Durham University
Programme and Module Handbook

Undergraduate Programme and Module Handbook 2017-2018 (archived)

Module TMMC3067: Key Issues in Christian Faith and Ethical Living

Department: Theology, Ministry and Mission

TMMC3067: Key Issues in Christian Faith and Ethical Living

Type Tied Level 3 Credits 10 Availability Available in 2017/18 Module Cap None. Location Durham


  • None


  • None

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • L6-20 Christian Faith and Ethical Living


  • To help students articulate a critical appreciation of the ways in which Christian faith in God informs and shapes the moral life of communities and individuals, with respect to one particular moral issue.
  • To develop in students an in-depth understanding and critical appreciation of the theological resources available for Christian reflection on ethical issues.
  • To develop in students skills to apply these resources faithfully to particular moral questions, equipping them for teaching, pastoral ministry and Christian living.


  • This module will focus on one particular moral issue, such as sexual, medical, political or economic ethics, and will include
  • Critical analysis of the chosen issue.
  • An exploration of theological accounts of this issue, including attention to the sources on which they draw, such as Scripture, tradition, reason, moral philosophy and experience.
  • The critical analysis of selected biblical and theological concepts and themes as they have a bearing on the issue, e.g., the doctrine of creation, divine commands, justice.
  • A critical outline of relevant features of our cultural contexts within which the particular issue is situated, e.g., utilitarianism, liberalism, capitalism.

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • Offer a coherent and detailed theological account and analysis of the chosen moral issue, in relation to aspects of faith, church and society.
  • Discuss intelligently some key issues and controversies in contemporary Christian thinking about this issue, drawing on current scholarship in the area.
Subject-specific Skills:
  • Critically analyse aspects of Christian thought and modes of inquiry in the context of discipleship, mission and ministry, showing sensitivity to the problems of religious language, experience, and the limits of knowledge.
Key Skills:
  • Identify, gather, analyse and critically evaluate textual source materials, including material from primary sources and scholarly research, and communicate their findings with clarity and fairness.
  • Critically evaluate ideas, arguments and assumptions, using them to construct and communicate coherent and well-reasoned arguments, showing critical awareness of their own and others’ beliefs, commitments and prejudices.

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

  • Teaching methods to be specified by each TEI, selecting from the following:
  • Lectures provide content, a conceptual framework and a survey of approaches within a subject area that enable students to locate their learning in a wider context, to make connections with other disciplines, and to evaluate and apply their learning to different contexts.
  • Seminars offer students an opportunity to present, evaluate and apply their knowledge to specific contexts, and to engage with teaching staff and peers in debate and reflection.
  • Guided reading in conjunction with lectures encourages independent learning and underpins the knowledge and understanding gained in lectures and seminars.
  • Small group learning creates an environment where students learn to articulate their knowledge and understanding effectively and in a way that is relevant to the group and its context.
  • Case studies offer students the opportunity to apply their knowledge, analytical and problem-solving skills to the kinds of complex, realistic and often ambiguous situations they are likely to encounter in their profession / ministry/ vocation.
  • Tutorials enhance learning by offering feedback and encouraging students to reflect on their own response to the knowledge and skills they have acquired.
  • Placements and/or work-based learning ensures that students make habitual connections between knowledge, understanding, skills, professional practice and the reality of a specific context, under the supervision of an experienced practitioner.
  • Programmed online learning materials guide students through knowledge content, its wider framework and different approaches to its application.
  • Virtual discussion forums offer students the opportunity to articulate the knowledge and understanding they have acquired to others and to engage in informed debate.

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Lectures 8 1.75 hours 14
Personal Study 86
Total 100

Summative Assessment

Component: Written Assignment Component Weighting: 100%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Essay 2500 words 100%

Formative Assessment:

Students will be expected to demonstrate engagement with the subject matter and the learning outcomes throughout the module by suitable formative assessments that encourage integrative and reflective skills.

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