This degree is designed to offer a flexible learning experience. It introduces you to the research skills necessary for doctoral study in the field of theology and is the perfect stepping stone to a PhD.
- One of the leading theological departments in the UK for research:
- ranked eighth for ‘research power' (REF 2014)
- 97% of our research is of international quality (REF 2014)
- Dedicated support, facilities and training through the Graduate School
- Active culture of dialogue and discussion both within the Department and across the university
- Research seminar programme for support and constructive criticism
Applicants apply to the MRes in either 'Theology' or 'Religious Studies', and they should choose the one that they wish to appear on their degree. The choice has no bearing on teaching and supervision arrangements.
See the Department of Theology and Religious Studies website for more on what it is like to study and research with us.
We have particular strengths in the following areas:
- Theology, Philosophy, Culture and Science
- Islamic Studies
- Jewish Studies
- History of Theology
- Bible Studies
Find out more about our key areas of research
Research students in the department are currently working in the following areas:
- 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
The course is made up of 180 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.
You will take 40 credits of taught modules. This could be made up of:
- 40 credits from our distance learning modules
- 20 credits of distance learning module and 20 credits of year 3 modules.
For examples of the modules we offer see our prospectus pages:
You will take one of two faculty-wide modules.
Each module is worth 20 credits.
Arts in Society
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.
- 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.
Mastering the Arts: Interdisciplinary Approaches to Research
You will achieve:
- greater confidence in dealing with original research
- a recognition of the huge range of approaches that can be used to address research questions.
We build on the research skills you have already developed during both your undergraduate degree and discipline-specific MA modules. The emphasis is on:
- ensuring you are possessed of a range of practical ways to approach research
- making you think about the nature of your discipline-specific approaches within a context of growing interdisciplinarity.
You will have the chance to consider topics as varied as:
- academic publishing
- digital transformations
- use of illustrations in dissertations.
You will also have the opportunity to hear academics from across the Faculty talk about the problems they have confronted and how they overcame them.
This module is worth 20 credits.
Mastering the Arts introductory video
The above is a sample of the typical modules that we offer at the date of publication 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. This prospectus may be updated over the duration of the course, as modules may change due to developments in the curriculum or in the research interests of staff.
All research students have access to:
- dedicated study space
- excellent IT network
- photocopying and printing allowance
- inter-library loan service.
The University library has online access to all books published in Britain and Ireland from the beginning of printing to 1800.
The Graduate School supports all postgraduates and early career researchers at the University, with dedicated study spaces, training courses and placement opportunities.
We have a strong and supportive research culture.
- the chance to hear visiting scholars from the UK and overseas
- opportunities for staff and postgraduates to present research in progress in a friendly and constructive environment.
These occasions also allow you to broaden your knowledge of the subject and gain a better sense of how research develops as part of an interactive process.
Find out more about our research seminars
The department is also associated with two research centres that promote collaborative research both inside and outside the University.
You may also register for German and French reading modules as needed for your research and make full use of the Language Centre facilities.
The University provides a range of support and information to enhance your student experience.
You will have access to:
- academic and disability support
- childcare services
- counselling service
- financial support
- visa and immigration advice
- welfare support
English language courses
Our Centre for English Language Education offers presessional English courses to help develop your English and study skills.
The centre is accredited by the British Council for the teaching of English in the UK, so you can be sure that the teaching and facilities are high-quality. You can also access free English language support alongside your academic course.
University of Nottingham Students’ Union represents all students. You can join the Postgraduate Students’ Network or speak to the dedicated Postgraduate Officer.
There are also a range of support networks, including groups for:
- international students
- black and minority ethnic students
- students with disabilities
- LGBT+ students
SU Advice provides free, independent and confidential advice on issues such as accommodation, financial and academic difficulties.
Researcher training and development
The Graduate School training and development programme empowers postgraduate students and early career research staff to develop the skills required in their research and future careers.
We encourage you to get in touch with a member of academic staff about your research proposal before submitting an application. They may be able to help you with your proposal and offer support to find funding opportunities in your area.
Details of research supervisors can be found on the Department website.
Careers and professional development
Average starting salary and career progression
For postgraduates from the School of Humanities, six months after graduation:
- 97.9% were in employment or further study
- the highest salary was £36,000
- the average salary was £20,500.
Source: known destinations and salary data for full-time, home, postgraduates extracted from the Destination of Leavers from Higher Education Survey 2016/17.
Careers support and advice
Whether you are considering a career within or outside academia, we’re here to support you every step of the way.
You can access our Careers and Employability Service during your studies and after you graduate.
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.
Fees and funding
There is a range of funding to support your studies. This can be from national, University or School/Department sources. Our step-by-step guide to funding sets out the different options available.
School and Department funding
The School of Humanities has information on funding available for its Masters students.
National and University funding
Our Student Services have information on university-wide and national funding.
The Careers Service also has links to a range of funding databases for postgraduate study.
Students with additional needs
Students with a disability, long-term health condition, mental health condition or specific learning difficulty (for example dyslexia) may apply for a Disabled Students’ Allowance.
Tuition fees and funding may be affected by the UK’s exit from the European Union. For more information see our Brexit information for future students.
Government loans for masters courses
Masters student loans of up to £10,906 are available for taught and research masters courses. Applicants must ordinarily live in the UK or EU.
International and EU students
Masters scholarships are available for international and EU students from a wide variety of countries and areas of study. You must already have an offer to study at Nottingham to apply. Please note closing dates to ensure you apply for your course with enough time.
We provide guidance on funding your degree, living costs and working while you study. You can also access specific funding opportunities, entry requirements and other resources for students from specific countries.