Critical Readings in Theology and Religion (THE3194)

StaffDr Louise Lawrence - Convenor
Credit Value15
ECTS Value7.5
NQF Level5 (THE2194) or 6 (THE3194)
Pre-requisitesAs determined by the choice of text, in consultation with module convenor.
Duration of Module Term 2: 11 weeks;

Module aims

This module aims to enable students to engage in close reading of a specific text, either in English, or in English translation. Classes will provide the context for discussion of issues of interpretation; students will also be encouraged to attend relevant research seminars. The module will thus enable capable students to engage with current research in their chosen area, and to develop their own research skills. Students will produce a piece of written work as assessment that may include translation and commentary, literary, philological, and/or historical analysis, and engagement with contemporary scholarship.

ILO: Module-specific skills

  • 1. Describe and analyse in detail the content of a specific Jewish or Christian text.
  • 2. Demonstrate critical and informed understanding of the significance of this text, whether in English translation or in its original language.

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

  • 1. Show the ability to analyse and interpret a religious text with care and sensitivity to detail
  • 2. Demonstrate awareness of the critical issues entailed in reading such texts.

ILO: Personal and key skills

  • 1. Attend carefully to the specific detail of a written text
  • 2. Describe, analyse, and interpret a text in an informed and appropriate way.
  • 3. Work independently, with guidance, in studying a set text and producing written work about it.

Syllabus plan

  • Introduction to the selected text, and issues of genre, transmission, and interpretation.
  • Introduction to contemporary scholarship on this text and its associated field.
  • Work on close reading of the text, whether in translation or the original language.
  • Preparation of assignment, and work on draft, in consultation with supervisor.
  • Oral presentation about each project prior to final submission of  written work.

Students will also be encouraged to attend relevant department research seminars, which will help locate their studies in a broader context of current research.

Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

Details of learning activities and teaching methods

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Initial introduction to the module1With module convenor
Small group work on set text5 (minimum)With assigned supervisor
Discussion of draft assignment1With assigned supervisor
Oral Presentation meeting1With supervisors and other students

Formative assessment

Form of assessmentSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Submission of draft assignment5,000 words1-7Discussion with supervisor

Summative assessment (% of credit)

CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams

Details of summative assessment

Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Essay905,000 words1-7Essay plus coversheet
Oral presentation1010 minutes1-5Oral feedback plus comment sheet

Re-assessment notes

Re-assessment will be taken as an essay

Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

Appropriate reading and resources will be determined by the choice of text, with the guidance of module convenor and supervisor.

Module has an active ELE page?


Available as distance learning?


Origin date


Last revision date


Key words search

Theology, Christianity, Judaism, text