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Faculty of Divinity

Advance Diploma

Advanced Diploma in Theology, Religion and Philosophy of Religion

Course Code: DVD1

The Advanced Diploma is a nine-month postgraduate qualification that allows graduates in other subjects to gain knowledge and expertise in Theology, Religion, and Philosophy of Religion. Many use the course as a bridge into further study in one of these areas, opening up an MPhil or PhD.  

Advanced Diploma students take three or four papers chosen from the BA Theology, Religion and Philosophy of Religion degree, as well as writing a dissertation.

"The range of subjects from which one can choose provides anyone who is interested in religion (whether from a faith position or not) with ample scope to explore, in depth, almost any of its aspects. I was able to combine church history, scriptural analysis, theology, and doctrine. The quality of teaching is, of course, second to none.

Coming to these subjects for the first time, later in life than most, was not easy for me (exactly as I hoped and expected!) and the help I received was exemplary. The personal attention given to individual students is a particular feature of the course, part of which is the excellent Cambridge supervision system." Charles Wide

Course Content

  • Students write a dissertation of not more than 10,000 words.
  • They also take three or four papers, chosen from the following: Any papers in Groups B and C or a language paper from Groups A, B, and C. At least one paper will be from Group C. Only one can be assessed by long essay. Where students have taken four papers (in addition to the dissertation), rather than three, the lowest mark will not be taken into account if it is in their interest to discount it.

You can find Paper descriptions by clicking the links below:

Part I: Diploma students can only do the language papers from here (A papers).

Part IIA: Diploma students can take any paper from here (B papers).

Part IIB - Diploma students can take any paper from here (C papers).

How to Apply

Information about all postgraduate degrees and courses of the University of Cambridge can be found via the postgraduate admissions page of the Postgraduate Admissions Office. This is the central body which deals with all graduate applications to the University. Information on the Advanced Diploma can be found here. Applications should be submitted to the Postgraduate Admissions Office, following the guidance on that admissions page.

Applicants are strongly encouraged to submit their applications as early as possible. This is particularly important for applicants seeking Gates or Cambridge funding, who should note the deadlines on the postgraduate admissions funding page.

Minimum Entry Requirements

  • A 1st class or 2.1 honours degree with marks of at least 67 per cent; where appropriate GPA of at least 3.7;
  • English Language requirements as set by the Graduate Admissions Office.


If you have any questions about the application process and the course contents then please contact the  (Not every paper necessarily runs every year, on account of sabbaticals and staff leave.)