Theology and Religious Studies Reading List

Information for prospective students

We advise you to read the Theology and Religious Studies subject page thoroughly.

For offer holders

Congratulations on your offer to study at King's! We look forward to welcoming you to the College in October. The following information may be useful in helping you think about possible choices for your first year papers, and once you have made your choices, it will certainly be useful in terms of preparation for the course.

Paper 1: Languages

As you'll be aware, you have to take a scriptural language paper in your first year, in addition to four other papers. Once you have decided which language you wish to take, it would really help if you could get hold of the relevant text book, and begin to work through it systematically. The further you get before you arrive, the easier you will find it when you're here.


  • C.L. Seow, Grammar for Biblical Hebrew, Revised Edition (Nashville: Abingdon, 1995)

New Testament Greek

  • Duff, J. Elements of New Testament Greek (3rd edition) (Cambridge University Press, 2005)


  • Coulson, M., Sanskrit: an introduction to the Classical Language (2nd edn., Hodder & Stoughton, 1992)

  • Coulson, M., Teach Yourself Sanskrit (2nd edn.,1992)

Qur'anic Arabic

  • Hayward, J. A. & Nahmad, H. M. A., New Grammar of the Written Arabic Language (Lund Humphries, 1990)

Other Papers

As well as the language paper, you have to choose four other papers, at least one of which must be either Paper 2 or Paper 3. You are entirely free to choose the papers you'd like to study otherwise. Some sort of rough guideline could be that if you're interested above all in studying Christian theology, then obviously you would do best to choose from papers 2, 3, 4, 5 and 8, whereas a strong interest in religious studies would suggest, say, papers 2, 3, 6, 7 and 8.

Once you have decided what paper choices you are likely to make, you should begin some introductory reading (in addition to the language, that is). Again, the more you can do before you arrive, the easier you will find it to settle in once you're here. Degree level work is quite a change in gear from A-level and equivalent qualifications, and one of the things that marks the difference is the amount of self-regulated reading that you're required to do here. So it does make sense to begin to get into the rhythm of reading and note-taking again.

General Books on Biblical Interpretation

  • Grant, R. M. & Tracy, D. A., Short History of the Interpretation of Scripture (1984)

  • Hayes, J. H. & Holladay, C. R., Biblical Exegesis: A Beginner's Handbook (1983)

  • Alter, R. & Kermode, F., The Literary Guide to the Bible (1987)

  • Morgan, R., & Barton, J., Biblical Interpretation (1988)

  • Rogerson, J.W., Introduction to the Bible (1999)

For more information, please consult the Divinity Faculty website via the links below. This contains more details about your options, set texts, and introductory reading for each of the papers.

All the information and documents you need if you've already been accepted for an undergraduate place at King's.
You are strongly advised to read these documents which form part of the terms of admission referred to in your offer letter.

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