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Postgraduate Study

Course closed:

Theology, Religion and Philosophy of Religion is no longer accepting new applications.


Teaching is by seminars, supervisions, and, as appropriate, classes and lectures. Each module shall normally be taught by four seminars of two hours duration in one term (though some subject areas may provide one-and-a-half-hour seminars where there is no essay work being assessed during the seminar itself). Teaching for the exercises varies according to the nature of the exercise. Students may be required to submit preliminary written work for seminar presentations, or practice essays or exercises ahead of their submitted essays or exercises.

The essays will be supervised individually. The norm is two hours of supervision (distributed between two or three meetings) per essay.

For dissertations, the norm is four hours of supervision, though that time may be distributed in various ways.

For those students taking the part-time route, it is intended that the taught elements will normally be delivered in the first year but students can take the third taught element in their second year.

One to one supervision

Four hours for the dissertation; two hours per essay.

The University of Cambridge publishes an annual Code of Practice which sets out the University’s expectations regarding supervision.

Seminars & classes

12 to 16 hours per term.


16 to 24 hours per year for language papers.


Feedback will be given on essays or exercises related to the seminar modules when the marks and comments are available. Feedback will be given regarding progress in the dissertation during the supervisions given for it. There will also be termly reports by supervisors.


Thesis / Dissertation

A dissertation of between 15,000 and 20,000 words. The examiners may at their discretion request an oral examination in any aspect of the work submitted by the candidate.


Two pieces of written work, each of which shall be an essay of not more than 5,000 words  related to a student's chosen seminar modules.

If a student does not choose to study a language, a further written exercise, of not more than 5,000 words.

Written examination

One three-hour language examination (if a student chooses to study a language).

Key Information

9 months full-time

1 year and 9 months part-time

Study Mode : Taught

Master of Philosophy

Faculty of Divinity

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Course on Department Website

Dates and deadlines:

Applications open
Sept. 4, 2023
Application deadline
May 16, 2024
Course Starts
Oct. 1, 2024

Some courses can close early. See the Deadlines page for guidance on when to apply.

Course Funding Deadline
Dec. 5, 2023
Gates Cambridge US round only
Oct. 11, 2023

These deadlines apply to applications for courses starting in Michaelmas 2024, Lent 2025 and Easter 2025.

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