Theology and Religious Studies (MA by Research / MRes / PhD)

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Study mode

Full-Time or Part-Time

Campus

Francis Close Hall, Cheltenham

Research in Biblical studies, religious studies or theology will enable you to complete a survey of existing knowledge in your selected area. In the case of a PhD, you will make an original contribution to knowledge.

Theology and religious studies is a vibrant learning community within a university that has an established research reputation, being recognised for world-leading and internationally excellent research output (REF, 2014). Many of our students follow a research degree out of personal interest. However, for some it is an important step towards lecturing in higher education or for achieving a new career in religious studies or other areas.

Research Environment

There’s an ethos of collaboration between students and staff. Our staff have established an international reputation through their research, publications, research supervisions and presentations at academic conferences. Their expertise covers a wide range of topics in areas such as theology, Old Testament, New Testament, Buddhist philosophy, Islam and contemporary Judaism. We have special interests in: socio-scientific approaches to biblical studies; New Testament theology; the Bible and the visual arts; and the Bible and spirituality.

We welcome applications in these areas. The research areas of theology, biblical studies and religious studies at the university attract research students from around the world. Recent students have come from the USA, Australia, Canada, India, South Africa, Japan, Germany and South Korea, as well as the UK. Our strengths in biblical studies led to the development of the International Centre for Biblical Interpretation. We offer opportunities for interdisciplinary research within humanities and also across the university. It’s possible, under certain conditions, to do a research degree in theology and religious studies by international distance learning (in your own country).

We have special interests in socio-scientific approaches to Biblical studies; New Testament theology; the Bible and the visual arts; and the Bible and spirituality. We welcome applications in these areas.

Research Areas:

Research areas include: Biblical studies, Buddhist philosophy, contemporary Judaism, Islamic political philosophy, and gender and religion. All students are required to take and complete a Postgraduate Certificate in Research Methods to support the development of their project and their education as researchers.

This research contributes to the subject community Religious, Philosophical and Historical Studies and the research priority area Being Human: Past, Present and Future.

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Entry requirements

  • MA by Research/MRes: a 2:2 honours degree or equivalent in a relevant subject area
  • PhD: a master’s degree or equivalent in a subject area relevant to the proposed research topic
  • We actively encourage applications from students from different backgrounds who demonstrate appropriate research experience and achievement
  • EU and international students need IELTS 6.5 overall (with a minimum of 6.0 in writing and 5.5 in any other component) or equivalent

Fees

See the further details of tuition fees when studying a course at the University of Gloucestershire.

Prof. Philip Esler

Staff Profile

Prof. Philip Esler

Portland Chair in New Testament Studies

"Professor Esler, who gained his New Testament doctorate from Oxford, practised law in Sydney, Australia, before moving to the UK with his family permanently in 1992, initially to the University of  St Andrews. From 2005 to 2009 he was on leave from St Andrews to serve as the first Chief Executive of the Arts and Humanities Research Council."

Publications

studying on computer
Theology and religious studies fosters a vibrant learning community and has an established research reputation, being recognised for world-leading and internationally excellent research output (REF, 2014).
fch campus
We offer opportunities for interdisciplinary research within humanities and also across the university.
religious statue on cathedral
Our strengths in Biblical studies led to the development of the International Centre for Biblical Interpretation. This aims to promote scholarship that both studies the Bible in its various ancient contexts and engages with its subject matter in such a way as to advocate its continuing significance for life in church and society.

School of Education and Humanities

Our School of Education and Humanities will help you graduate as a well-rounded, innovative and passionate individual. You will work with experienced practitioners, engage with active researchers and be inspired by published authors.

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