Durham University
Programme and Module Handbook

Postgraduate Programme and Module Handbook 2011-2012 (archived)

Module THEO54130: Theological Interpretation of Scripture

Department: Theology and Religion

THEO54130: Theological Interpretation of Scripture

Type Open Level 4 Credits 30 Availability Available in 2011/12 Module Cap


  • None


  • None

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • None


  • This module aims to introduce the main issues of contemporary debate as to the nature and purpose of theological interpretation of Scripture.


  • The module considers the strengths and weaknesses of modern arguments for the dissociation of the Bible from theology, the significance of contemporary ideological concerns, the possible enduring significance of patristic principles of scriptural reading, the implications of some recent developments in hermeneutics, and advances a proposal for a renewed contemporary understanding of the nature and purpose of theological interpretation of Scripture. Genesis 22 is the text used to test in practice the strengths and weaknesses of the various interpretative approaches considered.

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • Students should be enabled to understand the shape of modern debate in this area, to appraise theological interpretations (esp. with reference to Genesis 22) in relation to possible historical and ideological critiques, and to be aware of what is necessary to formulate appropriate theological interpretations of their own.
Subject-specific Skills:
Key Skills:

Modes of Teaching, Learning and Assessment and how these contribute to the learning outcomes of the module

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Lectures 19 1 per week 1.5 28.5
Preparation and Reading 271.5
Total 300

Summative Assessment

Component: Essay Component Weighting: 100%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Essay 5000 words 100%

Formative Assessment:

One 5,000 word essay

Attendance at all activities marked with this symbol will be monitored. Students who fail to attend these activities, or to complete the summative or formative assessment specified above, will be subject to the procedures defined in the University's General Regulation V, and may be required to leave the University