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Greetings! For a number of years, the Theology programme has had a very significant number of postgraduate students and they have added to the life of the Theology programme in so many ways.  It has been particularly encouraging to see postgraduates write excellent theses and then go on to establish academic careers. We hope that if you embark on postgraduate study, you will find it to be very satisfying and enriching.

There's lots going on for research students – our Friday afternoon seminars, a range of Open Lectures given by visiting scholars, conferences, book launches and Centre for Theology and Public Issues events. The Division and the wider University also offer a whole range of workshops and seminars for research students that are highly recommended. Do make the most of what is available!

We hope you'll find the information that you're looking for on these web pages.  If not, do get in touch with us.

Postgraduate certificate and diplomas

We offer a variety of postgraduate qualifications:

Coursework (taught) Masters

Research Masters and PhD

Supervisors, topics and current postgraduate research

For more information on suggested research topics and ideas for postgraduate students, visit:

View what our current postgraduates are researching:

Applying for postgraduate study

Entry requirements

Entry to all postgraduate qualifications is on merit. This means that the student shall have obtained a B+ or better average in their 300-level papers. The Programme considers the details of applicants' prior studies and grades, and, in the case of research degrees, looks at the feasibility of their proposed area of study.

Research proposals

To gain entry to a research MA, MTheol or a PhD, you need to supply the Programme with a proposal indicating a focused theme, a methodology, and a suggested plan for the work. It is useful to include some initial bibliography with this proposal.

Applicants who are not Otago graduates must additionally supply certified copies of transcripts from all of their previous tertiary studies.

Admissions committee

All postgraduate research applications are assessed by an admissions committee in the first instance, which makes recommendations to the University.  This may take a number of weeks to go through the system, and applicants should bear this in mind when they consider possible dates for starting study.

When you can start

Studies for an MA or an MTheol normally commence at the start of one of the regular semesters; studies for a PhD can begin at any time of the year.

Applications close

Entrance to Ministry and Chaplaincy postgraduate qualifications (PGCertChap, PGDipChap, PGDipMin, MChap, MMin) is at the start of the academic year. Applications must be completed by 10 December of the previous year.

Postgraduate Co-ordinator


Scholarships and funding

Applications for postgraduate scholarships and awards are a separate process from applications for entry to postgraduate studies.

Scholarships information

Graduate Research School

The Graduate Research School has responsibility for leadership, oversight and policy advice in relation to doctoral degrees (including the PhD), research Masters' degrees and University scholarships and prizes, as well as responsibility for providing appropriate support and guidance to graduate research candidates and their supervisors.

Find information about the many postgraduate scholarships and funding opportunities available.

The GRS also offers a number of workshops, seminars and social events to our candidates and relevant staff.

Graduate Research School

Conference funding

Download the application forms for PhD conference from the the Division of Humanities website.

PhD conference funding


Chaplaincy and Ministry

Dr Graham Redding

Faith-based Leadership and Management

Professor David Tombs

MTheol and PhD

Professor David Tombs

Dip Grad, PGDipTheol, and BTheol(Hons)

Professor Murray Rae

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