Research course

Theology and Religious Studies

University of Nottingham · Department of Theology and Religious Studies

Entry requirements

Applicants should, usually, hold a relevant masters-level degree (or international equivalent). You should submit a proposal of your intended research to the staff member you have identified as a potential supervisor.

Months of entry


Course content

The PhD requires an original contribution to knowledge and a thesis of a maximum of 100,000 words, inclusive of footnotes and bibliography. You will research your chosen topics in consultation with their supervisors.

You will be encouraged to present papers at staff and postgraduate seminars. You will have access to a range of staff in the department, but work particularly closely with one or two supervisors. As the academic profiles of members of staff indicate, most are experienced supervisors, several with former research students in academic posts.

A British PhD is valued highly internationally because it demands that a thesis embodies an original contribution to knowledge either by exploration and discovery or by re-appraisal and critique of a fresh and distinctive nature. Hence, an emphasis is placed on a thorough mastery of the literature of the field, usually in the original languages, as well as a creativity which grows out of interaction with a research supervisor who is producing creative work. We endorse John Henry Newman’s maxim that a university education has at its central core the creative meeting of minds.

Applicants apply to the PhD 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 supervision arrangements.

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

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • PhD
    part time
    72 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
    full time
    36 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

Postgraduate Enquiries
+44 (0)115 951 5843