Interpretive Approaches to Ancient Texts TRS5116

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Critical Studies
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 5 (SCQF level 11)
  • Typically Offered: Either Semester 1 or Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: No

Short Description

This course offers students the opportunity to develop a familiarity with, and understanding of, a range of interpretive approaches to a variety of ancient texts in and around the Bible (with a focus on the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament). It engages students in close reading skills and in critical analysis of texts, and scrutinizes relationships between texts, readers, and communities.


1 x 2 hour seminar per week over 10 weeks as scheduled on MyCampus.

Requirements of Entry

Standard entry to Masters at College level.

Excluded Courses





2500 word essay - 50%

10 minute presentation - 20%

1500 word report on presentation topic - 30%

Course Aims

This course aims to:

■ Introduce students to ancient and modern interpretive approaches to biblical and related texts

■ Trace the development of these approaches within their contexts

■ Examine the relationships between interpretive communities and the texts they read and produce

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

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

■ Discuss the history of interpretation of a range of ancient literatures

■ Situate biblical interpretations in historical, ideological and theological contexts that explain their continued appeal

■ Evaluate the relationships between ancient texts and modern readers

■ Evaluate argumentative structures and identify preconceptions in various approaches

■ Communicate responses to the material studied on the course both orally and in written form through coherent and sustained argument

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.