PhD in Theology

The PhD is an opportunity to engage in advanced research. This research can be carried out in any area within the Faculty of Arts, provided that supervision is available and the research proposal and supervision arrangements are approved by the University.

The PhD consists of a thesis of an internationally recognised standard that makes an original contribution to knowledge or understanding in its field. Normally the thesis may not exceed 100,000 words or 250 pages. An oral examination takes place after the thesis has been submitted.

Research opportunities

  • Rape culture and religion
  • Gender and sexuality in religion
  • The Bible in visual culture
  • Queer theory and sacred texts
  • Religious sectarianism and tolerance in New Zealand and the British Empire
  • Early Modern Christianity - especially in Scotland, France and Rhineland Germany
  • Martin Bucer (1491-1551) and his historical and intellectual context
  • History of the Eucharist
  • The use and abuse of history in Christian thought


The PhD is expected to be completed in three or four full-time years, although it may be possible to complete on a part-time basis.


The usual requirement is a masters degree with Honours (First Class or Second Class, First Division) from the University of Auckland, or an approved equivalent qualification. You must also have demonstrated an ability to pursue doctoral level research. All candidates must submit a research proposal and obtain registration.

Further information about PhD study

  • How to apply
  • Contacts and advisers 
  • Further PhD information