Master’s in Theology (Research)

The Research Master's is aimed at giving students the necessary skills and knowledge to permit them to acquire an initial mastery in their field of interest.

Home / Courses / Masters-degree-in-theology-mth-1

Introduction

The Research Master's is aimed at giving students the necessary skills and knowledge to permit them to acquire an initial mastery in their field of interest.

Description

Non-EU students should contact pgadmissions@spcm.ie for guidance on their application.

Research Master's programmes form the foundation of enduring postgraduate study at the College. In a Research Master's, candidates exercise far greater choice in the shape of their study and personal research, in contrast to Undergraduate Study or a Taught Master's where a student follows a course of study determined to a huge extent by the degree they have chosen. There are two Research Master's routes—the Master's by Minor Thesis and Allied Courses (Structured Research), and Master's by Major Thesis (Pure Research).

A Master's degree requires a thorough, broad, and interdisciplinary academic training. It is in this perspective that the Pontifical University brings the wide experience and expertise of its theologians to bear.

The programme for degree of Master in Theology (MTh) offers candidates the opportunity to deepen their knowledge of Theology through specialised study, personal work and research.

Career Outcomes

  • There are many ways in which a degree in Theology can be used. Possible career routes include: - • Second Level teaching (following the successful completion of the undergraduate degree in Theology followed by the Professional Master of Education (PME)).
  • - • Journalism.
  • - • Pastoral work, Retreat work, Parish catechesis.
  • - • Public/Private Sectors
  • - • School/ Hospital Chaplaincy (For professional qualifications in chaplaincy additional courses are also a requirement).

Course Structure

Programme of Study

There are two methods of obtaining this degree.

  • Structured Research: candidates complete six Seminar Courses and write a minor thesis (25,000-30,000 words).


Programme of Study: Structured Research
The duration of the programme is two years. The first year is considered a year of full-time study in one of the options below. In the second year the candidate, takes one seminar course in the first semester and completes a thesis. Candidates must complete Postgraduate Induction which takes place during the week beginning September 18, 2023.


Course Option I: Systematic Theology (Code - MU508)
In Year One the candidate takes five seminar courses: two seminar courses in Systematic Theology, two seminar courses from the remaining suite, as well as the obligatory course PG442: The Soul of Theology in the second semester.

In Year Two the candidate takes obligatory course PG464: Research in Theology: Historical and Methodological Approaches in semester one and completes the dissertation. The dissertation is to be submitted by 3.00pm on the last Friday in June. A grace period of two weeks will apply.

Course Option II: Moral Theology (Code - MU509)
In Year One the candidate takes five seminar courses: two seminar courses in Moral Theology, two seminar courses from the remaining suite, as well as the obligatory course PG442: The Soul of Theology in the second semester.

In Year Two the candidate takes obligatory course PG464: Research in Theology: Historical and Methodological Approaches in semester one and completes the dissertation. The dissertation is to be submitted by 3.00pm on the last Friday in June. A grace period of two weeks will apply.

Course Option III: Biblical Theology (Code - MU510)
In Year One the candidate takes five seminar courses: two seminar courses in Biblical Theology, two seminar courses from the remaining suite, as well as the obligatory course PG442: The Soul of Theology in the second semester.

In Year Two the candidate takes obligatory course PG464: Research in Theology: Historical and Methodological Approaches in semester one and completes the dissertation. The dissertation is to be submitted by 3.00pm on the last Friday in June. A grace period of two weeks will apply.

Course Option IV: Liturgy (Code - MU511)
In Year One the candidate takes five courses: one reading course in Liturgical Theology, two seminar courses in Liturgical Theology, the obligatory course PG442: The Soul of Theology and one seminar course from the remaining suite of modules, as agreed with the Dean of Postgraduate Studies, in consultation with the programme co-ordinator.

In Year Two the candidate takes one further seminar course in Liturgical Theology, and completes the minor dissertation, of 25,000—30,000 words. The minor dissertation will be on an approved topic and submitted by 3.00pm on the last Friday in June. A grace period of two weeks will apply. The dissertation is pursued under the direction of a member of the Faculty of Theology. While completing the dissertation, the candidate is not required to be in full-time attendance. The dissertation is to be submitted by 3.00pm on the last Friday in June. A grace period of two weeks will apply.


​Programme of Study

Programme of Study: Pure Research
Candidates must complete Postgraduate Induction which takes place during the week beginning September 18, 2023.

Candidates must fulfil the requirements of PG464: Research in Theology: Historical and Methodological Approaches, and work for at least three semesters under the direction of a permanent teacher within the Faculty.

The subject of the dissertation requires the approval of the relevant Head of Department.

The length of the dissertation shall be approximately 40,000 words, exclusive of footnotes and bibliography.

Candidates shall be required to submit their dissertations within three years. Extensions will be granted only in exceptional circumstances.

The dissertation shall be examined by the dissertation supervisor and an external examiner chosen by the Faculty.

Candidates may be examined on the subject matter of the dissertation if the above examiners so decide.

Application Requirements

Applications are now being accepted on www.pac.ie If you have any queries please contact admissions@spcm.ie.

PLEASE NOTE: Application forms must be completed in full, and all documentation must be provided BEFORE an application can be considered. Applicants will not be called for interview if an application is incomplete.

Admission Requirements: Structured Research

The minimum entry requirement is a primary degree in which Theology comprises at least an equal joint component. Candidates should have obtained at least Second Class Honours, Grade I overall, and Second Class Honours, Grade I in Theology. An interview will be part of the selection procedure.

The Faculty of Theology may also accept applicants whom it deems to have achieved an equivalent standard. Where an applicant’s qualifications are insufficient for admission to the MTh a Qualifying Programme and Examination may be provided.

Students whose first language is not English will be required to satisfy the English language requirements. Students will normally be expected to register year by year on a continuous basis until they have completed their degree. Students wishing to suspend registration may do so only on the express permission of the Faculty.


Admission Requirements : Pure Research

To qualify for admission to a Master’s Degree in Theology by dissertation only, candidates shall have Second Class Honours, Grade I in the theological component of their honours degree. The Faculty of Theology may also accept applicants whom it deems to have achieved an equivalent standard. Masters Mode B is recommended only for students who have a clear research focus and a proven ability to work on their own. An interview will be part of the selection procedure.

Students whose first language is not English will be required to satisfy the English language requirements. Students will normally be expected to register year by year on a continuous basis until they have completed their degree. Students wishing to suspend registration may do so only on the express permission of the Faculty.



Theological Languages – Structured Research and Pure Research:
A competence in theological language(s) is a qualifying requirement

• Candidates admitted into the MTh Research (Biblical) programme in the Faculty of Theology shall be required to sit a qualifying examination in Greek and Hebrew, which usually take place during orientation.

• Candidates admitted into the MTh Research (Moral/Systematic/Liturgy) programmes in the Faculty of Theology shall be required to sit a qualifying examination in Latin, which usually takes place during orientation.

• Candidates who do not pass the above qualifying examination(s) are required to attend and pass qualifying course(s) in the relevant theological language(s).

• Candidates can opt not to take the qualifying examination(s) during orientation and register to take the qualifying course(s) in the relevant theological language(s).

• Candidates who have previously successfully completed the theological language courses in the Pontifical University are exempt.

Syllabi for these examinations here: Greek, Latin, Hebrew (Hebrew Vocabulary).


This Degree qualifies for Higher Education grants.



If you live outside Ireland, check out our dedicated area for international students.

Let’s talk

For Undergraduate queries: email admissions@spcm.ie.

For Postgraduate queries: email pgadmissions@spcm.ie.

For The Centre for Mission & Ministries queries, email: cmmadmissions@spcm.ie.