In partnership with the Diocese of Monmouth, the College offers this course which will typically take three years. The first two years will be divided into six terms, meeting 10 afternoons each term and once for a study day or retreat. There is also a two-day induction at the beginning of the course, and ‘summer schools’ of several days at the end of years 1 and 2. In the third year there is a supervised project based in one or more of the churches you lead. This project will be written up as an extended dissertation for the last element of the course, leading to the MA in Theology, Ministry and Mission.
The elements of the course are:
Our aim is to integrate these elements throughout the course. Each term will involve all these elements and each afternoon study session may involve either one or more. The emphasis at these sessions will be on learning together. Although some sessions will be devoted to learning from an invited expert others will involve shared exercises and presentations from course members through which we are learning collaboratively and from one another. Your own daily ministry, the challenges that face you and the situations you encounter, will provide much of the material for study and reflection and you will be using a learning journal to help you record and reflect on these.
Each afternoon session will last from 2.00 - 5.30pm and you will be expected to make these sessions an absolute priority. You will also be expected to set aside another full day each week for study and preparation. Some people will prefer to set aside a complete day for study. Others will prefer to divide the time up over several days. In either case we suggest the a ‘full day’ consist of 5 or 6 hours devoted to the course. An hour or more of these should be spent writing up your learning journal – calling to mind the significant incidents of the week, describing and reflecting on them; or thinking in depth and reflecting about an on-going situation in the church or community. Two hours or more should be spent in preparation for the following week. Sometimes this will be an assignment, sometimes preparatory reading. The rest of the time you will spend reading and reflecting on recommended books and preparing for the major assignments on which you will be assessed. You should aim to continue your routine of ‘one day a week’ in between the ten week terms except for holiday breaks and major festivals such as Christmas and Holy Week. You will be asked to fulfil regular assignments, some in the form of short reflections or presentations, others longer essays or the equivalent. Feedback on these assignments from the course staff will be an important indication of how well you are doing, especially at first. Many of the assignments will be included in the portfolios that will make up your final assessment.