Friday, 9 December 2011

Theology, essays and theology essays

Michael Jensen, Lecturer in Doctrine and Church History at Moore College in Sydney, has recently completed a series of blog posts on writing theology essays.  I think what he has written is relevant for anyone doing theology for him/herself (which should be every Christian), and for everyone who writes essays in the humanities.  People who actually write theology essays will, of course, find the advice particularly useful.

Introduction

  1. How not to lose heart before you start
  2. What is ‘theology’ in any case?
  3. What is a theology essay?
  4. The responsibility of theology
  5. Choosing the question
  6. Analysing the question:
    1. The Verb
    2. The Question Word
  7. Beginning to think about it
  8. Brainstorming
  9. How to read theology for essays, and what to read
    1. Part a
    2. Interlude: words not to use in a theology essay
    3. Part b
  10. Using the Bible in theology essays
    1. Part a
    2. Interlude: writing theology exam essays
    3. Interlude: writing theology exam essays b
    4. Part b
    5. Part c
  11. How to treat your opponents
  12. Some advice on quoting
  13. Types of argument for your essay
  14. The classic introduction
  15. Why presentation matters, and how to make it work for you
  16. How to write well in an essay
    1. Part a
    2. Part b
    3. Part c
  17. The art of signposting
  18. Bringing home the bacon
  19. Publishing your essay - why not?
  20. A footnote about footnotes