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Faculty of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies



Our students have the opportunity to experience a variety of teaching and learning environments. Depending on your choice of courses, you may have classes in another Faculty, particularly the Faculty of Modern and Medieval Languages. The teaching styles and class sizes in other Faculties may differ from what you experience in the Faculty of Asian and Middle Eastern studies.


Our aim for all our students is to help you develop from absorbing knowledge to producing knowledge.

  • Over your four year degree, you will gain linguistic and cultural knowledge relating to your chosen area, alongside a wide range of skills including how to communicate in a rigorous, clear and effective manner.
  • As you advance through your degree, the emphasis shifts more and more from acquiring skills and knowledge, to using these to produce your own, original work. You will be encouraged to learn through research, discussion and debate, developing independent thought and the ability to share your ideas with others.
  • Your year abroad will further develop your independence and in depth understanding of the language and culture you are studying.



  • The Cambridge teaching system combines lectures, seminars and supervisions.  As part of their daily lives, many of our teachers are engaged in the cutting edge research that distinguishes the Faculty This informs the knowledge they share with you.
  • The Faculty is quite special when compared with many others. Class sizes in the Faculty, even for the most popular courses, are quite small. 
  • This means that even in the largest of our classes, you and your lecturers will have the opportunity to interact at a more personal level than would be possible in larger groups



Lectures are similar in format to the kind of teaching you will be used to with a lecturer dispensing information to a whole class.

  • This teaching style is usually used for classes covering cultural elements of the courses.
  • Though the format may be similar, the content will be substantially different to what you will have experienced at school.


Seminars take this small class learning a step further.

  • You will be encouraged to examine and debate material you have read in advance of the class and to express your own views about the topic under discussion.
  • This style of teaching is applied to both cultural and language classes.


Supervisions are unique to Cambridge and Oxford and are one of the key elements that differentiate our degrees from other universities.

  • The maximum number of students in a supervision will be four and 1:1 supervisions are not unusual.
  • Supervisions enable you to gain in depth, individual feedback on your work or to advance your learning in ways specific to your needs