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Masters Degrees (Islamic Theology)

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The MRes degree is a research programme that includes taught modules. It is intended for anyone wishing to move beyond undergraduate work into research, while it offers the help of taught modules to develop research and related skills. Read more
The MRes degree is a research programme that includes taught modules.

It is intended for anyone wishing to move beyond undergraduate work into research, while it offers the help of taught modules to develop research and related skills.

The programme enables you to explore most aspects of Islamic Studies, including Islamic history and philosophy, and contemporary religious and political thought.

The University of Birmingham is an excellent centre for the study of religion and culture. It not only has a long tradition of specialised research in Islam and its relations with the cultural settings in which Muslims live, but it has also built up good relationships and partnerships with Birmingham's many different communities. This long tradition of scholarship and rich cultural mix makes Birmingham an ideal setting to study Islam in both its historical and contemporary forms.

As a postgraduate in this field, you will have access to one of the largest collections of books on Islam in the country, and also the unique Mingana Collection of Syriac and Arabic manuscripts.

Theology and Religion celebrated excellent Research Assessment Exercise 2014 results, being ranked second in the UK - 51% of research at the University of Birmingham for Theology and Religious Studies was top 4* rated ‘world-leading’, A further 28% was rated 3* ‘internationally excellent’.

About the School of Philosophy, Theology and Religion

The School of Philosophy, Theology and Religion offers a variety of forward-thinking postgraduate study opportunities and is home to a dynamic and friendly community of staff and students, pursuing original research on a wide range of topics.

The School is made up of the Department of Philosophy and the Department of Theology and Religion, both of which were ranked second among other departments in the country in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework exercise.

The Departments are closely linked, providing opportunities for interdisciplinary study, but have also developed links more widely, in order to explore synergies with other disciplines.

The Department of Philosophy has links with the College of Medical and Dental Sciences, the International Development Department, the Birmingham Business School, the School of Psychology and the Birmingham Law School. In addition, the Department includes the Centre for the Study of Global Ethics, which was founded in 2001 to address the practical and theoretical issues raised by globalisation. Global Ethics has natural affinities with Political Science and International Studies, as well as the Institute of Applied Social Studies.

The Department of Theology and Religion has extensive formal and informal links with a wide range of academic and religious institutions across five continents. It has also built up excellent relationships and partnerships with Birmingham’s many different faith communities; this offers an ideal context to study religion in its contemporary as well as its ancient cultural contexts. These relationships, coupled with our large international community of postgraduates, means you will be studying in a diverse, yet well-connected environment.

Funding and Scholarships

There are many ways to finance your postgraduate study at the University of Birmingham. To see what funding and scholarships are available, please visit: http://www.birmingham.ac.uk/postgraduate/funding

Open Days

Explore postgraduate study at Birmingham at our on-campus open days.
Register to attend at: http://www.birmingham.ac.uk/postgraduate/visit

Virtual Open Days

If you can’t make it to one of our on-campus open days, our virtual open days run regularly throughout the year. For more information, please visit: http://www.pg.bham.ac.uk

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This programme offers a unique, interdisciplinary approach to legal issues in the Middle East and Islam. Read more
This programme offers a unique, interdisciplinary approach to legal issues in the Middle East and Islam. The programme is built on the work and expertise of UEL’s Law School in the areas of the Palestinian–Israeli conflict, the Iraq crisis, Islamic feminism, Islamic legal discourses and post-colonial analysis of Islamic legal history. The programme offers challenging perspectives on Islamic law, international law, human rights, democracy and pluralism in the context of critical Islamic and Middle East Studies.

Programme structure

There will be two core modules, Law and Policy in the Middle East and Current Issues and Research in International Law. Candidates then take at least one module from the following: Islam and Human Rights, Islamic Legal Cultures, Islamic Legal Theories, Feminist Legal Theories, International Human Rights, law, International Environmental Law, International Trade Law, Law of Armed conflict and International Criminal Law. Candidates may choose their second option from any one of the above or from any other LLM module.
The Dissertation must be deemed by the Dissertation committee to be substantially related to the areas of Islamic & Middle Eastern Studies.

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This Masters degree in Political Islam has been specifically designed for those who wish to comprehend the main currents of Islamic thinking during the modern period. Read more
This Masters degree in Political Islam has been specifically designed for those who wish to comprehend the main currents of Islamic thinking during the modern period. This will involve investigating a number of radical Islamic movements as well as alternative understandings of Islam.

Why this programme

◾The University of Glasgow offers a number of course options that may be taken by students, such as the courses provided within the Global Securities programme.
◾The course is taught by experts in Theology and Religious Studies. Assistance is offered by staff who teach outside of the Islamic tradition, which will be of use for those interested, for example, in Islamic-Christian relations or forms of literature within the Islamic tradition.
◾The programme is sufficiently flexible to enable students to concentrate on specific areas of study, or to concentrate on a more general range of issues.
◾Linguistic ability in Arabic, Persian, Turkish (or any other non-European language) is not essential.
◾Students are encouraged to participate in the wider seminar series offered in the subject area in order to gain a comprehensive knowledge of religion and culture in the contemporary world. (There are experts in Chinese religions, Judaism and Christianity with Theology and Religious Studies).
◾Glasgow has a large Muslim community. There are possibilities to engage with this local community.

Programme structure

This MSc in Political Islam investigates a number of “radical” Islamic movements such as Salafism, the Muslim Brotherhood, and the Islamic revival in Iran post-1978. At the same time, alternative understandings of Islam will be examined including the so-called “liberal” version, Islamic feminist thinking and contemporary manifestations of Sufism (the so-called “mystical” side of Islam).

As the course progresses the topics will engage with the historical Islamic tradition, so that students will appreciate the wide variety of “Islams” that have appeared in modern times. An understanding of Islam is imperative in the contemporary period, with issues such as security, identity and immigration appearing on a daily basis in the Western media. Islam is no longer a religion that is confined to the Middle East, but needs to be understood as an integral part of British society and culture. The challenges and issues that Muslims face require urgent investigation, and this course provides the framework for students to engage with the changes that affect everyone in society.

The programme is designed for small groups that will discuss the topics in a seminar environment. There will be formal lectures and the occasional guest speaker. The basis of the programme will be textual, and will involve class/group discussions about the material provided. Core teaching is delivered in two semesters, followed by a dissertation. The project dissertation is an opportunity for students to identify an area of interest and to create a research project that allows in-depth critical exploration of this.

Career prospects

With the current interest in Islam, this degree provides essential knowledge and skills for those involved in teaching, the civil service, government, the police and the military. The degree also provides an excellent entry into a PhD related to Islamic Studies.

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The Master of Arts in Theology at Western is a two year degree (full-time) which combines course work with a thesis, in a constructive combination of formal instruction, seminar discussion, and supervised research. Read more
The Master of Arts in Theology at Western is a two year degree (full-time) which combines course work with a thesis, in a constructive combination of formal instruction, seminar discussion, and supervised research. The thesis requirement in particular allows study to be tailored to individual interests. Drawing upon faculty working both in the theological disciplines and in the wider university, the degree seeks to foster academic integrity, interdisciplinarity and theological engagement.

The faculty’s central resources lie in Christian thought, but complemented by strengths also in Islamic Studies, global religion, and public theology. Thus a student can do theological research on subjects as diverse as, for instance, the Gospels, Reformation thought or history, Karl Barth, Islamic ethics, religion and violence, or religious pluralism. The goal is to provide students with a research degree which allows them to explore personal or professional interests at the Master’s level, while at the same time to laying a solid foundation for doctoral study in related areas for those wishing to pursue further research.

Visit the website: http://grad.uwo.ca/prospective_students/programs/program_NEW.cfm?p=143

How to apply

For information on how to apply, please see: http://grad.uwo.ca/prospective_students/applying/index.html

Financing your studies

As one of Canada's leading research institutions, we place great importance on helping you finance your education. It is crucial that you devote your full energy to the successful completion of your studies, so we want to ensure that stable funding is available to you.
For information please see: http://grad.uwo.ca/current_students/student_finances/index.html

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This unique and innovative programme is designed to develop students’ knowledge of the key areas of Islamic Studies. This programme will introduce Islam in terms of its fundamental beliefs, history and development from the Arabian Peninsula to other parts of the world. Read more
This unique and innovative programme is designed to develop students’ knowledge of the key areas of Islamic Studies. This programme will introduce Islam in terms of its fundamental beliefs, history and development from the Arabian Peninsula to other parts of the world. Students will examine the key teachings of Islam as a religion and a civilisation that has come in contact with other cultures and civilisations. They will also explore other areas such as women and Islam, Islamic core sources and Islamic ethics in light of contemporary developments.

This programme is SCQF credit-rated by the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA). It is available on a full-time or part-time basis.

Future Study and Careers

This programme is relevant to any candidate who wants to learn about Islam and its connection with other revealed religions such as Christianity and Judaism.

Through establishing a foundation and some critical thinking on the subject matter, candidates will become confident in addressing various challenges in response to their personal or professional situations through working in a multicultural society.

Additional Information
For students requiring a Tier 4 student visa, an overall score of 6 in IELTS for UKVI (with 6.0 in writing and 5.5 in all other areas) is required.
The programme is comprised of five compulsory units (+ 1 optional unit).

The whole programme is equal to 72 credit points with 12 credit points for each unit. The Advanced Diploma will be awarded to students who successfully pass all units.

The compulsory units are as follows:

Introduction to Islamic Studies will introduce students to Islam, its history, important personalities in the early history of Islam, the development of Islam, its main sources and basic teachings. The students will also be introduced to the skill of transliterating for correct pronunciation of some Arabic/Islamic terms. On successful completion of this unit, students should know the basic teachings and the main sources of Islam. In addition, students will be able to understand some of the similarities and differences between Islam and other religions.

Islamic Core Sources and Approaches will give students a comprehensive understanding of the Islamic core sources and approaches. They will be introduced to the different sciences developed within Islamic studies from exegesis (tafsir) to Islamic law (fiqh) and principles of jurisprudence (usul al-fiqh). On successful completion of this unit, students should know the different methodological approaches developed by Muslim scholars within the Islamic tradition.

Islamic Ethics (Akhlaq) has always been an intrinsic and fundamental part of Islamic thought, manifested in both Muslim jurisprudence and Islamic theology. This unit will look at the centrality of ethics in the Islamic core sources and how early and classical Muslim scholars have conceptualised it. Modern debates about the significance of ethics in Islamic core sources will be critically examined.

Women and Islam is a lively subject used by those in both the Islamic and western worlds. It is a subject often used by critics to portray Islam as a misogynistic and oppressive religion. In their arguments, their first point of reference is the plight of Muslim women in many Islamic societies. The advocates of women’s rights in Islam encourage differentiation between the teachings of Islam and diverse cultural practices.

Research Methodology in Social Sciences and Islamic Studies is designed to strengthen students’ critical thinking while writing or reading scientific research, to familiarise students with theories and the practical application of research methodology, methods, design and strategy while conducting a research proposal. The unit also includes aspects of methodology of Muslim scholars in searching for the truth by considering the revealed knowledge of the Qur’an and Sunnah, evidence from iltizamand qiyas (logic) or even disputed sources

Core Units 

•Introduction to Islamic Studies (SCQF 9)
•Islamic Core Sources and Approaches (SCQF 10)
•Islamic Ethics (SCQF 10)
•Women and Islam (SCQF 10)
•Research Methodology in Social Sciences and Islamic Studies (SCQF 10)”

Optional Units 

•Arabic as a Foreign Language (SCQF 5)
•Arabic as a Foreign Language (SCQF 6)
•Arabic as a Foreign Language (SCQF 7)
•Arabic as a Foreign Language (SCQF 8)
•Arabic as a Foreign Language (SCQF 9)
•Arabic for Special Purposes (SCQF 10)
•Islamic Economics and Finance (SCQF 11)
•Islamic Commercial Law (SCQF 11)
•Applied Islamic Banking and Insurance (SCQF 11)
•Islamic Accounting and Auditing (SCQF 11)

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Research profile. In this research area, you can pursue interdisciplinary study of Islamic thought and practice, and of historical, theological, ethical and political encounters between Christianity and Islam. Read more

Research profile

In this research area, you can pursue interdisciplinary study of Islamic thought and practice, and of historical, theological, ethical and political encounters between Christianity and Islam.

Staff research interests focus on Islamic theology (kalam), law (shari‘a and fiqh), and philosophy; Qur’an, Hadith, and Tafsir; Muslim views of Christianity and Judaism; Christian theological engagements with Islam; constructive theology and ethics from a Christian or Muslim perspective; Arab Christianity, classic and contemporary; political Islam; political theology; comparative theology; migration, religion and politics.

You can find out more and identify a potential supervisor by looking at the School’s staff profiles, which give details of research interests and publications, and email addresses.

You are encouraged to contact a potential supervisor to discuss your research project before making a formal application.

At the School of Divinity you will join a community of around 150 research students, drawn from around the world, and from a variety of religious and non-religious backgrounds.

You will study in a stimulating environment. The Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014 ranked the School’s research environment at 100% world-leading / internationally excellent, second in the UK on this front in theology and religion. This outstanding result reflects the vibrancy of the School’s research culture.

Masters by Research

If you have academic training in theology or religious studies (or another relevant subject), and would like to develop your interest with a focus on a particular area, the Masters by Research may interest you.

You can study full-time (one year) or part-time (two years). Your pattern of study can either be three supervised research essays followed by a 15,000 word dissertation, or a 30,000 word dissertation. Most students take the ‘research essays + shorter dissertation’ path. All students receive research training.

Training and support

The ethos of the Graduate School is to promote excellence in postgraduate study, within a stimulating and supportive environment. We value equality and diversity in the School community, and an academic culture that is both critical and constructive.

  • At the start of the academic year, you will be invited to Welcome Week, an intensive introduction to study and life in Edinburgh. Some events are especially for international students new to Scotland and the UK, but everything is open to all.
  • In the first weeks, the School provides a general orientation to research skills and to wider opportunities for training and support.
  • From your first days as a PhD or MPhil student, you will work one-to-one with your primary research supervisor.
  • Your progress will be tracked, through regular supervisions and milestone reviews, to ensure that you get the support you need to bring your project to fruition.
  • You will be part of the research seminars in Theology and Ethics, and in Religious Studies, to which visiting speakers are invited and to which postgraduates present work-in-progress.
  • You will be able to follow taught courses that contribute to your interests and research needs, and can also take advantage of opportunities to learn ancient and modern languages.
  • If you are a PhD student, after successful completion of your first year, you will be eligible to apply for tutoring opportunities, to gain teaching experience.

A University review (2015) commended the Graduate School for providing excellent support: responsive to student feedback; proactive in helping new postgraduates to adjust to their studies and to life in Scotland; enthusiastic and practical in promoting career development. The postgraduate student committee works closely with the School to make the research student experience the best it can be.

Facilities

The School of Divinity, one of the largest centres for the study of religion in the United Kingdom, is located in the historic setting of New College, close to Edinburgh Castle and overlooking Princes Street.

Resources for research are excellent. You can draw on the outstanding holdings of New College Library, the University of Edinburgh’s main library, and the nearby National Library of Scotland. New College Library has one of the largest theology collections in the UK, with more than a quarter of a million items and a large and rich manuscript collection. The University library exceeds 2.25 million volumes. The National Library of Scotland – a ‘legal deposit’ library like the British Library in London and the university libraries of Oxford and Cambridge – is just around the corner.

The School provides an extensive programme of weekly research seminars and special guest lectures. In addition, three research centres provide a special focus for activity: the Centre for the Study of Christian Origins; the Centre for Theology and Public Issues; the Centre for the Study of World Christianity.

You will have access to excellent study facilities, dedicated to postgraduates. PhD and MPhil students have access 24/7, and can request an allocated desk. Masters by Research students have shared study space. All areas have printing/scanning and computer facilities. The main postgraduate study wing has a kitchen. New College has an on-site cafe that is open during term time.



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The end of classical antiquity in the Mediterranean and the Middle East witnessed the formation of polities, institutions and ideologies which define and continue to influence our world today. Read more

The end of classical antiquity in the Mediterranean and the Middle East witnessed the formation of polities, institutions and ideologies which define and continue to influence our world today. By combining a diverse, yet related range of research interests, our programme offers an exceptional selection of linguistic and disciplinary expertise in the study of late antique, early Islamic and Byzantine worlds, embracing Arabic, archaeology, art history, classical languages and literature, history, Persian and theology.

Linguistic training is a vital part of the programme,with courses available in four relevant languages. You will have access to the expertise of academics who are all passionate about their area of study.

Teaching on this programme comes from subject areas brought together in the Centre for Medieval and Renaissance Studies. It is one of the largest communities of Medieval and early modern specialists internationally, with more than 70 members actively pursuing research in this field. This MSc offers you the opportunity for regional and disciplinary specialisation depending on your own research interests.

Programme structure

The MSc comprises seminars, language classes and tutorials, which will include seminar discussion and debate, presentation to peers, directed and independent reading, as well as interactive language teaching.

The compulsory course is: Approaches to the Long Late Antiquity. This course provides specialist methodological, theoretical, and cross-disciplinary training. There will also be a language option in Classical Greek, Latin, Arabic or Persian.

Option courses previously offered include:

  • Archaeology of the Roman Economy
  • Byzantine Archaeology: The Archaeology of the Byzantine Empire and its Neighbours AD 600–1000
  • Constantinople: The History of a Medieval Megalopolis from Constantine the Great to Suleyman the Magnificent
  • Late Antique Visual Culture
  • Palaces and Gardens in the Golden Age of Islam
  • Persian Painting
  • Rome Across Time and Space: Visual Culture and Cultural Exchange AD 300–1300
  • The Seven Ecumenical Councils AD 325–787
  • The Umayyad Empire: The Islamic World in its Late Antique Context
  • Topics in Byzantine Literary History
  • Centre and Periphery in the Age of Constantine VII Porphyrogennetos
  • Greek, Latin, Byzantine and Medieval Latin Text Seminars

Learning outcomes

The programme emphasises acquisition of essential language skills for original research and close work with key historical and/or literary sources of evidence and grounding in the issues surrounding them.

You will gain an appreciation of the associated material cultures, including issues surrounding its recovery, survival and curation, which will prepare you for future academic research and prospective careers in aspects of museums and heritage management.

Career opportunities

Our students view the programme and a graduate degree from Edinburgh as an advanced qualification valued and respected by many employers. Those interested in long-term academic careers consider the MSc as preparation for a PhD.

The MSc provides a toolkit of transferable skills in organisation, research and analysis that will be highly prized in any field of work. It can form a stepping stone to many careers, such as further academic research, museum and art curation, literary translation or analysis, education or public heritage. Graduates of related programmes are putting their skills to use as tutors, archivists, writers and conference coordinators for employers including the RSPB.



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The MA by Research programme requires you to prepare a dissertation of up to 40,000 words on a topic of your choice, for which an academic staff member will provide expert supervision. Read more
The MA by Research programme requires you to prepare a dissertation of up to 40,000 words on a topic of your choice, for which an academic staff member will provide expert supervision.

The PhD, the most advanced research degree, leads to a dissertation of up to 80,000 words on a subject of your choice and under the expert supervision of an academic member of staff.

Our main areas of research expertise are in, Biblical studies, Christian theology, Islamic studies, Jewish and Holocaust studies, Pentecostal and Charismatic studies and Religion and society.

Distance learning

You can study an MA by Research or PhD programme on campus or by distance learning. Please note that if you are studying with us by distance learning, the programme includes a fully-funded annual visit to campus for each full year of your programme (every two years for part-time students).

For more information on distance learning including answers to frequently asked questions, student experiences and funding opportunities, please see our distance learning website.

At Birmingham you also have the option of studying languages, free of charge. Almost no other UK University offers you the opportunity to learn the intense graduate academic language skills which you may need to pursue your research.

Funding and Scholarships

There are many ways to finance your postgraduate study at the University of Birmingham. To see what funding and scholarships are available, please visit: http://www.birmingham.ac.uk/postgraduate/funding

Open Days

Explore postgraduate study at Birmingham at our on-campus open days.
Register to attend at: http://www.birmingham.ac.uk/postgraduate/visit

Virtual Open Days

If you can’t make it to one of our on-campus open days, our virtual open days run regularly throughout the year. For more information, please visit: http://www.pg.bham.ac.uk

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This programme provides a thorough and cutting-edge exploration of classic and contemporary debates in theology and religious studies, incorporating the latest scholarship in the field. Read more
This programme provides a thorough and cutting-edge exploration of classic and contemporary debates in theology and religious studies, incorporating the latest scholarship in the field.

Why this programme

◾You will have the opportunity to gain a comprehensive overview of the field and to develop an area of expertise.
◾You will be taught by academics who are currently engaging in and shaping the international debates around the specialisations offered.
◾This programme is open to those of all faiths and none, and to those who are new to the study of religion.

Programme structure

The 180 credit programme is comprised of two compulsory 30 credit core courses, two 20 credit optional courses, a compulsory 20 credit research skills course, and a compulsory 60 credit dissertation of 12,000 - 15,000 words.

The 12 month programme structure for full-time students is as follows:

Semester 1:
◾Core 1: Reason, Religion and Culture
◾Option 1
◾Research skills course

Semester 2:
◾Core 2: Reading, Religion, and Culture
◾Option 2
◾Dissertation (submitted in September)

Theology and Religious Studies has a selection of optional courses available, including:
◾Modern Islamic Thought
◾Muhammad
◾Reading Theology: Hermeneutics and Interpretation Theory
◾Writing Theology: Creative Writing as Theological Reflection
◾Central Issues in Christian Theology
◾Theology in the Catholic Tradition
◾Foundations of Contemporary Biblical Studies
◾Bible, Culture and Criticism
◾Sacred Texts and Critical Theories
◾Political Theologies
◾Religion and Violence
◾Directed Study

Please contact the Programme Convener for further details about planned taught courses. In order to promote interdisciplinary study, students can elect to take one optional course from any other University of Glasgow Masters programme. The directed study option allows for one-to-one supervision on a topic of personal interest.

Career prospects

As a graduate of this programme, you will be in possession of a variety of subject specific and transferable skills and graduate attributes which will equip you for a wide range of careers and for further academic study.

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This interdisciplinary programme aims to provide you with the opportunity to develop your knowledge and understanding of medieval society and culture. Read more
This interdisciplinary programme aims to provide you with the opportunity to develop your knowledge and understanding of medieval society and culture. Staff expertise, drawn from across the University, covers a wide range of disciplines and specialisms including Archaeology; History; Islamic studies; Law; Music; Theology; Visual and material culture; and the literatures of England, France, Germany, Italy and Spain from the Fall of the Roman Empire to the Renaissance. Particular areas of strength include medieval religious culture, Christian-Muslim interaction, intellectual and elite culture, and the history of medicine.

The University library maintains extensive holdings in all these disciplines, extensive audio-visual collections and a number of medieval manuscripts (including the Syon Collection), while Exeter Cathedral Library and Archives and the Devon Heritage Centre contain further significant medieval manuscripts, documents and early printed books. You will benefit from contact with leading scholars in the field, whilst receiving the training suitable for MPhil/PhD research.

Modules

A range of optional modules are available which reflect the varied research interests of academic staff across the Centre for Medieval Studies. These interests range widely across the medieval period and cover Britain, Europe and the Islamic world. They also represent several disciplines, including History, Archaeology, Classics, Literature, Music, Art History, Theology and Islamic Studies.

The core module Interpreting the Middle Ages: Images, Texts and Contexts will give students an overview of these different disciplinary approaches and show how they can be applied to the study of medieval texts and objects. Other core modules are Medieval Research Skills, which introduces students to the skills needed to work with medieval sources such as palaeography and codicology, and Current Research in Medieval Studies which asks students to reflect on how academic research projects are designed and presented, and gives them guidance in developing their own dissertation projects. Students also have the option of taking Latin modules and are strongly encouraged to do so if they are considering going on to an MPhil or PhD.

The programme

- offers an excellent, interdisciplinary education in medieval studies, covering a wide range of topics and approaches across the medieval period;
- gives students the opportunity to work with the medieval sources in and around Exeter, for example at Exeter Cathedral, the Devon Heritage Centre and the University’s Special Collections;
- produces graduates who are highly competent in subject-specific, core academic, and personal and key skills that are both relevant and transferable to employment;
- encourages participation in research seminar programmes offering insights into a very wide range of research cultures and specialisms and into how academics go about designing and presenting research projects;
- offers excellent preparation for students intending to continue on to doctoral-level research with a good track record in obtaining funding for further study.

Research areas

As an MA Medieval Studies student you will be welcome to join the Centre for Medieval Studies (http://humanities.exeter.ac.uk/history/research/centres/medieval/) , which brings together academic staff and Postgraduate students from a wide range of disciplines across the University’s Colleges. We are brought together by our shared interests which run from the Early Middle Ages to the early Renaissance and may include archaeology, theology, music, literature and law. We hold regular seminars and research events which, if you decide to join us at Exeter, we hope you will not only attend but become an active part of.

Research is at the heart of History and our students are encouraged to come to Departmental Research Seminars and become an active part of wider research community. Our research centres regularly hold seminars and other research events which MA students are welcome to attend.
Our current research centres include:
• Centre for Early Modern Studies
• Centre for Imperial and Global History
• Centre for Maritime Historical Studies
• Centre for War, State and Society
• Centre for Medical History
• Centre for Medieval Studies
• Institute of Cornish Studies

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Interdisciplinary Approaches to Religion and History in the Pre-Modern World. Encounter and Conflict. Read more
Interdisciplinary Approaches to Religion and History in the Pre-Modern World: Encounter and Conflict

Why is Jerusalem still such a contested place? What are the reasons for the systematic destruction by the Islamic State (IS) of the cultural heritage of the past? Why do sacred texts produced centuries ago continue to shape the lives of people today? How are they used and abused? Why does the sword sometimes replace the word in religious matters? How did religious groups, ideas and artefacts travel from one continent to another and how did that migration transform them? In other words, how did religious conflicts and encounters shape the modern world and why do they still matter today?

These are some of the topics MF Norwegian School of Theology tackles in its new M.Phil programme in History of Religions, with a primary focus on Religion in the Pre-Modern World: Encounters and Conflicts.

The programme is focused on the issues of religious cross-pollination, coexistence and conflict in three target areas: Europe, South-East Asia and the Middle East. Addressed in a long historical perspective stretching from Late Antiquity to the European Renaissance, the programme seeks to illuminate the roots of present peaceful coexistence and interchange, as well as of today’s antagonisms and conflicts. The underlying idea of the programme is that, in order to fully grasp current religious conflicts and alliances, we need to understand how the perceptions of past and present are intertwined, reciprocally dependent and constantly reshaped.

Based on a multidisciplinary approach and applying various theoretical frameworks and interpretative methods, the core courses of the programme aim to reveal historical dynamics, privileging ‘how’ and tentatively ‘why’ over ‘who’ and ‘when’.

The programme is conceived at the intersection between political history and history of religions, but relies also on other disciplines, such as the history of ideas, art history and archaeology. These are meant to provide the depth of field expected in Big History by illustrating and clarifying the macro-historical perspectives.

Teaching and learning are driven by a hands-on and case-oriented attitude and core courses are complemented by lectures and seminars of theory and method.

The programme is open to all students with a BA in related disciplines (history, religious studies, theology, archaeology, art history, social sciences, etc.).

The programme coordinator is Victor Ghica, Professor of Antiquity and Early Christian Studies. The core courses of the programme will be taught by Kristin B. Aavitsland, Professor of Cultural History, Liv Ingeborg Lied, Professor of the

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How did the ancient Romans view religious-political differences? How did ancient Jewish, Christian, and Muslim authorities use authoritative texts? What potential for pluralism exists in modern monotheisms and secularisms?. Read more
How did the ancient Romans view religious-political differences? How did ancient Jewish, Christian, and Muslim authorities use authoritative texts? What potential for pluralism exists in modern monotheisms and secularisms?

Tension between group solidarity and productive relations with ' others' has been part of human history for as long as evidence exists. In Europe it has played out most enduringly in relations among the monotheistic religions: Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Today, in the face of mass migration from Muslim regions, questions of political identity and belonging remain bound up with religious affiliation. This one-year degree programme focuses on relations between Jews, Christians and Muslims in the antique world and how these relations have formed our modern society. We will explore concepts as religious pluralism, politics, and their many interfaces globally in particular.

In this track within the Master's Programme in Theology & Religious Studies, you will:
* examine the literary sources of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam in a historically informed way in order to bring critical perspectives to modern interpretations;
* identify continuing issues in Jewish, Christian, and Islamic self-definition, toleration of difference, and exclusionary or conversionist tendencies;
* map a range of ancient possibilities for coexistence or conviviality and their opposites under changing conditions.

Why Groningen?

• rated best Master's programme in Theology & Religious Studies in the Netherlands
• top 100 university
• integrated approach of religious pluralism, politics, and their many global interfaces
• focus on historical context of modern societies
• taught by internationally recognized experts in the field
• opportunity to pursue your own research interests

Job perspectives

As a graduate you can become an adviser and policymaker on interreligious issues and multicultural society. You may work in cultural organisations and companies in the public sector. In addition, you can work in the media. You can become a teacher of religion or philosophy. If you want to pursue an academic career, you can follow this track as a specialization within the research Master's programme.

Job examples

• Consulting & Policy
You are able to provide well-founded advice on interreligious issues and multicultural society. You can use this expertise in an advisory position at cultural organizations, in companies or in the public sector. Your knowledge equips you for policymaking positions in this field.

• Media & Journalism
The current debate often refers to perceived historical realities. Your expertise in the formative periods of Judaism, Christianity and Islam enables you to ask critical questions concerning modern-day claims about these religious traditions. You can use your knowledge and skills as an editor at a publishing company, broadcasting company, newspaper or news and current affairs magazine. You could also work as a freelancer.

• Education
Once you have completed this Master's programme you will have enough knowledge of the subject to become a secondary school teacher in the subject of Religious Studies and Philosophy or Social Studies. You could also opt for a position in higher vocational education, for example teaching Theology at a university of applied sciences. As you also need didactic skills as a teacher, it is advisable to do a Master's in Education after you have completed your regular Master's programme.

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The programme offers a high quality student experience through a strong programme of study within the field of Church History, encouraging the student to explore in depth a range of topics relating to the history of the Christian church from its inception to the present. Read more
The programme offers a high quality student experience through a strong programme of study within the field of Church History, encouraging the student to explore in depth a range of topics relating to the history of the Christian church from its inception to the present.

Course Overview

The School is part of a university which was established in 1822, with Church History having been a core subject in the theological curriculum from the beginning. Drawing on expertise throughout the Faculty of Humanities, our staff has an international profile in scholarship with published expertise in monasticism and medieval Christianity, Protestant nonconformity, nineteenth century and twentieth century religious thought as well as Christianity in Wales.

The School of Theology, Religious Studies and Islamic Studies has a vibrant research culture and MTh students are encouraged to participate in research seminars.

There are two parts to the MTh. Part I consists of six taught modules, on completion of which the student progresses to Part II, a 15,000 word dissertation. The MTh comprises three compulsory modules and three options, devised in such a way as to equip the student with essential knowledge of key aspects of the Christian tradition, along with a dissertation on a specialist topic of the student’s choice.

The Compulsory modules comprise Study Skills which introduces students to the basic skills needed to be a successful researcher including how to access and utilize bibliographical resources. Two further modules at the start of the programme provide the student with an overview of two key epochs in Christian history, namely the patristic or early church period, and the Protestant Reformation. The Church Fathers and the Making of Doctrine introduces the way in which Christian faith developed and was formularized by its leading theologians and thinkers during the first five centuries while The Reformation provides an insight into the way in which Christian Europe responded to the challenge of renewal during the sixteenth century and beyond.

The student is required to complete three of the four option modules which cover medieval Christianity (Cîteaux and the Growth of the Cistercian Order and St Thomas Beckett: Archbishop, Martyr, Saint), popular Protestantism during the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries (The Evangelical Revival in England and Wales), and religion and society during the twentieth century (Christianity, Culture and Society in Twentieth Century Britain).

Modules

-Study Skills for Theology and Religious Studies
-The Church Fathers and the Making of Christian Doctrine
-The Reformation
-The Cistercian World 1: Citeaux and the Growth of the Cistercian Order
-Thomas Becket: Archbishop, Martyr, Saint
-The Eighteenth Century Evangelical Revival in England and Wales
-Christianity, Culture and Society in Twentieth Century Britain
-Dissertation

Key Features

The programme is based upon an established pool of expertise in related concerns, and covers a range of projects undertaken over a number of years:

Staff are research active and regularly attend academic conferences.

Study cutting edge areas of academic interest

The staff expertise represents a considerable bank of knowledge and skills that will underpin this programme and will ensure student experience a high quality educational experience.

In addition Students will benefit from the:
-Opportunity to specialise in the chosen area of Church history
-We have a long and distinguished tradition of specialist teaching in church History
-Vibrant research culture

Assessment

Assessment is usually based on written work in the form of long and short essays, reports, book reviews and reflective pieces.

Career Opportunities

The programme has been designed to attract students interested in developing both their generic as well as their subject-specific skills. It offers opportunities for students who have recently graduated to move on to work at level 7 in their specialist field of study and help prepare them for careers in education, ministry and research. The programme also offers excellent continuing professional development for teachers at various stages of their career, ministers currently in pastoral charge seeking further professional development and other interested parties. In addition, the programme will be attractive to students who wish to study out of personal interest or faith commitment.

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The MRes programme offers a high quality student experience through a unique programme of study with 60 credits of taught modules within the field of Biblical Studies, with a Dissertation of 120 credits amounting to up to 30,000 words in total. Read more
The MRes programme offers a high quality student experience through a unique programme of study with 60 credits of taught modules within the field of Biblical Studies, with a Dissertation of 120 credits amounting to up to 30,000 words in total.

Course Overview

Have a long and distinguished tradition of specialist teaching in Biblical Studies going back many decades and, today, all our Biblical Studies staff continue to participate nationally and internationally in significant biblical research projects.

The School of Theology, Religious Studies and Islamic Studies has a vibrant research culture, and MRes students are encouraged to participate in research seminars.

The MRes programme is delivered as a full-time and part-time programme of study, and is also available as distance learning. It looks in its 60 credits taught element to encourage the student to explore in depth a range of topics relating to the Bible, both from historical and contemporary perspectives. All module content is available through the University’s Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) and students will be supported throughout their studies through regular access to their module tutors, either one to one (by email, skype, phone), in groups (using media such as Skype), or via VLE module discussion forums or wikis.

Students will be supported through a variety of mechanisms using technology where appropriate, and particularly through the 120 credit Dissertation part of the programme. An annual residential graduate summer school is held for all students in July where students are able to experience lectures and seminars covering both issues related to generic learning and subject-specific information and to engage with a number of our research students.

Modules

Students will choose three modules. Below is an illustrative list of modules available:
-Study Skills for Theology and Religious Studies
-The Bible: Text and Transmission
-The Bible: Contemporary Approaches
-The Book of Genesis
-The Book of Isaiah
-The Gospel of John
-Paul and his Letters
-Dissertation

Key Features

The programme is based upon an established pool of expertise in related concerns, and covers a range of projects undertaken over a number of years:

Staff are research active and regularly attend academic conferences.

Study cutting edge areas of academic interest

The staff expertise represents a considerable bank of knowledge and skills that will underpin this programme and will ensure student experience a high quality educational experience.

In addition Students will benefit from the:
-Opportunity to specialise in the Old Testament or the New Testament
-We have a long and distinguished tradition of specialist teaching in Biblical Studies
-Vibrant research culture

Assessment

A range of assessment methods are used from essays and short written evaluation, to the creation of publicity flyers, feasibility reports, oral presentations and reflective pieces. The Dissertation is between 25,000 and 30,000 words.

Career Opportunities

The MRes programme equips the student with a range of skills appropriate for a broad variety of posts including teaching and ministry and prepares the student to progress to MPhil / PhD.

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This programme provides the opportunity to study a variety of religious traditions, in combination with advanced learning in the theory and method of the study of religion. Read more

This programme provides the opportunity to study a variety of religious traditions, in combination with advanced learning in the theory and method of the study of religion.

Religious beliefs, behaviours and institutions are powerful components in human societies. Understanding their motivations and structures can help the search for solutions to major challenges in the contemporary world.

This programme allows a deepening engagement with theory and method in religious studies, while encouraging in-depth study of one or more religious traditions. This combination of theoretical know-how with studies in specific traditions equips you to compare, interpret and explain religion in a cross-cultural perspective.

You can study Jewish, Christian, Islamic and Indian traditions, as well as indigenous religions of Africa, North America and East Asia, and new age and diasporic traditions. The programme also offers the opportunity to learn Sanskrit, Arabic or Persian (subject to availability) through our expertise in Asian Studies and in Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies.

Programme structure

This programme is run full-time over one year (or part-time over two years). You will be taught mainly in small classroom/seminar groups. You will be given training in research methods which offers a practical approach to postgraduate level skills of critical investigation and writing, and receive individual supervision for your 15,000 word dissertation.

Compulsory courses

Compulsory courses comprise Theory and Method in the Study of Religion; one further course from the options specific to this programme; and two courses in research methods.

Option courses

You will choose three options. At least one must be a course in religious studies, such as:

  • Contemporary Theories of Religion
  • Hindu Traditions: Critical Investigations
  • From Diatribe to Dialogue in Christian-Muslim Relations
  • New Age Spirituality in Contemporary Culture

The options on offer change from year to year, so please consult the Programme Director for advice on what will be available. With the agreement of your Programme Director, you may also choose options from other taught masters programmes, language courses, and advanced undergraduate courses.

Career opportunities

This programme is designed to provide a strong foundation for postgraduate research in the field or for employment in a range of areas requiring critical analysis and empathetic understanding.



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