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.
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.
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 2021): While being enrolled for the proposal you pay 1,650.00€ 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.
The University of Pretoria (UP) and its Faculty of Theology have a strong focus on research. They offer a PhD in 12 theological disciplines. This includes traditional disciplines like Old Testament, New Testament, Practical Theology but also specializations like Youth Ministry. Usually, they would require a Master of Theology in the relevant discipline (possible exception see below).
The doctoral thesis (90,000 words, roughly 250 pages, without appendices) must make an original contribution to the discipline, broadening the field of knowledge. The doctoral study starts with designing a research proposal (roughly six pages), which should be completed within the first six months of enrolment. It then has to be defended before the department in a video meeting. After acceptance of the proposal the real research begins. You will have two supervisors, one from GBFE and one from UP. The final doctoral thesis will be examined by three experts from the international academic community. After this examination the thesis has to be defended before the relevant department, again possible by video meeting.
A speciality is the PhD in Theological Studies: This new PhD is open for candidates who have a non-theological Master. It is thus an interesting option for candidates holding, for example, a Master in Economics or in Social Sciences, and who would like to do an interdisciplinary study on the interface between Theology and the discipline in which they hold a Master’s degree.
Study fees: The annual study fee for the doctoral programme at UP is 3,450 €. The minimum study length is two years.
Your supervisor will help you to find your research topic. The GBFE dean will help you to find the right supervisor within Europe.