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Biblical Languages and Literature (MLitt)

Course Description

MLitt in Biblical Languages and Literature

• Focus on the reading of biblical manuscripts and the use of the apparati of the critical editions of the Hebrew Bible, Septuagint and the New Testament with preparation for research degrees.

• Gain a critically and historically informed understanding of biblical traditions and their textual development.

• Contextualise the various methods and sources employed in biblical scholarship in order to facilitate the use of textual investigations in broader biblical, historical and theological research.


Scotland’s oldest university offers a rich heritage of academic excellence in theology extending from its founding in 1413. Probably the two most important factors in choosing a place for advanced study are the academic staff and the research environment.

* Divinity has 22 members of staff undertaking research in a wide range of specialisms, an undergraduate student population of around 100 full-time equivalents, and 90 postgraduates, of whom 20-30 are in MLitt programmes.

* A closely-knit community of academics and postgraduates provides a context in which to engage in stimulating theological explorations.

* St Andrews has gathered one of the most outstanding communities of internationally-renowned scholars.

* Four weekly seminars cover Biblical Studies; Religion and Politics; Theology, Imagination and the Arts; Systematic Theology. There are also regular workshops on the theme of Scripture and Theology.

* Intellectual abilities are promoted as part of a broad package of development, including the enhancement of effective communication and leadership skills, in preparation for your future career.

* The School is home to the Centre for the Study of Religion and Politics, the Institute for Theology, Imagination and the Arts and the Institute for Bible, Theology and Hermeneutics.

Postgraduate community

The School of Divinity promotes a friendly atmosphere with a cross-flow of ideas between the disciplines, while providing the depth and breadth necessary to ground the pursuit of scholarly activity at an international level.
Our biggest asset is not our distinguished history or our fine facilities but rather our people – both staff and students. It is a popular place for visiting scholars from all over the world.

Library resources

As a result of enjoying copyright status during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, the University is rich in theological, historical and biblical works from that period. In more recent times, the University has further developed its library resources, strategically investing in key publications for research and teaching. In addition to the holdings in the University Library, Divinity has a further collection of its books housed in the King James Library which adjoins the College quadrangle and study facilities are also available there.


The close contacts of many St Andrews staff with North America, including regular attendance at the annual meetings of the American Academy of Religion and Society of Biblical Literature, provide an important network for aiding graduates in finding academic positions. This is strengthened by our own alumni who have, over many decades, become established in teaching positions in the United States and Canada. Over 70% of graduates from this programme go on to do a PhD – 60% apply to continue here at St Andrews.

Visit the Biblical Languages and Literature (MLitt) page on the University of St Andrews website for more details!

(Student Profile)


St Mary’s College has been a wonderful place for me to grow in my understanding and love of the Bible. I especially appreciate how many of the staff model an approach to Biblical Studies that is simultaneously broad and deep. Beyond its academic merits, St Mary’s is a very easy place to make lasting friendships because of how staff and existing students seek to build relationships with incoming students. Finally, I have been deeply encouraged by the School’s constant and earnest effort to make students’ experience a positive one.


Entry Requirements

Our minimum academic requirement for entry to most programmes is a 2:1 degree classification from a recognised UK university or the equivalent in a subject-related area.

Course Fees

2017/18: Home/EU £7,500; Overseas £17,090

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