Theology & Religious Studies: Peace, Trauma and Religion

1 Jahre
1. September. (Studiengänge mit Studienbeginn Februar)
bachelor degree
Informationen zu Studiengebühren
Application deadline: 1 May (1 April if you want to use the housing options of the VU)
Worum geht's im Studium

Today, we witness the rise of national and regional conflicts - so-called “new wars” -, often linked to religious and ethnic diversity or enmity, usually triggered by unjust living conditions. In a globalized world, every regional conflict affects and is affected by the larger international community. At the same time we observe the devastating influence of violent conflicts on the individual as well as on the relations within families and communities (trauma).

These developments have created a growing interest in the political and public arena to explore and develop skills for peace making and peace keeping – locally, regional, and internationally – as well as for conflict prevention and post conflict care. The challenges are taken up in a variety of disciplines: Political Science, Law, The Humanities, Medicine, et al. In the field of Theology and Religious Studies, all of these insights are considered and critically reflected (in research, education, and praxis) from the perspective of different faith traditions. Religion is misused to incite violent conflicts as well as it is one of the strongest resources for conflict resolution and trauma healing – on the inter-personal level, the inter-groups level, as well as in reconciliation processes within whole societies. 

This master program aims to communicate those insights and prepares professionals for this growing field of peace and conflict studies.

The programme
The theoretical basis will be provided by three thematic modules with a focus on reconciliation in religious perspective, healing of trauma, theological interpretations of peace and justice and religious roots of violence. You will study and discuss scientific research in the study of religion, violence, trauma and reconciliation from various disciplines, including (Peace-) Theology and Ethics, Islam Studies, Psychology, Practical Theology, amended by inputs from other faculties.

A first compulsory core module, Hermeneutics, treats the skills of interpretation and reflexivity. A second core module, Research Skills, aims to train the student in academic research practices, discussing problem formulation, methodology, and analysis.

During the module Master seminar students develop and discuss a portfolio of their academic and professional qualities. This module is designed to run parallel to the other modules during the whole study-year in order to assure an individual accompaniment as well as a rich interdisciplinary and interreligious exchange among students and in dialogue with lecturers from various fields. 

The second semester is devoted to internship and thesis work. Your Master’s specialization will equip you with a sound theoretical basis in peace & justice studies, trauma healing and reconciliation – from religious perspectives. You will gain the analytical, communicative and operational skills to become an independent professional in the field, both in religious and spiritual organizations as well as in the wider political arena.

Career prospects
This program trains professionals with long-standing experience as well as becoming professionals with a special interest in peace-building, reconciliation and conflict transformation from a religious perspective, both on individual and community level. Students will find employment in a wide range of non-governmental organizations as well as governmental institutions, media and research, international political as well as religious institutions. In addition students might be employed in the field of health care and counseling, since “religion and trauma” is one of the possible specializations.

For more information create your own program brochure on
Request up to five programs and select which information you wish to receive. After sending the request, you will get an email with a download link for your pdf brochure.

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam - Campus
De Boelelaan 1105 
1081 HV Amsterdam

Stipo Jelec
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