Study Abroad - Cambridge, England
WHERE: Ridley Hall is a permanent theological hall at Cambridge University in England, about an hour north of London.
WHAT: NCU students will take 15 credits of selected Bible, Theology and Critical Thought classes through Cambridge University, one of the highest ranked universities in the world.
WHEN: Fall Semester each year.
WHO CAN PARTICIPATE: 2 students are selected each year. This competitive program is open by application to Biblical and Theological Studies majors, as well as to other students who want to study Bible and Theology at Cambridge and can use the classes offered to fulfill major, general education, scripture core or elective credits. Applicants must have a GPA of 3.0 or higher.
APPLICATIONS: Applications are available by November 1st and are due by December 1st each year. After each application is assessed, the student may be invited to come in for an interview. Selection is made by the IBATS faculty around December 10th and input and clearance is also gathered from Student Life, Student Financial Services and the Registrar.
MEETINGS: Interested students are strongly encouraged to set up a meeting with Brandon Gilliam to discuss the program, prior to submitting an application. In late January each year, the students who studied at Ridley Hall the previous fall give their trip report. It is important for interested applicants to attend this meeting.
CONTACT: Brandon J. Gilliam, Administrative Assistant for the Institute for Biblical and Theological Studies. Email, or 612-343-4767, or stop by his office Miller Hall # 248.
NCU students who take part in this program will live at Ridley Hall and participate in its community and worship life while attending a full schedule of classes through the Cambridge University Divinity Faculty. This includes participating in daily morning chapel, small groups and other college functions. Ridley Hall is one of several theological colleges in Cambridge that all take classes together, so while functioning as a Ridley student, NCU participants will also be in class with students from the Methodist, Reformed, Anglo-Catholic, Catholic and Orthodox schools. This is can be exciting, frustrating and stretching all at the same time! Past NCU participants have returned to NCU with an appreciation for what all Christians have in common but with a renewed appreciation for their Evangelical and Pentecostal roots.
Founded in 1881, Ridley Hall is an Evangelical permanent theological hall at Cambridge University in England whose main purpose is to train undergraduate and graduate students for ministry within the Church of England. Past NCU students who have participated in this program have felt at home with its Charismatic flavor but also stretched by its daily liturgical worship in the Anglican tradition. Can both of those things go together? Come and see for yourself!
In England, undergraduate students don't have a choice of classes- they follow a perscribed course of study without electives. It is not a liberal arts degree, like in the US; Cambridge students studying theology take only Bible, Theology and Philosophy which means they do not take math, science or arts classes. Therefore, NCU students who study at Ridley Hall only have these types of classes available to them, which is why a student's graduation requirements are a big part of the selection process for this program. Available classes differ slightly each year, based on a two to three year rotation, but the following classes are always offered (they are listed here with the NCU course number equivalent:
- Christian Ethics—CT213
- New Testament Exegesis (specific book studies have included Romans and Corinthian Letters)—NT Elective
- Old Testament Exegesis (specific book studies have included Genesis, Jonah and Ruth and Ezekiel)—OT Elective
- Gospel and Western Culture—THEO Elective
- Biblical Greek 1A—ALAN241
- Biblical Hebrew 1A—ALAN235
- History and Practice in the Early Church - HIST311
Note about classes: The theory of university education in the UK is quite different from the US. Except in biblical languages classes, the students' only graded assignment is usually a large essay due at the end of the term. This means that there is a lot more responsibility on the student to take charge of their own education, do the readings, seek out their professors to ask questions, research and prepare their own essay and glean the best from the class. There is no "busy work." It is also important to note that in the UK university students are graded on a percentage scale in comparison with experts and scholars in the given field. Thus for an undergraduate "good grades" are the equivalent to 50-69% range, while graduate students should be aiming for 70% or higher. This can be a shock for US students, but its goal is to orient the students to what it takes to be a professional in their chosen field.