- ABOUT US
- ONSITE PROGRAMS
- ONLINE PROGRAMS
- STUDENT LIFE
In August 2011, Bhaktivedanta College entered into a collaborative partnership with the University of Chester, which now validates our Theology and Religious Studies degree programme (TRS). The Theology and Religious Studies Department at Chester was ranked 3rd in the UK in the National Student Survey and 8th in the Times University Guide in terms of graduate prospects. (From 2004 through mid-2011, Bhaktivedanta College had accreditation from Lampeter University in Wales.)
The study of theology in general enhances one’s awareness of and sensitivity to religious values. Students consider both historical and contemporary issues related to theological thought, which can have a major impact on present social, religious, and political situations. The theology major develops an appreciation for the similarities and differences of religious beliefs and practices across cultures and acquires skills relevant to a variety of careers.
The TRS BA degree programme spans three years of full-time study, structured as short-term modules followed by individual study time. While theoretically rigorous, the degree course also stresses the core needs of practical application and character formation. The programme is designed to develop students academically, vocationally, and spiritually. It features four areas:
Introduction to Philosophy; Pre-modern Indian Theologians: Rupa Goswamin and Jiva Goswamin; Science and Religion; Classical Indian Philosophy: Vedanta
Theory and Method in the Study of Religion; Introduction to Hinduism; World Religions; Modern Hinduism; Sociology of Religion
Classical Indian Literature: Ramayana and Mahabharata; Sanskrit for Scriptural Study; Vedas and Upanishads; Sacred Texts: Bhagavata Purana
Pastoral Care; Community Development
The table below indicates the TRS Career prospects in four main areas:
1. Internal Position in ISKCON
Most often with recommended further studies (e.g. through the VTE, The Mayapur Institute, and so on.)
2. Professional Career
without further studies
3. Professional Career
most likely after further studies
4. Academic Career
Note: These career prospects are important for ISKCON and some devotees. However, they are relatively few.
Visakha Dasi talks about why parents could consider Bhaktivedanta College for their children.
Visakha received an Associate of Applied Science degree with honors from Rochester Institute of Technology and shortly thereafter published her first book, Photomacrography: Art and Techniques. In 1971 she traveled to India, where she met Srila Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, read his Bhagavad-gita As It Is and eventually became his student. As a photographer, she traveled with and photographed Bhaktivedanta Swami and his students in India, Europe and the United States. As a writer, she wrote numerous magazine articles and three books on the Bhagavad-gita. Visakha also assists her husband, John Griesser, in making documentary films. They live with their children and grandchildren in Sharanagati Village, a rural community in British Columbia, Canada, where Visakha is writing a memoir, Bhagavad-gita and One Life Transformed.
Visakha's blog page: Our Spiritual Jurney
Externally validated means there is a third party in between BC and UOC which is independent and which is monitoring educational quality.
Honours degree has different meanings for different degrees. Most commonly it is an award in connection with undergraduate Bachelor’s degree variations. If you meant on that answer is “yes”.
Yes, there is a scope of employment in ISKCON and outside. There is also a variety of scopes to continue your studies.
Students can inquire and apply any time of the year, preferably in spring so that there is enough time for the admission process to be completed before the academic year starts in September.
For the application to be complete, we need the following:
- Filled-in Student application form:
- 50 Eur (processing fee):
- If English is not your first language, the College requires proof of your ability to study in the English medium. This may be demonstrated by a certificate of IELTS (score of no less than 6.5 in any category); TOEFL, with minimum score of 79 (iBT), 213 (CBT), 550 (paper); or Cambridge Exam (CAE).
- Copies of the high school diploma and a mark transcript.
All these documents can be sent to us by e-mail.
The academic topics include philosophy and theology, religious studies, scriptural studies and practical theology. At the end of Year 3, students are required to write a dissertation on any of the chosen areas, agreed upon with a mentor. The curriculum is fun yet challenging. The College facilitates the devotional, intellectual, artistic, cultural, and missionary aspirations of the students. Thus the curriculum includes all these aspects, and the courses contain varied teaching methods to best involve the students in the process of learning. Each course has its own mood and is exciting and inspiring.
Onsite: The academic year runs from September through June. Each of the three terms run for eleven to twelve weeks. The terms are separated by a two-week break at Christmas and a two-week break around mid-March. Generally all the Bhaktivedanta College courses last for one or two weeks. Some weeks are set aside for writing essays, preparing presentations, or studying for exams.
Online: The academic year runs from August through June. The terms are separated by a two-week break at Christmas and a two-week break around mid-March. The courses are taught and spread in a different way than the onsite courses in order to facilitate a proper distant learning experience. Some weeks are set aside for writing essays and preparing other assignments depending on the course requirements.
The students attend the morning program at the Radhadesh temple, which is followed by breakfast. The morning classes usually run from 10.30 AM till 1.30 PM, followed by lunch. Afternoon classes (if required for the course) usually run from 3 PM until 6 PM, followed by an evening snack of fresh bread and butter and milk. Gaura-arati is at 7 PM.
It is a package price: ashram accommodation and meals are included. More details are given under Costs:
The yearly tuition is split into three installments, of which are to be paid 50% at the beginning of the 1st term (beginning of September) and 25% at the beginning of both the 2nd and 3rd term (beginning of January and April).
You can pay by bank transfer, Paypal, or in cash. You will find the necessary information here:
As our student you will:
The main purpose of these interest-free loans is to assure that any financially needy student with clear plans for the improvement of his or her life through a combination of practical and spiritual education can obtain the UK accredited Bachelor degree at Bhaktivedanta College.
Loans cover the cost of course service charges, accommodation and meals. Full (2nd and 3rd years students) or partial loans (1st year students) are available, based on demonstrated financial need and availability of funds. Students attending the Bhaktivedanta College degree program with the loan will be assessed at the end of every term to assure satisfactory course progress, temple program participation, and conduct.
Based on that criteria the Bhaktivedanta College is able to offer the loans only for the third trimester of the first year students. Second and third year students are eligible for a full loan. Loan reapplication is necessary each school year.
Once the loan has been granted and the student continues to fulfill the requirements, there is assurance of the funding for the full, three-year duration of the course.
If you are interested in an interest-free loan, please fill out the Interest-free loan application form and send it in simultaneously with your course application.
Students requesting a loan will require a co-signer and one additional reference (that is, in addition to the two references all students require, students requesting a loan will require a total of three references).
Determining the loan amount takes approximately fourteen days from the date of submission of all required documents, so please apply well in advance.
For more information, please email on our Secretary <firstname.lastname@example.org>.
All applications can be sent by e-mail.
When your applications papers have been received and fully reviewed, an admission committee member will invite you for an interview (preferably in person, or by a telephone link).
Here is a list of documents you will need to send:
Mature students (aged 21+) without these qualifications will be considered on a case-by-case basis. All candidates need to complete and submit an application form along with two recommendations, which are reviewed by the Admissions Committee.
Normally all applicants will be interviewed and will be expected to demonstrate a subject-related interest and readiness to comply with the code of conduct for residential students.
Where the level of English requires improvement, students will be recommended to attend English classes provided by the college.
Interest-free Student Loan Application Form.
For onsite students the costs of tuition, room and board, etc. are billed together in three installments at the beginning of each trimester. 50% of the fees are due in the beginning of the 1st term (September), 25% are due at the beginning of each the 2nd and 3rd terms (January and April).
All financial arrangements relating to continuing students will be the same as for their first year of study.
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