menu icon
Book your open day visit nowClick to book open day

Different course options

Study mode

Full time


9 months

Start date


Key information

Qualification type

MSt - Master of Studies

Subject areas

Religious Studies

Course type


Course Summary

About the course

The Master of Studies (MSt) in Theology is offered in many areas of theology, such as Biblical Interpretation, Christian Doctrine, Christian Ethics, Ecclesiastical History, New Testament studies and Old Testament studies. Students of Christian Doctrine specialise in one of two areas. Patristic Theology or Modern Theology. You will be part of an active and vibrant community of graduate students within the Faculty of Theology and Religion.

The degree offers an intensive period of advanced study in a chosen field, with rigorous training in relevant research methods. It offers the opportunity to gain specialist knowledge of distinct topics within the field of study and includes an element of scholarly research and writing which can constitute part of the training for a future research degree.

The course is taught through a combination of core lectures and/or seminars and regular meetings with your supervisor, either one-to-one or in a very small group. Attendance at other lectures and seminars may be recommended or required. The topics being studied will normally be covered during the first two terms.

You learn to analyse and evaluate both primary and secondary literature, how to select the most significant materials, and combine them to form a structured argument. You also develop the habits of critical questioning, clear exposition, and objective evaluation.


The MSt degree is awarded on the basis of two short essays of up to 5,000 words each, a written exam of three hours in duration, and a dissertation of up to 15,000 words in Trinity term. These assessments may require a demonstration of linguistic competence according to your field of study. There may be an oral examination (viva voce) on your dissertation topic and wider knowledge of your field of study.

Graduate destinations

Students who leave the University of Oxford with graduate degrees in theology enter a variety of careers all around the world. Over half of those who gain an MSt or MPhil proceed to further, usually doctoral study. Others progress to professional employment as, for example, lawyers, school teachers, civil servants, or parliamentary research assistants, or go on to work with non-governmental organisations or in the media and journalism.

Tuition fees

UK fees
Course fees for UK students

For this course (overall cost)


International fees
Course fees for EU and international students

For this course (overall cost)


Entry requirements

As a minimum, applicants should hold or be predicted to achieve the equivalent of the following UK qualifications: a first-class or strong upper second-class (67% or above) undergraduate degree with honours in theology, religious studies or another closely related field. Applicants with a degree in another discipline, who can demonstrate significant competence in handling theological and religious ideas in their statement of purpose, will be considered. Entrance is very competitive. For applicants with a degree from the USA, the minimum GPA sought is 3.8 out of 4.0.