The aim of the Intellectual Programme is to serve the two-fold primary function of the College: to discern priestly vocations and to form candidates for priestly ministry (PDV n. 61). The Intellectual Programme cannot be isolated from the other areas of formation. In the initial formation-period of a seminary, however, study will naturally absorb much time and energy. Study is essential to human, Christian and vocational growth, because through it "the future priest assents to the Word of God, grows in his spiritual life and prepares himself to fulfil his pastoral ministry" (PDV n. 51). In an era in which many distrust the ability of human reason to reach objective truth, and in which science and contemporary culture are raising profound and challenging questions, a high level of intellectual formation is required (sic), if priests are to be effective evangelisers, able joyfully to proclaim the unchanging gospel of Christ.
The shape of the usual programme of intellectual formation at Oscott is given below. Besides philosophy and theology, courses in pastoral theology, spirituality and human formation are also followed throughout the six years.
The Intellectual Programme is validated by two universities:
- Courses in Years One, Two and Three are validated by BU leading to a BA in Fundmental Catholic Theology.
- Theology courses across the six year programme lead to the award of an STB, through our affiliation with KUL.
The BA and the STB enable students to be admitted to graduate level programmes in both the secular and the pontifical university systems. Click here for Course Index
Each year of the Intellectual Programme has been given a title in order to help students and staff focus and appropriate the material studied at that level. Moreover, Key Learning Outcomes are identified for each level in order to help students in their work and to monitor progress within the overall aim and purpose of the College: that is, to develop a clear sense of priestly identity
and mission within contemporary culture. These Key Learning outcomes also assist staff in designing and delivering courses appropriate to the level intended.
The Mystery of Christ and His Church BU validated BATS Programme Introduction to St. Thomas, Metaphysics, History of Philosophy, Synoptic Gospels, Liturgy, Aspects of the History of Western Christianity, Christian Latin leading at Level I to an introductory knowledge of the subjects studied as a basis for further study
Divine Revelation and Its Transmission Foundational Theology (Revelation and Transcendental Method), the Old Testament (Psalms and Pentateuch), Christology, Biblical Greek, Philosophical Ethics; Epistemology; Anthropology; History of Philosophy enabling at Level 2 a deeper understanding of the theological enterprise as a whole
3. SYSTEMATIC THEOLOGY
The Mystery of the Triune God New Testament Theologies, the Blessed Trinity, Grace, Fundamental Moral Theology, Ecclesiology, Patrology, Early Modern Church History, Philosophy of Religion leading at Level 3 to a greater awareness of the inter-connections between subjects studied at Levels 1 to 3 and of their significance within
4. PASTORAL THEOLOGY
Evangelisation and Ecumenism KUL affiliated STB Programme Extended Pastoral Placement, Ecumenism, Catholic Communications, Sacraments of Initiation, Social Ethics, Philosophy of Science, Holy Order, Introduction to Canon Law (Philosophy and General Norms) leading in addition at Level 4 to further development of the skills needed to communicate their knowledge as pastors and evangelisers.
5. MORAL THEOLOGY
Living the Christian Faith, Sexual Morality, Health Care Ethics, Canon Law, Creation and Eschatology, New Testament Theology, Old Testament (Prophets and Wisdom Literature), Biblical Hebrew leading in addition at Level 5 to a more integrated appreciation of the practical, moral and spiritual dimensions of theology in the life of an ordained minister.
6. SACRAMENTS AND LITURGY
Celebrating the Mystery of Christ The Holy Eucharist, Penance, Anointing and Funerals, Theology and Canon Law of Marriage, Modern Church History, Comparative Religion, Synthetic Seminar (Art, Evangelisation, Religious Language and Mariology) At Level 6, the student relates further his theological studies to the liturgical and sacramental life of the Church, and writes an extended essay contributing to a personal synthetic vision of priestly identity and mission within contemporary culture