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Worship & Ritual in Context - CED00030M

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  • Department: Centre for Lifelong Learning
  • Module co-ordinator: Information currently unavailable
  • Credit value: 20 credits
  • Credit level: M
  • Academic year of delivery: 2020-21

Module will run

Occurrence Teaching cycle
A Summer Term 2020-21

Module aims

This module introduces students to the history and practice of worship and religious ritual in parishes and parish churches from the medieval period to the present day. In particular it will:

  • Discuss the history and development of ritual and liturgical practice from the late Anglo-Saxon period to the present day
  • Explore how these practices and the ideology behind them has shaped church buildings and in turn been shaped by them.
  • Examine the social and cultural drivers and effects of the change and evolution of religious practice and observance.
  • Study the changing practices of public and private devotion and their interaction with art and architecture
  • Develop multidisciplinary skills in using literature, art, architecture, music and archaeology to explore this subject from a variety of angles.

Module learning outcomes

Subject content

  • A broad chronological exploration of the nature of religious observance and practice between c.800 and today
  • Study the physical expression of liturgical practice in the shape, ornamentation and furnishing of church buildings through time.
  • Relate the social and cultural drivers and effects at work in parishes to the built heritage.
  • Study in depth some specific examples of the expression of public and private devotion

Academic and graduate skills

  • Demonstrate an ability to undertake research into primary sources of varying dates and complexity
  • Interrogate sources and buildings to extract complex data
  • Employ interdisciplinary approaches to evidence, its use and interpretation
  • Demonstrate an ability to articulate a coherent narrative

Other learning outcomes

  • Students will reflect on their own experience and preferences and have the opportunity to examine how these have been shaped by the environment in which they were formed.


Task Length % of module mark
4000 word study
N/A 100

Special assessment rules



Task Length % of module mark
4000 word study
N/A 100

Module feedback

The tutor will give regular individual feedback throughout the module on work submitted.

The assessment feedback is as per the university’s guidelines with regard to timings.

Indicative reading

  • D. Dyas & Christianity & Culture “The English Parish Church through the Centuries” York (2010)
  • S. J Wright “Parish, Church and people: local studies in lay religion 1350-1750 Hutchinson (1988)
  • T. Cooper S. Brown “Pews benches and chairs: church seating in English parish churches from the fourteenth-century to the present” The Ecclesiological Society (2011)
  • N. Mears and A. Ryrie “Worship and the Parish Church in early Modern Britain” Ashgate (2013)
  • A. Doig “Liturgy and Architecture from the Early Church to the Middle Ages” Ashgate (2008)
  • E. Duffy “The Stripping of the Altars: traditional religion in England 1400-1580” Yale (1992).

The information on this page is indicative of the module that is currently on offer. The University is constantly exploring ways to enhance and improve its degree programmes and therefore reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of modules, and to discontinue modules, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Where appropriate, the University will notify and consult with affected students in advance about any changes that are required in line with the University's policy on the Approval of Modifications to Existing Taught Programmes of Study.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): changes to courses

The 2020/21 academic year will start in September. We aim to deliver as much face-to-face teaching as we can, supported by high quality online alternatives where we must.

Find details of the measures we're planning to protect our community.

Course changes for new students