Theology and Religion

Tutors and Lecturers: Prof. Mark Edwards, Dr Pui Him Ip

Places at Christ Church: 2

You don't have to be a budding priest to do Theology. The study of religion introduces you to one of the most important elements in world history, and will be of interest to anyone who wants to understand modern European or American thought and culture. Because of Oxford's strong tradition in Christian studies, the first year of study includes an introduction to the Bible, but there are also compulsory papers on Religion and Religions and on the figure of Jesus in Christian theology, literature, film and other religions; in addition you will have to learn a language – usually Greek or Hebrew, though Arabic, Latin and Sanskrit are also possible – unless you prefer to take philosophy. After your qualifying examination (prelims) at the end of the first year you can take options from the history and teaching of any of the world's major religions (Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism), with further options from the psychological, philosophical, anthropological and sociological approaches to religion.  The permitted combinations are numerous, but it should be possible to accommodate most interests. Those doing Philosophy and Theology will be expected to do two philosophy papers at prelims and at least three for finals. There is also now a degree in Religion and Oriental Studies, which will appeal to those who like learning languages and who wish to concentrate at least half their studies on Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam or Judaism. 

Attendance at Cathedral services is not expected of students of Theology, but some find that it can serve as a reminder of the intimate connection between English culture and Christianity.

Faculty Website:

www.theology.ox.ac.uk