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Full time college-style training
If you are going to be training full-time, then the Queen’s college-style programme (which we also call ‘Track 1’) is the natural starting point for exploring what we have to offer. Lectures are focused on Mondays to Thursdays, with practical involvement in a local church expected at weekends. Some students live on-site, but it’s possible to live at home and commute to Queen’s. Students can be:
- resident on-site
- live nearby and commute each day
- or live further away and commute weekly (being present at Queen’s Monday-Thursday).
Typical full-time training lasts two years, but it can be longer or shorter, depending on your age and previous experience or study. Most Track 1 students are full-time, but for some students there may be an option to stretch your training over an extra year and be part-time.
Part time college-style training
It’s also possible for some students to train on the Queen’s college-style programme part-time. In most cases this means spreading your training over three years instead of the normal two. We focus your lectures on two days a week (normally Tuesdays and Wednesdays, including lectures on a Tuesday evening). However, students need to be flexible, as in some terms those days might need to be different, because of timetable constraints.
The shape of the week and the year
Lectures take place Mondays to Thursdays (including some on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings). Friday to Sunday is when we expect students to be involved in their local church, to do further individual study, and to have time for family, friends, rest and recreation.
Within the week a number of significant events help to focus formational learning:
- A module focusing on formational issues, which is required for candidates from the Church of England and the Methodist Church
- A cell group meeting
- Other activities, such as community gatherings, shared meals, etc.
These different parts of the day address different aspects of your development – often summarised as ‘being, knowing and doing’.
The year is split into three terms, and in each term we have a half-term break, when there is no teaching, chapel or meals. We try to make our half-term breaks match those for schools, though this is not always possible as local education authorities do not all plan the same term dates.
- Prayer and worship
Corporate worship is at the heart of life at Queen’s, and a large part of what holds this diverse community together.
Anglican ordinands are expected to be in Chapel each day for our gathered act of worship, which takes place at lunchtime. These daily services are student-led, and you would be part of a student worship team once a term, helping to lead the services for that week.
Each week you are also expected to be present at one of our two evening services (5pm on Tuesdays and Wednesdays). These are staff-led and normally include Holy Communion. In addition, there are often other student-organised acts of worship, from regular morning prayer and night prayer, to one-off informal praise services. These are always open to all students, but are not compulsory.
In addition to corporate worship, we expect Anglican ordinands to be developing or continuing a sustainable pattern of daily private prayer.
- Hands-on learning in your home church
We expect all ordinands to continue active involvement in their home church (if you move to Birmingham for your training, this will be a new local ‘home’ church, which we call your Link Church).
If you are full-time ordinand you are expected to give 1-2 sessions (i.e. a morning, afternoon or evening) per week (plus active involvement in ministry on Sunday) for ministry in your church. The expectations for this are set and agreed in discussion with the minister. The practice and experience gained in leading worship and preaching in the local church feed into a worship portfolio, compiled over the duration of your training.
Full-time ordinands normally do a 5 week full-time placement in the summer term of your first year of training. The placement is church-based in an Anglican church. We work with you and your DDO to determine the best place for you to do your placement – it will normally be somewhere which will stretch your existing experience, perhaps in terms of church tradition, or context, or some particular form of ministry or mission. For the duration of your placement you will be worshipping in your placement church and not your home church.
For those training for three years there can sometimes be an opportunity for further placement experiences, including in the wider world church.
- Personal tutorial oversight and support
Students are allocated a personal tutor whose task is to focus on the formation of the ministerial candidate. This enables the personal tutor to take the lead in preparing the end of year summative report which goes to your bishop.
- Opportunities to engage with the world church
Queen’s is an international community, with serving ministers from around the world studying here as part of their own ministerial development.
In addition, we encourage all students to make the most of our international links and the visits which take place each year to different contexts around the world. In recent years these have included exchanges with theological colleges in South India and Sri Lanka, and we are hoping to expand the range of opportunities in the next few years to include Africa and continental Europe, and different sorts of ministerial context.