Module Narrative

Module Title: Hermeneutics
Module Code: THE502
Level: 5
Credit Points: 20 Credits
Compulsory or Optional: Required
Pre-requisites/co-requisites: None
Excluded combinations or modules: None
Mode of attendance: Mixed


This module aims to introduce students to biblical interpretation within the framework of the Old and New Testaments. It includes exegesis and hermeneutics, equipping students to examine the original meaning of the bible and the contemporary significance of biblical texts. Students will be introduced to the various genres of literature found in the Bible as well as the major themes.

Learning outcomes

On completion of this module, the successful student will be able to:
1. discuss the special exegetical and hermeneutical issues associated with Biblical interpretation, both in general and in relation to the texts studied. and recognise and evaluate discussion in commentaries and other reference sources.
2. evaluate the critical methods used by scholars in this field in their reconstructions of the historical and literary contexts in the interpretation of biblical texts.

This module will call for the successful student to demonstrate:
3. an ability to recognise and evaluate discussion in commentaries and other reference sources.
4. an ability to locate the historical, cultural and political context of Scripture.


Basic questions about language, genre, analogy and referentiality; genres of literature e.g. parables, allegory, poetry, history, narrative and prophecy; basic models of responsible hermeneutics; the role of community and consensus, magisterium and individual; Jewish exegesis at the time of Jesus; use of the Old Testament in the New Testament; Alexandrian and Antiochene schools (Grecian and Hebraic), establishing a framework and prominence of selected texts and books by examples of exegetical and contextual studies

Learning, Teaching and Assessment Strategy

Staff-led lectures introduce students to biblical interpretation and to basic principles in exegesis, hermeneutics, critical methods and the use of commentaries and reference sources.

Analysis of short extracts gives the student practice in using the basic skills of exegesis and hermeneutics and will form the basis for small group discussion during seminars. Formative feedback enables students to further develop exegetical skills, which form a foundation for further Biblical study and analysis

Discussion groups act as a focus for further development of topics concerning the contemporary significance of Biblical texts, enabling students to prepare an exegete a passage before completing an analysis of texts (summative) 3000 words

Tutorial time enables Tutors to give formative feedback on draft essays, guidance to students on developing their presentations and constructive feedback on summative work.

Independent study to supplement these activities is an essential element of the programme, including reading and producing the module assignments.

Assessment Scheme

• Exegesis of a passage 500 words (formative assessment)

• Analysis of texts 3000 words (summative assessment)

Assessment Weighting

Analysis of Bible passages or texts with presentation 100%

Indicative Bibliography

Holgate, D. & Starr, R. (2006) Biblical Hermeneutics. London: SCM Press

Blomberg, C. L. (2004) Preaching the Parables: From Responsible Interpretation to Powerful Proclamation. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic.
Fee, G. & Stuart, D. (2003) How to Read the Bible for All Its worth. Grand Rapids: Zondervan.
Stein, R. (2011) A Basic Guide to Interpreting the Bible. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic.

Sterrett, T. N. & Schultz, R. L. (2010) How to understand Your Bible. Downers Grove: IVP.
Bauer, R. D. & Traina, A. R. (2011) Inductive Bible Study. Grand Rapids: Baker Books.
Hays, D. J. & Duvall, S. J. (2011) The Baker Illustrated Bible Handbook. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic.
Hill, A. & Wilton, J. (2009) A Survey of the Old Testament. Grand Rapids: Zondervan.
Holgate, D. & Starr, R. (2006) Biblical Hermeneutics. London: SCM Press.
Jensen, A. (2007) Theological Hermeneutics. London: SCM Press.
Powell, M. A. (2009) Introducing the New Testament. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic.
Seitz, C. R. (2007) Prophecy and Hermeneutics. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic.
Thiselton, A. C. (2009) Hermeneutics. Grand Rapids: William B. Eerdmans.
Virkler, H. A. (2007) Hermeneutics. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic.

Online Application
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