About the Common Awards
Theological education for ministry and mission is being reshaped
through the advent of the Common Awards in Theology, Ministry and
Mission. From September 2014, institutions training ordinands in
the Church of England and partner churches will be doing so through
a common suite of awards that will be validated through a
partnership with Durham University. The catalyst for this
initiative has been the national changes in higher education
funding. However, the decision to respond to these changes by
developing the Common Awards has opened up possibilities for
re-thinking ministerial education for the 21st century,
offering greater coherence for both lay and ordained training while
lifting the administrative and financial burden of a large number
of small institutions currently offering awards through 19
Reports were presented to the House of Bishops as part
of the decision-making relating to the Common Awards approach.
The Common Awards strive to combine creativity and academic
rigour in developing pathways of learning that are transformative
while promoting the flourishing of distinctive patterns and
cultures of teaching and learning. They embrace the formational
dimensions of the pursuit of knowledge and the acquisition of
skills, encouraging learners to explore and inhabit their calling
and become lifelong learners open to the dynamic of the Spirit.
The Preface to
the Common Awards describes the pedagogical and
theological themes that shape the teaching and learning embodied in
the Common Awards.
A framework for the awards was created, based on extensive
consultation among theological educators in colleges, courses and
dioceses. The Common Awards provide a full range of undergraduate
and taught postgraduate programmes from Certificate to Masters
level. The structures of the programmes are such that they
encourage integration across disciplines and between classroom
learning and practice. Developing an intellectually rigorous,
emotionally intelligent, and spiritually discerning practice of
theological reflection and reflective practice is at the heart of
for the Common Awards sets out some key structural
features that have been embedded in the Common Awards.
benefit from the Common Awards?