MA Program in “Iranian Studies”

MA Program in “Iranian Studies”

University of Tehran

MA Program in “Iranian Studies”

Call for Applications – September 2013

The Faculty of World Studies, University of Tehran, is pleased to offer a two-year academic program in Iranian studies to non-Iranian students. This is a full-time program based on both intensive course- work and research. Those who can successfully meet all the requirements will receive an internationally-recognized degree of “Master of Arts in Iranian Studies” from University of Tehran. The program starts every year in late September, and continues for four successive semesters. Admission is given on the basis of high academic qualifications, with the minimum condition of holding a BA or BSc from a recognized university.

Structure and Length of the Program: During the first semester, students will take part in two intensive Persian language courses as well as in an introductory workshop on Iranian studies. In the second and third semesters, students should pass 14 modules – 7 in each semester. By the end of the fourth semester, students will be required to complete a 120-page dissertation on a subject of their own interest related to Iranian studies. This research project will be supervised by two faculty members from University of Tehran, and must be defended before a board of examiners. Students are not obliged to stay in Iran while working on their dissertations. All students are also required to either pass the Persian Language Qualification Examination held by the University of Tehran or to obtain the certificate of level “Advanced 2” from UT’s Dehkhoda Institute as a requirement for their graduation from the program.

Themes and Content: This MA program is specifically designed and intended for non-Iranian students and follows a multi-disciplinary approach to Iranian studies. Although attention is also given to historical backgrounds of every topic discussed, the main focus of this program is on the modern and contemporary issues of Iran. Course themes include: Iranian history, society and culture, ethnic groups and local traditions, political economy, geopolitics, and foreign policy.

Students will also be offered exceptional opportunities to take part in extra-ordinary field trips to different parts of the country (on highly discounted fares) and visits to several social, cultural, and political institutions during the program.

Language of the Program: The Iranian Studies MA Program follows a cleverly-designed bi-lingual policy. The program starts in English. However, since Persian is the essential language for Iranian studies, all students are expected to gradually become fluent in Persian towards the end of the program


(through regularly attending in Persian language courses). During the first and second semesters, most instructions will be conducted in English. However, as students improve their knowledge of Persian, some modules will be offered in Persian, particularly during the third semester. Students will have the option to write their dissertations in either Persian or English.

University of Tehran: The University of Tehran is the main university of Iran and the oldest one in the Middle East. With its universally-known reputation, the UT is ranked amongst the top 400 universities in the world. More than 35,000 students are studying at this university in all major academic fields and at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels. The UT currently has about 500 foreign students, mostly from neighboring countries but also from Europe, America, Africa, East and South-East Asia. Studying for an MA degree on Iranian studies at the University of Tehran is a prestigious and valuable academic opportunity which provides students with a unique chance to access the best scholars and professors of the field as well as first-hand resources and information about Iranian society and its rich history and culture, as well as its contemporary political and economic achievements.

Non-Iranian citizenship (Iranian nationals with dual citizenships are not eligible to apply). Holding a Bachelor’s degree or higher in any fields of study from a recognized university. Graduates in humanities and social sciences will be preferred. Applicants are required to submit a scanned copy of their educational degrees/transcripts in their application package. Diplomas must be translated into English (if not originally) and approved by Iranian diplomatic or consular representations in the applicant’s home country if and after admission is granted. Total average of the BA grades at least 14 or above out of 20 (2.8 out of 4.0). Age under 35 years old. Exceptions may be made for highly-qualified applicants up to 40. Good command of English is a requirement but knowledge of Persian language will be an asset. All applicants should express the level of their knowledge of Persian and English in their letter of motivation and provide supporting evidence/documents (e.g. scores obtained in international examinations, language course certificates, evidence of previous university educations in English or Persian).

Deadlines: Applications are welcome until February 28, 2013. Applicants are encouraged to apply as early as possible. Successful candidates will be informed by end of May, 2013.

Visa and Accommodation: The University of Tehran will assist prospect students to get their visas and it will provide proper accommodation at discounted student rates for all participants (rooms cost up to 200 US dollars/month depending on the room conditions and exchange rates). Admitted applicants will receive in due time full instructions about when and how to obtain their visas and about how to book an accommodation in the university’s dormitory.


Important Notice for citizens of the United States, Canada, and United Kingdom:

Given our experiences, we would like to inform potential applicants with American, Canadian, and British nationalities that they may face considerable delay in the visa process or even rejection of their visa applications in most cases. Although the University of Tehran is strictly committed to providing equal opportunity for all prospect students, we kindly recommend potential applicants with above nationalities to consider applying to this program in a later time. Citizens of EU countries (except Britain) would generally have no problem to obtain visas. The University of Tehran is unable to take any responsibility if rejection occurs since the visa process is totally outside of the University’s control or jurisdiction.

Tuition Fees and Financial Aids: The normal enrollment fee for foreign students in the humanities at the University of Tehran is 7200 US dollars per year. However, the Faculty of World Studies has the privilege to provide more than 65% discount for ALL participants in the Iranian Studies Program. As a result, each student will pay only 2275 USD per year, (total of 4550 $ for the whole program). Tuition fees must be paid per annum and in cash at the registration desk.

Please note the above tuition fee will also include two free-of-charge intensive Persian language courses at UT’s Dehkhoda Institute during the first semester of the program. Those students who will need to take part in more Persian language courses during next semesters will be required to pay an additional amount of 160 USD per semester.

In addition to all these wonderful discounts, the UT will also provide one tuition-waiver scholarship for the 2013 program. The winner will be totally exempted from paying the tuition fees for the first year of the program, as well as for any number of Persian language courses to attend at Dehkhoda Institute. This scholarship will be extendable for a second year subject to obtaining minimum total average grade of 18 out of 20 at the end of the first year. Furthermore, a special scholarship is also provided by the President of the University of Tehran to the most advanced student with the highest total average grade in the class at the end of the first year of the program. The winner will not pay any tuition fees for the second year. To apply for the UT’s scholarship, please include a request statement in your application. Please note, however, that the competition over this scholarship is very tough, and applicants are recommended to also seek possible financial assistance from other institutions in their home countries. Some scholarships may be available through the Iranian Ministry of Science, Research, and Technology. For more information, please contact I. R. Iran’s local representation or cultural centers in your home country.

Required Documents for Application:

1- A filled out application form available at: or obtainable through email. 2- A detailed letter of motivation (no longer than 1000 words) 3- A curriculum vitae, including detailed information about previous educations as well as academic publications or work experience (if any)


4- Evidence of knowledge of English and Persian languages (good command in English and any level of familiarity with Persian) 5- Two letters of recommendation from scholars capable of attesting to the applicant’s qualifications (the letters must be sent directly to the program director by email) 6- Scanned copy of previous academic diploma(s) 7- Scanned copy of academic transcripts 8- Scanned copy of passport’s personal data pages 9- A recent color photo (scanned and small-sized) 10- Any additional supporting material that you may prefer to include in your application

All applicants are required to send in their applications via email before February 28, 2013. To submit your application package, and for any questions and queries about the Iranian Studies MA Program, please contact:

Dr. Mahdi Ahouie, Director of Iranian Studies Program, University of Tehran

E-Mail: (preferred way of contact)

Tel: +98-21-88630862 (Office of International Relations, Faculty of World Studies)

Mailing Address: Faculty of World Studies, University of Tehran’s Northern Campus, North Kargar Avenue, Tehran, Iran, P. O. Box 14155-6468

For any further information, please do not hesitate to consult, or send an email to:


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