Certificate of Higher Education in Philosophy, Religion and Ethics
Is this programme for me?
This new Certificate focuses on the use of Philosophy as a tool for analysing the nature and truth of religious beliefs and values, and on the two religions – Christianity and Islam – which have the greatest number of adherents.
Studying this programme will give you:
- an introduction to key themes in the study of philosophy, religion and ethics, and address issues of meaning and truth in these areas
- an understanding of key texts, events, doctrines, theories, interpretations and arguments relating to the study of Philosophy, Religion and Ethics
- a range of transferable skills, including the ability to select and organise material from a range of sources, represent the views of others with fairness and integrity, and produce clear, well-structured written work - skills which are valuable in many walks of life.
Candidates who successfully complete the Certificate in Philosophy, Religion and Ethics may be eligible to enter the second year of the BA in Philosophy, Religion and Ethics programme at Heythrop College, University of London. We also offer undergraduate programmes in Divinity and Theology.
|Application deadline||1 October in the year before you intend to sit your first examinations|
|Registration deadline||30 November|
|Despatch of study materials||Shortly after your registration form is received|
|Start studying||As soon as you receive your study materials|
|Examinations take place||May|
The programme consists of 4 courses.
Prestige and career progression
The programme has been developed by Heythrop College, established in 1614, a specialist College of theology and philosophy within the University of London. The skills you will gain are valuable in many walks of life. Theology is useful, not only for those working with one of the churches but also for teachers, those in social services or other occupations that are concerned with people and their values.
Flexible study at a reasonable cost
You have 1-5 years to complete the Cert HE. Fees are payable as you progress rather than as a single lump sum. The following is an example of University fees for the whole programme of study: £1,637 for the Cert HE. Please note that this example is calculated using current fees, does not reflect any annual change to fees and assumes completion in the minimum time permitted.
Certificate of Higher Education
Three courses chosen from
- Philosophy of religion (Theology) (level 4)
A study of the main problems in the philosophy of religion, including such topics as: the proofs of God's existence; the justification of religious belief; religious diversity; the divine attributes; miracle; prayer; eternal life; the problem of evil.
- Introduction to the New Testament (level 4)
(i) The purpose and theology of each of the Synoptic Gospels, with particular reference to the prescribed texts;
(ii) Paul's theology, with particular reference to the prescribed texts;
(iii) 1 Peter, James, Hebrews.
Attention should be given to:
- careful exegetical study of the texts, using at least one major commentary per text
- study of relevant texts other than those prescribed
- evaluation of modern scholarly discussion of the texts and principal topics relevant to the syllabus.
Set texts to be studied in English:
Mark 3:22-30. Matthew 12:24-32. Luke 11:14-23.
Matthew 6:7-15. Luke 11:1-4.
I Corinthians Chapters 1 and 15. Romans Chapter 8.
- Christian ethics for Philosophy, Religion and Ethics students
(i) The philosophical background in relation to:
(a) The Nature of Humankind: the Christian account of human nature compared with other theories; the worth of persons and the value of human life; the nature of conscience; the freedom of the will;
(b) The Nature of Human Acts: the relation of acts to consequences; acts and omissions; the principle of double effect; deontological and teleological accounts of right action.
(ii) The characteristics of Christian ethics in relation to the basic Christian doctrines concerning God, humankind and society.
(iii) A consideration of selected contemporary moral problems in the light of the foregoing.
Choose one from the following
- Islam (level 5)
A mainly historical study considering both traditional and radically novel views on the origins of Islam; the beginnings of Islamic theology and law; the doctrines of the sects, especially those of Shi’ism; the development of philosophy, and, in particular, mysticism; the rise of Islamic modernism and reformism; and contemporary practices.
- Religion and science (level 5)
(i) The history of the relationship between religion and science in the Medieval period (including Ptolemy), the Renaissance period (including Copernicus and Galileo), the Enlightenment period (including Newton), and the nineteenth century (including Darwin).
(ii) Contemporary and philosophical issues. Cosmology and the Anthropic Principle, quantum physics, Chaos Theory, Neo-Darwinism, genetic engineering, and cloning. The aims and processes of religion and science (including Popper and Kuhn), and the relationship between religion and science.
Note: For your fourth selection, choose either Islam or Religion and science.
How you study
We offer you the maximum flexibility in planning your studies; you can study at a time and place to suit yourself using the introductory study materials we provide as the starting point. When you first register you will receive:
- The Arts Good Study Guide by Ellie Chambers and Andrew Northedge
- Student Handbook and Regulations
- subject guides for each module studied
- past examination papers and Examiner guidelines
- access to online resources and reference materials, including a Virtual Learning Environment and Online Library.
Each year you continue to register, you will receive updated materials. In addition to the materials we provide you will be advised to buy some books, and you may also need to refer to others in a library. As far as possible, you should consider the facilities available locally to you, and how accessible books are likely to be before registering as an International Programmes student.
The fees below relate to the 2013-2014 session and are subject to annual review.
|Certificate of Higher Education in Philosophy, Religion and Ethics||2013-2014|
|Application fee||£ 72|
|Registration fee||£ 685|
|Examination fee per course||£ 220|
|Continuing registration fee||£ 390|
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Disclaimer: the currency conversion tool is provided to you for convenience only and does not constitute an endorsement or approval by the University of London; the exchange rates are provided dynamically via a third-party source, consequently, the University of London International Programmes is not responsible for their accuracy.
The total provided above is an example of the total amount of fees payable to the University for the whole programme of study. This example use the current fees, does not reflect any annual changes to fees and assumes completion in the minimum time permitted.
When to pay
The application handling fee is payable when you make your application. The closing date for applications is 1 October. If you meet the entrance requirements you will be invited to register.
The initial registration fee is payable when you register with the University. The closing date for registrations is 30 November.
The examination fee is payable when you choose to enter an examination. Examinations take place in May or June each year and examination entries are accepted between 30 November and the examination entry closing date, 1 February.
The continuing registration fee is payable in the second and subsequent years of registration at the time when you confirm the courses that you will be registered for during that year. The continuing registration fee is effective between 1 March and 30 November.
How to pay
All University fees must be paid in pounds sterling (GBP). The University accepts:
- Western Union - Quick Pay
- Credit/debit card (Visa, MasterCard, Maestro, Electron, JCB)
- Sterling banker's draft/cheque
- International money/postal order
Further details are given in payment methods.
In addition to the fees payable to the University, you should also budget for:
- textbooks (this may well be in the region of £300 per year if you are taking four units in one year);
- tuition costs (if studying at a teaching institution);
- the fee charged by your local examination centre to cover its costs; this fee will vary.
Fees are subject to annual review and the University reserves the right to amend previously announced fees, if necessary. For a full list fees that may be applicable, please see the fee schedule.
Each course of the Certificate of Higher Education in Philosophy, Religion and Ethics is examined by one three-hour unseen written paper.
You do not have to come to London to take your examinations. Examinations are held once a year in exam centres around the world as well as in London. Examinations overseas are arranged mainly through Ministries of Education or the British Council. You will be charged a fee by your local examination centre (this fee will vary). For further information please see the Assessment and exams section.
To be eligible for the Certificate of Higher Education in Philosophy, Religion and Ethics you must:
- normally* be aged 18 or over by 1 September in the year of registration and
- have a minimum of three subjects at Grade C or above at GCSE/GCE O level or an equivalent qualification
|*Applications will be considered from applicants who do not meet the normal minimum age requirement for admission. Each application will be considered on an individual basis, and the decision taken at the discretion of the University of London.|
Applicants with other qualifications not listed above and/or suitable work experience will be considered by the University on an individual basis. There are many entrance qualifications [PDF: 9pgs, 160KB], both from the UK and overseas, which the University accepts instead of British O and A levels.
If you do not satisfy the criteria for automatic acceptance we will still consider your application on an individual basis under our Special Admissions procedures. If we cannot accept you with your current qualifications and experience, we will advise you what qualifications you could take in order to become eligible in the future.
For awards at FHEQ levels 4, 5 or 6, applicants must provide satisfactory evidence showing that they have:
- Passed acceptable examinations equivalent to GCSE/GCE O level English Language at grade C or above; or
- Demonstrated fluency in academic English gained through either:
- Five years secondary schooling taught solely in English and/or passed GCE A levels or IB in essay based subjects; or
- Passed an International Foundation programme for UK HEI entry with a unit in English for Academic purposes (EAP) or its equivalent; or
- A first degree or Associate degree taught and examined in English; or
- Have passed a Diploma awarded by any of the polytechnics in Malaysia, Singapore or Hong Kong. For undergraduate admittance have within the previous three years passed a test of proficiency in English at the following minimum level: IELTS with an overall grade of at least 6 with a minimum of 5.5 in each sub test, TOEFL with a score of 580, 237 on the computerised test plus a Test of Written English (TWE) of at least 4.5 or a test of proficiency in English language from the prescribed list published by the University.
Where an applicant does not meet the prescribed English language proficiency requirements but believes that they can demonstrate the requisite proficiency for admission the University may, at its discretion, consider the application.
Note: Some programmes will require greater proficiency in English language; these requirements will be reflected in the relevant programme regulations.
Online access and general computer requirements
Supported Browsers include:
Internet Explorer 7+
Screen resolution (recommended)
1024 x 768 or greater
Certain programmes may have their own specific requirements, please refer to the relevant Regulations.
Academic leadership: Heythrop College
Heythrop, one of the oldest Colleges within the University of London, is a specialist College of Theology, Philosophy and Psychology. Like most of the colleges at Britain's oldest universities, Heythrop was originally a religious foundation, set up in 1614 by the Society of Jesus (the Jesuits) to train its own members. It received its Royal Charter as a College of the University of London in 1971. Heythrop possesses one of the finest collections of theological and philosophical books in the UK. For further details please visit the Heythrop College website [external link].