Theological Research

MTh pathway in Biblical and Theological Studies
COURSE UNIT 403

UNIT DESCRIPTION

The unit explores the dynamics of research in theology, with reference to its various sub-disciplines. The relationship between secular theories, established research methodology and theology as it bears on theological research projects is examined. Students are introduced to the range of resources available for their research through the college library and elsewhere. Guidance is given on structuring a dissertation, the ethical dimensions of research, and the process of supervision. Personal tutorials and group discussions enable students to choose and refine a research topic. Having chosen a topic, students construct a detailed literature survey, drawing material from a range of sources including relevant academic databases. Building on this, they then prepare a research proposal for the master’s dissertation. Students who for any reason are not proceeding to Part Two of their course substitute an academic journal-style article for the research proposal.

Aims

To enable students to understand the purpose and dynamics of postgraduate research, especially as they apply in various theological disciplines, and to produce a viable research proposal for their Master’s dissertation in critical dialogue with literature in their field.

INTENDED LEARNING OUTCOMES:

CATEGORY OF OUTCOMEBY THE END OF THIS UNIT STUDENTS SHOULD BE ABLE TO:
Knowledge and understanding
  • demonstrate understanding of the demands of critical research appropriate to their theological specialism and individual topic
Intellectual skills
  • select and justify the use of an appropriate research methodology for investigating their topic
  • identify and evaluate key literature in their field and assess its relevance to their topic
Practical and transferable skills; personal qualities
  • discuss the ethical dimensions of research
  • produce a detailed literature survey for a specific topic of study
  • select, prepare and organise material independently to produce a focused and coherent piece of Master’s level writing
  • work with a supervisor to complete a project successfully with effective time management

Assessment:

ASSESSMENT TASK:LENGTH:WEIGHTING WITHIN UNIT
Formative:
  • 3 book reviews related to the proposed research topic

500 words each

n/a
Summative:
  • Dissertation research proposal including literature survey

3000 words

100%
[Students who for any reason are not proceeding to Part Two of the course may submit an academic journal-style article on a chosen topic instead.]
[3000 words]

[100%]
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Theological Research

MTh pathway in Biblical and Theological Studies
Course Unit 403

Credits:

15

Level:

7

Hours of Learning:

150

Tutor:

Dr Stephen I. Wright

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