A Doctorate of Philosophy is the highest level of degree that a student can achieve, demonstrating academic excellence through independent, creative thought and the ability to interact with modern scholarship.
Any students around the world who want to pursue advanced research in biblical studies, historical theology, philosophical theology, and more with Davenant Hall’s respected scholars now have the opportunity to do so by applying for PhD study at Union Theological College, one of one of the UK’s finest theological colleges, while still being supervised by Davenant Hall faculty.
Five of Davenant Hall’s leading instructors–Dr. Matthew Hoskin, Dr. Joseph Minich, Dr. Bradford Littlejohn, Dr. Michael Lynch, and Dr. Alastair Roberts–have joined the faculty of Union Theological College to supervise PhD research within their fields of expertise. Eligible students will show evidence of sufficient academic preparation, as well as being recommended by the Davenant Hall faculty.
To earn a PhD, students must write a 80,000 word thesis on a topic defined by their research proposal under the guidance of a relevant faculty member. PhD students undertake research on their own topics, working closely with their supervisors to write their thesis.
Contact The Davenant Institute or prospective supervisor with a field of interest.
The prospective supervisor will dialogue with the applicant concerning their readiness and specific topic. Promising students should develop a dissertation proposal.
If a supervisor accepts the applicant, the applicant will fill out the PhD application on the Davenant website. This will satisfy the UTC admission requirements.
The Davenant Institute will then discuss the application materials and dissertation proposal in conjunction with Union Theological College and make a final decision on the applicant’s acceptance.
Dr. Bradford Littlejohn (Ph.D., University of Edinburgh) is the Founder and President of the Davenant Institute. He also works as a Fellow of the Ethics and Public Policy Center and has taught for several institutions, including Moody Bible Institute-Spokane, Bethlehem College and Seminary, and Patrick Henry College. He is recognized as a leading scholar of the English theologian Richard Hooker and has published and lectured extensively in the fields of Reformation history, Christian ethics, and political theology. He lives in Landrum, SC with his wife, Rachel, and four children.
Areas of Specialization: History and theology of the English reformation, Richard Hooker, Anglicanism vs. Puritanism, political theology in 14th–18th centuries, constructive contemporary political theology and social ethics
Dr Matthew Hoskin (PhD, University of Edinburgh) teaches ancient and medieval Christian history for Davenant Hall. His research focuses on manuscripts, monks, popes, canon law, and councils, which all feature in his book The Manuscripts of Leo the Great’s Letters (2022), and he blogs about the historic faith at Classically Christian. He lives on Superior’s northern shore in Thunder Bay, Ontario, with his wife and sons.
Areas of Specialization: Ancient and Medieval church councils, ancient and medieval monasticism, pagans and Christians in the Roman world, Augustine of Hippo, Constantine, textual criticism of Latin Christian texts, Christianity in the Later Roman Empire, Christology, ancient Trinitarian theology
Dr. Alastair Roberts is a Teaching Fellow of The Theopolis Institute and lecturer for Davenant Hall, a leading evangelical blogger and writer, and one of the hosts of the Mere Fidelity podcast. His personal podcast is Alastair’s Adversaria, where, alongside topical interviews, he currently produces daily reflections upon the whole Bible. He is the author of Echoes of Exodus: Tracing Themes of Redemption Through Scripture (2018). He is married to Susannah, and they divide their time between the UK and the US.
Areas of Specialization: Biblical theology, the exodus, baptism, theology of the sexes, biblical law
Dr. Michael Lynch (Ph.D, Calvin Seminary) teaches Ancient Language and Humanities at Delaware Valley Classical School in New Castle, DE. He is the author of John Davenant’s Hypothetical Universalism: A Defense of Catholic and Reformed Orthodoxy. He and his wife have five children, three girls and two boys.
Areas of Specialization: Augustinianism, Reformed scholasticism, Catholic scholasticism, medieval theology, early modern theology, atonement, Puritanism, Calvinism, American Presbyterianism
Dr. Joseph Minich is a Teaching Fellow with The Davenant Institute and Editor-in-Chief of The Davenant Press. The founding editor of Ad Fontes, he is also the author of Enduring Divine Absence and a current co-host of the Pilgrim Faith podcast. His public writing can be found at The Calvinist International, Mere Orthodoxy, Modern Reformation, and the Ad Fontes blog. He lives in Garland, Texas, with his wife and four children.
Areas of Specialization: Christianity & culture, apologetics, general philosophy, philosophy of technology, philosophy of modernity, philosophical theology, religious studies (i.e. comparative religion, method, etc.)
Would you like to join us? We’d love to hear from you. If you have any further questions about the Ph.D. or the application process, don’t hesitate to reach out.
The application process is the same for former Davenant students as other students. The difference is that our familiarity with former Davenant students will often allow for a quicker response.
Yes, the application process is the same for former Davenant students as other students. The difference is that our familiarity with former Davenant students will often allow for a quicker response.
Yes, though we prefer that you apply through Davenant’s website. The application process at Davenant is based on the UTC application process with the specification that one of your references must be a pastoral character reference, as already required in our applications to our other programs.
It is common in the United States to refer to a bachelor’s degree or master’s degree capstone project as a thesis and a doctoral degree capstone project as a dissertation. In Europe, the terminology is the opposite, although even in the United States it is not uncommon to refer to a student’s PhD thesis.
Theology, though this may encompass a wide range of subjects and fields depending on the student’s dissertation topic and the expertise of their supervisor.
The PhD will be awarded by (The Presbyterian Theological Faculty, Ireland” (PTFI) which is the official Royal Charter. Students will list their degree on their CV as PhD Union Theological College, Belfast (PTFI). For details see question 1 of the FAQs on Union’s website at https://www.union.ac.uk/admissions/faqs
The PhD is an advanced research programme. From the outset, the student focuses on working towards the completion of the dissertation. The only coursework required will be project specific in order for students to enhance necessary skills, for example, in languages. Students need to be well-prepared from previous study and be able to demonstrate appropriate competence in special skills, such as languages.
No. Travel is not required for the PhD program.
See UTC website for the most up-to-date information.
Full Time: £15,000/year
Any student who successfully completes the Davenant M.Litt and then goes on to finish a PhD in an approved program will, may, upon successful completion of their PhD, receive a reimbursement of all tuition paid for the M.Litt. See the Tuition Reimbursement Policy for details.