Master in Theology Theology

Learning, teaching and assessment

 

The information provided about the MTheol Theology is subject to the Postgraduate Programmes Review which we anticipate taking place early in 2022.  This is part of a standard pattern of programme review and revalidation. The revalidated postgraduate programmes will offer a broader range of elective modules, especially in the areas of doctrine and church history, and modules which are designed to integrate theological disciplines.

Teaching and learning together

Our ultimate aim is not just to impart information but to work towards the transformation of students as they reflect with others on loving Christ more deeply in order to explain him simply. We pursue the enhancement of teaching and learning within the College by fostering:

• habits in the lecturer of reflective, self-critical intentionality and innovation
• an ethos in the classroom of directed, active and hospitable learning
• an ethos amongst the faculty of collegiality, teachability and servant leadership
• an ethos in the College of teachability, servant leadership and worship

 

Study hours and make up of study

Within Higher Education, it is generally understood that 1 credit = 10 hours of study, shared between class time, pre-class reading, private study and assessment.

This means that a 10 credit module = 100 hours of study. So for the MTheol, 480 credits = 4800 study hours over the course of the programme as a whole.

In-class learning involves lectures, seminars, discussions, worked examples and presentations. Out-of-class study involves reading, reflecting, researching, writing assignments, group projects and revision for exams. At BA and especially Master’s-level, it will also include work on a substantial dissertation package.

 

Learning, teaching and assessment

The College aims to provide a learning experience which is demanding and exhilarating, reflecting the highest academic standards as well as excellence in pedagogy. The College has been commended for its commitment to integrating the academic and practical aspects of training for ministry vocations. Additionally, it has been recognised that the College excels in teaching biblical languages and biblical studies. Students experience this through a rich and varied learning experience which encompasses lectures, seminars, language classes, field trips, placements and a range of formative and summative assessments. Through these assessments, the College aims to provide all students with an equal opportunity to demonstrate their achievement of Threshold Learning Outcomes (at module level) and Programme Learning Outcomes. Underlying all of the College’s programmes is a commitment both to information and to transformation, and a belief that the sub-disciplines within Theology are integrated within the framework provided by scripture, which can and does speak into every area of life. 

The first two years of the programme are in effect the DipHE Theology and aim to cover in outline the main sub-disciplines of theology: biblical studies, doctrine, history and practical ministry. Study is foundational in the first year, and then progresses to a deeper engagement in the second year.

The latter two years (third and fourth) bring the student to degree level and then on to Master’s level study. The third year builds on work in the first two years and involves integrative learning and a greater degree of thoughtful application. In-depth engagement with a topic and sustained reflective writing are required by means of the compulsory short dissertation. In the fourth year, the student will study a selection of Master’s-level modules and can specialise to a greater depth. The fourth year dissertation package brings the student to a mature engagement with issues which have relevance for his or her own ministry, and requires independence in pursuing relevant lines of enquiry. Across the third and fourth years, students will participate in the postgraduate research seminars, which will expose them to a broad range of ideas and help inculcate critical thinking skills.

Students are awarded a Pass on an MTheol Theology once they have passed modules and dissertations worth 480 credits, including all of the compulsory modules. At least 100 credits must be at Level 4; at least 100 credits must be at Level 5; at least 120 credits must be at Level 6+; and at least 120 credits must be at Level 7. The remaining 40 credits may be at Level 4, 5, 6 or 7.

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This award can be marked Fail, Pass, Merit or Distinction: 

In the first two years (the CertHE and DipHE years), the pass grade is C, but the student must attain an overall average of B+ or better, over all modules taken at Levels 4 and 5, to be allowed to progress to the third (BA) year:

  • The average is calculated using the awarded Level 4 and 5 alpha grades after they have been mapped onto their numerical equivalents (see below). For example, a B+ will have a numerical equivalent of 5. Any numerical grades awarded at Level 6 will not be included in the calculation.
  • The calculation excludes Pass/Fail and zero-credit modules, and will take into account the individual credit weighting of each module. 
  • Students who wish to progress to Year 3 of the MTheol must obtain an average of 5 (B+) or better in order to continue.

In the third year (the BA year), the pass grade is 12 on the undergraduate 15-point scale; to continue on into the fourth year (the MTheol year), the student must attain an average of at least 8 on the undergraduate 15-point scale, over all taught modules taken at Level 6 (or higher), plus a grade of 8 or better for their short dissertation:

  • Grades awarded at Levels 4 or 5 in the third year will be excluded from this calculation.
  • The calculation excludes Pass/Fail and zero-credit modules, and will take into account the individual credit weighting of each module.

At Level 7, the pass grade is 12 on the postgraduate 15-point grading scale.

  • Students may be awarded a Pass with Merit on an MTheol Theology once they have attained all of the above; have attained a rounded average of 6.5 or better in the taught modules (including guided reading modules) and the dissertation/project package at Levels 6 and 7; and have also attained grade(s) of 6 or better specifically for the Level 7 dissertation package.
  • Students may be awarded a Pass with Distinction on an MTheol Theology once they have attained all of the above; have attained a rounded average of 3.5 or better in the taught modules (including guided reading modules) and the dissertation/project package at Levels 6 and 7; and have also attained grade(s) of 3 or better specifically for the Level 7 dissertation package.

An MTheol student may decide to leave the College before the end of their programme. A student who has transferred across to the MTheol Theology at the end of their DipHE year(s) of study (or who has been admitted directly into the BA year with a DipHE equivalent) may exit at the end of the BA Year and be awarded a BA (Hons) Theology, provided that all of the requirements for a BA (Hons) Theology have been met (see the Programme Specification for that award): in such cases, the normal BA (Hons) pass mark of 12 or better applies to each module and to the short dissertation rather than the higher grades required to progress into the fourth and final year of the MTheol programme.

However, a third-year direct entrant who is admitted to the MTheol with a BA (Hons) or equivalent may not be awarded a BA (Hons) Theology as an exit qualification: in such cases, any credits gained in the third year may be used towards future courses under the national Credit Accumulation & Transfer Scheme (CATS).