Theology & Religious Studies Research

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MPhil/PhD

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Part Time, Full Time

RESEARCH PROFILE
  • RAE score (2008): Joint third in the United Kingdom for world-leading research or research of international excellence.
  • Current number of academic staff: 28
  • Current number of research students: 120
  • Recent publications:
    • A History of Saudi Arabia.
    • The Stars Will Fall From Heaven: Cosmic Catastrophe in the New Testament and its World.
    • The Command of Grace: A New Theological Apologeticsl. 
    • Imitating Jesus: An Inclusive Approach to New Testament Ethics.
    • Language in the Diaspora: The Secularization of Hebrew in the Eighteenth Century.
  • Current research projects:
    • The Historical and Contemporary Impact of St Paul. 
    • Transformation Theology
    • The Visibility of the Church: Christan Ministry and Leadership 
    • Apophatic Theology.
  • Partner organisations: London School of Jewish Studies & Leo Baeck College, and the National Gallery.

KEY FACTS
Student destinations
Teaching; journalism; careers in the church - one of our famous alumni is, of course, Desmond Tutu.
Head of group/division
Professor Paul Janz
Duration
Expected to be: MPhil two years FT, four years PT; PhD three years FT, four-six years PT. September to September, January to January or April to April.
Location
Strand Campus.
Year of entry 2015
Offered by
Faculty of Arts & Humanities
Department of Theology and Religious Studies
Closing date
None. Students interested in applying to funding should be aware that deadlines for this differ and may be earlier, therefore applicants should view the Graduate Funding Pages at http://www.kcl.ac.uk/study/pg/funding/sources/index.aspx for more information.
Intake
No set number.
Fees
CONTACTS
Contact information
Postgraduate Admissions, Admissions Office
tel: +44 (0) 20 7848 1649
fax: +44 (0) 20 7848 7200
Email Website

RESEARCH DESCRIPTION
The lively research-orientated atmosphere of our department offers a stimulating environment for graduate research.

The department represents a broad range of overlapping research areas. Students can pursue traditional areas of study through Theology (Systematics; Philosophical Theology; Patristics and Medieval Theology; History of Christianity in the reformation and modern period; Biblical Theology, Ethics, Business Ethics, and Christianity and the Arts) and Biblical Studies (literary, ideological and theological approaches to the Hebrew Bible; Second Temple Judaism, gender and the Dead Sea Scrolls; New Testament studies, including biography, genre, environment and ethics). Central to our department too is the social scientific study of religion (anthropology, sociology, history and politics), together with philosophy of religion, the world of Jews in modern Europe, contemporary Islamic thought, and Chinese religions. Staff are engaged in research and publishing at the cutting edge of their areas, and several are involved in editing leading academic journals and monograph series.

Students pursue their research by working with a supervisor, and the department's graduate seminars and day conferences offer excellent opportunities for interaction with other staff and students, including the chance to try out research papers on a friendly audience. We pride ourselves on the quality of our research training at every level.

Staff interests associated with the research programme and its research groups

Interests:
Modern Jewish thought and practice; the Enlightenment and its critics;
Orientalism and secularism.
Tel:
+44 (0)20 7848 2337
Fax:
Email:
Website:
Interests:
My research interests include: Theological aesthetics (especially the idea of beauty in Christian theology), with a particular interest in Hans Urs von Balthasar's work, as well as 19th-century commentators like S.T. Coleridge and John Ruskin and recent ones like David Bentley Hart and Rowan Williams; Literature, drama, the visual arts and music, in their intrinsic theological interest, as well as the way in which the arts can stimluate renewed theological engagement with the Bible; the arts as scriptural exegesis; Modern philosophical and systematic theology; Christian ethics, especially as shaped by liturgy and scripture.
Tel:
+44 (0)20 7848 2336
Fax:
020 7848 2255
Email:
Website:
Interests:
History of Religions (intellectual history of the modern Muslim world; Islam in Southeast Asia); Islamic Studies (contemporary thought in the Muslim world; Islam in global and transnational contexts); Southeast Asian Studies (European expansion in Southeast Asia; Islamization in Southeast Asia; Religion in Southeast Asia); Study of Religions (Islamic Studies as an academic specialisation, theory and method; philosophy of religion); travel writing (historical travel accounts on Southeast Asia).
Tel:
+44 (0)20 7848 1795
Fax:
+44 (0)20 7848 2325
Email:
Website:
Interests:
Nietzsche; Simone Weil; ethics; some aspects of aesthetics; relations between philosophy and literature
Tel:
+44 (0)20 7848 1524
Fax:
Email:
Website:
Interests:
Social ethics and poverty research; Christian ethics; theology and social sciences; relationship epistemology and ethics.
Tel:
+44 (0)20 7848 2510
Fax:
Email:
Website:
Interests:
English reformation; the Elizabethan Catholic Community; the Elizabethan Privy Council.
Tel:
020 7848 2835
Fax:
Email:
Website:
Interests:
Modern British religious history, especially the question of secularisation; youth movements and the relationship between Christianity and leisure.
Tel:
020 7848 2304
Fax:
Email:
Website:
Interests:
New Testament; social aspects of early Christianity; critical linguistics and New Testament interpretation.
Tel:
020 7848 2502
Fax:
Email:
Website:
Interests:
Tel:
020 7848 2335
Fax:
020 7848 2255
Email:
Website:
Interests:
Religion and society in Western and Eastern Europe, in particular in post-communist societies; new religious movements and new Charismatic and Pentecostal Christian groups; religion and migration; religion, ethnicity and nationhood; religion, violence, and conflict; Church-State relations; religion law, and human rights.
Tel:
+44 (0)20 7848 2637
Fax:
Email:
Website:
Interests:
* Patristic and Medieval Studies (especially Neo-Platonist traditions)
* philosophical theology, Transformation Theology
* exile, history, arts and contemporary theology
* religion and business (including intercultural HR, finance, sponsoring/fundraising, organisation, leadership, entrepreneurship)
* Re-modernity or Second Modernity
Tel:
+44 (0)20 7848 2738
Fax:
020 7848 2255
Email:
Website:
Interests:
Contemporary theology; theology and continental philosophy; medieval theology; religion and literature; mysticism.
Tel:
020 7848 2459
Fax:
Email:
Website:
Interests:
Fundamental theology; contemporary philosophical theology; theology and embodiment; theology and action; theology and time.
Tel:
+44 (0)20 7848 2398
Fax:
Email:
Website:
Interests:
The Gospels; Graeco-Roman biography; New Testament ethics
Tel:
020 7848 2333
Fax:
Email:
Website:
Interests:
Contemporary Christian theology; the legacy of Karl Barth; theological interpretation of the Bible, especially the Book of Job; semiotics.
Tel:
+44 (0)20 7848 1258
Fax:
Email:
Website:

ACADEMIC ENTRY REQUIREMENTS
General entry advice

Students who wish to read for a research degree should normally have obtained (a) an MA or, in exceptional circumstances, a first class or good upper second class honours degree at a British university, or (b) an equivalent qualification. In both cases, their previous studies should normally have included a dissertation, or equivalent, demonstrating ability to present the result of independent study and research.

NON ACADEMIC REQUIREMENTS
Enhanced criminal conviction check
Occupational Health clearance required?

APPLYING TO KING'S
To apply for graduate study at King's you will need to complete our graduate online application form. Applying online makes applying easier and quicker for you, and means we can receive your application faster and more securely.
King's does not normally accept paper copies of the graduate application form as applications must be made online. However, if you are unable to access the online graduate application form, please contact the relevant admissions/School Office at King's for advice.

APPLICATION PROCEDURE

You are encouraged to contact a potential supervisor before applying to discuss your proposed research project (see Staff and Groups section). Admission to our research programmes will initially be for the MPhil/PhD but we expect students to transfer to the PhD after an appropriate period, by agreement with their supervisor and the Departmental Postgraduate and Research Committee.



PERSONAL STATEMENT & SUPPORTING INFORMATION
Please provide a research proposal of between one paragraph and two sides of A4 paper in length.

FUNDING
One scholarship awarded two out of every three years by the King's Theological Trust to a student from a country where the opportunity to pursue a theology degree is not normally available and for whom sources of finance are not available. The student must already have been accepted to study in the department and, if awarded, the scholarship is for the duration of full time study of a research degree, subject to satisfactory progression. The Trust additionally makes a number of minor grants to students. Two Walton Scholarships (approximately 4,500 each year), normally awarded to one full time MA student and one full time research. Otherwise AHRC, Graduate School and School of Arts & Humanities scholarships and bursaries, self-funded. For further information, please see our postgraduate funding page: http://www.kcl.ac.uk/artshums/depts/trs/study/funding/index.aspx


Student profiles

Theology & Religious Studies Research MPhil/PhD
For me personally, King’s represented expertise and a genuine interest in faith and scripture-based knowledge. These are two things I valued as I wanted to pursue a PhD in Theology & Religious Studies.

My goal is to become an academic with an interest in Shi’a Islamic Studies and Western philosophy and King’s has opened up a window of opportunities for me. My supervisors have been helpful and the Department has aided me financially. My humble advice for postgraduate students is to engage with your supervisors, present papers and attend conferences – this gives vitality to your PhD and opens up employment opportunities.

In sum, I can only say that King’s combines its heritage of classical knowledge with dynamism for new ideas. 
Theology & Religious Studies Research MPhil/PhD
I came to King’s to do my MA, and then continued my time here, going on into the PhD. I was initially attracted by the strong reputation and high-profile history of the department in my subject area of systematic theology. The former and current staff members, and many alumni, are well-known contributors to the field.

King’s has been a great place to engage in advanced study in theology – having a raft of world-leading experts from across the sub-disciplines, and with a vibrant and involved research environment. In the Theology Department, there are regular research seminars with international experts presenting cutting-edge work, and plenty of one off lectures and conferences where one is introduced to the much of the most important work currently being undertaken.

The department itself is research-led, having a first-rate pool of experienced PhD supervisors. The King’s PhD experience is quite hands-on, with regular meetings to monitor progress, and it is generous in offering support and guidance where necessary. I have been awarded a full award from the Arts and Humanities Research Council, which has helped my immeasurably. I consider King’s to be an ideal place in nurturing and cultivating the skills required for top-level academic research; to be applied in an academic career or a similarly research oriented role. I have been opportunities to present my research to my peers, to work as a teaching assistant doing undergraduate teaching and marking, and to represent the department at a variety of international conferences.

With such a broad range of subjects on offer at the heart of London, the King’s experience is pretty unique in both breadth and character. If anyone wants to research theology with a resolutely worldly orientation, and with a view to academic excellence, King’s College London is the ideal choice.
Theology & Religious Studies Research MPhil/PhD
While writing the dissertation for my master’s in Christian Theology I realised I had developed a passion for theology and carried on going to the British Library to follow-up some of my ideas. I was delighted to find a wonderful supervisor at King’s who was as excited as I was about the area I am researching which is Theology and Disability.



I chose King’s because of the wonderful reputation and great location in the heart of London. The day I enrolled I walked through the Strand Campus in a daze, because I could hardly believe how fortunate I was to be here. The views of so many iconic buildings from the terrace at the back of Somerset House are stunning.