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  • Writer's pictureCaleb Kaltenbach

Earning an Overseas Masters Degree Without Moving Overseas

Updated: Mar 22

****This page is regularly updated****

In previous years, earning a gradulate/postgraduate degree from an overseas school meant moving and living near the university for a year or more. Today, through various platforms (like online study, Zoom/FaceTime, independent studies, intensive classes, live-streaming classes, etc.), an increasing number of institutions have strived to make it more realistic for students to finish an overseas degree without moving to another country.

While some degrees include taking classes/modules, many are referred to as "by research" and are research-based/thesis-only programs. MPhil (Master of Philosophy), MTh/MTheol (Master of Theology), MRes (Master of Research), MLitt (Master of Letters), MA (Master of Arts), MS/MSc (Master of Science). For perspective, whereas a PhD/ThD requires a dissertation of 80,000-100,000 words, MPhil and MLitt degrees usually require writing a thesis of around 40,000–70,000 words, an MTh 30,000-50,000 words, and a MRes or MA (by research) 20,000–30,000 words (I am not including any info on the degree of postgraduate diploma).

Overseas graduate/postgraduate programs are often perfect for students who have an undergraduate degree in a ministry or biblical studies-related field (especially the research-based/thesis-only programs). Such degrees are also well suited for seminary graduates who desire further study or individuals with degrees in fields similar to ministry or biblical studies.

Below are a few overseas schools that have degrees (with majors like biblical studies, theological studies, religion, ministry/practical theology, philosophy of religion, missions/intercultural studies, etc.) requiring either no travel or extremely minimal travel to the school campus.

If you enjoy this post, take a look at some of my other blog posts in this series: where to earn a 100% online masters degree, obtaining an overseas PhD, and PhD distance learning programs in the United States. Anyway, happy reading!!!


Australian School of Theology

**Click on the link and scroll down to see the schools offering the degree.

MTh (by research)

Charles Sturt University

MPhil (by research)

Sydney College of Divinity

MPhil (by research)

University of Divinity

**You choose one of their schools to study for an MPhil (by research) or MTh (by research)

University of Notre Dame Australia

MPhil in Philosophy & Theology and MTh (by research)


University of Otago

MTh and MA (by research)


South African Theological Seminary

MTh (by research)

University of Pretoria

**Students can earn a master's from the University of Pretoria through:

University of South Africa

MTh in various theology-related fields


University of Geneva

MTh in Theology

University of Lausanne

MTh in Theology


Anglia Ruskin University

MPhil in Theology

Bangor University

MA in Philosophy & Religion (by research)

Cardiff University

MTh in Theology

Durham University **Students can earn a master's from Durham University through:

Liverpool Hope University **Students can earn a master's from Liverpool Hope University through:

London Metropolitan University

MPhil (by research)

London School of Theology

**The degrees are awarded by Middlesex University

MPhil (by research)

MTh (by research)

MA in Aspects & Implications of Biblical Interpretation

MA in Theological Studies

Manchester Metropolitan University

MPhil (by research) and MRes (by research)

The Open University

MPhil (by research) **Students can earn a master's from The Open University through:

Oxford Brookes University

MA (by research) or MPhil (by research)

Oxford University

MTh in Applied Theology

St. Mary's University

MPhil (by research)

Union Theological College


MA in Theology

MTh in Old Testament, New Testament, and Reformed Theology

University of Aberdeen

BTh (honors)

MTh (by research) or MLitt (by research)

MTh in Ministry Studies

**Students can also earn a master's from the University of Aberdeen through:

University of Birmingham

MA in Theology & Religion (by research)

MA in Philosophy of Religion & Ethics

MA in Global Ethics & Justice

University of Bristol

MPhil in Religion & Theology (by research)

University of Chester

MA in Theology

MA in Religious Studies **Students can also earn a master's from the University of Chester through:

University of Edinburgh

MS in Philosophy, Science & Religion

University of Essex

MA (by dissertation), MS (by dissertation), and MPhil (by dissertation)

University of Exeter

MPhil (by research) and MA in Theology & Religion (by research)

University of Glasgow

MPhil (by creative research)

**Students can also earn a master's from the University of Glasgow through:

University of Gloucestershire

MA (by research) or MRes

University of the Highlands & Islands

MPhil (by research)

University of Leeds

MA (by research)

MA in Philosophy of Religion & Ethics

MA in Theology & Religious Studies

University of London

Bachelor of Divinity

University of Manchester

**Students can earn a master's degree from the University of Manchester through:

University of Northampton

MPhil (by research)

University of Nottingham

MA in Systematic & Philosophical Theology

University of St. Andrews

MLitt in Bible & the Contemporary World

University of Sheffield

MPhil (by research)

University of Sunderland

MPhil (by research)

The University of Wales Trinity Saint David

MPhil (by research)

MTh in Christian Theology

MRes in Biblical Interpretation

MA in Biblical Interpretation

University of Westminster

MPhil (by research)

University of Winchester

MA in Death, Religion & Culture

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