We offer postgraduate studies towards a Master and PhD degree, which are integrative, international and interdisciplinary.
You choose the topic of your research!
Experiences supervisors will then support you to research your topic professionally, e.g. with regard to the content and the appropriate methodology.
The University of South Africa (UNISA) offers three different postgraduate qualifications
for which you can apply and register by GBFE:
Bachelor of Theology Honours (BTh Hons)
In South Africa the Bachelor Honours is the first degree after the Bachelor Degree. In the case of the BTh Honours, one can choose to major in a theological discipline (page "Colleges"). The GBFE colleges offer different academic advanced programmes on the Honours level as a part-time or full time programmes, see colleges. They consist of 50 credit points according to ECTS. Depending on the major chosen, you may take minor subjects at other GBFE colleges, and thus combine a variety of disciplines.
GBFE also offers the option to enrol at UNISA for the Honours programme. In some theological disciplines you can take some Honours courses with one of the GBFE colleges and subsequently enrol at UNISA for the remaining 50% of the required credits. This will qualify you to receive the official BTh Hons from UNISA.
Colleges Homepage UNISA
Master of Arts (MA) / Master of Theology (MTh)
After completing the academic advanced programme at GBFE you can apply for the Master’s Programme at UNISA in the respective discipline. For the MTh the following specializations are possible: Old Testament, New Testament, Practical Theology, Christian Leadership, Christian Spirituality, Missiology, Systematic Theology, Theological Ethics, and Church History. Note that UNISA does not require the classical languages (Greek, Hebrew, Latin) unless they are required for the research project. Candidates with a Bachelor degree in a non-theological discipline additionally have to do additional theological orientation courses before they enrol for the MTh. Furthermore, a MA in Development Studies is possible via GBFE.
The Master’s degree consists of a major independent research project (25,000 – 40,000 words). The Master study begins with a research module, in which the students produce a research proposal (25 pages). As soon as this research proposal is accepted by UNISA, students start writing the dissertation. Compared to the ECTS-system the research proposal counts for 10 credit points and the master dissertation for 60 credit points. In both phases students get supervision from one professor from UNISA and one professor from GBFE. The final dissertation will be examined by two examiners, which can be chosen world-wide. The supervisors are not part of the panel of examiners.
The supervisor supports you to do research on your topic!
The study fees for the Master might vary within the GBFE-network, depending on the GBFE-college where you want to study. Please contact their dean or the Dean of GBFE.
Following international standards, UNISA offers a PhD as its doctoral degree. The discipline in which the research was done is indicated in brackets, e.g. PhD (Theology). Enrolment in the doctoral programme usually requires a Master’s degree in the same or an equally relevant discipline. Furthermore, UNISA encourages multidisciplinary research and thus offers a generic PhD. In this case the PhD diploma will just provide the title of the thesis, but does not indicate any discipline.
The doctoral thesis (40,000 – 100,000 words, without appendices) must contain an original contribution to knowledge in this discipline. The doctoral study begins with a detailed research proposal, in which the research process is designed. As soon as this research proposal is accepted by UNISA, students start writing the dissertation. In both phases students get supervision from one professor from UNISA and one professor from GBFE. The final thesis will be examined by three examiners, which are chosen from the international academic community. The supervisors are not part of the panel of examiners. There is no oral defence.
Study fees (in 2019): While being enrolled for the proposal you pay 1,475.00€ annually (usually for one year). While being enrolled for the doctoral thesis you pay 3,920.00€ annually (usually two to three years). For more information on the doctoral programme please contact the Dean of GBFE.