THL514 Theological Hermeneutics (16)

This subject explores the history of hermeneutics, ranging from Ancient and Biblical through to Contemporary Philosophical and Theological Hermeneutics. The subject addresses the interpretation of texts, the issue of meaning, and the question of what it is to understand. Hermeneutics occupies the place between epistemology and methodology, and, studied at the advanced level, will equip students with the capacity to locate themselves in relation to their critical reading of texts.


Session 1 (30)
On Campus
Canberra Campus
United Theological College
Canberra Campus
United Theological College
Term 3 (75)
On Campus
Ming Hua Theological College

Continuing students should consult the SAL for current offering details: THL514. Where differences exist between the Handbook and the SAL, the SAL should be taken as containing the correct subject offering details.

Subject Information

Grading System



One session


School of Theology

Enrolment Restrictions

Master of Theology and Bachelor of Theology (Honours) students only

Incompatible Subjects


Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
  • be able to demonstrate an in-depth understanding of the history of hermeneutics, and its philosophical and theological background, in order to engage with the contemporary explanation and understanding of theological texts
  • be able to reflect critically on the interface between hermeneutics, methodology and epistemology
  • be able to demonstrate a chosen hermeneutic by applying it to a specific text or piece of research
  • be able to reflect critically on their location as knowing subjects
  • be able to demonstrate an appreciation of the importance of hermeneutics for the theological community
  • be able to demonstrate independent research and writing skills


This subject will cover the following topics:
  • Hermeneutics: Overview, Definition, Science and/or Art
  • Philosophical and Theological interface in contemporary Hermeneutics
  • Patristic Hermeneutics with a focus on Augustine's Semiotics
  • Medieval Hermeneutics
  • Reformed Hermeneutics
  • Modern Hermeneutics: Schleiermacher
  • Interface of Hermeneutics, Doctrine and Canon in contemporary theology
  • Philosophical Hermeneneutics: Gadamer, Heidegger, Ricoeur, Wittgenstein, and Habermas
  • Theological Hermeneutics: Bultmann, Jeanrond, Thiselton, and Vanhoozer

Indicative Assessment

The following table summarises the assessment tasks for the online offering of THL514 in Session 1 2021. Please note this is a guide only. Assessment tasks are regularly updated and can also differ to suit the mode of study (online or on campus).

Item Number
Value %
Weekly interaction
Essay 1
Essay 2

The information contained in the CSU Handbook was accurate at the date of publication: May 2022. The University reserves the right to vary the information at any time without notice.