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This course would allow you to explore the richness of Christian spirituality through historical, anthropological and theological lenses. It integrates theory with practice, and will be particularly appealing if you are in ministry, contemplating ministry or wanting to discover more about this exciting area. 

  • In 2017 the library acquired the Franciscan Study Collection from the Franciscan Study Centre in Canterbury

Why study Christian Spirituality?

This master's is designed to offer you the opportunity to study this field in some depth, from historical, theological, psychological and other points of view. The course examines different understandings of how Christians seek to relate to God, the underlying theology and the particular practices or lifestyles that express these understandings.

The search for ‘spirituality’ is one of the most striking aspects of our contemporary Western cultures. In simple terms, the word ‘spirituality’ stands for the way we seek to live out our fundamental beliefs and values. In Christian terms, spirituality is based on a relationship with God, to whom we seek to respond.

Why St Mary's?

As an institution, we have been at the forefront of the development of spirituality as an academic discipline. In 2009, we held one of the first European conferences connected to its study, the proceedings of which were published as Sources of Transformation: Revitalising Christian Spirituality (Eds. Peter Tyler and Edward Howells, Continuum 2011).

We have developed our world-class scholarship and experience in this department into an innovative, stand-alone MA in Christian Spirituality.

Upcoming open days and webinars

We'll be running events for you to find out more about Christian Spirituality MA, PGDip, PGCert on the following dates:

  • Tuesday 25th April 2023, 5.30pm

Course lead

Prof Peter Tyler headshotProf Peter Tyler
Professor - Pastoral Theology and Spirituality

Entry requirements

2:2 Previous degree

Students will be accepted on the programme if they have an Upper Second Class Honours Degree or equivalent.

Additional requirement information

In some circumstances other qualifications will be accepted after interview, or (exceptionally) other relevant experience and study with evidence of the ability to engage with such a programme.

Further information

For more information about entry requirements please email

Course content

Please note: in any given year not all modules will be offered, only a selection according to staff availability and student demand. The course will be taught on eight Saturdays at St Mary’s University.


  •  Core
  •  Core
  •  Core
  •  Optional
  •  Option for PGCert, PGDip and MA
  •  Optional
  •  Optional

Please note: it is possible that a module listed on the website will not be able to run due to reasons beyond our control. For more information please refer to our course information disclaimer.

Career opportunities

This degree has flexibility for students, allowing you to study part-time. This enables you to continue professional development alongside various forms of Christian ministry and leadership. Or on a personal level this MA is a way of continuing your interests, while enhancing your future employability or advancement to more senior roles.

This advanced education in Christianity would open specific opportunities in school teaching, and work with Christian or other charities and agencies. 

The skills acquired through this programme will provide an education which sensitises you to engaging with religious and ethical ideas from other times, cultures and places. Thus, it will equip you to go into a profession that engages with cross-cultural situations, such as non-governmental organisations in the UK and overseas, international relations, and the civil service.

Finally, the increasing role of psycho-spiritual formation in counselling and psychological settings is reflected in our optional module, Spiritual Direction, Psychology and Spiritual Formation, which will prove valuable if you want to pursue a career in these areas.


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How the degree is taught

Teaching methods

You'll be taught on our beautiful and historic campus located in Twickenham, London.

Student learning will be supported by a variety of strategies across the programme, which will include:

  • Lectures, to give overviews or detailed considerations of areas of knowledge or methods;
  • Seminar discussion based on prior reading or study tasks, to facilitate students growing in critical engagement with key texts from the tradition;
  • Student oral presentations on particular topics or texts, to enable students to develop in articulating their understanding and application of knowledge and approaches to Christian spirituality and to develop presentation skills, use of IT etc.;
  • Multimedia platforms such as online discussions and postings;
  • Provision of materials where appropriate (such as subject guides, handbooks, guided reading, and bibliographies);
  • Individual supervision for dissertation and essay work, to facilitate students’ own research and growth in ability to pursue independent study. 

Assessment methods

The degree is assessed by essays and other coursework set for the taught part (120 credits) and by a dissertation (60 credits). The dissertation will be on an agreed topic and will be up to 15,000 words.


How the course is taught

The course will be taught on eight Saturdays a year at the St Mary’s campus, Twickenham.

Qualifications available

If you complete two taught modules (60 credits) you will qualify for a Postgraduate Certificate.

Completing four taught modules (120 credits) will qualify you for a Postgraduate Diploma and successfully completing both coursework and dissertation will qualify you for a master's degree.

International students

This course is not Student visa eligible because it’s part-time only. However, we do accept international applications to study fully online, or blended (mostly online with some on-campus study on select Saturdays).


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Fees and funding

Tuition fees

September 2023

  • Home: £7,950
  • International: £15,750

The tuition fees listed are for the duration of the course. Students will be charged for the modules undertaken per academic year. Module prices are calculated as a percentage of credits against the total credits and cost of the degree. Please see clause 5.15.2 of the Tuition Fee Regulations for further information.

Tuition fees are subject to an inflationary increase each year, meaning if your course runs over more than one academic year you may pay an increased fee per module for each subsequent year of study. Tuition fee increases for returning students will be capped at the higher of 5% per annum or the rate of Consumer Price Index inflation in the United Kingdom.

Alumni discount

A 20% tuition fee discount is available for our alumni (undergraduate and PGCE) planning to study this Master's degree. Those studying for a PGDip of PGCert are not eligible for the discount.


Government-funded loans of over £11,000 are available to many Home postgraduate students.

Home and International students may also be eligible for external sources of funding. 

International Students should check their eligibility for our International Scholarship.

For more information, please look at our postgraduate funding page.

Additional costs

Your tuition fees will cover the cost of all mandatory elements of your programme.

Additional costs could be incurred depending on optional modules chosen and other projects undertaken.

For further information about additional costs please see our additional costs webpage

Further information