Triangle

Research overview

Combine advanced teaching with your own research.

This course is ideal if you are passionate about a research topic in religious studies but:

  • you want to develop your research skills or academic ability before committing to a PhD
  • you cannot commit to three years or more of research
  • your topic does not need three years of research

Main research areas

We have particular strengths in the following areas:

  • Theology, Philosophy, Culture and Science
  • Islamic Studies
  • Jewish Studies
  • History of Theology
  • Bible Studies
  • Sociology of Religion
  • Religion, Media and Culture

Find out more about our key areas of research

Current research projects cover areas such as:

  • Old Testament/Hebrew Bible
  • New Testament Theology
  • Philosophical Theology
  • Philosophy of Religion
  • Systematic Theology
  • Historical Theology
  • Theology and Science
  • Theology and Literature
  • Jewish Studies
  • Islamic Studies

This degree is a companion to the Theology MRes. The difference is in your agreed area of research and the title of your award. The teaching and supervision arrangements are the same.

Course content

The course is made up of 180 credits:

  • Dissertation - 120 credits
  • Subject modules - 40 credits
  • Faculty-wide module - 20 credits

You will write a dissertation on a subject agreed by you and your supervisor.

The dissertation is limited to 25,000 words inclusive of footnotes and bibliography.

This is worth 120 credits.

These taught modules allow you to deepen your knowledge and skills over a specific range of topics and so prepare you for further research specialisation.

They are taken during semesters one and two.

You will take 40 credits of subject modules. This could be:

  • 40 credits from our distance learning modules or
  • 20 credits of distance learning module and 20 credits of year three modules.

For examples of the modules we offer see:

You will take one of two faculty-wide modules.

Each module is worth 20 credits.

This module introduces you to the wide range of interdisciplinary research happening in the Faculty of Arts. We invite you to ‘think outside the box’ in relation to your own research, while learning key research techniques and methods.The module aims to:

  • introduce the ideas, practices, complexities, and opportunities of interdisciplinary research in the arts
  • enable you to practice critical self-reflexivity about the conventions and expectations of your own disciplines in relation to those of others
  • train you in core research skills necessary for graduate-level study
  • develop your confidence in communicating research findings to non-specialist audiences

You will build on your existing research skills gained from your university career to date. Furthermore, you will develop a more nuanced understanding of your own research practice, inspiring you to explore different approaches questions.In addition, you will develop an understanding of professional practice in areas such as:

  • academic publishing
  • knowledge exchange
  • dissertation planning and writing
  • professional communication

This module is worth 20 credits.

We will help you to apply your arts MA across society to enhance your career and contribute to wider society.

We'll demonstrate how the arts can be used to:

  • transform society, politics and culture
  • enhance the careers of arts and humanities MA students.

You'll be able to explore, explain and then detail how your disciplinary skills can impact upon wider issues to emphasise the applicability of the arts and humanities. From the role of the scholar activist to understanding ‘knowledge transfer’ and ‘public engagement’, you'll develop professional skills in preparation for a career within academia or across a range of sectors.

You will:

  • harness the ways in which the arts and humanities enable us to think differently and to innovate
  • work on issues of research, networking, grant-writing and cultural exchange
  • learn how to engage, communicate and create.

This module is worth 20 credits.

 

The above is a sample of the typical modules we offer but is not intended to be construed and/or relied upon as a definitive list of the modules that will be available in any given year. Modules (including methods of assessment) may change or be updated, or modules may be cancelled, over the duration of the course due to a number of reasons such as curriculum developments or staffing changes. Please refer to the module catalogue for information on available modules.

Entry requirements

All candidates are considered on an individual basis and we accept a broad range of qualifications. The entrance requirements below apply to 2021 entry.

QualificationMRes
Degree

2:1 (or international equivalent) in theology and/or religious studies or a closely related subject.

QualificationMRes
Degree

2:1 (or international equivalent) in theology and/or religious studies or a closely related subject.

International and EU equivalents

We accept a wide range of qualifications from all over the world.

For information on entry requirements from your country, see our country pages.

IELTS7.0 (no less than 6.5 in any element)
English language requirements

As well as IELTS (listed above), we also accept other English language qualifications.

This includes TOEFL iBT, Pearson PTE, GCSE, IB and O level English.

Meeting our English language requirements

If you need support to meet the required level, you may be able to attend a presessional English course. Presessional courses teach you academic skills in addition to English language. Our Centre for English Language Education is accredited by the British Council for the teaching of English in the UK.

If you successfully complete your presessional course to the required level, you can then progress to your degree course. This means that you won't need to retake IELTS or equivalent.

For on-campus presessional English courses, you must take IELTS for UKVI to meet visa regulations. For online presessional courses, see our CELE webpages for guidance.

We recognise that applicants have a variety of experiences and follow different pathways to postgraduate study.

We treat all applicants with alternative qualifications on an individual basis. We may also consider relevant work experience.

If you are unsure whether your qualifications or work experience are relevant, contact us.

Applying

We encourage you to get in touch with a member of our academic staff before submitting an application. They may be able to help you with your proposal and offer support in finding funding opportunities.

Most of our academics are experienced supervisors, several with former research students in academic posts.

Supervisors and research areas

Our step-by-step guide contains everything you need to know about applying for postgraduate research.

How to apply

Fees

QualificationMRes
Home / UK£4,496 per year
International£19,000 per year

Additional information for international students

If you are a student from the EU, EEA or Switzerland, you will pay international tuition fees in most cases. If you are resident in the UK and have 'settled' or 'pre-settled' status under the EU Settlement Scheme, you will be entitled to 'home' fee status.

Irish students will be charged tuition fees at the same rate as UK students. UK nationals living in the EU, EEA and Switzerland will also continue to be eligible for 'home' fee status at UK universities until 31 December 2027.

For further guidance, check our information for applicants from the EU.

These fees are for full-time study. If you are studying part-time, you will be charged a proportion of this fee each year (subject to inflation).

Funding

There are many ways to fund your research degree, from scholarships to government loans.

Check our guide to find out more about funding your postgraduate degree.

Postgraduate funding

Support

We have a strong, supportive and welcoming research culture.

Research seminars

  • Hear visiting scholars from the UK and overseas
  • Present research in progress in a friendly and constructive environment
  • Broaden your general knowledge of Theology and Religious Studies
  • Gain a better sense of how research develops as part of an interactive process

Find out more about our research seminars

Research centres

The department is also associated with two research centres that promote collaborative research both inside and outside the University.

Language learning

You can make full use of the Language Centre facilities for both research-specific learning and personal interest.

Researcher training and development

The Researcher Academy is the network for researchers, and staff who support them. We work together to promote a healthy research culture, to cultivate researcher excellence, and develop creative partnerships that enable researchers to flourish.

Postgraduate researchers at Nottingham have access to our online Members’ area, which includes a wealth of resources, access to training courses and award-winning postgraduate placements.

Student support

You will have access to a range of support services, including:

  • academic and disability support
  • childcare services
  • counselling service
  • faith support
  • financial support
  • mental health and wellbeing support
  • visa and immigration advice
  • welfare support

Students' Union

Our Students' Union represents all students. You can join the Postgraduate Students’ Network or contact the dedicated Postgraduate Officer.

There are also a range of support networks, including groups for:

  • international students
  • black and minority ethnic students
  • students who identify as women
  • students with disabilities
  • LGBT+ students

SU Advice provides free, independent and confidential advice on issues such as accommodation, financial and academic difficulties.

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Where you will learn

University Park Campus

University Park Campus covers 300 acres, with green spaces, wildlife, period buildings and modern facilities. It is one of the UK's most beautiful and sustainable campuses, winning a national Green Flag award every year since 2003.

Most schools and departments are based here. You will have access to libraries, shops, cafes, the Students’ Union, sports village and a health centre.

You can walk or cycle around campus. Free hopper buses connect you to our other campuses. Nottingham city centre is 15 minutes away by public bus or tram.

Careers

Whether you are considering a career in academia, industry or haven't yet decided, we’re here to support you every step of the way.

Expert staff will work with you to explore PhD career options and apply for vacancies, develop your interview skills and meet employers. You can book a one-to-one appointment, take an online course or attend a workshop.

International students who complete an eligible degree programme in the UK on a student visa can apply to stay and work in the UK after their course under the Graduate immigration route. Eligible courses at the University of Nottingham include bachelors, masters and research degrees, and PGCE courses.

Many of our research students are already settled in careers before starting the course - their research is for personal development, interest or to deepen their existing career.

The most common non-religious career paths for our postgraduate students include education/teaching, IT, and welfare and housing associations.

We have a successful record of our research students developing academic careers at many different institutions.

The average annual salary for postgraduates from the School of Humanities was £25,563*

*HESA Graduate Outcomes 2020. The Graduate Outcomes % is derived using The Guardian University Guide methodology. The average annual salary is based on graduates working full-time within the UK.

Portrait of Sara Parks smiling
Researching and supervising here is so rewarding. I know our international team of professors will listen to and support my passions while being eager to get my input on their projects. That's why I'm so excited to have just been awarded a Leverhulme Early Career Fellowship based at Nottingham. It's going to allow me to carry on my research while also helping others develop theirs.
Dr Sara Parks, Assistant Professor in New Testament Studies

Related courses

Research Excellence Framework

We are ranked 8th in the UK for research power (2014). The Research Excellence Framework (REF) is the system used by UK higher education funding bodies to assess research quality in universities.

  • The Department of Theology and Religious Studies is ranked seventh in the UK for ‘research power’, a measure of the quality and scale of research activity
  • 97% of our research is rated of international standard with 30% considered world-leading
  • More than 97% of research at Nottingham is recognised internationally
  • More than 80% of our research is ranked in the highest categories as world-leading or internationally excellent
  • 16 of our 29 subject areas feature in the UK top 10 by research power

This content was last updated on 30 April 2021. Every effort has been made to ensure that this information is accurate, but changes are likely to occur between the date of publishing and course start date. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply.