Study Options

The College offers two programmes of study:

Bachelor of Theology: A structured award takes a minimum of three years to complete.

Graduate Diploma in Theology: A more flexible programme for students who have already attained a degree level qualification.


The Graduate Diploma takes at least one year of full-time study or the equivalent part-time.

Both are at undergraduate level and both offer a variety of ways you can undertake your studies; full-time or part-time, on-campus or by-distance.


What is a programme of study?

A programme of study leads to a qualification.  At Good Shepherd College you can either study towards a Bachelor of Theology or Graduate Diploma in Theology.

Each qualification is made up of a number of courses that the College refers to as papers.  You must be admitted to a programme to take papers.  If you want to complete individual papers and are not interested in working towards a full qualification, this is not an option at Good Shepherd College.  We’d suggest contacting Walk by Faith about their NCRS programme.


How long do the awards take to complete?

The time it takes to complete a qualification is dependent upon the number of papers you can take each semester.  In NZQA speak it is a level 7 award of 360 points or 24 papers.

Bachelor of Theology degree generally take three years of full-time study, although there are other options.

A full-time student does 120 credits in a year.  That is four papers each semester.  All of our papers are the same size, 15 credit points.  4 papers x 15 credits = 60 credits in a semester.  There are two semesters in a year 60 + 60 = 120 credit points.

Part-time or distance students will take longer to complete the degree.  Refer to the mode of study table for more details.

Graduate DIPLOMA in Theology:  The eight papers that make up the diploma can be completed in:

      • One year of full-time study as an on-campus student,  or
      • Minimum of 2 years if studying by-distance, or
      • Minimum of 18 months if a part-time student studying on-campus

Please note that papers are completed each semester and the tertiary year consists of two semesters.


What background do I need?

The Graduate Diploma in Theology requires a degree-level qualification to gain admission.

For the Bachelor of Theology Degree you must either have a University Entrance qualification or seek special admission if 21 years of age or over.

While general admission is based on your previous qualifications and results, special admission to the degree is available if you are 21 years or over and do not have a recognised University Entrance qualification, but have relevant work and life experience.