MA Death, Religion and Culture

MA Death, Religion and Culture at Winchester explores the way in which death is the only inevitability of life. This universal reality is understood differently by various cultures and religious traditions, and those understandings are played out in rituals of death, dying and bereavement.

MA Death, Religion and Culture at University of Winchester

Entry requirements

Normally a first or second-class Honours degree or professional experience in the area of study, the course is great for anyone with an interest in exploring death as a subject area, and how religion and culture affect perceptions of death, dying and bereavement. No previous knowledge of religion or death studies is required although some summer reading would help students prepare.

There are additional entry requirements for Distance Learning programmes - please view the Distance Learning Policy online at

If English is not your first language: 

IELTS 6.5 (including 6.5 in academic writing) or equivalent

Degree duration 

Full-time: 1 year
Part-time: 2 years

Start date: September

Distance learning only: There are e-seminars in the evenings, with full tutorial and study skills support

Course Tuition Fees and Additional Costs

UK/EU/Channel Islands and Isle of Man

September 2017** Entry Full-time | £5,000
September 2017** Entry Part-time | £2,500 p/a

Total Cost | £5,000

International Students

September 2017** Entry Full-time | £11,200
September 2017** Entry Part-time | £5,600 p/a

Total Cost | £11,200

Additional Costs


  • Core texts: Due to copyright restrictions, compulsory modules require students to purchase the core texts. Some Core Texts can be bought second hand which can often reduce this cost. Cost for compulsory modules £30. Costs for optional modules £50 - £100.

To find out what general costs are included or excluded in the course fees, such as textbooks and travel expenses, please click here

Terms and Conditions

For more information about the University of Winchester's terms and conditions click here

**Please note the fees are indicative and subject to the approval of the University of Winchester Board of Governors. 

The programme attracts a diverse range of students including funeral directors, clergy from a variety of traditions, teachers, nurses and those preparing for a research degree, as well as a range of people who are simply fascinated by the subject.

Study provides a view of historical and current approaches to death and dying, disposal and bereavement rituals, enabling a meeting of professional groups and students with particular interests in this area of speciality.

Core modules:

  • Contemporary Approaches to Death and Dying
  • Gateway to Independent Study
  • Independent Study

Optional modules:

  • Death in the Christian Tradition
  • Death in World Religions
  • Death and Martyrdom
  • The Philosophy, Ethics and Theology of Death
  • The Pastoral Care of the Dying and Bereaved
  • Death and Visual Culture
  • Philosophical Approaches to Mourning and Eulogy
  • Connecting Death to Professional Practice
  • Postgraduate Seminar

Students undertake structured discussion and debate through electronic forums and are provided with guided course readings and access to the e-resources held in the University library in order to complete assessments.

A visit to a local crematorium, cemetery, mortuary and/or funeral home is an essential aspect of the programme.

The programme is taught by a team of highly qualified and enthusiastic staff who include internationally renowned scholars.

Programme Leader

Types of assessment used include a review of practical activities such as site visits, alongside more traditional methods of assessment such as essays and book reviews. There are no examinations. Students complete a dissertation of 15,000-20,000 words on a subject of their choice within the realms of religion and death. It is a substantial piece of independent research and full tutorial support is provided.

At the University of Winchester validated programmes may adopt a range of means of assessing your learning. An indicative, and not necessarily comprehensive, list of assessment types you might encounter includes essays, portfolios, supervised independent work, presentations, written exams, or practical performances. The University is committed to ensuring that all students have an equal opportunity to achieve module learning outcomes. As such, where appropriate and necessary, students with recognised disabilities may have alternative assignments set that continue to test how successfully they have met the module's learning outcomes. Further details on assessment types used in the programme you are interested in can be found on the course page, by attending an Open Day/Evening, or contacting our teaching staff.

Graduates have gone on to work within bereavement counselling, funeral homes, teaching and the church.

Course Enquiries and Applications

Telephone: +44 (0) 1962 827234
Send us a message

International students seeking additional information about this programme can email or call +44 (0) 1962 827023.

Applications need to be submitted before the 31 May 2017. Late applications can be accepted throughout the remainder of the application year, for more information click here.

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