University of Chester

Programme Specification
Ministry CUC (Level 4)
2017 - 2018

Church Universities' Certificate (Level 4)

Ministry

Ministry (Diocese of Chester)

University of Chester

Diocese of Chester

Chester Diocese (Foundations for Ministry pathway) training suites at Daresbury, Chester and Macclesfield, and Parkgate campus (pathway in BSL)

Undergraduate Modular Programme

Part-time

Classroom / Laboratory,

1 year

3 Years

Annual - September

V610

No

17a. Faculty

17b. Department

Arts and Humanities Theology & Religious Studies

Theology & Religious Studies

Theology & Religious Studies

Tuesday 12th January 2016

Pathway 1 (FfM) (Foundations for Ministry)

  • To provide a foundation for development of Christian ministry in the church and the world.
  • To develop skills and knowledge appropriate to the exercise of a variety of ministries within the Christian church.
  • To develop reflective practice in ministry and application to the student's own context.
  • To provide a context for exploring gifts, vocation and calling.
  • To resource ongoing learning and access to resources for developing personal spirituality and ministry.
  • To develop key skills in collaborative working and an arena for shared support and learning.
  • To stimulate reflection on the student's own learning and development.
  • To develop critical engagement with current issues in church growth and mission in the contemporary UK context.
  • To develop confidence in expressing and discussing the student's own faith journey. 

Pathway 2 (in BSL) (British Sign language)

  • To provide a foundation for development of Christian ministry in the church and the world, for Deaf people.
  • To provide a pathway in a programme in ministry using British Sign Language for delivery and assessment.
  • To develop skills and knowledge appropriate to the exercise of a variety of ministries within the Christian church.
  • To develop reflective practice in ministry, beginning with the experience of Deaf people, and application to the student's own context.
  • To make connections between practices of their own Christian communities and their own personal abilities and ministerial vocations.
  • To develop key skills in collaborative working and an arena for shared support and learning.
  • To stimulate reflection on the student's own learning and development.
  • To develop confidence in expressing and discussing the student's own faith journey.

All outcomes are at level 4.

Pathway 1 (FfM)

Students will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of

  • concepts of the kingdom of God and ways in which Christians have interpreted the church (TH4111)
  • a theological reflection cycle (TH4111)
  • aspects of ministry and vocation within the Christian tradition (TH4112)
  • approaches to church growth or mission in the contemporary context (TH4113)

Pathway 2 (in BSL)

Students will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of

  • a variety of methods used in biblical interpretation (TH4307)
  • aspects of the Deaf Community and Deaf Culture in relation to the study of the Bible (TH4307)
  • key themes in Christian Theology (TH4308)
  • different methods, especially those using Deaf experience, of doing and interpreting theology (TH4308)
  • a variety of traditions of liturgy and worship (TH4309)
  • the role of space, symbol, art and design and layout in a variety of liturgical practices (TH4309)

All outcomes are at level 4.

Pathway 1 (FfM)

Students will be able to

  • apply a theological reflection cycle to their own personal and ministerial learning (initiated in TH4111 and developed in TH4112 and TH4113)
  • reflect on their own gifts, ministry or vocation (TH4112)
  • demonstrate plans for (and development in) sustaining and resourcing their own discipleship and ministry (TH4112)
  • reflect critically on approaches to church growth or mission in the contemporary context (TH4113)
  • improve their own learning and performance, and reflect on own learning and involvement in group work, including reaction to feedback from others (all modules in this pathway)
  • demonstrate the exercise of an open and questioning approach to familiar and new material (all modules in this pathway).

Pathway 2 (in BSL)

Students will be able to

  • demonstrate skills in theological reflection (TH4309); and reflect theologically on the application of their learning to personal and/or ministerial practice (TH4307)
  • evaluate different methods, especially those using Deaf experience, of doing and interpreting theology (TH4308)
  • work as a part of a group to reflect on a set biblical text and apply its meaning to contemporary Deaf culture (TH4307)
  • apply their awareness of the role of space, symbol, art and design and layout in a variety of liturgical practices (TH4309)
  • evaluate different approaches detailed above and communicate the results of their work with structured and coherent arguments (all modules in this pathway).

All outcomes are at level 4.

Pathway 1 (FfM)

Students will be able to

  • apply learning to personal and/or ministerial practice (all modules in this pathway)
  • participate in facilitated group discussion and exercises, and reflect critically on their own contribution to group work and discussion (TH4112)
  • participate in group problem-solving exercises and issue-based discussion, and learn from feedback on their part in a group process (TH4112)
  • use a variety of technologies and resources to identify and retrieve material and support assignments and group
    work (all modules in this pathway)

Pathway 2 (in BSL)

Students will be able to

  • apply learning to personal and/or ministerial practice (all modules in this pathway)
  • research visual representations of biblical texts using the internet and submit them electronically (TH4307)
  • design and lead an act of worship appropriate to the Deaf Community to which they are ministering (TH4309)
  • develop skills in ministerial contexts (TH4308); and apply learning to personal and/or ministerial practice (all modules in this pathway)

All outcomes are at level 4.

Pathway 1 (FfM)

Students will be able to

  • communicate effectively within a group context, including skills of listening and giving feedback (TH4112)
  • use a variety of communication approaches in written and oral exercises (all modules in this pathway)

Pathway 2 (in BSL)

  • communicate effectively within the group context (all modules in this pathway)
  • communicate effectively in presentations and dialogic assessments (all modules in this pathway)
  • express ideas with clarity and with due acknowledgement of sources (assessed in TH4308)
  • use written English sufficiently to navigate for resources on the web (assessed in TH4307)
    

There are two distinct pathways in this programme. Each is a coherent whole and modules may not be swapped between pathways.

Pathway 1 (FfM)

Three modules at Level 4: 60 credits.

The pathway consists of three compulsory modules, studied sequentially.

  • TH4111 Foundations for Ministry 1: Church, Kingdom & Action,
  • TH4112 Foundations for Ministry 2: Ministry, Vocation & Teamwork,
  • TH4113 Foundations for Ministry 3: Groups, Growth & the Gospel.

(The modules are listed as optional in 24b but this designation is necessary because CCCM (FfM) is one of two pathways in this programme: the three modules are core for students on this pathway.)

FFM is open to anyone wanting to explore ways of developing or grounding their faith and ministry. It forms the first year of training (part time) to be licensed as a Pastoral Worker or Reader. The course links to a variety of further routes to training and ministry.

Pathway 2 (in BSL)

Three modules at Level 4: 60 credits.

The pathway consists of three compulsory modules, studied sequentially.

  • TH4307 Using the Bible in BSL
  • TH4309 Liturgy and Worship
  • TH4308 Introduction to Theology

(The modules are listed as optional in 24b but this designation is necessary because CCCM (in BSL) is one of two pathways in this programme: the three modules are core for students on this pathway.)

The pathway provides an introduction in foundations for Christian ministry and seeks to widen access and participation in ministerial education. Three key areas of doctrine, biblical interpretation and worship are offered; in each module, interactions between theological expressions, the community practices of Christianity and the community experience of Deaf people offer a framework within which theological reflection and biblical interpretation are contextualised. 

Mod-Code Level Title Credit Single
TH4111 4 Foundations for Ministry (FfM) 1: Church, Kingdom and Action 20 Optional
TH4112 4 Foundations for Ministry (FfM) 2: Ministry, Vocation & Teamwork 20 Optional
TH4113 4 Foundations for Ministry (FfM) 3: Groups, Growth & the Gospel 20 Optional
TH4307 4 Using the Bible in BSL 20 Optional
TH4308 4 Introduction to Theology 20 Optional
TH4309 4 Liturgy and Worship 20 Optional

60 Credits at Level 4 leads to the Church Universities' Certificate in Ministry.

Pathway 1 (FfM)

  • Active engagement in Christian ministry.
  • Completion of a Christian Basics course or equivalent learning. 

Pathway 2 (in BSL)

  • Fluency in BSL and sufficient use of English for navigating IT resources.
  • Active engagement in Christian Ministry.

These are established through the prospective student's completion of a detailed application form and a letter of support from the applicant's church leader. There are no certificated entry requirements: students must be able to benefit from study on the programme. Where the likelihood of that benefit is not adequately assured by the application form and ministerial reference an interview with the course leader will be required.

Where a prospective student, prior to the course, is offering for an authorised and licensed ministry within the church the selection process appropriate to that role must have been completed successfully. Students may also candidate for such a ministry whilst on the course; completion of the course is not dependent on the outcome of that candidature.

The programme relates to the Subject Benchmark statement for Theology and Religious Studies, October 2014, but in a partial fulfilment of its many aspects because the programme is at level 4 and each pathway is of only 60 credits. Some of Benchmark’s assumptions concerning communication and the nature of resourcing relate to language in written and spoken forms; Pathway 2, delivered and assessed in a visual-spatial language, accords with such skills in a way appropriate to the linguistic medium (see Section 28 below).

Both pathways match aspects of the Benchmark’s description of ‘Subject knowledge and skills’ (3.1): including e.g.

  • the history and present character of Christianity
  • reading, analysis and interpretation of texts, sacred or significant to practising communities.; and hermeneutical questions concerning their meaning and application for the appropriate community of believers in the present
  • engagement with some of the major religious thinkers through their extant work or subsequent influence.
  • critical methods of study, often adapted from those of other subjects in the humanities and social sciences, to the study of texts, practices, religious communities as social and cultural entities, and their art forms.
  • ethics: the values and problems for living as an adherent of the religion are engaged with.

Both pathways match aspects of the Benchmark’s description of ‘Qualities of mind’ (3.2): including e.g.

  • ability to understand how people have thought and acted - and continue to think and act - in contexts other than the student's own; how beliefs, doctrines, traditions and practices have developed within particular social and cultural contexts; and how religious traditions have changed over time and continue to evolve in the contemporary world
  • Sensitivity to the problems of religious experience, and to the issues of conflicting interpretations of language and symbols, texts and traditions.
  • capacity to bring a degree of self-reflectiveness to the study of the subject
  • basic critical and analytical skills: recognition that statements should be tested, that evidence and arguments are subject to assessment, and that the interpreter's role demands critical evaluation.
  • ability to employ a variety of methods of study in analysing material, to think independently, identify tasks, set goals and solve problems.
  • capacity to give a clear and accurate account of a subject, marshal arguments in a mature way and engage in debate and dialogue with respect for the opposite case or different viewpoint.

Both pathways match aspects of the Benchmark’s description of ‘generic skills’ (3.4): including e.g.

  • independence of mind and initiative
  • capacity for reflexive learning, understanding how they learn
  • ability to attend to others and have respect for others' views
  • ability to gather, evaluate and synthesise different types of information
  • analytical ability and the capacity to formulate questions and solve problems
  • technological and media literacy, including the generation of documents and other resources, electronic communication and interaction in various forms and accessing information from a variety of sources
  • teamwork skills

Pathway 1 (see introductory note on the visual-spatial nature of the language and resourcing of pathway 2) matches aspects of the Benchmark’s description of further ‘generic skills’ (3.4): including e.g.

  • writing skills, including clarity of expression, citation of relevant evidence and authorities and accurate referencing

Pathway 1 (FfM)

The main teaching is a balance of tutor-led input and facilitated group discussion and exercises. A range of learning and teaching methods are used: lectures, workshops, group-work activities, individual and group-centred projects, tutor-guided private study; group theological reflection. These activities are supported by directed independent study that feeds into group discussion in the main sessions.

Key methodologies are experiential learning and a method of doing theology that begins with experience. By developing skills in basic theological reflection, students will be able to begin to evaluate experience and learn from it - a key skill for effective ministry. There are also specific exercises on assessing gifts and calling and on giving and receiving of feedback -these include elements of individual and group work and feedback from tutors and facilitators.

Students' learning is further supported by the provision of a book box including resources pertaining to the programme
that are available at the site of teaching. Students also receive an opportunity to be inducted into using the university's
internal electronic resources provided through Portal and Moodle.

As with all collaborative partnerships in TRS, tutors on the programme engage in an annual review with the link tutor
and participate in peer observations of teaching as a part of their personal professional development.

Students are inducted into different forms of assessment at level 4 in a range which responds to the different learning
preferences of students, prepares them for the standard forms of graduate assessment, and offers some opportunities for applied forms of assessment. As well as options for more essay-based assessments, some assignments are based on reflective practice models and on interacting with and reflecting on feedback from others.

Students are given formative experiences within the module or programme for any type of summative assessment they will encounter at that level. Assignment proposal forms are used for all essays and other forms of assessment. These are used in initial negotiation of topic and resources, for title agreement, and for supervising the development of the analysis and argument.

Knowledge and understanding are assessed through, e.g., essay and project-based assignments and reflection-based
exercises, research-based exercises. Cognitive skills are assessed through, e.g., use of theological reflection cycle, set essay or project-based assignments. Developing professional skills are assessed through, e.g., assessment of application in all assignments.

Pathway 2 (in BSL)

Consonant with level 4, learning is predominantly tutor-designed and guided. The student learning experience is supported by class-delivered group work, and by tutorial-based and fieldwork activities. A range of learning and teaching methods are used: lectures, seminars, workshops, group-work activities, individual and group-centred projects, tutorials, tutor-guided private study; supported e-learning; group theological reflection. This teaching and opportunities for learning will take place through residential weekends, one week-long event, and one day events, at least one per module. A further weekend induction will also take place inducting students into Information technology and the programme as a whole. The face-to-face sessions will be the primary focus of tutor-led learning with students working independently, supported by a mentor, in between sessions.

The key methodology is a method of doing theology that begins with experience. By developing skills in basic theological reflection, students will be able to begin to evaluate their personal experience and corporate Deaf experience and learn from it – a key skill for effective ministry.

The methodology also allows delivery of a level 4 programme where published resources are scant. The absence of academic texts (‘performance texts’, e.g. videos of theological monologue or dialogue) in BSL means that the independent learning of a student cannot, as with many programmes for spoken/written language users, take place to a significant extent in private ‘reading’. Some of this experience will be provided through newly created web-delivered performance texts; some will be provided through available material, which is in BSL (e.g. some biblical texts) or which is principally visual and requires minimal English (e.g. some websites). The emphasis on experiential learning (as with validated practice in work-based learning) means that published textual resources are not the sole or main resource in a student’s collaborative or independent learning. The modules will be explicitly about learning how to learn, using BSL, and the module tutors, themselves BSL users, will have the key role in learning support.

The learning experience will be supported by Mentors, qualified to CACDP Stage 3 in BSL. These are individuals with a primary qualification and experience in ministerial practice. The role of mentor is for pastoral support, acting as a critical friend and as first point of contact for web-support including e-documents in written English. Support for students will be supplemented by Deaf chaplaincy and diocesan involvement.   The assessment strategy draws on validated practice in oral assessment and presentations, and work-based learning.  A Programme Pack (accessible through Moodle) gives details of assessment and reassesment methods and of assessment criteria. Knowledge and understanding are assessed through, e.g., electronic research activities; church or parish communication; facilitated group discussion with portfolio evidence; design and leadership of act of worship.  Cognitive skills are assessed through, e.g., a group performance of textual interpretation and dialogic rationale of interpretation, presentation of video diary of theological reflection.  Key skills are assessed through, e.g., electronic research activities, facilitated group discussion; presentation of video diary of theological reflection.  Professional skills are assessed through, e.g., design and leadership of an act of worship, church or parish communication. 

Pathway 1 Foundations for Ministry

The pathway is designed to lead into a variety of Christian ministries. It offers a specific path into the training for licensed Pastoral Workers in the Diocese of Chester (and forms the first year of that three-year programme). It also is used as a basis for progressing into a variety of Christian ministries including: Reader ministry, ordained ministry, Christian youth work, Christian children's work, evangelistic ministry, worship-leading and music ministry, other church-based lay ministries (e.g. house group leaders, churchwardens, licensed lay worker), and Christian discipleship and ministry in the workplace and community.

Successful students will be able to

  • articulate and apply certain key concepts relevant to ministry - including ideas related to the church and the kingdom of God, ministry and vocation, church growth and mission
  •  engage in a structured process of theological reflection and application
  •  identify and apply a variety of resources an d strategies for supporting discipleship and ministry
  •  communicate the results of their study/work accurately and reliably, and with structured and coherent arguments
  •  understand and apply learning to personal and/or ministerial contexts
  •  reflect on how best to work effectively with others in a ministry context
  •  reflect on their own learning and development in a group context (including receiving of feedback from others)
  •  undertake further training and develop new skills of ministry within a structured and managed environment

and will have

  •  qualities and transferable skills necessary for Christian ministry in a variety of contexts.

Pathway 2 (in BSL)

Successful students will be able to

  • articulate and apply certain key concepts relevant to ministry - including ideas related to the Bible, to doctrine and to worship
  • engage in theological reflection and application
  • evaluate the appropriateness of different approaches to solving problems related to Christian ministries
  • identify and apply a variety of resources and strategies for supporting discipleship and ministry
  • communicate the results of their study/work accurately and reliably in British Sign Language, and with structured and coherent arguments
  • undertake further training and develop new skills of ministry within a structured and managed environment

and will have

  • qualities and transferable skills necessary for ministry requiring the exercise of some personal responsibility.

The programme admits students from a variety of backgrounds and does not discriminate on the basis of race, gender, age or disability. It is open to people from all Christian denominations and explicitly addresses a variety of Christian traditions and viewpoints.

Pathway 1 (FfM)

Modules in the programme offer opportunities for addressing questions of gender, sexuality, race and religious identity. Pastoral and ministerial modules and projects may additionally address issues of age and disabilities. The programme makes particular space for valuing the worship and spiritual needs of Christians participating in the programme.

Pathway 2 (in BSL)

The pathway is specifically designed to widen participation in Higher Education for Deaf people who use British Sign Language as their first or preferred language and the whole programme design and delivery is focussed around enabling students to participate in HE who would not ordinarily have access. Students are supported by tutors, web-based facilities, and the University link tutor. They have some access to the support offered by the University in Learning Support and Student Guidance and Support and to the Students' Union. Students are made aware of the University's support structures at induction.

Pathway 1 (FfM) is delivered by the Diocese of Chester in a number of approved adult education locations in the Diocese.

Pathway 2 (in BSL) is delivered and assessed by a team of Deaf tutors fluent in BSL and hearing tutors (aided by translators as appropriate), and recruits students nationally and ecumenically. It was initiated by the (national, Anglican) Committee for Ministry of and among Deaf and Disabled People. It is the only Higher Education programme in theology and ministry which is delivered and assessed in BSL.

Back - to previous page  Print - launches the print options panel