Skip to Content


Last modified: 27 Feb 2018 09:50

Course Overview

What we know today as the New Testament, a single book between two covers and most often bundled with the Old Testament, is in fact a small library of twenty-seven texts produced by various followers of Jesus between the 30s and about 120 of the Common Era. The small collection has had an enormous impact not only on Christian churches but also the whole of Western civilization until today. This course explores the origins of these texts, their authors and audiences, and the events behind them. It neither requires nor expects any prior experience with these texts.  Download Course Guide

Course Details

Study Type Undergraduate Level 1
Session First Sub Session Credit Points 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits)
Campus Old Aberdeen Sustained Study No
  • Dr Tomas Bokedal

Qualification Prerequisites


What courses & programmes must have been taken before this course?

  • Any Undergraduate Programme (Studied)
  • Either Programme Level 1 or Programme Level 2

What other courses must be taken with this course?


What courses cannot be taken with this course?

  • DR1044 The Founders of Christianity: Introduction to the New Testament (Studied)
  • DR1048 The Founders of Christianity: Introduction to the New Testament (Dl) (Studied)
  • DR2559 Earliest Portraits of Jesus (Studied)

Are there a limited number of places available?


Course Description

The New Testament is a small library of 27 texts, produced by followers of Jesus in the period AD 30 to 120 or so, which has had a unique impact on Western civilization. This course explores such issues as these: the formation of the New Testament collection; the NT manuscripts that have reached us, and the problems of establishing the "correct" text and translation; criteria for establishing the authorship and chronology of the texts; what Paul's letters reveal about both his self-understanding and that of other groups in the first Christian generation; what the gospels and Acts reveal about unity and diversity in the second generation and possibly later; what other NT writings and texts that did not find a place in this collection have to say about these issues. Since these texts hint at the complex relations between the new groups of Christ's followers, on the one hand, and both Jewish and Graeco-Roman society on the other, those questions also arise in a preliminary way.

Contact Teaching Time

Information on contact teaching time is available from the course guide.

Teaching Breakdown


More Information about Week Numbers

Details, including assessments, may be subject to change until 31 August 2023 for 1st half-session courses and 22 December 2023 for 2nd half-session courses.

Summative Assessments

1st Attempt:

1 one-hour exam (50%); Continuous assessment comprising; one essay of 1,500 (50%).

1 one-hour exam (100%).

Formative Assessment

There are no assessments for this course.


Feedback on the essay will be detailed and prompt. Feedback on the exam will be provided if requested.

Course Learning Outcomes


Compatibility Mode

We have detected that you are have compatibility mode enabled or are using an old version of Internet Explorer. You either need to switch off compatibility mode for this site or upgrade your browser.