THL519 Contemporary Issues in Practical Theology (16)

In this subject, students engage critically with the foundational theoretical and practical texts underpinning the discipline of Practical Theology. Students are enabled to apply cross disciplinary research, critical perspectives and a variety of methods to examine issues and questions of church practice, with a view to developing new approaches and understandings.


Session 1 (30)
On Campus
Canberra Campus

Continuing students should consult the SAL for current offering details: THL519. 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) only

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
  • be able to demonstrate an in-depth understanding of the breadth of thinking represented by the term Practical Theology
  • be able to demonstrate an appreciaton of the place of Practical Theology within the discipline of Theology
  • be able to evaluate critically significant contributors to the field of Practical Theology
  • be able to demonstrate an ability to understand and evaluate critically theological models of praxis, and appropriately apply them in given contexts
  • be able to demonstrate an in-depth understanding of a chosen contemporary issue from a perspective of Practical Theology
  • be able to demonstrate an in-depth understanding of the relevance of other disciplines to Practical Theology including Indigenous, Feminist and Social Science perspectives
  • be able to demonstrate research and writing skills relevant to the discipline of Practical Theology


This subject will cover the following topics:
  • The place of Practical Theology within the larger discipline of Theology
  • Historical background and current context of Practical Theology: an overview of the complexity of the discipline
  • Critical engagement with Practical Theology's distinctive starting point and methodology
  • Issues and prospects for the integration of the social sciences and other disciplines into Practical Theology
  • The relationship of Practical Theology to social justice, mission and evangelism
  • Contemporary approaches to Practical Theology: notable practical theologians, in Australasia and elsewhere
  • The critical engagement of Practical Theology with Biblical Studies, Church History and Systematic Theology
  • Critiques of Practical Theology approaches and method, e.g. Anderson, Ward and Darragh
  • Critical examination of two studies in Practical Theology to look at approach and method in more depth

Indicative Assessment

The following table summarises the assessment tasks for the online offering of THL519 in Session 1 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 %
Theological reflection
Class presentation

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.