BA Theology and Religion
|Typical offer||AAB; IB: 34; BTEC: DDD|
|Discipline||Theology and Religion|
Faith and religion has impacted the world immeasurably, both past and present, which is what makes Theology one of the most challenging and intellectually stimulating areas of study. By exploring the rich tapestry of human history in relation to its beliefs and secular associations, we can gain deep insight into modern day issues. Amongst others, you will be confronted with topics such as sexuality, criminal justice, feminism, the environment, science, evolution, the body, the soul, heaven and hell, heresy, morality and ethics, martyrs, pilgrimage and life after death.
This internationally renowned degree that ranks in the top 50 in the QS World University Subject Rankings 2018, and top 5 in The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2019, The Guardian University Guide 2019 and The Complete University Guide 2020, will introduce you to a range of disciplines. From history, literary criticism, language study, sociology, anthropology and art history you will search for the answers to some of the greatest unknowns facing humanity. Is there a meaning and purpose to our existence? Is there a God or gods? How do we decide what’s right or wrong in relation to war and peace, birth and death, sex and the environment?
At the University of Exeter, you will be guided by enthusiastic faculty staff who are actively contributing to cutting-edge research in the field. With their support, you will get to know some of the oldest, largest and best-known religions like Christianity and Judaism, as well as having the freedom to choose your own modules in subject areas that interest you most. Choose from Heaven and Hell Throughout the Ages, Blasphemy and the Arabic Faith or Art in Syria in the Holy Land at the Time of the Crusades, to name but a few. You will gain the confidence to pose complex ethical and philosophical questions that tackle areas of controversy. By critically analysing sources, interpreting and translating religious texts, understanding objects and practices in sacred or secular settings, you will learn to form and express opinions to draw insights into modern day issues.
A degree in Theology offers a wide range of transferable skills that lead not only to humanities jobs, but a diverse range of careers across multiple industries. Recent graduates now hold roles such as Church Ministry Assistant, Youth and Worship Worker and Assistant Curator, and work with organisations like the NHS, St Monica Trust and Parliament.
- BA Theology and Religion with Study Abroad
- BA Theology and Religion with Employment Experience / Employment Experience Abroad
- Liberal Arts
- BA/BSc Flexible Combined Honours
The programme itself is fantastic because there is so much variety in what you learn. The core modules in the first year give you the basics you need to go on to study the more unusual options that the department offers, such as Theology and Art, Theology and Criminal Justice.
Jo Nussbaum, BA Theology.
The modules we outline here provide examples of what you can expect to learn on this degree course based on recent academic teaching. The precise modules available to you in future years may vary depending on staff availability and research interests, new topics of study, timetabling and student demand.
The Theology and Religion degree programme is made up of compulsory (core) and optional modules, which are worth 15 or 30 credits each. Full-time undergraduate students need to complete modules worth a total of 120 credits each year.
Depending on your programme you can take up to 30 credits each year in another subject, for instance a language or business module, to develop career-related skills or just widen your intellectual horizons.
In your first year, you will study primarily to gain a solid grounding in the broad areas of study essential to Theology and Religion. You can also choose from a range of optional modules to begin your exploration into more specific areas.
Year 2In the second year you will choose your own modules from a wide range which vary from year-to-year. These reflect the expertise of lecturers in the department, who are world-leading experts in their fields, and allow you to engage with research at the cutting edge of the discipline.
In your final year you will continue to customise your degree to suit you. The only compulsory module in the third year is the dissertation, which many students find the most rewarding part of their degree. It gives you the chance to carry out independent research in an area of most interest to you.
Full module descriptions
For full module descriptions from previous years, please visit our Humanities student website.
Entry requirements 2020
AAB; IB: 34; BTEC: DDD
Additional selection criteria
We are looking for well-qualified students with a genuine interest in and enthusiasm for the subject.
In addition to the specific requirements listed above, we look for excellent A level* results/predictions and we may also take into account results up to and including GCSEs* and AS Levels* as part of our holistic assessment of an application.
*Equivalent qualifications will be considered. For more information about our equivalencies for specific qualifications please contact our Admissions Office.
International students should check details of our English language requirements
If your academic qualifications or English language skills do not meet our entry requirements our INTO University of Exeter centre offers a range of courses to help you reach the required language and academic standards.
International Foundation programmes
Preparation for entry to Year 1 of an undergraduate degree:
Please read the important information about our Typical offer.
For full and up-to-date information on applying to Exeter and entry requirements, including requirements for other types of qualification, please see the Applying section.
Learning and teaching
The nature of university learning, especially in the humanities, involves a lot of self-directed study and research. As well as traditional lectures, seminars, and small group tutorials, led by internationally respected academics at the forefront of research, you’ll be encouraged to take the initiative by organising study groups, taking advantage of online and traditional learning resources, and managing your own workload and time.
Class sizes and contact time
Your class sizes will be on average 25-35 students for lectures and 10-15 students for seminars, and you’ll have 10 hours of contact time with staff per week in your first year. You’ll also need to allow for additional hours of private study and should expect your total workload to average about 40 hours per week during term time.
Strong emphasis is placed on acquiring a variety of skills that will be attractive to employers in your future working life. Modules are specially designed to help you develop a range of intellectual, transferable and personal skills throughout your degree programme. Our Staff-Student Liaison Committee meets once a term to review existing modules, consider new ones and discuss ways the department can be improved.
Our approach to theology and religion is interdisciplinary and relates the broad areas studied to politics, social sciences, the arts, literary studies and more. We’re actively engaged in introducing new methods of learning and teaching, including increasing use of interactive computer-based approaches to learning through our virtual learning environment where the details of all modules are stored in an easily navigable website. Students can access detailed information about modules and learning outcomes and interact through activities such as the discussion forums.
In your final year you’ll write a dissertation on a topic of your choice, so you can examine a question of interest to you in detail, and apply the skills you have acquired during your degree.
Each year we arrange various guest lectures and study days led by visiting speakers, including the series of Prideaux Lectures hosted every other year. Past lecturers have included Tom Wright, Sarah Coakley, Nicholas Lash, Robin Gill, James Dunn, John Rogerson and Christopher Rowland.
We believe that every student benefits from being part of a culture that is inspired by research and where modules are taught by experts. Your lecturers will be contributing to the latest developments in their field and their teaching will be highly relevant to contemporary issues. We have a vigorous research culture spanning a wide range of subject areas with particular strengths in theology, ethics, social contexts and public issues.
All students have a personal tutor who is available for advice and support throughout your time here. There are various other services on campus providing advice, information and support, including the Students’ Guild Advice Unit. You can find further information about all the services in the University’s undergraduate prospectus or online at www.exeter.ac.uk/undergraduate
Assessment is based on essays, seminar presentations and exams. In the second and third year, coursework (including assessed seminar presentations and essays) can account for well over half of your assessment depending on which modules you choose.
Your first year doesn’t count towards your final degree classification, but you do have to pass it in order to progress. If you study a three-year programme, assessments in the final two years both count towards your classification, and if you study a four-year programme then the final three years all contribute.
For full details of the assessment criteria for each module, check the Theology and Religion undergraduate modules section.
Theology and Religion graduates from the University of Exeter have an excellent reputation with graduate recruiters and compete very successfully in the employment market.
Studying Theology and Religion will provide you with valuable skills and abilities which are attractive to employers and relevant for a wide range of careers, such as:
- An understanding other people’s points of view
- An in-depth knowledge of different cultures
- The ability to communicate your position clearly
- Effective debating skills
- Interpretation and analysis of sources
- Interpersonal skills
- The ability to use your initiative and be open-minded
Recent graduates from the Theology and Religion at the University of Exeter have progressed to careers in a broad range of sectors, including:
- The Police Force
- Public Policy
- The Charity sector
- Heritage Management
- Religious institutions
Other recent graduates have progressed to postgraduate courses in:
- MA Social Work
- MA Theology
- Graduate Diploma in Law
- MTS (Master of Theology Studies) in Religion, Literature and Culture
The services offered by the Humanities careers and employability team are complementary to the services offered by our central Career Zone, where you can participate in practical sessions to develop your skills; access paid internships and volunteering opportunities; explore postgraduate study options; meet prospective employers; get one-to-one advice and learn how to secure the right job for you.