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Department of Theology and Religion

Study & Library Facilities

The most important study facility any university can offer is a lively scholarly community. At Durham you will be part of a thriving, international and interdisciplinary group of staff and students. Whatever your field, you will never be short of someone to argue with.

But more mundane facilities still matter and we try to provide as much practical support for research students as possible.

We currently have 25 dedicated carrels or study spaces available to our research students, including some reserved for sharing between part-time students. We cannot guarantee them to all students who apply but we aim to ensure as fair a distribution as possible, taking into account individual students' needs and prioritising those nearing the end of their studies. Students are also able to apply for study space in the Arts and Humanities Postgraduate Hub, two minutes’ walk from the Department’s main buildings.

Library facilities for Theology and Religion in Durham are extensive, and the holdings at the Bill Bryson Library are only the beginning. Our next-door neighbour, Durham Cathedral, houses another theological library: the Sharp Library, which focuses on modern and pastoral theology. Additionally, the Meissen Library, located on level 3 of the Bill Bryson Library, is the largest collection of German-language theological materials in Britain. Some of the College libraries (notably St. Chad's College and St. John's College) hold extensive theological collections. And the Department has some library resources of its own, in particular in Hebrew and Jewish studies.

The historic library at Palace Green holds the University's Special Collections, including extensive collections of rare books and manuscripts of particular interest to students of Theology and Religion.

Online research resources are increasingly an essential part of any researcher's work, and Durham subscribes to all the principal online databases relevant to our field.

Inevitably, sometimes you will need a book which we don't have here. For those cases, all research students have an allowance for interlibrary orders through the Document Delivery Service.