Introduction

An Aberdeen MTh in Biblical Studies draws on six centuries of scriptural scholarship at the fifth oldest university in the English-speaking world, founded in 1495. Biblical studies at Aberdeen draws on diverse academic disciplines in the study of Jewish and Christian scriptures, including theology, archaeology, literary criticism, history, philology and social science.

Key Facts

Duration
1 Year / 2 Years
Study Mode
Full Time or Part Time
Start Month
September
Learning Mode
On Campus Learning

Interested in this Degree?

Call +44 (0)1224 272890 Email dhp-pgs@abdn.ac.uk Enquire Using an online form Next Steps Find out how to apply

Overview

The MTh in Biblical Studies is designed to provide advanced training to students with undergraduate, seminary or comparable background in biblical or related studies. Through seminars, lectures and directed research, students will acquire the skills and knowledge useful for further research, professional development, or teaching in the field of biblical studies. Areas of concentration include both Old and New Testament studies, Biblical ethics, the history of ancient Israel, the Dead Sea Scrolls, Pauline studies, and Christology—among others.

The programme is a stepping stone for further academic research, work with charitable and voluntary organisations, ministry, and congregational leadership.

In addition to our taught programme, we also offer the MTh in Biblical Studies as a research degree. For more information about this option, please click here.

What You'll Study

The information below applies to the 1 year full time / 2 year part time on campus learning MTh programme which runs in September.

Degree Structure

Introduction

If students do not wish to undertake the full Master’s Degree, other exit points include the Postgraduate Certificate (based on undertaking 60 credit points, 40 of which much be at level 5), or the Postgraduate Diploma (based on 120 credit points, 90 of which must be at level 5).

Compulsory Courses

For the MTh, students are required to take DR552G: Dissertation (60 credits) as well as an additional 120 credits from the optional courses listed below, or as agreed with the course coordinator.

Creation in Christian Ethics (DR502T)

This course examines the account of creation in the biblical book of Genesis in order to explore the theological account of human moral action it offers. By exploring different movements of the creation story, the course lays out the basic structure of Christian moral theology. The aim is to develop a theological approach to the fundamentals of Christian ethics, clarifying its relevance for issues of sexuality and procreation, economics, work, governance, health, animals and the environment. The course offers a broad theoretical framework for thinking about the whole scope of ethical questions in contemporary society. Download course guide.

View detailed information about this course.

Great Thinkers in Theological Ethics (DR551Q)

This course will introduce students to a number of major thinkers in the area of Theological Ethics. Its focus will be on reading and discussing texts by prominent figures who are of ongoing significance. Moreover, this course will include figures from different theological and confessional backgrounds (Catholic, Reformed, Lutheran, non-Conformist, etc.), and explore whether and how their theological commitments connect with practical stances and approaches (i.e. on issues of war and peace, sexual ethics, bioethics, etc.). Download course guide

View detailed information about this course.

Preaching to Change the World: Exploring the Theology and Practice of Christian Witness (DR503M)

This course engages students in a sustained exploration of the theology and practice of preaching in the context of Christian worship with a view to the wider horizon of public communication. Initial investigation of traditional and contemporary theologies of the Word prepares us to focus upon the theological and rhetorical analysis of actual sermons considered in video, audio and textual forms. We will critically examine the theological frameworks within which preaching is understood, various possibilities for understanding the relation of biblical text, contemporary context, and preached sermon, as well questions concerning the interplay of form and content in the act of preaching. Download course guide.

View detailed information about this course.

The Life of Muhammad: Religion, History, Literature (DR552K)

We will discuss the biography of Prophet Muhammad, the main figure in Islam, through whom the Qur’an was revealed. We will look at existing sources for this biography and the problems that they present to modern scholars. We will examine various research approaches to this topic and discuss the advantages and shortcomings of each. Through a discussion of main episodes in the life of the Prophet we will learn of various ways for understanding these episodes. We will also discuss the status of Muhammad against other prophets in Islam and against the Qur’an.

Download Course Guide

View detailed information about this course.

The Emergence of Christology (DR503F)

How did the Jesus of history become the proclaimed Christ of faith? At the heart of the earliest Christian Christology is the variously expressed association of the pre-Easter Jesus and his message with the post-Easter proclamation of Jesus as Messiah and Son of God, as testified in the New Testament. This course explores some of the early expressions and trajectories of the early Christian conviction to this effect, how these related to contemporary messianic expectations as well as other relevant Early Jewish and Graeco-Roman concepts and beliefs, and, of course to the focal point of early Christianity: the Christ-event itself. Download course guide.

View detailed information about this course.

Jewish History and Culture (DR552V)
Special Subject (DR502X)

This course allows a student to do in-depth study in a specific area in Divinity or Religious Studies agreed upon with his or her supervisor and approved by the Head of School. It may be offered in conjunction with the student sitting in on level 4 lectures relating to the subject material.

View detailed information about this course.

Senior Honours Special Subject (DR4543)

STUDENTS SHOULD NOT ENROL ON THIS COURSE WITHOUT THE PERMISSION OF THE UNDERGRADUATE PROGRAMME COORDINATOR

This course allows a student to do in-depth study in a specific area in Divinity or Religious Studies. The specific content of the course may vary, but the focus will include work on enhancing research skills and the completion of a academic research paper. Students interested in pursuing such a course of study need to obtain the permission of a supervisor and of the Head of School.

View detailed information about this course.

Senior Honours Special Subject (DR4043)

STUDENTS SHOULD NOT ENROL ON THIS COURSE WITHOUT THE PERMISSION OF THE UNDERGRADUATE PROGRAMME COORDINATOR

This course allows a student to do in-depth study in a specific area in Divinity or Religious Studies. The specific content of the course may vary, but the focus will include work on enhancing research skills and the completion of a academic research paper. Students interested in pursuing such a course of study need to obtain the permission of a supervisor and of the Head of School. Download course guide.

View detailed information about this course.

Dissertation (DR552G)

20,000 word dissertation written on a topic related to the student's taught Master's programme and agreed to by the supervisor and the programme co-ordinator. Download course guide

View detailed information about this course.

Optional Courses

Optional courses normally include the following:

The Emergence of Christology (DR503F)

How did the Jesus of history become the proclaimed Christ of faith? At the heart of the earliest Christian Christology is the variously expressed association of the pre-Easter Jesus and his message with the post-Easter proclamation of Jesus as Messiah and Son of God, as testified in the New Testament. This course explores some of the early expressions and trajectories of the early Christian conviction to this effect, how these related to contemporary messianic expectations as well as other relevant Early Jewish and Graeco-Roman concepts and beliefs, and, of course to the focal point of early Christianity: the Christ-event itself. Download course guide.

View detailed information about this course.

Jewish History and Culture (DR552V)
Special Subject (DR502X)

This course allows a student to do in-depth study in a specific area in Divinity or Religious Studies agreed upon with his or her supervisor and approved by the Head of School. It may be offered in conjunction with the student sitting in on level 4 lectures relating to the subject material.

View detailed information about this course.

Special Subject (DR552X)

This course allows a student to do in-depth study in a specific area in Divnity or Religious Studies agreed upon with his or her supervisor and approved by the Head of School. It may be offered in conjunction with the student sitting in on level 4 lectures relating to the subject material

View detailed information about this course.

Senior Honours Special Subject (DR4043)

STUDENTS SHOULD NOT ENROL ON THIS COURSE WITHOUT THE PERMISSION OF THE UNDERGRADUATE PROGRAMME COORDINATOR

This course allows a student to do in-depth study in a specific area in Divinity or Religious Studies. The specific content of the course may vary, but the focus will include work on enhancing research skills and the completion of a academic research paper. Students interested in pursuing such a course of study need to obtain the permission of a supervisor and of the Head of School. Download course guide.

View detailed information about this course.

Senior Honours Special Subject (DR4543)

STUDENTS SHOULD NOT ENROL ON THIS COURSE WITHOUT THE PERMISSION OF THE UNDERGRADUATE PROGRAMME COORDINATOR

This course allows a student to do in-depth study in a specific area in Divinity or Religious Studies. The specific content of the course may vary, but the focus will include work on enhancing research skills and the completion of a academic research paper. Students interested in pursuing such a course of study need to obtain the permission of a supervisor and of the Head of School.

View detailed information about this course.

Creation in Christian Ethics (DR502T)

This course examines the account of creation in the biblical book of Genesis in order to explore the theological account of human moral action it offers. By exploring different movements of the creation story, the course lays out the basic structure of Christian moral theology. The aim is to develop a theological approach to the fundamentals of Christian ethics, clarifying its relevance for issues of sexuality and procreation, economics, work, governance, health, animals and the environment. The course offers a broad theoretical framework for thinking about the whole scope of ethical questions in contemporary society. Download course guide.

View detailed information about this course.

Great Thinkers in Theological Ethics (DR551Q)

This course will introduce students to a number of major thinkers in the area of Theological Ethics. Its focus will be on reading and discussing texts by prominent figures who are of ongoing significance. Moreover, this course will include figures from different theological and confessional backgrounds (Catholic, Reformed, Lutheran, non-Conformist, etc.), and explore whether and how their theological commitments connect with practical stances and approaches (i.e. on issues of war and peace, sexual ethics, bioethics, etc.). Download course guide

View detailed information about this course.

Preaching to Change the World: Exploring the Theology and Practice of Christian Witness (DR503M)

This course engages students in a sustained exploration of the theology and practice of preaching in the context of Christian worship with a view to the wider horizon of public communication. Initial investigation of traditional and contemporary theologies of the Word prepares us to focus upon the theological and rhetorical analysis of actual sermons considered in video, audio and textual forms. We will critically examine the theological frameworks within which preaching is understood, various possibilities for understanding the relation of biblical text, contemporary context, and preached sermon, as well questions concerning the interplay of form and content in the act of preaching. Download course guide.

View detailed information about this course.

The Life of Muhammad: Religion, History, Literature (DR552K)

We will discuss the biography of Prophet Muhammad, the main figure in Islam, through whom the Qur’an was revealed. We will look at existing sources for this biography and the problems that they present to modern scholars. We will examine various research approaches to this topic and discuss the advantages and shortcomings of each. Through a discussion of main episodes in the life of the Prophet we will learn of various ways for understanding these episodes. We will also discuss the status of Muhammad against other prophets in Islam and against the Qur’an.

Download Course Guide

View detailed information about this course.

Dissertation (DR552G)

20,000 word dissertation written on a topic related to the student's taught Master's programme and agreed to by the supervisor and the programme co-ordinator. Download course guide

View detailed information about this course.

We will endeavour to make all course options available; however, these may be subject to timetabling and other constraints. Please see our InfoHub pages for further information.

How You'll Study

Learning Methods

  • Lectures
  • Tutorials
  • Research
  • Individual Projects
  • Workshops
  • Seminars

Assessment

The taught courses will be assessed by coursework, by written examination, or by a combination of these, as prescribed for each course. The dissertation module will be assessed by submission of the dissertation. An oral examination may be held at the discretion of the examiners.

Why Study Biblical Studies?

  • The University of Aberdeen has a long-standing reputation as one of the foremost research institutions in Biblical Studies offering a variety of career options and further academic research.

  • The programme is largely research-oriented and Aberdeen offers internationally recognised experts among its permanent staff in a broad range of sub-disciplines.

  • Aberdeen’s Divinity School has a large postgraduate community and there are several vibrant postgraduate research seminars open to students and staff.

  • Our students come from all over the British Isles and from overseas and go on to a wide range of professions after they graduate.

Fees and Funding

You will be classified as one of the fee categories below.

Fee information
Fee category Status Amount
Home / EU / RUK Students Tuition Fee for 2017/18 Academic Year £6,000
International Students Tuition Fee for 2017/18 Academic Year £14,300
  • In exceptional circumstances there may be additional fees associated with specialist courses, for example field trips. Any additional fees for a course can be found in our Catalogue of Courses.
  • For more information about tuition fees for this programme, including payment plans and our refund policy, please visit our InfoHub Tuition Fees page.

Funding

View all funding options in our Funding Database.

An ancient centre of Biblical learning

A site of scriptural learning since 1495.

Entry Requirements

For more information about the application process, including details about which supporting documents you will be asked to provide, please click here.

Qualifications

Candidates must normally have an Honours degree to at least 2.1 standard in an appropriate discipline or equivalent qualifications (normally a 3.0 GPA in North America). Equivalent professional experience may be considered.

Language Requirements

All students entering the University must provide evidence that they can use English well enough to study effectively at the University of Aberdeen.

Details of our English language entry requirements can be found on our English Language Requirements webpages. This programme requires that you meet the College of Arts and Social Sciences Postgraduate Standard level of English proficiency.

If you have not achieved the required scores, the University of Aberdeen offers pre-sessional English courses. Further details are available on our Language Centre website.

Nationals of some English-speaking countries or those who hold degrees from some English-speaking countries may be exempted from this requirement. Details of countries recognised as English-speaking can be found on our English Language Requirements webpages.

Document Requirements

  • Degree Certificatea degree certificate showing your qualifications
  • Degree Transcripta full transcript showing all the subjects you studied and the marks you have achieved in your degree(s) (original & official English translation)
  • Personal Statementa detailed personal statement explaining your motivation for this particular programme

Careers

An Aberdeen MTh in Biblical Studies prepares students for a wide variety of careers. Our students have gone on to teaching, ministry, church leadership, charitable organisations, and doctoral studies in a wide range of institutions around the world.

Our Experts

Other Experts
Dr Lena-Sofia Tiemeyer
Dr Jutta Leonhardt-Balzer
Professor Joachim Schaper
Professor Grant Macaskill
Programme Coordinator
Dr Tomas Bokedal

You will be taught by a range of experts including professors, lecturers, teaching fellows and postgraduate tutors. Staff changes will occur from time to time; please see our InfoHub pages for further information.

Contact

Address
School of Divinity, History and Philosophy
University of Aberdeen
50-52 College Bounds

Aberdeen

AB24 3DS
Email
Phone
+44 (0)1224 272890
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