There is something irresistible about London. Maybe it’s the sights like Big Ben or the Tower Bridge that already feel familiar. Or the international character that is evident in every neighborhood, where people of different cultural, ethnic, and socio-economic backgrounds live and work together. Whatever it is that has drawn you to London, don’t look back now—London awaits!
This is your chance to live and learn alongside students from the UK and around the world by directly enrolling at the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London (SOAS).
IES Abroad London is dedicated to enhancing your study abroad experience with superior student services and opportunities to fully experience life in London. Our staff in London will help you make the most of your experience abroad.
London will be your classroom. Involvement in the local community or a student club enriches your learning experiences and provides excellent opportunities for cultural integration.
We want you to feel at home in England, so we do everything we can to help you integrate into life in London. Our housing options provide you opportunities to meet and make new friends, while our cultural events familiarize you with the city of London.
After you are admitted, refer to the Travel Dates section of the Predeparture Information in your MyIESabroad account before booking travel.
IES Abroad’s mission is simple: to provide you with the best study abroad program possible—which includes the highest quality academic and cultural experiences. That is why we partnered with the School of Oriental and African Studies.
The SOAS, University of London
As the only institution of higher education in the United Kingdom to specialize in the study of Asia, Africa, and the near and Middle East, SOAS is truly unique. The school was founded in 1916 and today enrolls more than 4,700 students. SOAS fosters an intimate and friendly intellectual community and prides itself on the level of individual contact that students have with their high-caliber instructors.
SOAS specializes in the history, culture, economics, and environment of Asia, Africa, and the near and Middle East. SOAS also has interdisciplinary offerings across the faculties of Arts & Humanities, Languages & Cultures, and Law & Social Sciences. You register for 4 units per semester (16 IES Abroad credits).
Specific courses available to study abroad students can be found on SOAS' Course Listings page.
Courses are available in:
SOAS is located in Bloomsbury (minutes from the IES Abroad London Centre), central London, where the concentration of academic institutions reflects the area’s rich intellectual and cultural history. One of those institutions, the British Museum, was founded in 1753 and offers SOAS students easy access to an unparalleled collection of cultural artifacts from across the globe and throughout diverse historical periods.
Even though you’re directly enrolling in one of our partner universities, we’ll be there for you whenever you need us.
Choosing and directly enrolling in courses abroad can be confusing and overwhelming. This is why we offer you predeparture advising that’s specific to your needs. Our goal is to provide support and guidance throughout your application and enrollment process.
But our advising services don’t stop there. While you’re in London, our staff is available to help you transition into your new home.
The support services we offer IES Abroad direct enrollment students are specifically designed to help you achieve your study abroad goals as effectively and smoothly as possible. We know studying abroad is an adventure, and, at times, you may need help or just someone to talk to—that’s why our staff is there for you.
Whether you have questions about academic requirements, housing, or well-being and safety, our London-based IES Abroad staff is available to support you. Because of our close relationship with the universities in London, IES Abroad is also able to offer you unique academic, social, and cultural opportunities. Our staff in London accompanies you throughout orientation, as well as at the IES Abroad field trips and cultural events.
We want to make sure that your greatest challenge is deciding which landmarks to see first or discovering the best café—not finding a place to live where you feel comfortable. We do our best to locate housing that is reflective of how the local students are living. Our goal is that when you leave London, it will feel like home.
Residence Hall – You will live in an international student residence hall located in central London. You and another IES Abroad student share a room with an attached bathroom and will either have access to a common kitchen with others on your floor or a kitchenette in your room. No meals are included, but there are many affordable eateries nearby. There are laundry facilities and common areas with wireless Internet (and 24-hour Internet access in your room) on various floors of the residence hall. Enjoy 24-hour security and a short walk to public transportation.
Part of making you feel at home in London is doing our best to help you feel safe and cared for. Whether it is an orientation program that makes you feel prepared, housing that is well-located and comfortable, or field trips that take you off the beaten path—we’re all about our student services. This is just one of the things we’re known for.
IES Abroad Orientation
Upon arrival in London, you participate in an introductory orientation with the IES Abroad London staff. Designed specifically for direct enrollment students, the IES Abroad orientation program introduces you to your direct enrollment program, your fellow students, and to London.
Other highlights may include a bus tour of London and other cultural activities. In addition, you will learn about the teaching methods of British professors of your host institution.
You will also attend SOAS’ orientation, where you get acquainted with the logistics of student life.
Redefine the way you live and learn in London through our cultural events, such as:
University Clubs & Events
The lively SOAS student union sponsors a number of clubs and societies that offers something foreveryone. The union also hosts social events and provides services for all students. Visit SOAS’ website for up-to-date information on societies, sports, events, and other union services at www.soasunion.org.
Even though your adventure starts in London, our field trips take you beyond the city to discover the culture and traditions of your host country. These trips are subsidized by IES Abroad, though additional costs may apply. Past destinations are listed below. IES Abroad field trip destinations, activities, and length of stay may vary according to term and availability.
Stonehenge, Bath, and Salisbury
2 Days | Fall & Spring
Visit mysterious Stonehenge, the ancient Roman baths in Bath, and the Salisbury Cathedral, one of the finest examples of the early English Gothic architecture style in Britain.
2 Days | Fall & Spring
Explore the historic maze of twisting alleyways and enjoy an optional visit to the royal pavilion, one of Europe’s most exotic royal palaces.
1 Day | Fall & Spring
Spend one Saturday experiencing Liverpool. Enjoy a guided tour around the city including a visit to the Beatles Museum.
Oxford or Cambridge
1 Day | Fall & SpringVisit one of these historic university towns, with their picturesque colleges and punting (like a gondola) on the river.
Stratford and Kenilworth
1 Day | Fall & Spring
Visit Shakespeare’s house, place of birth, and place of his burial, Holy Trinity Church.
About the Center
The IES Abroad London Center, situated in the central London neighborhood of Bloomsbury, is a two-minute walk from the British Museum.
John brings over 15 years of experience with IES Abroad, including seven years with IES Abroad Milan and nearly three years with IES Abroad Siena before coming to IES Abroad London. During his time in Siena, John developed and implemented a banner program with a strong focus on cultural immersion and academic rigor. In Milan, he played a key role in improving and developing the Milan program, notably in the areas of student housing, student activities, orientation, and supervision of the student services staff. Prior to working for IES Abroad, John received his undergraduate and graduate degrees in Italian Literature and Art History from Brigham Young University and worked in Geneva for the United Nations.
IES Abroad Staff
Kimberley Aparisio Assistant Director
Sally HarrildAcademic Programmes Manager
Alice Kerby Direct Enrolment Programmes Coordinator
Dr. Diane AtkinsonAcademic Support
Simon CaustonSenior Student Affairs and Housing Coordinator
Natalie CrownStudent Affairs Coordinator
Beth LehlbachInternship Coordinator
Mads Bomholt NielsenProgramme Assistant
Zosia RutkowskaCustomized Programmes Manager
Martin HannanBuilding Manager
Sachna Hanspal Internships Assistant
What is it really like to live in London? Check out our virtual tour of all the places you’ll come to know and love when you study abroad there—GO!