Training for Anglican Ordained Ministry

Discover the kind of leader you can become through rigorous, spiritually compelling and transformative ministerial training.

Key info

Assistant Deputy Director of Ordinands Rev Raymond Baudon chats about the journey to ordination, what to expect from the discernment process, and his own story of being called to the priesthood.

About the ordination training pathway

Experience your own theological and ministerial formation through ordination training.

As an ordinand embarking on your journey to ordination, you are invited to dive into a rich and diverse programme of theological learning.

Become part of the Church of England’s vital vision for ministry and leadership in the Body of Christ.

  • Develop your skills and learn how to lead through faith, compassion and collaboration.
  • Prepare yourself for flexible deployment and build confidence to lead in diverse social, economic and ecclesiastical contexts.
  • Gain the wisdom to guide people in an increasingly busy and complex world.

“St Augustine’s has always been a place where ideas and action meet. As someone training for self-supporting ministry whilst working full-time, the ability to integrate study with my professional and personal life is essential.

I expected to find a diverse student body but I’ve been delighted to find even more variety than I imagined. Amidst the differences, there is a common commitment among staff and students alike to grapple with thorny issues and grow in the knowledge and love of God.”

Duncan Gray
Part-time ordained ministry student

About your programme of study

As part of your ordination training at St Augustine’s, you’ll study for a qualification in Theology, Mission and Ministry.

There are a range of qualifications available, all accredited by Durham University as part of the Church of England’s Common Awards.

As an ordinand, you can choose to study for one of the following:

Each of these qualifications will allow you to engage in theological study and ministerial training at a level that is appropriate to your own academic experience. Your choice of qualification may also depend on how you’d prefer to study (part-time or otherwise).

Every one of our training programmes allows you, as students, to:

  • understand the intersection of Biblical witness and the traditions of faith in contemporary life
  • engage in contextual reflection to better understand God’s call in our work
  • foster a personal formation that deepens your trust in God’s love, strengthening you to minister that love to others.

By the time your training is complete, you will have gained the knowledge, experience and wisdom you need to minister across a range of missions.

Full-time ordinand Katrina explains what’s defined her St Augustine’s experience as an ordinand.

“When I speak to other clergy and talk about training, I am so glad that I chose to study here. The standard of teaching is second to none and the staff are very accessible, approachable and supportive. So, too, are fellow students, who share the same demands and pressures as I do, both in their studies and in daily life. Giving up so much that I was comfortable with in order to study was a big step for me. Would I do it again? Without a moment’s hesitation, I would.”

Barry Knott,
Full-time Ordained Ministry Student

How will I be studying?

We understand the commitment you will be making by engaging in ordination training. As such, we have designed a range of full-time and part-time study options to allow you to fit your study and placements around your life.

As a part-time student you’ll attend either evening classes or daytime classes, depending on which best suits your schedule. You can choose from one of the following three options:

  • Weekly evening classes at our Southwark campus, Trinity House (Mondays, 6:30pm – 9pm)
  • Fortnightly teaching days at our West Malling campus, Malling Abbey (Fridays, 10:30am – 4pm)
  • Depending on your level of study, there may be an option to attend classes online on Wednesday evenings.

We understand that life can sometimes get in the way of study. If you’re unable to attend your normal class, you can arrange to attend the class at an alternative teaching centre.

This pathway is a full-time programme of study and training, equivalent to a full-time job. It is normally a two-year programme but can be a three-year programme for candidates with appropriate funding.

As a full-time student, you’ll attend either evening classes, daytime classes, or a mixture of both, depending on what best suits you. Choose from one of the three following study modes:

Option 1

  • Two evening classes (6:30pm – 9pm) per week at our Southwark campus (Trinity House) on Mondays. Depending on your level of study, there may be an option to attend classes online on Wednesday evenings.
  • One weekly seminar (3pm – 4:45pm) at either:
    • our Southwark campus on Mondays
    • or at our West Malling campus on Wednesdays (Autumn and Winter terms only).
  • One weekly languages class, either:
    • New Testament Greek, Mondays at Southwark campus (5pm – 6pm)
    • or Biblical Hebrew, Wednesdays at West Malling campus (1pm – 2pm)

Option 2

  • One weekly evening class (6:30pm – 9pm) at our Southwark campus on Monday. Depending on your level of study, there may be an option to attend classes online on Wednesday evenings.
  • One fortnightly teaching day (10:30am – 4pm) at our West Malling campus every other Friday
  • One weekly seminar (3pm – 4:45pm) at either:
    • our Southwark campus on Mondays
    • or at our West Malling campus on Wednesdays (Autumn and Winter terms only).
  • One weekly languages class, either:
    • New Testament Greek, Mondays at Southwark campus (5pm – 6pm)
    • or Biblical Hebrew, Wednesdays at West Malling campus (1pm – 2pm)

Option 3

  • One weekly teaching day (10:30am – 4pm) on Fridays at our West Malling campus
  • One weekly seminar (3pm – 4:45pm) at either:
    • our Southwark campus on Mondays
    • or at our West Malling campus on Wednesdays (Autumn and Winter terms only).
  • One weekly languages class, either:
    • New Testament Greek, Mondays at Southwark campus (5pm – 6pm)
    • or Biblical Hebrew, Wednesdays at West Malling campus (1pm – 2pm)

We understand that life can sometimes get in the way of study. If you’re unable to attend your normal class, you can arrange to attend the class at an alternative teaching centre.

This pathway is a full-time programme that allows for a more significant level of church involvement through an ongoing placement equivalent to roughly three days per week.

This programme is normally a two-year programme, but can be taken over three years if you have access to a higher level of funding.

  • You will usually take two shared modules per term.
  • Unlike the standard full-time route, you will have fewer classes to attend.
  • You will, instead, take a twice termly ‘Mixed mode seminar’.

We understand that life can sometimes get in the way of study. If you’re unable to attend your normal class, you can arrange to attend the class at an alternative teaching centre.

Part-time ordinand Ollie chats about finding a community of students who, like him, are balancing part-time study with work and family life.

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

Come along to one of our open-day style taster events. Meet the staff, chat with fellow students, sit in on classes, and join us in worshipping together.

Who will I be studying alongside?

As a college, we are very lucky to have such a diverse student community. You will learn and train alongside students from all backgrounds and Church of England traditions.

Many of our ordinands have answered a call to become an ordained priest later in life, and will be training for ordination alongside work and family commitments. While some of our ordinands may have studied at university level before, others are discovering academic learning for the first time.

You will attend lectures and seminars with both fellow ordinands and students of theology pursuing learning for a variety of reasons, from enriching their understanding of their Christian faith to studying to better serve Christ in their daily lives.

Ray, an ordinand studying at the college, talks about his experience of learning from and sharing knowledge with his fellow students.

Frequently asked questions

The amount of study time you will engage in on a weekly basis depends on how you’ve chosen to undertake the course. Ordinands engaged in a two-year programme can expect to engage in the following level of study per week:

Part-time
  • Your studies will involve 2 and a half hours of classroom time per week (on average).
  • You will typically take one module each term; each module involves two written assignments.
  • You can expect to dedicate at least ten hours a week outside the classroom for study.
Full-time
  • Your studies will involve around eight hours of classroom time per week.
  • You will typically take two modules each term; each module involves two written assignments.
  • You can expect to dedicate at least twenty hours a week outside the classroom for study.

Students who are undertaking mixed mode full-time study may have different amounts of study time over any particular week. Please get in touch to find out more.

While you will join us on campus for classes, lectures, and seminars, St Augustine’s is a non-residential college. Class-based learning takes place at:

  • the West Malling campus, Malling Abbey
  • the Southwark campus, Trinity House
  • online via Zoom (depending on your level of study).

As part of your studies, you will attend our annual Theological Symposium, held in Canterbury.

Placements and mission projects

As a student training for ordained ministry, you will also undertake the following projects and placements throughout your time here:

  • First year – A mission placement, undertaken as a small-group project with four or five other ordinands.
  • Second year – A pastoral placement in a hospital, prison or similar setting, for a minimum of 30 hours over the year.
  • Final year – A parish placement taking place over approximately eight Sundays, generally in a church context significantly different from your ‘home’ parish.
Residential events

As an ordinand, you’ll attend six residential events each academic year.

During these events, you will engage in modules specific to your ordination pathway, developing your theoretical knowledge and your skills in Christian pastoral ministry and worship.

Residential events are held at various locations, including at our West Malling campus, and at Ashburnham Place in East Sussex.

Residential week

You will also attend a Residential Week once a year. You will stay at King’s School in Canterbury, and daily worship will take place in Canterbury Cathedral.

The Ordained Ministry training pathway is suitable for those who have either:

  • received a bishop’s recommendation to train for ordination for the Church of England
  • received a recommendation through the equivalent process of another denomination.

As part of your discernment process, your Diocesan Director of Ordinands may recommend that you undertake our Introduction to Biblical Studies taster module before being accepted for training to become an ordained minister.

If this is the case, you will need to pay the course fee yourself. However, if you are then accepted as an ordinand, your future fees will be paid by your sponsoring church.

If you are accepted onto the Ordained Ministry training pathway, your tuition fees will be paid directly to St Augustine’s College of Theology by your sponsoring church. This will cover all of your training, teaching sessions and attendance at residential events.

Ordinands may claim reimbursement of travel costs and apply for book grants through Ministry Division.

As an ordinand, the modules that you will take will depend upon the level of academic qualification you are studying for.

Qualification Modules typically studied
Diploma of Higher Education (DipHE) Levels 4 and 5
BA (Hons) Levels 6 and 7
Graduate Diploma (GDip) Level 6
MA Level 7

Take a look at our modules page to explore the range of modules available across different levels.

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

Next steps

Take the next step on your journey into ordination training.

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