This three-year part-time course is a thorough grounding in theology, ministry, and mission validated by Durham University as part of the Common Awards scheme. It will take you through a range of modules that are academically stimulating and relevant to the Christian life. It provides a solid foundation for active ministry in the Church, both lay and ordained and satisfies those who want to take their theological studies further.
All study material is provided online, so some IT skill is necessary. You will work with your designated personal tutor and can converse with other students via Moodle, so it is possible to do this course anywhere in the world at a time and pace that suits you. Also, depending on the numbers on the course, we will be offering some study sessions either in the evening or at weekends for those who can attend – this is not a requirement but an opportunity to enhance your learning.
It is possible after completion of the Diploma to progress to the BA (Hons) through the two-year top-up course.
Over the three years, you will work through 12 modules. The range of study is wide to give you a broad approach to theology that relates directly to experience. You begin with introductions to the Bible, Christian Doctrine, Church History and the Foundations for Ministry and Mission in Context. In the second year, you will study further the relevance of the Bible and Christian Doctrine to everyday life, along with modules on Christian Worship and Reflective Practice. In the third year, you will deepen your research in Biblical Studies, reflect on the role of Sacramental Theology in Ministry, relate Community Formation and Discipleship, and develop your Mission and Apologetics in Contemporary Culture.
The assessment of work is varied, through the writing of assignments and reflections, creating resources for practical use, giving presentations and putting together portfolios. Your personal tutor will help you prepare for these and offer advice on how to develop your learning. Each module will be marked, with an overall grade given for the Diploma.
Please contact us if you require more details about the modules or the assessment.
How to apply
Applications for entry to this course are accepted at any time, but we enroll new students in the Autumn of each year. Previous necessary qualifications will include 2 A levels, or the equivalent, or the Foundation Award. You will be allocated a tutor who will guide you through your studies. Also, you will have access to our online Moodle site with study material, forums, feedback forms and details about the assessment for each module. Simply complete the application form and return it by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
As part of the application process overseas students will need to supply evidence that any previous overseas study / education is comparable to UK qualifications. This can be done through NARIC https://www.naric.org.uk/naric/Individuals/Default.aspx
NARIC can also provide evidence of English Language Assessment which is a Durham University requirement for anyone whose first language is not English. Requirements for undergraduate and postgraduate programmes https://www.dur.ac.uk/learningandteaching.handbook/1/3/3/1/
We keep our fees competitive because we want as many as can to access all our courses. In 2018/19 the annual fee for the Diploma is £2480. This covers your distance tutor, any classes or groups, online materials and the university validation. This annual fee may be subject to a small rise each year, and as the Diploma takes three years the total fee may be around £7500.
We offer a 5% discount to all those who apply and pay the annual fee by the 31st August. This reduces the annual fee from £2480 to £2356.
For those on a tighter budget, we offer module by module payments which must be paid prior to starting the module. In the first year, you will pay £620 per module. The first payment of £620 by 31st August, the second by 30th November, the third by 31st January and the final by 31st March (4 modules in total = £2480).
Unfortunately, we are not able to offer a refund if you leave the course during the year. However, it is possible in special circumstances to take a break from your studies, subject to a deferral fee of £80, and return to the Diploma in the following year.