Graduate Certificate and Diploma (GCert & GDip) in Theology, Ministry and Mission

  1. About the course

    The GCert and GDip in Theology, Ministry and Mission are specially tailored programmes of theological learning and research that allows lay and ordained ministers, as well as church members, to deepen their theological knowledge, engaging with daily life and ongoing experience of the Body of Christ.

    Accredited and awarded by Durham University, these programmes includes offers opportunities to develop advanced skills as part of your continuing ministerial development. The degree can be taken part-time or full-time. Much of the teaching is delivered alongside candidates for church ministry, but the programme is suitable for all, irrespective of any ministerial involvement.

  2. Who is it for?

    The course is designed for lay and ordained ministers, or church members, who wish to deepen their theological knowledge, often (but not always) building on previous theological learning. The GCert and Grip programmes are designed to allow graduates to engage with theological study at graduate level, typically as preparation for theological study and research at postgraduate level (e.g., MA). In addition, these graduate programmes may be used by theology graduates, or those holding other qualifications in theology and related areas (e.g., ordained ministers), who wish to re-engage with theological study. Some students undertake this programme as and end in itself, in order to enrich their theological learning, while others use this as preparation for postgraduate study and research.

    The programme provides opportunities to relate academic learning to contemporary church life, but you need not have any particular role or experience within the church.

  3. Qualifications available

    • Graduate Certificate (GCert) in Theology, Ministry and Mission – 60 credits at Level 6
    • Graduate Diploma (GDip) in Theology, Ministry and Mission – 120 credits at level 6

    The GCert is effectively the first half of the GDip. Both involve study at Level 6 (which may include some study at Level 5), which is equivalent to the level of the final year of a full-time degree.

  4. How long will it take?

    The GDip can be taken on a part-time or full-time basis, the GCert on a part-time basis only. The GCert takes one year of part-time study; the GDip two years of part-time study, or one year of full-time study.

    You can study a selection of modules in the following areas: Biblical Studies, Church History, Christian Doctrine, Spirituality and Reflective Practice. You will also have the option of undertaking an Independent Learning Project or, in the case of the GDip, a longer Dissertation.

  5. Where can I study?

    Modules are offered either on weekday Monday evenings at Trinity House (Southwark) or on fortnightly Friday day sessions at Malling Abbey, West Malling (Kent).

  6. What will I study?

    GCert students take three of the following modules, whereas GDip students take six (or five, in case they choose to do a Dissertation or Extended Project). The selection of modules depends on your interest and/or availability (not all modules are offered each year).

    Christian Doctrine in Focus

    This module focuses on the Christian doctrines of Trinity, creation and the person and work of Jesus Christ. It studies how these areas of Christian doctrine have been subject to critique within and outside the Church in modernity and post-modernity, and examines various constructive theological responses to such critique, for example, Radical Orthodoxy and post-liberal theology.

    Issues in Biblical Theology

    This module explores some of the main issues involved in studying Biblical theology and engages with some major biblical themes such as the nature of God, God’s presence/absence and the people of God. Students will be introduced to the work of some significant scholars in the field. Particular attention is given to the unity and diversity of the testaments, and the effects of this on a canonical approach to particular themes.

    The Bible and Christian Faith

    This module will explore specific biblical texts and themes from a range of hermeneutical perspectives and bring these to bear on contemporary contexts.

    Church History in Focus

    This module will explore one or more important areas of church history and will typically include a focus on the Protestant Reformations. It will include study of relevant primary sources; consideration of the chosen area’s connections to the wider history of Christian life and thought; and attention to the relationships between this historical area and contemporary Christian practice and experience.

    Texts and Traditions in Christian Spirituality

    This module aims to engage with a range of voices from the Christian spiritual tradition in relation to disciplines of academic study, including disciplines shared by non-theological subject areas. It introduces students to the study of spirituality as well as to a range of texts from the writings of great figures within the tradition of Christian spirituality.

    Project or Dissertation

    GDip students typically also do either an Independent Learning Project, an Extended Project or a Dissertation. In either case, the opportunity is for you to explore a particular topic or context that is of interest to you and which has not appeared elsewhere in the pathway.

    As an independent student you’ll also undertake the following pathway-specific module:

    Further Reflective Practice in Context

    The focus of this module (and corresponding placement) is theology in the contemporary public arena. It offers the opportunity to experience, and reflect upon, the ways in which theology might be expressed and exercised in the realms of business, civic organisation or politics.

  7. Course structure

    The following overview reflects a typical part-time GDip programme. GCert students (part-time) only take one set of three modules. Full-time GDip students take the total amount of modules listed below (120 credits) in a single year.

    Year one

    Three taught modules, for example:

    • Christian Faith and Ethical Living
    • The Bible and Christian Faith
    • Texts and Traditions in Christian Spirituality

    Year two

    Three more modules, for example:

    • Christian Doctrine in Focus
    • Further Reflective Practice in Context
    • Independent Learning Project
  8. What is involved?

    Most Graduate students study on a part-time basis, taking one module per term in the above subject areas (and attending weekly evening classes or fortnightly teaching days). Those taking the GDip programme on a full-time basis, however, will take two modules each term (attending two sets of teaching sessions). Full-time students also attend additional weekly Texts and Themes’ seminars in the first two terms designed to help them to integrate their learning in the various subject areas.

    A module typically involves two written assignments. Full-time study requires at least twenty hours of study per week, outside class time. Part-time study requires at least ten hours of study per week, outside class time.

  9. Academic Calendar

    Please Contact Us for our Academic Calendar for 2020/21.