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Unit information: Dissertation in 2020/21

Unit name Dissertation
Unit code THRS30100
Credit points 40
Level of study H/6
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 4 (weeks 1-24)
Unit director Dr. Lomi
Open unit status Not open




School/department Department of Religion and Theology
Faculty Faculty of Arts


The Dissertation is an exercise in extended independent research. Students are required to identify their own research topic, formulate the particular research questions to be addressed, identify the main primary sources to be used, set the research questions in the context of the issues arising from the secondary literature, and execute a scholarly and analytical text to high scholarly standards consistent with this level of study.

Students will have the opportunity to present their work to non-specialist audiences and to organize elements of an academic event.

Students are also introduced to higher level research and scholarly cutting edge material by fortnightly attendance at the department's research seminars.


To familiarise students with some of the central debates in contemporary philosophy of religion

To develop students’ ability to offer their own assessment of the key philosophical issues to which these discussions give rise

To develop skills in philosophical reading, writing and argumentation

Intended learning outcomes

On successful completion of this unit students will be able to:

1. demonstrate research skills through the production an extended piece of independent research in accordance with level H;

2. form their own research questions;

3. demonstrate skills of argumentation and communication

4. compile their own bibliography based on independent research

5. work with both secondary and primary resources and to draw reasoned and considered conclusions from them

6. present their work to non-specialist audiences and to organize elements of an academic event.

Teaching details

Teaching will involve a combination of seminars, workshops, group meetings and 1-2-1 supervision. Students will be expected to attend fortnightly seminars and regular workshops, engage with readings for their chosen topics and participate in a half day conference. Students will be supported in their work with tutor and peer feedback.

Assessment Details

1 x 10,000-word dissertation project (including footnotes) [ILOs 1-5]

Reading and References

Bibliographical references will depend on the topic chosen and the student will be responsible (in consultation with an appointed supervisor) for assembling a bibliography which will include relevant primary and secondary sources.