About Turkish Studies (MATS) Program

MATS, the Turkish Studies MA program at Sabancı University, is the first such interdisciplinary graduate program in Turkey with English language instruction. Its primary purpose is to meet the growing international demand for knowledge about and a deeper understanding of Turkey. With a highly flexible curriculum that capitalizes on the intellectual and scholarly resources available at one of Turkey's leading private universities, MATS offers students a broad range of courses in History, Political Science, Economics, Cultural Studies, Conflict Resolution, and Visual Arts. In addition, the curriculum also seeks to meet the needs of those international students who wish to learn or improve their command of the Turkish language. Also available are a number of other language courses, including, for example, Ottoman Turkish, Arabic, Persian or Kurdish.

The program offers several advancement possibilities. Graduates will be competitive candidates for PhD programs in various fields of the Humanities and the Social Sciences, including especially History and Political Science (as already borne out by our still very young alumni placement record). The MA degree in Turkish Studies is also likely to enhance the career prospects of students for positions in the public sector (diplomacy and various bureaucratic careers), the private sector (international business, media, tourism), and international ngo’s.

The normal duration of the program is a year and a half (three semesters), while students can be enrolled for a maximum of four semesters. This does not include our  seven-week Summer Terms; nor does it cover term-leaves of absence. We have thesis and non-thesis tracks. In the thesis track, students have to take and pass a minimum of 8 credit courses, plus a non-credit Pro-Seminar, and a non-credit MA Thesis course. Program Requirements may vary according to the year of first enrollment, see MATS degree requirements (thesis). Within the framework of the said MA Thesis course, they are expected to research and write an MA thesis of around 70 pages on a previously submitted and approved topic. In the non-thesis track, a minimum of 10 credit courses plus an MA Project are required. Program Requirements may vary according to the year of first enrollment, see MATS degree requirements (non-thesis). Continuing students may track their program requirements on Student Resources web site based on the year of first enrollment to the program.

Scholarships usually cover the normal program duration (of three semesters). In the thesis track, any student who has successfully completed his/her coursework within three semesters, but who needs additional thesis completion time, may, upon applying to the Social Sciences Institute, be granted a fourth semester without any scholarship, but subject to the payment of a smaller retainer’s fee instead of normal tuition.

For more information, please contact the program coordinator, Ayşe Ozil  (