PhD program in “comparative studies of religions with the concentration on Christian theology” is a comprehensive, specialized, educational package in line with the regulations and decisions made by the Ministry of Science, Research, and Technology of Iran. The program studies the different historical-theological dimensions of Christianity from the beginning to the present age. It also studies Christianity in Quran and Islam.
Religions have influenced widely the intellectual, spiritual, and social life of human beings by their different manifestations and examples. Therefore, it is highly important to study religions in general and Abrahamic religions in particular, i.e. Judaism, Christianity, and Islam given their geographical scope and wide population dispersion. The common origin, related contents, and historical ties of the three Abrahamic religions help the followers of each religion to better understand the two other religions. This in turn results in both acquiring a more precise knowledge of their own religion and establishing the interfaith dialogue.
The PhD graduates of “comparative Studies of Religions with the concentration on Christianity” will be able to instruct or do research on different topics of Christianity at the academic and research centers; this will enhance the original knowledge in these areas. They may do as experts in analyzing the interfaith dialogue.
The PhD program in “comparative Studies of Religions with the concentration on Christianity” takes 4 years which equals 8 academic semesters. The semesters are scheduled as follows: 4 semesters are dedicated to the coursework, 1 semester is dedicated to the comprehensive examination, and the last 3 semesters are dedicated to writing the thesis. The students pass the prerequisites during the first semester, followed by the core and elective courses during the upcoming semesters.
Holding a master’s degree or an equivalent is sufficient for enrollment in this program. The previous degree of the applicant must be verified by the consulate of Iran in the issuing country. Also, matching the applicants’ previous field of study with the current program is not necessary. Upon establishing the applicants’ scholarly competency and the committee’s agreement, the applicants are eligible to study in this program regardless of their previous field of study. Previous publications including books, research papers, and journal articles can positively influence the committee’s judgment.
The program includes 62 units: 18 units of core courses, 26 units of prerequisites, and 18 units for the thesis. The following are some of the core courses offered in this program: “origins of theories of biblical inspiration and authority”, “methodology of biblical interpretation”, “Christian theology”, “Catholic theology”, “Protestant theology”, and “Orthodox theology”. Among the prerequisites, the following courses can be named: “origins of Christianity”, “history of Jewish theology up to the emergence of Christianity”, “history of Christianity up to the medieval times”, “Christianity in Quran and Islamic narrations”, and “comparison of the structure and contents between Quran and the Bible”.
- Total cost of the course for Iranian students who are admitted through the national entrance exam or internal university exam (2021-2022): 125 million tomans (The fee covers the student’s educational costs and does not include living expenses such as food and accommodations.
- Total cost of the course for Iranian students who are admitted through the national entrance exam or internal university exam (2021-2022): 9 thousand dollars (The fee covers the student’s educational costs and does not include living expenses such as food and accommodations.
The applicants must submit the following documents to apply to the (combined coursework and research) PhD programs at the University of Religions and Denominations:
- A completed application form.
- An electronic copy of the passport or a valid residence permit.
- An electronic copy of the bachelor’s and master’s degrees or their equivalent and a certified Persian, English, or Arabic translation of the transcripts.
- The original bachelor’s and master’s degrees or their equivalent and a Persian, English, or Arabic translation of the transcripts.
- A recently taken photo of the applicant, size 30x40mm.
- Applicant’s CV indicating education and work experience.
By clicking on the “Apply now” button next to each program, you will be transferred to the registration portal, where you can upload and submit your application documents. Your application will not be complete until all the required items are submitted.