Master's Degree in Theology (specialisation in the History of Christianity)
This Masters offers a comprehensive overview of the evolution of Christian thought and practice over two millennia and explores the general principles necessary for understanding the history of the Christian Church, and their application, with particular reference to Britain and Ireland.
Students will be introduced to the practice of writing church history, a critical approach to primary source documents, and the use of historical archives. There are also modules on the literary and theological culture of early medieval Ireland, the writing of Church History from the Reformation to the present day, and the Renewal of Theology in the 20th century.
This course consists of eight modules delivered over four semesters (two academic years) and the submission of a thesis of 15,000 words on an agreed topic. Modules are delivered on Wednesday evenings.
In the first year, candidates take the following modules: History of Christian Thought (10 credits); Research Methodologies & Reading and Interpreting Primary Source Texts I (5 credits); "Isle of Saints and Scholars"? The Literary Culture of Early Medieval Ireland (10 credits); and History of Christian Practice: Medieval to Modern (5 credits).
In the second year candidates take: Theology and Renewal in the Twentieth Century (10 credits); Research Methodologies & Reading and Interpreting Primary Source Texts II (5 credits); The Writing of Church History from the Reformation to the 20th century (10 credits); and History of Christian Practice: Medieval Ireland (5 credits).
During this course, students will have the opportunity to visit, view and research relevant texts from the rich and unique collections of holdings housed in the John Paul II and Russell Libraries on campus, some of which date from as early as the eleventh century. These collections will form an integrated element in most of the taught modules, affording students ample opportunity to explore potentially rich areas for original research in their end-of-year dissertations. This Masters explores the general principles necessary for understanding the history of the Christian Church (first semester) and their application in the context of Britain and Ireland (second semester). It offers a comprehensive critical overview of the evolution of Christian thought and practice over two millennia.