Research course

Systematic Theology (specialisation)

Radboud University · Philosophy, Theology and Religious Studies
MA by research

Entry requirements

A completed Bachelor's degree in Theology or related area

A proficiency in English

In order to take part in this programme, you need to have fluency in both written and spoken English. Non-native speakers of English* without a Dutch Bachelor's degree or VWO diploma need one of the following:

  • A TOEFL score of ≥575 (paper based) or ≥90 (internet based)
  • An IELTS score of ≥6.5
  • Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (CAE) or Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE) with a mark of C or higher

Months of entry

February, September

Course content

Drawing on the compassionate values and insights of the Christian faith to contribute to the welfare of society.

What is the public relevance of Christian beliefs and doctrines in today’s society? Systematic theology deals in general with the meaning and implications of Christian doctrines. At Radboud University we add the unique focus of public theology. Public theology isn't about promoting the interests of 'the Church' but about drawing on the compassionate values and insights of the Christian faith to contribute to the welfare of society.

Currently, the secularisation thesis is strongly under review. On the one hand, the orientation in affluent societies has become secular even though the world as a whole is certainly no less religious than before. On the other hand, there also seems to be a post-secular movement and a revival of religion in affluent societies. At Radboud University we look at these and other developments in the public domain. What new forms of spirituality are kindled in society? How are morals changing? And how is the role of woman changing in society and religious organisations?

Based on the readings from both classical and contemporary theologians, and the active discussions in the seminars, students learn how to formulate critical theological perspectives on questions of meaning of life and a viable civil society in our contemporary situation. Graduates of the Master’s specialisation in Systematic Theology can become researchers, policy makers, educators or spiritual caregivers.

Why study Systematic Theology at Radboud University?

  • Radboud University offers a unique set of subjects within Systematic Theology which includes philosophy of religion, feminist theology and spirituality studies as well as the more conventional subjects fundamental theology, dogmatic theology and theological ethics.
  • The central focus of this specialisation lies on public theology, a relatively new and vibrant development within theology in which issues and debates in society are studied as possible ways of thinking about God.
  • This programme is not just geared towards Europe but also places developments in a global perspective.
  • Thanks to electives, students have plenty of room to choose a direction that meets their professional and academic interests. Taking a few seminars from the other theology disciplines of choice (Church History, Literary Theology or Practical Theology) is mandatory to broaden students general knowledge on Theology.
  • The third year is aimed at training students for a specific profession. Students can choose research (English), education (Dutch), religion and policy (Dutch) or spiritual care (Dutch).
  • Teaching takes place in a stimulating, collegial setting with small groups, allowing for ample opportunity for questions and discussion.
  • Radboud University and its Theology department are Roman Catholic in origin, but its Master’s programme in Theology is open to all students. Our students have very diverse religious and cultural backgrounds.

Change perspective

This programme is aimed at enhancing students’ capacity for theological reflection and Christian intellectual so they can confidently enter the public area where debates on issues as atheism, post-secularism and science come into play. Therefore graduates can participate in debates in the public arena using arguments based on their Christian faith and can convey their faith in society. As a graduate of Systematic Theology, you will change the perspective of others and give meaning to fundamental questions and ideas that feature in science, culture and faith.

*This is a specialisation of the Master's in Theology

To apply for this course, please contact us by e-mail.

Fees and funding

UK students
€ 2,083 p/a
International students
€ 2,083 p/a for all students

There are various scholarships available for studying at Radboud University. Some of the opportunities are described below. A full list, including detailed information, can be found on our scholarships and grants page at our website.

Radboud Scholarship Programme

Open to a select number of excellent international students. Instead of the institutional tuition fees, non-EEA students pay the legal tuition fees (€2,083 in 2019/2020). Visa and residence permit costs, liability insurance and health insurance are also covered.

Orange Tulip Scholarship

Open to students from Brazil, Mexico, Russia, Indonesia, South-Korea, Vietnam, Thailand, and China. Instead of the institutional tuition fees, non-EEA students pay the legal tuition fees (€2,083 in 2019/2020). Visa and residence permit costs, liability insurance and health insurance are also covered.

Fulbright-Radboud Scholarships

Open to excellent American students. The grant will be paid in 12 monthly instalments of 1,050 euros. International travel and the cost of the residence permit will be covered, and an extra allowance of €1150 will be paid on arrival.

Sino-Dutch Bilateral Exchange Scholarship

Open to excellent students from China. Consists of a contribution of € 16,113 towards the total costs of one year of study or research in the Netherlands.

DIKTI-Neso Scholarships

Aimed at lecturers at higher education institutions in Indonesia who wish to pursue a PhD or Master's at a university in the Netherlands. A DIKTI scholarship includes allowances for living expenses, insurance, travel costs, tuition fees and more.

Indonesian Education Scholarship (LPDP)

Open to excellent Indonesian students under the age of 35. Involves a full scholarship.

Holland Scholarship Programme

Open to excellent students from Canada, America, India and Turkey. Scholarship consists of 5,000 euros payed at the start of study.

Dutch Student Finance

EU/EEA students and Swiss students under 30 years of age are eligible if they are working at least 56 hours per month in the Netherlands, or have been living in the Netherlands for five years or more. Dutch student finance consists of four components: a basic grant, a supplementary grant (depending on the parental income), a student travel product, and a loan.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • MA by research
    full time
    36 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

Study Information