Online Certificate of Higher Education in Theology, Ministry and Mission

This exciting new theology degree programme is taught exclusively online, allowing students to engage in faith-expanding study from the comfort of their own home!

Key info

  • Duration: 2 years
  • Location: Online via Zoom (students can be based anywhere in the world)
  • Entry requirements: Normally 2 A levels, but we also take into account your experience and commitment to studying theology
  • Qualification level: Certificate of Higher Education (CertHE) in Theology, Ministry and Mission
  • Award/study level: Level 4

  • Cost: From £1,900 per year (depending on length of study)
  • Find out moreSign up to a Q&A session

About the course

Theology is about understanding our faith in the midst of life – wherever you happen to be.

That’s why St Augustine’s College of Theology is now offering you the opportunity to study theology exclusively online, so you can learn from wherever you are in the world – you do not have to be based in the UK to study.

Accredited by Durham University, the new online-only Certificate of Higher Education (CertHE) Theology, Ministry and Mission explores a range of traditional theological disciplines.

Taught entirely via virtual Zoom classes, this specially designed online programme will provide you with opportunity to establish your skills in theological reflection. With modules that delve into the core beliefs and practices of Christian faith, you will discover and develop your own faith-based perspective on all aspects of daily life.

Through engaging and interactive online learning sessions, you’ll study alongside fellow students from all across the UK and beyond. Classes are led by the same tutors who teach on campus, bringing the same level of energy, excitement, and spiritual insight to our virtual classrooms.

What are the modules?

Over your two years of study, you will engage in the following modules.

Year 1
  • Autumn Term – Intro to Biblical Studies
  • Winter Term – Intro to Church History
  • Spring Term – Intro to Spirituality and Discipleship
  • Throughout the Year – Foundations for Reflective Practice in Context
Year 2
  • Autumn Term – Foundations in Christian Worship
  • Winter Term – Intro to Christian Doctrine
  • Spring Term – Using the Bible Today
  • Throughout the Year – Teamwork & Collaboration

Throughout your second year, you may also take part in Vocations and Further Study. Read more about the modules and learn about the subjects you will be studying.

Discover what it’s like to study at St Augustine’s

Come along to one of our Q&A taster events. Meet the staff, chat virtually with fellow students, and get a taste of what online theology study is like.

Frequently asked questions

As a theology student engaged in an online-only course, you’ll attend your classes virtually via Zoom. All classes and lectures will be led by the same St Augustine’s tutors who teach in-person classes.

Online classes are typically just as engaging and interactive as our in-person classes; there are opportunities to listen to the lecturer, engage in class-wide discussion, and enter breakout rooms to share insights with smaller groups of fellow students.

As with our campus classes, online college teaching events begin with worship in which all students are invited to participate. This allows us to take a moment to connect with God and each another as a Christian community of learning.

The 2023 online Certificate of Higher Education course will begin this September, to coincide with the start of autumn term.

Before your studies begin in earnest, you will be invited to attend online induction events in September as part of Induction Week. During these session you will:

  • be introduced to the College, perhaps meeting some of the tutors who’ll be teaching you
  • learn about the various learning resources and study support available to you
  • find out about key policies and ask any question you may have.

The majority of online classes take place on Wednesday evenings, between 6:30pm and 9:00pm; this includes time for worship.

Modules that you will study over the year (see module section for more details) will involve a limited number of online sessions and tutorials. These learning events may be held at different times throughout the tear.

For the 2023-24 course programme, the year-long ‘Foundations for Reflective Practice in Context’ module will be taught via the following Wednesday evening tutorials:

  • 13th December 2023
  • 27th March 2024
  • 15th May 2024

The amount of study time typically required depends on how you’ve chosen to undertake the course.

Studying theology online over 3 years

Part-time students studying over three years are expected to undertake at least 10 hours of private study per week; possibly more at times, to accommodate study of modules which run throughout the year.

However, you will not need to set aside as much time during the academic terms in which you’re not studying a specific module, which are:

  • spring term in the first year
  • winter term in the second year
  • and autumn term in the third year

You will typically complete three modules over a single academic year. You will be required to complete one or two written assignments per module (2,500 words each). This means you may need to complete between three and six assignments each academic year.

Studying theology online over 2 years

Part-time students studying over two years are expected to undertake at least 15 hours of private study per week; possibly more at times, to accommodate study of modules which run throughout the year.

You will typically complete four modules each academic year; one per term and a fourth throughout the year.

You will be required to complete one or two written assignments per module (2,500 words each). This means you may need to complete between four and eight assignments each academic year.

This course is designed for those without prior or recent experience of academic study. However, we generally recommend that applicants have two A-Levels at grade E or higher, or equivalent qualifications.

If you wish to enrol in this course but have studied theology previously, it may be possible to enter our undergraduate programme at Diploma or BA level. However, this may require you to attend classes in-person for portions of the programme.

Find out more about our entry requirements or alternatively, get in touch with our admissions team for advice and guidance.

As a member of St Augustine’s student community, you are welcome to visit and make use of the facilities at our West Malling and central London campuses.

Although students who study online typically prefer to study remotely, you can use campus facilities should you wish to; although access may be subject to timing and availability.

In addition to this, all St Augustine’s students – including online students – are invited to attend our annual Theological Symposium, held in Canterbury.

Many of our CertHE students have never studied at undergraduate level – and if they have, it’s often been some time since they were attending a lecture or writing an academic essay!

We understand that while academic study is an exciting prospect, it can also be quite daunting. That’s why we provide comprehensive student support that’s there to help you; from learning how to write academically to accessing practical support if things get tough.

As part of our commitment to making theological study accessible to all, we aim to offer effective support for students who are neurodivergent or have learning differences. This could be by allowing for extra time to hand in coursework, working with our dedicated writing tutor via online sessions, or other forms of support.

Find out more about how we support our students.

Study resources

As an online CertHE student, you will have access to St Augustine’s significant online collection of academic resources and texts, available via the Common Awards Hub.

You will receive a SCONUL card, which gives you certain access and borrowing rights with libraries across the UK. Depending on your requirements, you could also receive a letter from the principal to allow you to become a member of the British Library.

Online students are not expected to use our in-person library resources. While you may use our physical libraries for reference, you are not able to borrow books and take them away.

Your total course fee are £5,600 (£2,800 per year). Alongside your course fees, there may be other costs associated with your studies. You may wish to factor in a book budget of £200 for the overall programme; roughly £25 per module.

As part of our commitment to making theological studies accessible to all, we have established the Tattersall Fund. This fund provides bursaries in support of students whose personal circumstances may mean that finance is a barrier to their studying.

Applying for a bursary to help towards the cost of fees (and in some cases, study materials) is simple and non-intrusive. Find out more about bursaries and how to apply.

The Online Certification of Higher Education (CertHE) degree programme also forms part of the Diploma or BA (Hons) in Theology, Ministry and Mission.

Once you achieve your CertHE qualification, many students choose to continue their studies to earn their Diploma or BA. You’d essentially pick up where you left off, choosing a programme of theological study that suits you.

However, if you wish to study at Diploma or BA level, you may be required to attend at least some in-person learning events. While online learning is available to an extent, this may not be suitable for students who cannot commute to either London or West Malling (Kent) in the UK.

Speak to our admissions team if you’d like to know more about future study options.

Theology books on the shelves St Augustine's Trinity House library

Next steps

Take the next step on your journey into studying theology.

Need help or have a question? Contact our admissions team for further assistance.