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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Divinity : Divinity

Undergraduate Course: Theology and Religious Studies: Final Dissertation (DIVI10001)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Divinity CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 4 Undergraduate)
Course typeDissertation AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits40 ECTS Credits20
SummarySupervised research into a topic in theology and religious studies. This is compulsory for all final year single honours programmes in Divinity.
Course description Academic Description:
The course allows students to choose and pursue in depth a research topic in biblical studies, the history of Christianity, religious studies, or theology and ethics. The topic may have appeared in a previous or current course, and might be relevant to a student's personal interests, work, faith, ministry or possible future study. The topic should be well focused, such as on a specific thinker, text, group, historical event or location. It is usually easier to broaden a narrow topic than to reduce a big topic. In conjunction with their supervisor, students then formulate a research question or problem related to the chosen topic and use appropriate methods and research sources to address it.

Syllabus/Outline Content:
The content is determined by the research question or problem. In consultation with their supervisor, students formulate their own work timetable determined by the chapters and headings in their dissertation outline. Suitable primary and secondary academic sources, both printed and electronic, are identified, using existing knowledge, the library catalogue and online research databases. Some projects may use archival sources. Other projects may employ fieldwork methods, such as a site visit, interviews or participant observation. Any research involving human subjects will require prior ethical review, which includes a risk assessment. Students considering fieldwork may wish to prepare for this by taking REST10047 Field-Work Approaches for the Study of Religion in year 3.

Student Learning Experience Information:
Planning begins in semester 2 of the preceding year with a briefing. In this semester, students must register an agreed topic and potential supervisor, providing a brief description and an initial bibliography. Research and writing commence in semester 1 and continue through semester 2. Three formal meetings are held with the supervisor through the year, with feedback on the same chapter permitted only once. Additional informal consultation may take place in person or by email. No meetings or feedback are allowed within seven days of the submission deadline. The assessment is based entirely on the written dissertation, which must be in the required format and use a recognised citation style.

Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2023/24, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  None
Course Start Full Year
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 400 ( Dissertation/Project Supervision Hours 7, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 8, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 385 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) One 10,000 word dissertation due toward the end of the final year of Honours study, required to be submitted by a due date established each year and indicated in the Honours Dissertation Guidelines. (100% of mark).
Feedback Not entered
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Formulate an independent research question or problem
  2. Plan a research project
  3. Conduct independent research using appropriate methods
  4. Produce an extended critical written response to the question or problem
Reading List
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills - Self- discipline
- Self- direction
- Independence of mind and initiative
- Ability to gather, evaluate and synthesise different types of information
- Analytical ability and the capacity to formulate questions and solve problems
- Writing skills, including clear expression and citing relevant evidence
Additional Class Delivery Information Three supervision sessions amounting to approximately 6 hrs total.
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserDr Simon Burton
Tel: (0131 6)50 8920
Course secretaryMiss Rachel Dutton
Tel: (0131 6)50 7227
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