Studies in Early Church History and Theology Non Honours TRS3037

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Critical Studies
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 3 (SCQF level 9)
  • Typically Offered: Either Semester 1 or Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: No

Short Description

This course will explore the development of the Christian church and its theology from the Apostolic Fathers through the patristic period. Attention will focus on the definition of orthodoxy, the development of church order, the role of women, and the socio-political context of Christian development.


1x2hr seminar per week over 10 weeks as scheduled on MyCampus.


This is one of the Level 3 options in TRS and may not run every year. The options that are running this session are available on MyCampus.

Requirements of Entry

Grade D3 or above in any TRS level 2 course or at the discretion of the Head of Theology and Religious Studies.

Excluded Courses

TRS3002 Early Church History Level 3 

TRS4004 Studies in Early Church and Patristics

TRS4102 Studies in Early Church History and Theology




Essay (2,000 words) - 40%

Presentation of 10 minutes accompanied by a one-page A4 handout - 10%

Source criticism exercise (750 words) - 10%


Examination (90 minutes duration) - 40%


In place of the exam an additional 2,000 word essay on a topic to be agreed with the convener, by an agreed date - 40%

Main Assessment In: April/May

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? No

Reassessments are normally available for all courses, except those which contribute to the Honours classification. For non-Honours courses, students are offered reassessment in all or any of the components of assessment if the satisfactory (threshold) grade for the overall course is not achieved at the first attempt. This is normally grade D3 for undergraduate students and grade C3 for postgraduate students. Exceptionally it may not be possible to offer reassessment of some coursework items, in which case the mark achieved at the first attempt will be counted towards the final course grade. Any such exceptions for this course are described below. 

Presentation is not available for reassessment.

Course Aims

This course will provide the opportunity to:

■ explore the development of Christian theology and the church in its earliest centuries;

■ engage critically with primary sources which offer evidence of this development;

■ deepen understanding of the political, religious, and cultural world of Late Antiquity;

■ develop awareness of a range of historiographical interpretations of this period.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:

■ present an account of the development of Christianity and the reasons for that development;

■ analyse a range of primary sources;

■ compare and contrast different historiographical approaches;

■ present complex arguments in written and oral form.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.