Faculty of TheologyChristianity and Culture
The degree programme in Christianity and Culture focusses on the origin and current state of Christianity as a cultural phenomenon. The degree programme covers theoretical and empirically-founded aspects of the subject and offers students the opportunity to develop a specialism of their choice.
Christianity and Culture applies theories from theology and cultural studies to the study of the Old Testament, the New Testament, church history, systematic theology (dogmatic, ethics, ecumenical theology), religious studies/intercultural theology and practical theology.
The course enables students to specialise in one of the named disciplines during the Bachelor’s degree programme, and in up to two neighbouring disciplines across the period of study. The Master’s degree programme in Christianity and Culture enables students to further their competences in their chosen area of specialism.
Special Features and Characteristics
The Faculty of Theology offers introductory courses and internal language lecturers specialising in Hebrew, Greek and Latin. This supports students as they begin the degree programme and learn a language.
With 15 professors, the faculty is able to offer a diverse range of seminars and lectures, guarantee the interdisciplinary nature of the degree programme, and offer students a high degree of student support.
The Faculty employs five academics with different specialisms within the field of exegetical study. This gives students the possibility to study biblical texts in great depth and from a variety of perspectives. Uniquely in Germany, the Faculty reserves one of these positions for an academic specialising in the history of Christianity in America. The existence of an Ecumenical Institute is also unique to Heidelberg. Research at the Institute focusses on the Christian church and confessions, and questions relating to interconfessional and interreligous dialogue. With internal academics specialising in the science of preaching (in relation to the exegesis), pastoral work, congregational development and church theory, religious pedagogy and diaconal studies, the Faculty is able to offer a broad range of courses in practical theology.
The modern faculty library at Heidelberg University offers a very particular learning atmosphere. Situated directly below the Heidelberg castle, the library contains over 220,000 volumes and is one of the largest specialist theological libraries in Germany.
The Faculty of Theology also forms part of an international network and offers students the opportunity to participate in archaeological digs, as well as exchange programmes with institutions in countries including the USA, France, England, Israel and South Africa.
Graduates of the Master’s degree programme in Christianity and Culture are able to pursue doctoral studies to become a doctor of theology, or doctor of philosophy (Dr. theol or PhD). With around 100 doctoral students, the Faculty of Theology at Heidelberg University plays a considerable role in the promotion of young junior researchers in the field.
The Faculty of Theology is involved in national and international research projects. Depending on their specialism, academic performance and the available courses and lectures, students of Christianity and Culture may participate in research projects.
Graduates are able to pursue a career in diverse fields including media, publishing, museums, development, churches, business (e.g. human resources) and the service industries. Students’ success in certain fields of employment will depend on their areas of specialism, work placements they may have completed outside of the University, and periods they’ve spent working or studying abroad.
I find it fascinating to constantly reexamine the question of how the foundations of Christianity and current issues in our contemporary culture enrich each other. The Christianity and Culture programme offers me many possibilities to do research, to set my own priorities and to delve into theology with its various disciplines.
Jana Walther, 26, Christianity and Culture, 5th semester Master