Postgraduate study
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Islam and Christian-Muslim Relations Programme closed

Awards: Programme closed

This programme, housed within the School of Divinity, draws on the strengths of one of the most distinguished centres of religious and theological studies in the country. It offers a deep and broad study of the rich intellectual traditions of Islamic law, theology and philosophy in conversation with Christian thought, ethics and political theology.

The dialogical framework of the course allows you to study multiple disciplines in both Islamic and Christian thought and practice, not as mere historical artefacts, but as resources that transform the academic study of religion and engage public debates on the place of Islam, Christianity, and religion in society.

The programme’s core courses will enable you to receive a strong grounding in the major themes and methodologies in Islam and in the academic study of Christian-Muslim relations.

You will gain a deep appreciation of the philosophical, theological and ethical debates between Christians and Muslims in different times and places.

Optional courses from which you may choose your other modules, include a variety of courses in both Islam and Christianity. In addition, students can take courses offered by the department of Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies (IMES).

The programme offers opportunities for study and collaboration with world renowned academics, with a view to tailoring a personalised path to doctoral study or to other relevant careers.

This programme is run over one year full-time (or two years part-time).

You will:

  • be taught mainly in small classroom/seminar groups
  • be given training in research methods which offers a practical approach to postgraduate level skills of critical investigation and writing
  • receive individual supervision for your 15,000 word dissertation

Compulsory courses

  • The Study of Islam and Christian-Muslim Relations
  • Approaches to Research in Divinity and Religious Studies
  • Approaches to Research: Islam and Christian-Muslim Relations

Optional Courses

You will choose three options from among the courses specific to the programme, such as:

  • Pioneers of Political Islam
  • Jesus in Christian-Muslim Relations
  • Introducing Classical Syriac
  • Gender and Ethics in Islam
  • Science, Sorcery and Wonder is Islam
  • The Qur'an - Islam's Holy Book
  • Muslim Africa in Global Perspective
  • Muslim Societies in Southeast Asia
  • Islam Through the Arts

The options on offer change from year to year, so please consult the Programme Director for advice on what will be available. With the agreement of your Programme Director, you may also choose options from other taught masters programmes.

After finishing the programme you will have:

  • expertise in the major themes and debates in the academic study of Islam
  • specialised knowledge and expertise in several major aspects of both Islam and Christian-Muslim relations
  • a facility with select major thinkers in the history of Islamic thought and/or Christian-Muslim relations
  • an appreciation of how various social, historical, cultural, and political contexts shape and inform the relationship between Christians and Muslims
  • a clear understanding of how Islamic Studies and Christian-Muslim relations relate to and engage other academic disciplines, especially religious studies, theology, philosophy, law, and politics
  • the ability to analyse the relationship between contemporary and modern Christian-Muslim encounters and the history of Christian-Muslim dialogue, diatribe, and debate

Possible fields for employment after completion of this programme include:

  • academia
  • non-governmental organisations
  • academic publishing
  • think-tanks
  • religious leadership
  • national and international civil services

These entry requirements are for the 2024/25 academic year and requirements for future academic years may differ. Entry requirements for the 2025/26 academic year will be published on 1 Oct 2024.

A UK 2:1 honours degree, a minimum US 3.25 GPA, or its international equivalent, in a relevant humanities subject (e.g. theology/religious studies, philosophy, or history).

Students from China

This degree is Band C.

International qualifications

Check whether your international qualifications meet our general entry requirements:

English language requirements

Regardless of your nationality or country of residence, you must demonstrate a level of English language competency at a level that will enable you to succeed in your studies.

English language tests

We accept the following English language qualifications at the grades specified:

  • IELTS Academic: total 7.0 with at least 6.0 in each component. We do not accept IELTS One Skill Retake to meet our English language requirements.
  • TOEFL-iBT (including Home Edition): total 100 with at least 20 in each component. We do not accept TOEFL MyBest Score to meet our English language requirements.
  • C1 Advanced (CAE) / C2 Proficiency (CPE): total 185 with at least 169 in each component.
  • Trinity ISE: ISE III with passes in all four components.
  • PTE Academic: total 70 with at least 59 in each component.

Your English language qualification must be no more than three and a half years old from the start date of the programme you are applying to study, unless you are using IELTS, TOEFL, Trinity ISE or PTE, in which case it must be no more than two years old.

Degrees taught and assessed in English

We also accept an undergraduate or postgraduate degree that has been taught and assessed in English in a majority English speaking country, as defined by UK Visas and Immigration:

We also accept a degree that has been taught and assessed in English from a university on our list of approved universities in non-majority English speaking countries (non-MESC).

If you are not a national of a majority English speaking country, then your degree must be no more than five years old* at the beginning of your programme of study. (*Revised 05 March 2024 to extend degree validity to five years.)

Find out more about our language requirements:

Read our general information on tuition fees and studying costs:

Search for scholarships and funding opportunities:

  • Programme Director, Dr Salam Rassi
  • Phone: +44 (0)131 650 8900
  • Contact:
  • School of Divinity
  • New College
  • Mound Place
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH1 2LX

This programme is closed and is no longer accepting applications.

Find out more about the general application process for postgraduate programmes:

Further information

  • Programme Director, Dr Salam Rassi
  • Phone: +44 (0)131 650 8900
  • Contact:
  • School of Divinity
  • New College
  • Mound Place
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH1 2LX