Study this programme anywhere in the world and receive a fully accredited University of London degree

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Divinity and Theology

BD, DipHE, CertHE

Available to study anywhere in the world

The study of religion provides an opportunity to consider questions which are of fundamental concern, both for individuals and societies – questions about the meaning and purpose of human life, and the values by which we live.

At Level 4, a module introducing you to the study of religion is complemented by modules covering key texts and traditions of the Abrahamic religions. At Levels 5 and 6 the choice of modules includes biblical languages and texts, texts in English, Christian history and doctrine, Buddhism, philosophy of religion, religion and science, and religion and global politics. Level 6 includes the dissertation module, which offers you the chance to focus in detail on a topic of your choice.

Student sitting on floor reading in library
Study the Divinity and Theology programme with academic direction from the University of London wherever you are in the world.

By studying this programme, you will:

  • gain a deeper understanding of individuals and communities who have been influenced by religious belief
  • examine your own answers to some of life’s important questions
  • be able to analyse texts and arguments
  • be able to produce clear written accounts of your knowledge and arguments.

Programme details

Bachelor of Divinity 12 modules:
 compulsory Level 4 modules, seven elective modules (at least two from Level 5 and three from Level 6), and one dissertation.

Diploma of Higher Education in Theology (DipHE) 8 modules:
Four compulsory Level 4 modules, and four elective modules from Level 5 and Level 6.

Certificate of Higher Education in Theology (CertHE) 4 modules:
Four compulsory Level 4 modules.

View programme structure

Application deadline 01 October 2020
Registration deadline 30 November 2020

Independent study

We supply learning materials which are specially designed for distance learning. You will also have access to a significant range of online resources, including a fully supported Virtual Learning Environment and online library.

Study materials

For new and redeveloped modules, all essential and further readings will be available online (with the exception of Texts in Hebrew). For the remaining modules, you will see a subject guide and a more limited range of online resources. You may need to purchase or borrow books for these modules.

Online support

When you register, we will give you access to your Student Portal. You can then access your University of London email account and other key resources:

  • The Virtual Learning Environment (VLE). Here, you can access electronic copies of your study materials, where available, as well as forums to discuss course material and work collaboratively with others.
  • The Online Library provides access to over 100 million academic electronic items comprising E-books, E-journals, conference proceedings, etc. In addition, students can request items which are not held in the library via the library's Inter-Library loans service with the British Library.
  • Senate House Library provides free reference access for all registered distance and flexible learning students.


Modules are assessed by a variety of methods. For some modules this will involve a combination of coursework and a written examination. Others are examined solely by one three hour unseen written examination. The Dissertation module is assessed by an 8,000-10,000 word dissertation.

Exams are held in May each year. You can sit your exams at one of 400 approved examination centres located all over the world.

More about exams.

For access to the BD or DipHE, you will usually meet the following criteria:

For access to the CertHE:

  • Age 18+ by 01 September in the year of registration.
  • Three GCSEs (Grade A*-C / 9-4) or equivalent.
  • Meet our English language requirements.

Even if you don’t meet the standard requirements (including age), we will consider each application on its own merits. Our Admissions Panel will consider whether any alternative / incomplete qualifications or work experience you have are suitable for entry to the programme.

I don’t meet the entry requirements. What can I do?

English Language requirements

You need to demonstrate a good level of English to be admitted to our programmes. We accept a range of evidence, including proficiency test scores. If you don’t have evidence but believe you can meet the standard, we may consider your case.

Do I hold the English requirements?

Computer requirements

We set minimum basic computer requirements because your study resources are accessed via the Student Portal and it is vital that you can access this regularly. For this degree, you will also need Adobe Flash Player to view video material and a media player (such as VLC) to play video files.

More about computer requirements.

Can I transfer credits from other awards?

If you have studied material as part of a previous qualification that is comparable in content and standard, you might be exempted from the equivalent course for the University of London degree. This is known as Recognition of Prior Learning (APL), Credit Transfer or Exemption. For the Bachelor of Divinity, you can apply for up to four Level 4 modules.

More about Accreditation of Prior Learning.

The fees below relate to the 2019-2020 session. These are subject to annual review.

Academic year


Application fee (non refundable)

£ 97

Initial registration fee

£ 920

Examination fee per module

£ 290

Continuing registration fee

£ 525

Dissertation fee (BD only)

£ 490

Other fees (as applicable) 

Application fee for accreditation of prior learning per course, BD only)

£ 103

Indicative total: BD£ 6028
Indicative total: DipHE£ 3948
Indicative total: CertHE£ 2177

Disclaimer: Currency conversion tool.

Individual modules taken on a stand-alone basis


Application fee (non-refundable)

£ 97

Composite fee (registration and one examination attempt) per module

£ 525

Resit examination fee per module

£ 290

Fee for extension of registration, per annum, per individual module

£ 260

Additional Costs

You will also need to budget for:

  • Textbooks (could extend to around to £150 per year)
  • Exam centre fees, which are paid directly to the venues where you sit your exams.

How to pay your fees.

Please note: all student fees shown are net of any local VAT, Goods and Services Tax (GST) or any other sales tax payable by the student in their country of residence. Where the University is required to add VAT, GST or any other sales tax at the local statutory rate, this will be added to the fees shown during the payment process. For students resident in the UK, our fees are exempt from VAT.

The programme can help to prepare you for a variety of career paths. For example, with further training, you could become a teacher, social worker, counsellor, police officer, journalist, or lawyer.

What do employers think of our graduates?

In some countries, qualifications earned by distance and flexible learning may not be recognised by certain authorities or regulators for the purposes of public sector employment or further study. We advise you to explore the local recognition status before you register, even if you plan to receive support from a local teaching institution.

Programme Director

Elizabeth Burns is Director of the University of London distance learning programmes in Divinity and Reader in Philosophy of Religion. Elizabeth has a BD (specialising in Philosophy of Religion and Ethics) from King’s College London, a PhD from Queens’ College, Cambridge, a PGCE in Post-Compulsory Education from Suffolk College, Ipswich, and is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

Elizabeth taught Philosophy of Religion at Heythrop College, formerly the University of London, from 2000-2017, where she was Dean of Undergraduate Studies from 2003-2008.

Without the cost of moving to London, studying for your University of London degree anywhere in the world represents excellent value for money. However, there are additional sources of support depending on where you live and how you choose to study.

More on funding your study.