OCCA Programme for Masters Students
A prerequisite of acceptance to the programme is acceptance on to a relevant Masters course.
The Oxford Centre for Christian Apologetics (OCCA) is an autonomous study centre based in Oxford, England. Established in 2005, OCCA offers a range of programmes. Students who successfully apply for any masters course at the University of Oxford can also apply to study apologetics at OCCA.
OCCA brings together leading theologians, apologists and scholars in a centre of excellence. OCCA students receive regular teaching from acclaimed lecturers such as John Lennox, Os Guinness, Michael Ramsden, Amy Orr-Ewing, Frog Orr-Ewing, Sharon Dirckx, Tom Price, Keith Small and Tanya Walker as well as teaching from Ravi Zacharias at special functions during the year. Furthermore, students receive mentorship and spiritual formation, evangelistic placements, and the chance to work alongside OCCA faculty at speaking events and on university mission weeks. For those with a passion to make Christ known, studying at OCCA can be a life-transforming experience, combining effective evangelism with academic rigor.
Students who successfully apply for any masters course at the University of Oxford can also apply to study apologetics on the OCCA Programme for Masters Students. The programme aids pursuit of excellence in academic study and practical evangelism through additional support and training. Students taking this programme have full access to the extensive resources of OCCA while being able individually to adapt their OCCA involvement around the commitments of their Masters course. A prerequisite of acceptance to the programme is acceptance on to a relevant Masters course. (For information about applying, please see ‘Applying’ below.)
Taking the OCCA Programme for Masters Students provides the chance to develop academic competence at graduate level in an apologetics-relevant field while also receiving broader, world-class training in apologetics and evangelism from OCCA. Students experience an unparalleled opportunity to receive academic mentorship and to develop in character, spiritual discipline, intellectual depth and evangelistic ministry. Set in the beautiful environment of Oxford, the OCCA Programme for Masters Students uniquely encourages academic excellence alongside effective evangelism.
KEY ATTRACTIONS OF THE OCCA PROGRAMME FOR MASTERS STUDENTS
- The chance to study many of the key questions of, and objections to, the Christian faith.
- Teaching and training from many leading apologists and scholars, such as John Lennox, Os Guinness, Ravi Zacharias, Michael Ramsden, Amy Orr-Ewing, Simon Edwards, Tom Price, Frog Orr-Ewing, Tanya Walker, Keith Small and Sharon Dirckx.
- An opportunity to sharpen apologetic and evangelistic skills.
- The opportunity to travel with OCCA on various university mission weeks and other evangelistic speaking engagements.
- Integration with OCCA Programme students, often representing 10 or more nationalities.
- An intentionally small group of students enabling close and consistent interaction with tutors and lecturers.
- Mentoring in preaching and speaking from experienced and gifted communicators.
- An engaging weekly practical evangelism placement in a local church or team.
- 'Huddles': weekly discipleship and mentoring groups led by OCCA faculty allowing students to share concerns and successes, and receive ongoing support and encouraging advice.
- Weekly community worship with a challenging devotional message.
- At least a full academic year in the inspiring surroundings of Oxford.
- Studying in a city where teaching has existed in some form since 1096 and developed rapidly from 1167. Oxford University itself is recognized as the oldest university in the English-speaking world.
- Being a part of a rich heritage of Christian thinkers, scholars and writers, such as C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, John Wesley, William Tyndale and John Wycliffe.
- The 'city of dreaming spires' - strikingly beautiful architecture.
- An ideal base for exploring Europe during the holidays.
Applicants to the OCCA Programme for Masters Students must be evangelistically minded and see serious implications in their prospective studies for apologetic/evangelistic issues. They must be reflective about how their Christian beliefs and practise interact with the methods and issues present in their chosen field.
Applicants will need to complete two applications – one to the University of Oxford for a Masters course and one to OCCA for the OCCA Programme for Masters Students. These two admission processes are independent of one another. A prerequisite of acceptance to the OCCA Programme for Masters Students is acceptance on to a relevant Masters course.
- Applications to the University of Oxford for a Masters course are made via their online graduate admissions process here. These applications are handled exclusively by the University of Oxford. Wycliffe Hall offers a MTh or MPhil in a range of subjects. For information about which subjects you could take at Wycliffe, please look at their website.
- Applications to OCCA for the OCCA Programme for Masters Students can be made by clicking 'Apply Online' at the top right of this page and then selecting 'OCCA Programme' in the drop-down menu. (You will be asked to register an account with a valid email address to make an application). During the online application, when asked "Are you a Masters Course candidate?" select "yes". (Briefly, while our system is being updated, this question may appear as "Are you a MTh candidate?" - if so, still select "yes".)
During the application process for a University of Oxford Masters course, you will have the option to state a preference for which University of Oxford college/hall you would like to be a member of.
We welcome applications for the OCCA Programme for Masters Students while you are awaiting the results of your application to a Masters course. Please note, however, that OCCA Programme for Masters Students applications will only be fully reviewed once a candidate is offered a place on a relevant Masters course.
Applicants who are accepted on to the OCCA Programme for Masters Students will be able to take the programme for a full academic year. At the end of that year, students who are enrolled on a Masters Course that lasts more than one academic year (like the MPhil or MTh) are welcome to apply for an additional year on the OCCA Programme for Masters Students.
Also welcome are applicants who are already undertaking the first year of a two-year Masters course. These applicants may apply to take the OCCA Programme for Masters Students alongside the second year of their Masters Course.
For further information please view our FAQ section.