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Theology (PgCert)

1 semester (full-time) / 2 semesters (part-time) / n/a (distance / e-Learning)

The School of History, Archaeology and Religion also offers a PgDip or MTh in Theology. For more information on this course please see the relevent course information page.

Course Aims

The Postgraduate Certificate in Theology is a postgraduate qualification which engages in critical theological reflection upon professional practice. It is available in four different Pathways:

It is expected that most of the students undertaking the course will be involved in some kind of ministry, whether on a full- or part-time basis. It is equally available and relevant to laity and clergy alike.

The formal aim of the course is to improve the competence of practitioners so they can make a better contribution within their ministry.

It also provides an opportunity for exploring present and future training and educational needs within professional development.

Special Features

Courses Description

Studied full-time, the Postgraduate Certificate is an excellent ‘sabbatical’ programme. Within the four month period of September to December, you will complete three modules of study, while also having time for personal reflection. It is particularly suited for a clergy sabbatical, where accommodation at St Michael’s College creates a congenial, collegiate atmosphere combining academic, personal and spiritual development. We will do everything possible to make the particular options of interest to you available, but we cannot guarantee this. Having completed this programme, you then have the option of taking the qualification or of continuing with the Postgraduate Diploma or MTh in part-time mode.

Teaching is delivered on Fridays: part-time students will normally attend on four Fridays in each of the two semesters; full-time for eight Fridays in one semester. Part-time students should expect to have another day a week available during the academic year for reading, preparation for sessions, and for writing assessment. Full-time students will need 35 hours a week for the one semester. The teaching style for any particular session varies widely, but includes lectures, seminars, student presentations, and free discussion.

Though not offered as a designated module, support and training for advanced study of the biblical languages is offered via the Independent Learning Project.

Course Structure

Students take a total of 60 credits of modules, consisting of:

There will be a number of written assignments of 4,000 words in each taught module.

Please see the Theology website for more course and module information.

Available Modules

Core Module (compulsory for all four Pathways)

All students on all pathways take the following mosule:

  • Research Methods for Theology

Practical Theology Pathway

Students take the first and then one more of the following option modules:

  • Principles of Practical Theology
  • Continuity and Change: Mission in Contemporary Society
  • Faith, Belief and Spirituality
  • Contemporary Theologies of Mission
  • Bible in Ministry
  • Independent Learning Project
  • Critical Reflection on Practice

Biblical Studies Pathway

Students take the first and then one more of the following option modules:

  • Hermeneutics and Critical Method
  • New Testament in Social Perspective
  • Exegesis of Biblical Texts
  • Out of Babylon: Old Testament Theology
  • The Horrors we Bless: Old Testament Texts
  • Independent Learning Project

Christian Doctrine Pathway

Students take the first and then one more of the following option modules:

  • Hermeneutics and Critical Method
  • Contours of Christian Theology
  • Theology and Biography
  • Theologies of Liberation
  • Independent Learning Project

Church History Pathway

Students take one of the following option modules:

  • Church History I (40 credits)
  • Church History II (40 credits)

Entry Requirements

The programme is suitable for graduates in Theology and/or Religious Studies. Though primarily aimed at people engaged in Christian Ministry (in its widest understanding), laity or ordained ministers of religion alike, members of some other professional groups - e.g. nursing, medicine – will find it equally valuable.

Applicants should normally possess or expect to obtain a First or Upper Second class UK Honours degree, or equivalent. However, significant experience of ministry can also be taken into account.

Note: International students pursuing part-time programmes of study are not eligible for Tier 4 (General Student) visas and must have alternative leave to remain in the UK if they intend to study at the University in person.

How to Apply

Applications can be made for this course via our Online Application Service selecting the Graduate Certificate Theology option from the list of courses.


For more information on funding available, please see the school's funding website.

Next intake:

School Contact

Name: Lyn Davies  




School Website:

More information

School of History, Archaeology and Religion


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