ISL232 Usul al-Hadith (Methodology of Prophetic Traditions) (8)

This subject provides students with an introduction to the place of Hadith in Islamic scholarship. The methods and rules related to the authentication and classification of Hadith narrations in canonical texts together with the application of this methodology are also addressed. This subject covers the history of the development of Hadith discipline from the emergence of documentation since its inception to major Hadith collections produced, together with the criteria adopted by scholars to authenticate a Hadith.


Session 2 (60)
United Theological College

Continuing students should consult the SAL for current offering details: ISL232. 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


Centre for Islamic Studies and Civilisation

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
  • be able to describe the difference between Hadith and Sunnah;
  • be able to demonstrate an understanding of the different phases in the collating of Hadith literature in the first three centuries of Islam;
  • be able to critically discuss the methods used to classify Hadith;
  • be able to demonstrate an understanding of the Hadith types and their definitions; and
  • be able to differentiate the level of authenticity between Hadith narrations.


This subject will cover the following topics:
  • Distinction between Hadith and Sunnah
  • Introduction to Ulum al-Hadith (science of Hadith studies)
  • Identification phase of Hadith
  • Collection phase of Hadith
  • Classification phase of Hadith
  • Six canonical Hadith collections
  • Refinement phase of Hadith
  • Hadith types and their definitions
  • Content (matn)analysis of Hadith
  • Critical analysis of chains of transmission (sanad)
  • Methods in transmission of Hadith from master to student: manners of Hadith transmission
  • Criteria for Hadith critique and their narrators

Indicative Assessment

The following table summarises the assessment tasks for the online offering of ISL232 in Session 2 2020. 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 %
Participation and engagement
Presentation and paper
Final exam

The information contained in the CSU Handbook was accurate at the date of publication: May 2021. The University reserves the right to vary the information at any time without notice.