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Durham University

Faculty Handbook Archive

Archive Module Description

This page is for the academic year 2014-15. The current handbook year is 2019-20

Department: Theology and Religion

THEO2391: EARLY CHRISTIAN DOCTRINE: TRINITY AND CHRISTOLOGY

Type Open Level 2 Credits 20 Availability Available in 2014/15 Module Cap None. Location Durham

Prerequisites

  • Christianity in Context (THEO 1171).

Corequisites

  • None.

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • None.

Aims

  • To trace the development of Christian theology in the patristic period, especially Christology and the doctrine of the Trinity.
  • To set doctrinal developments in the context of selected practices of Christianity in the patristic period.
  • To expose students to primary texts by major patristic authors and texts and teach them skills of close analysis of texts.

Content

  • The paper traces the development of doctrine through the patristic period. The main focus will be on the 'classical' debates from the council of Nicea (325AD) to the council of Chalcedon (451AD). The examination will include: the doctrine of the Trinity, the person of Christ, human salvation and sanctification. The doctrinal developments will be set in the context of the church's communal worship and reading of the Bible, probing the question of the relation between doctrine and the church's life and practice.

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • Doctrinal development in the period, especially with respect to Christology and the doctrine of the Trinity.
  • Selected areas of Christian practice.
Subject-specific Skills:
  • Ability to analyse primary texts theologically, showing appropriate knowledge of interpretative issues and the background of doctrinal development.
Key Skills:
  • Skills in the acquisition of information through reading and research, and in the structured presentation of information in written form.

Modes of Teaching, Learning and Assessment and how these contribute to the learning outcomes of the module

  • The course will be taught with a mixture of lectures and seminars.
  • The lectures will trace the development of doctrine, as well as outlining the theology of the authors of the recommended primary texts and will also provide an introduction to worship in the period and patristic Biblical exegesis and hermeneutics.
  • The seminars will focus on the recommended primary texts and teach skills of close reading and interpretation of texts in a variety of genres (e.g., doctrinal, exegetical and liturgical).
  • Tutorials provide feedback on student work and the opportunity to discuss specific issues in detail, enhancing student knowlege and writing skills.
  • Formative essays develop subject-specific knowlege and understanding, along with student skills in the acquisition of information through reading and research, and in the structured presentation of information in written form.
  • Examinations assess subject -specific knowledge and understanding, along with student skills in the structured presentation of information in written form under time constraints.
  • Summative essays assess subject-specific knowledge and understanding, along with student skills in the acquisition of information through reading and research, and in the structured presentation of information in written form.

Teaching Methods and Contact Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Lectures 22 1 per week:10 in Term l; 9 in Term 2; and 3 in Term 3 1 hour 22
Tutorials 2 1 in Term 1 and 1 in Term 3. 1 hour 2
Seminars 6 3 in Term 1 and 3 in Term 2. 6
Preparation and Reading 170
Total 200

Summative Assessment

Component: Essay Component Weighting: 40%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
One summative essay 3,000 words 100% Yes
Component: Examination Component Weighting: 60%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
One unseen examination in Easter term 2 hours 100% Yes

Formative Assessment:

One formative piece of work in the Autumn term (2,500 words).


Attendance at all activities marked with this symbol will be monitored. Students who fail to attend these activities, or to complete the summative or formative assessment specified above, will be subject to the procedures defined in the University's General Regulation V, and may be required to leave the University