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About the Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies

The Faculty of Theology and Religious studies is considered to be the oldest faculty at the University of Iceland, based on the fact that the Seminary was the oldest of the schools for officials which merged, along with the Faculty of Philosophy, to form the University of Iceland in 1911; the Seminary was founded 1847. The history of the Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies, and the University of Iceland goes even further back, however, as it could be argued that the history of Icelandic theology education is as old as the country's dioceses. The faculty is therefore based on a solid foundation and ancient traditions.

For a long time, the Faculty of Theology and Religious studies was considered to be a school for priests, first and second, and the studies were based on that consideration. In later years studies within the faculty have increased in diversity, and for instance increased emphasis has been placed on religious studies, and new academic programmes have been introduced. In addition to being active scholars within the traditional fields of theology, faculty lecturers strive to meet the needs of a multicultural society. For those purposes an interdisciplinary academic programme in general religious studies was established in 2000. In 2006 the faculty was granted permission to introduce a teacher certification programme in Christian studies and general religious studies. Approximately 150 students study at the faculty, and there are eight tenured lecturers. The faculty’s entire operations take place in the Main Building of the university, and students therefore have very good access to lecturers.