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Session: 2022/23

Last modified: 01/06/2021 16:29:25

Title of Module: Church History Turning Points L7

Code: THEO07001 SCQF Level: 7
(Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework)
Credit Points: 20 ECTS: 10
(European Credit Transfer Scheme)
School:School of Education & Social Sciences
Module Co-ordinator:Dr Ian  Birch

Summary of Module

This module familiarises students with key ‘turning points’ in the history and development of the Christian Church. Three particular ‘turning points’ make up the course:

1.     The Road to Nicaea and Chalcedon: the narrative and social development of the early Christian movement and development of ideas about God, Jesus and Salvation, including a survey of significant personalities and events, and the Christological legacy of the great ecumenical councils of Nicaea and Chalcedon.

2.     The Road to Wittenburg and the European Reformations; includes an examination of medieval Christianity, ‘pre-reformation’ reform and Catholic Reform. The dominance of ideas and personalities, the significance of geography, and the impact of the European Reformations on subsequent history of the Church provides an entry into examination of several major traditions.

3.    The Road to revival: the Evangelical Revival in the 18th century, including why the Evangelical Revival happened at all, study of the thought of selected founding fathers of Evangelicalism against the background of historical context and the legacy in later diversity of global Evangelicalism.

Through such study students will be introduced to issues of historical and critical study and the importance of history as a source of intellectual perspective. Basic elements of historical awareness to which students will be introduced are clarification through historical perspective, living with the impossibility of ‘objective’ history, exploring the narrative context of events, personalities and ideas, accepting critically the inevitability of ‘subjective’ history, and the value of recreating the social context of events, personalities and ideas.

Module Delivery Method
Face-To-FaceBlendedFully OnlineHybridCHybridOWork-based Learning
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Term used to describe the traditional classroom environment where the students and the lecturer meet synchronously in the same room for the whole provision.

A mode of delivery of a module or a programme that involves online and face-to-face delivery of learning, teaching and assessment activities, student support and feedback. A programme may be considered “blended” if it includes a combination of face-to-face, online and blended modules. If an online programme has any compulsory face-to-face and campus elements it must be described as blended with clearly articulated delivery information to manage student expectations

Fully Online
Instruction that is solely delivered by web-based or internet-based technologies. This term is used to describe the previously used terms distance learning and e learning.

Online with mandatory face-to-face learning on Campus

Online with optional face-to-face learning on Campus

Work-based Learning
Learning activities where the main location for the learning experience is in the workplace.

Campus(es) for Module Delivery
The module will normally be offered on the following campuses / or by Distance/Online Learning: (Provided viable student numbers permit)
Paisley:Ayr:Dumfries:Lanarkshire:London:Distance/Online Learning:Other:
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Term(s) for Module Delivery
(Provided viable student numbers permit).
Term 1check markTerm 2check markTerm 3


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Learning Outcomes: (maximum of 5 statements)

On successful completion of this module the student will be able to:

L1. Demonstrate an appreciation of the broad historical developments of the Christian tradition and some of the major changes in the conception and intellectual expression of Christian Doctrine throughout the history of the Church.

L2. Demonstrate knowledge and understanding, providing narrative context, of the major historical events, theological issues and key personalities of several turning points in the history of the Christian Church.

L3. Demonstrate an overall appreciation of the significance of historical context and perspective, including the wider social and intellectual world, of one selected period from the course contents.

Employability Skills and Personal Development Planning (PDP) Skills
SCQF Headings During completion of this module, there will be an opportunity to achieve core skills in:
Knowledge and Understanding (K and U) SCQF Level 7.

Historical awareness as an essential intellectual perspective, demonstrated in a broad knowledge of particular movements, their historic and ecumenical significance.

Discovering the historical context of events and using this information to interpret their historical significance and influence.

Practice: Applied Knowledge and Understanding SCQF Level 7.

Historical research enabling an informed account of historical events and movements, their causes and consequences.

Identifying significant and relevant historical material through close reading of secondary literature, and using this argument and interpretation.

Generic Cognitive skills SCQF Level 7.

Descriptive account of historical events and intellectual developments, enabling connections to be made between historical context and ideas.

Respectful encounter with traditions other than their own

Communication, ICT and Numeracy Skills SCQF Level 7.

Use a range of standard applications to identify and use resources relevant to historical enquiry.

Present in a group situation, relevant, organized material that facilitates discussion and group learning.

Autonomy, Accountability and Working with others SCQF Level 7.

Constructive and collaborative participation in discussions which explore in a group situation, the historical and theological significance of events and ideas.

Pre-requisites: Before undertaking this module the student should have undertaken the following:
Module Code:
Module Title:
Co-requisitesModule Code:
Module Title:

* Indicates that module descriptor is not published.

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Learning and Teaching
Learning Activities
During completion of this module, the learning activities undertaken to achieve the module learning outcomes are stated below:
Student Learning Hours
(Normally totalling 200 hours):
(Note: Learning hours include both contact hours and hours spent on other learning activities)
Lecture/Core Content Delivery18
Tutorial/Synchronous Support Activity18
Asynchronous Class Activity24
Independent Study140
200 Hours Total

**Indicative Resources: (eg. Core text, journals, internet access)

The following materials form essential underpinning for the module content and ultimately for the learning outcomes:

Course set Text Book: Noll, Mark, Turning Points: Decisive Moments in the History of Christianity (Grand Rapids: Baker, 2001).

Bebbington, D. W., Evangelicalism in Modern Britain: A History from the 1730s to the 1980s. (Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1992)

Chadwick, O (ed.), The Penguin History of the Church (7 volumes) (London: Penguin 1993)

Cross, F. L. (ed.), Livingstone, E. A., Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church (3rd ed.) (Oxford:OUP 2008)

Dowley, I (ed.), Introduction to the History Of Christianity (2nd ed) (Oxford:Fortress Press 2013)

Hillderbrand, Hans, The Division of Christendom: Christianity in the Sixteenth Century (Liousville:JKP 2007)

Hillderbrand, Hans (ed.), Oxford Encyclopaedia of the Reformation (4 volumes) (Oxford:OUP 1996)

Lynch, Joseph, The Medieval Church: A Brief History (Abingdon: Routledge 2013)

McGrath, A. E., Historical Theology (2nd ed.) (Oxford: Blackwell 2013)

McGrath, A. E., Christian History (Oxford: Blackwell 2013)

Mitchell, M.M. and Young, F.M. (eds.) The Cambridge History of Christianity (9 Volumes) (Cambridge: CUP 2005-2009)

Noll, Mark, The Rise of Evangelicalism (Leicester: IVP, 2004)

Wilken, Robert L., The Spirit of Early Christian Thought: Seeking the Face of God (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2003)

(**N.B. Although reading lists should include current publications, students are advised (particularly for material marked with an asterisk*) to wait until the start of session for confirmation of the most up-to-date material)

Engagement Requirements

In line with the Academic Engagement Procedure, Students are defined as academically engaged if they are regularly engaged with timetabled teaching sessions, course-related learning resources including those in the Library and on the relevant learning platform, and complete assessments and submit these on time. Please refer to the Academic Engagement Procedure at the following link: Academic engagement procedure

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Supplemental Information

Programme BoardEducation
Assessment Results (Pass/Fail) No
Subject PanelDivinity
ModeratorDr Lina Toth
External ExaminerA Jack
Accreditation Details
Version Number


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Assessment: (also refer to Assessment Outcomes Grids below)
Assignment: Essay 60%
Practical: Portfolio 40%
(N.B. (i) Assessment Outcomes Grids for the module (one for each component) can be found below which clearly demonstrate how the learning outcomes of the module will be assessed.
(ii) An indicative schedule listing approximate times within the academic calendar when assessment is likely to feature will be provided within the Student Handbook.)

Assessment Outcome Grids (Footnote A.)

Component 1
Assessment Type (Footnote B.) Learning Outcome (1) Learning Outcome (2) Learning Outcome (3) Weighting (%) of Assessment ElementTimetabled Contact Hours
Essaycheck markcheck markcheck mark600

Component 2
Assessment Type (Footnote B.) Learning Outcome (1) Learning Outcome (2) Learning Outcome (3) Weighting (%) of Assessment ElementTimetabled Contact Hours
Portfolio of written workcheck markcheck mark 400
Combined Total For All Components100% 0 hours

A. Referred to within Assessment Section above
B. Identified in the Learning Outcome Section above

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  1. More than one assessment method can be used to assess individual learning outcomes.
  2. Schools are responsible for determining student contact hours. Please refer to University Policy on contact hours (extract contained within section 10 of the Module Descriptor guidance note).
    This will normally be variable across Schools, dependent on Programmes &/or Professional requirements.

Equality and Diversity
As a Christian theological college, students should be aware that teaching, discussion and the college's ethos is from a confessional viewpoint. The college actively encourages an environment of openness and religious tolerance, but the main function of the college is the training of ministerial candidates and the learning environment will be supportive of this.

Where students need additional support, this is provided by the college team with reference if appropriate to other UWS colleagues, when they are referred to Student Support Services for further assistance. In consultation with the student, the needs of individual students are met, wherever practicable, and every effort made to ensure individual students are not disadvantaged
UWS Equality and Diversity Policy
(N.B. Every effort will be made by the University to accommodate any equality and diversity issues brought to the attention of the School)

2014 University of the West of Scotland

University of the West of Scotland is a Registered Scottish Charity.

Charity number SC002520.