Contemporary Spirituality in Historical Context
MA Taster Term for December 2023

In this reflective and engaging MA Taster Term, you’ll explore major historical and contemporary strands of Christian spirituality over a three-month academic term.

Key info

  • Next enrollment: December 2023 – Sign up now

  • Duration: December 2023 to March 2024 (Winter Term)
  • Location: Kent campus (West Malling)

  • Entry requirements: A degree in theology/ministry, or degree in another subject plus a qualification in theology/ministry

  • Cost: £500 (payable on application)
  • Qualification level: Worth 20 credits

“If you’re thinking about studying one of the Taster Terms at St Augustine’s, I encourage you to come and try a module at the West Malling campus, because you won’t regret it. You will be in love with this space; a place where the visible and invisible meet.”

St Augustine’s Taster Term student

About the taster term

In this reflective and engaging MA Taster Term, you will explore major historical and contemporary strands of Christian spirituality. Through your studies you’ll have the opportunity to develop your own spiritual practice and to resource others in theirs.

You will explore different varieties of contemporary Christian spirituality and the techniques they employ around spiritual practices, reflecting on their similarities and differences.

Using this context, you will analyse the relevance of these cultural, theological and historical approaches and how they influence and impact contemporary spirituality.

You will attend classes with fellow students at our West Malling campus in rural Kent, joining students and staff for morning worship before engaging in the day’s classes. This taster term is taught by Rev Dr Emma Pennington.

“I opted to study at St Augustine’s because I felt I was somewhere where my course of study would be individualized rather than simply following a curriculum. There was a genuine openness to people of all traditions and backgrounds at the College, too.”

St Augustine’s student

Where and when will I be attending classes?

Classes for the Contemporary Spirituality in Historical Context MA Taster Term will be taught via fortnightly Friday teaching days at our Kent-based campus.

Location: West Malling campus (52 Swan Street, West Malling, Kent, ME19 6JX) View on Google Maps

Date: Fridays (fortnightly)

Time: 10:30am – 4:00pm

  • Friday 5th January 2024
  • Friday 19th January 2024
  • Friday 2nd February 2024
  • Friday 23rd February 2024
  • Friday 8th March 2024

Please note there is a 3-week gap between your third and fourth teaching sessions to accommodate a reading week, which takes place 12th-18th February.

Take a virtual tour of our West Malling campus in the heart of rural Kent, less than an hour by train from central London.

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.

Frequently asked questions

At St Augustine’s, we believe we should make theological learning as accessible as possible. If you’re intrigued by theological study at postgraduate level but you’re not yet ready to commit to a full MA programme, the taster term might be for you.

Taster terms (sometimes referred to as “taster modules”) give you an opportunity to whet your appetite and test your aptitude for studying theology at MA level. By taking a single 20-credit module from our MA programme in Theology, Ministry and Mission, we hope you’ll gain a fantastic insight into what studying theology at postgraduate level is like.

Completing the taster term alone doesn’t give you an academic qualification. However, if you pass the assignments for the module and decide to continue your studies, the credits that you achieve can be counted towards your MA qualification.

The fee for the taster module is £500, payable upon application.

You should expect to devote at least 10 hours of independent study per
week to get the most out of your academic experience. As part of your studies, you will be expected to complete one or more written assignments.

You will also be expected to attend your classes at our West Malling campus, which will be held on alternating Fridays.

In order to complete the module, you will be expected to submit either of these two options:

  • One large assignment (6,000 words) with a deadline of a few weeks after the final teaching session.
  • Two smaller assignments (typically 3,000 words each) with the first deadline typically in week 7 or 8 of term.
Because this taster module is taught at MA-level, we require applicants to have academic experience of studying theology (or a relevant subject) at undergraduate level.


Specifically, we ask for qualifications that include:

  • either a 2:1 degree or other equivalent level 6 qualification (e.g. a Graduate Diploma) including a substantial element of theology and/or ministry
  • or a 2:2 degree in any subject and an additional qualification at level 5 or above in theology and/or ministry at 2:1 standard or equivalent
  • or a 2:1 degree in any subject and an additional qualification at level 4 or above in theology and/or ministry.

“I immediately felt safe and at home at St Augustine’s. It’s welcoming, calm, and I just knew that it was the place for me to study; somewhere I could grow and where I would be encouraged.”

Katrina Jenkins,
St Augustine’s student

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.