than 25,000 words, including footnotes and appendices but excluding bibliography on a subject approved by the Degree Committee. All MPhil theses must include a brief abstract at the start of the thesis of no more than 400 words.

Students must have a viva examination (oral examination), which is normally held in September.

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Key Information

12 months full-time

2 years part-time

Master of Philosophy

Faculty of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies

Course - related enquiries

Application - related enquiries

Course on Department Website

Dates and deadlines:

Michaelmas 2024

Applications open
Sept. 4, 2023
Application deadline
May 16, 2024
Course Starts
Oct. 1, 2024

Some courses can close early. See the Deadlines page for guidance on when to apply.

Course Funding Deadline
Dec. 5, 2023
Gates Cambridge US round only
Oct. 11, 2023

These deadlines apply to applications for courses starting in Michaelmas 2024, Lent 2025 and Easter 2025.

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