Religious Studies


  • Entry year 2024
  • Duration Full time 1 year, Part time 2 years


Why Lancaster?

  • Study a course designed to explore religion through the lens of different disciplines
  • Learn from experts who specialise in research areas such as the roles of women in Islam and global Christianity
  • Our team are at the cutting edge of the discipline and you’ll benefit from their insights into new religious movements
  • Build your professional experience by presenting your ideas and getting feedback at the department’s postgraduate conference
  • Use the advanced research skills you’ll develop to enhance your career or pursue a future in academia

Religion plays a role in many aspects of todays world from popular culture to conflict, gender equality to our understanding of the past. Weve designed this course to help you unravel those relationships using research methods from different disciplines such as sociology and anthropology.

Hone your research skills

We kickstart this course with our Studying Religion module. It covers a lot of ground – you’ll study areas like social and cultural transformations of religion and spirituality, as well as sharpening your skills in making sense of conflicting data from different sources and forming an evidence-based argument.

You’ll also dig deeper into an area that interests you with our dissertation module. Past students have looked at a very wide range of topics, depending on their own interests. For example, they’ve written about religion and spirituality during lockdown, and charismatic leadership in new religious movements.

A range of areas to explore

Alongside core modules, you might analyse Indian source texts on politics and ethics or perhaps discuss major debates in religious and atheistic thought. With our Independent Study module, you can pick any area within the subject to explore.

Religious Studies is a rich and fascinating area of study, constantly evolving as our understanding expands and matures. Your MA Religious Studies degree will show potential employers that you understand cultural differences and appreciate diversity. This is something that’s valued across a range of sectors.


By the time you finish the course, you’ll have a set of transferrable skills on your CV. Your ability to evaluate arguments, assess evidence and think critically will be invaluable to employers, as will your understanding of religious and cultural diversity.

Our graduates go on to secure a range of public service roles within:

  • Charities
  • Organisations in the voluntary sector
  • The Civil Service
  • The police
  • Education

Alternatively, you might decide to carry on studying with a PhD – an excellent opportunity to specialize further and make your mark in this field of research.

Entry requirements

Academic Requirements

2:1 degree in a related subject is normally required. We will also consider applications where you have a degree in other subjects, have a 2:2 or equivalent result and/or extensive relevant experience. In these cases, you should clearly demonstrate how your experience and skills have prepared you for postgraduate study.

If you have studied outside of the UK, we would advise you to check our list of international qualifications before submitting your application.

English Language Requirements

We may ask you to provide a recognised English language qualification, dependent upon your nationality and where you have studied previously.

We normally require an IELTS (Academic) Test with an overall score of at least 6.5, and a minimum of 5.5 in each element of the test. We also consider other English language qualifications.

If your score is below our requirements, you may be eligible for one of our pre-sessional English language programmes.

Contact: Admissions Team +44 (0) 1524 592032 or email

Course structure

You will study a range of modules as part of your course, some examples of which are listed below.

Information contained on the website with respect to modules is correct at the time of publication, but changes may be necessary, for example as a result of student feedback, Professional Statutory and Regulatory Bodies' (PSRB) requirements, staff changes, and new research. Not all optional modules are available every year.



Fees and funding

Location Full Time (per year) Part Time (per year)
Home £11,500 £5,750
International £23,875 £11,935

General fees and funding information

Scholarships and bursaries

You may be eligible for the following funding opportunities, depending on your fee status and course. You will be automatically considered for our main scholarships and bursaries when you apply, so there's nothing extra that you need to do.

Unfortunately no scholarships and bursaries match your selection, but there are more listed on scholarships and bursaries page.

If you're considering postgraduate research you should look at our funded PhD opportunities.

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We also have other, more specialised scholarships and bursaries - such as those for students from specific countries.

Browse Lancaster University's scholarships and bursaries.

Important Information

The information on this site relates primarily to 2024/2025 entry to the University and every effort has been taken to ensure the information is correct at the time of publication.

The University will use all reasonable effort to deliver the courses as described, but the University reserves the right to make changes to advertised courses. In exceptional circumstances that are beyond the University’s reasonable control (Force Majeure Events), we may need to amend the programmes and provision advertised. In this event, the University will take reasonable steps to minimise the disruption to your studies. If a course is withdrawn or if there are any fundamental changes to your course, we will give you reasonable notice and you will be entitled to request that you are considered for an alternative course or withdraw your application. You are advised to revisit our website for up-to-date course information before you submit your application.

More information on limits to the University’s liability can be found in our legal information.

Our Students’ Charter

We believe in the importance of a strong and productive partnership between our students and staff. In order to ensure your time at Lancaster is a positive experience we have worked with the Students’ Union to articulate this relationship and the standards to which the University and its students aspire. View our Charter and other policies.