St. Stephen’s University, through the Institute for Religion, Peace and Justice, offers a unique and thoroughly enriching Master of Arts in Peace and Justice that includes online courses, short in-person modules and travel abroad opportunities to allow students to complete their program without the need to uproot their lives.

Earn a general background in peace studies, including theory and praxis, rooted in pressing and pertinent theological considerations related to peacebuilding and conflict transformation.

 

The curriculum combines a focus on:

  • grassroots peacebuilding skills and training, 
  • conflict analysis, 
  • public theology with a focus on peace and justice, 
  • trauma-healing and reconciliation, 
  • contemplative and ascetic practices encouraging resilience, healing, and authenticity

Students complete six online courses in the first year of study (18 c/h) and a short in-person peace and justice module at St. Stephen’s University (10 days), research methods course, travel study module in Scotland and Northern Ireland (18 days), and a thesis in the second year (21 c/h). 

Duration — Two Years 

Credit Hours — 39

Delivery Mode — Online Courses, Intensive On-site Module (10 Days), Travel Study Module (18 Days), Thesis

Year One

September Term

RS5481 — The Inner Transformation of a Peacemaker


RS5380 — Theology of Peace and Justice


RS5180 — Peace and Violence in the New Testament


9 CREDIT HOURS

Year One

January Term

IS5583 — Practical Nonviolence and Peacebuilding


IS/RS5882 — Religion, Peace and Conflict


RS5182 — Peace and Violence in the Old Testament


9 CREDIT HOURS

Year Two

September Term

Scotland / Northern Ireland Travel Study Module (August – 2 weeks)


RS6300 — Research Methods / Guided Thesis Proposal


9 CREDIT HOURS

Year Two

January Term

SSU In-Person Peace and Justice Module (March – 1 week)


Thesis (25,000 words)


12 CREDIT HOURS

Track 2 – Peacebuilding, Public Theology, and Indigenous Reconciliation

Student Intake - September 2023

This track is for students who have a special interest in Indigenous reconciliation, considered within a peace and justice framework. It has the same emphases and components as Track 1, but it replaces the travel study module in Scotland and Northern Ireland with another in-person module at St. Stephen’s University on Indigenous reconciliation.

 

The curriculum combines a focus on:

  • grassroots peacebuilding skills and training, 
  • conflict analysis, 
  • public theology with a focus on peace and justice, 
  • trauma-healing and reconciliation, 
  • contemplative and ascetic practices encouraging resilience, healing, and authenticity

Students complete six online courses in the first year of study (18 c/h) and a short in-person peace and justice module at St. Stephen’s University (10 days), a research methods course, a second short in-person Indigenous reconciliation module at St. Stephen’s University (10 days), and a thesis in the second year (21 c/h).

Duration — Two Years and Four Months

Credit Hours — 39

Delivery Mode — Online Courses, Two Intensive On-site Module (10 Days Each), Thesis

Year One

September Term

RS5481 — The Inner Transformation of a Peacemaker


RS5380 — Theology of Peace and Justice


RS5180 — Peace and Violence in the New Testament


9 CREDIT HOURS

Year One

January Term

IS5583 — Practical Nonviolence and Peacebuilding


IS/RS5882 — Religion, Peace and Conflict


RS5182 — Peace and Violence in the Old Testament


9 CREDIT HOURS

Year Two

September Term

SSU In-Person Indigenous Reconciliation Module (Fall)


RS6300 Research Methods/Guided Thesis Proposal


9 CREDIT HOURS

Year Two

January Term

SSU In-Person Peace and Justice Module (March – 10 days)


Thesis (25,000 words)


12 CREDIT HOURS

Track 3 – Peacebuilding, Public Theology, and the Palestinian Context

Student Intake - September 2022

This track is for students who have a special interest in the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict. It is offered jointly with the Bethlehem Institute for Peace and Justice at Bethlehem Bible College and emphasizes peacemaking in the midst of the decades-long intractable conflict in Israel-Palestine by including two additional online courses on the Palestinian context and a two-week residency in Bethlehem, Palestine.

Students complete six online courses in the first year of study (18 c/h) and two online courses on the Palestinian context, a research methods course, a residency with training and seminars in Bethlehem, Palestine (14 days), and either a thesis or a directed study + major research paper in the second year (21 c/h).

Duration — Two Years

Credit Hours — 39

Delivery Mode — Online Courses, Residency in Bethlehem (14 Days), Thesis or Major Research Paper

Year One

September Term

RS5481 — The Inner Transformation of a Peacemaker


RS5380 — Theology of Peace and Justice


RS5180 — Peace and Violence in the New Testament


9 CREDIT HOURS

Year One

January Term

IS5583 — Practical Nonviolence and Peacebuilding


IS/RS5882 — Religion, Peace and Conflict


RS5182 — Peace and Violence in the Old Testament


9 CREDIT HOURS

Year Two

September Term

IS6100 – Peacemaking & Justice in the Palestinian Context I


RS6300 — Research Methods / Guided Thesis Proposal


6 CREDIT HOURS

Year Two

January Term

IS6200 – Peacemaking & Justice in the Palestinian Context II


Bethlehem Residency, Training, and Seminars (May – 14 days)


MA6600 – Thesis (25,000 words) or Directed Study + major paper


12 CREDIT HOURS

Program Delivery

ONLINE COURSES

Students will complete six online courses in their first year of study. These courses explore topics related to the inner transformation of a peacemaker, theology of peace and justice, the factor of religion and peace and violence, and practical nonviolence and peacebuilding. For more on these six courses, VISIT HERE.

For those enrolled in Track 3, students also complete two online courses in their second year of study on peacemaking and justice in the Palestinian context. These courses introduce key concepts in both the theory and practice of peacemaking and justice in the context of Palestine and Israel and as expressed by Palestinian Christians and other international scholars. For more on these two courses, VISIT HERE.

RESEARCH METHODS COURSE AND THESIS
Students will complete a course on research methods as they refine the topic of their thesis with their supervisor, and complete a 25,000-word thesis on a topic related to the subjects of the degree program and adequately prepares students for their vocation as peacemakers. Some students have the opportunity to complete a directed study and major research paper instead of a thesis.

Students in Track 2 will need to complete a thesis on a topic related to indigenous truth and reconciliation.

Students in Track 3 will need to complete a thesis or complete a directed study and major research paper on a topic related to peace and justice in the Palestinian context.

TRAVEL STUDY MODULE IN SCOTLAND AND NORTHERN IRELAND
This 2-week intensive study abroad module includes a learning tour of sites in the history of the conflict in Derry/Londonderry and Belfast and interactions with victims of ‘The Troubles’ in Northern Ireland, with a panel discussion on post-conflict trauma healing, forgiveness, reconciliation, and the inner transformation of a peacemaker; a symposium of speakers on peacebuilding, contemplation, and the arts in Edinburgh; attendance at the Just Festival in Edinburgh; and a pilgrimage on the isles of Mull and Iona and the surrounding small islands in the Inner Hebrides off the west coast of Scotland, culminating in a final debriefing and send-off at Iona Abbey.
IN-PERSON PEACE AND JUSTICE MODULE @ ST. STEPHEN'S UNIVERSITY
This short 1-week module takes place on-site at St. Stephen’s University in New Brunswick, Canada. It includes seminars and workshops that are led by a team of top scholars and practitioners covering such subjects as psychology, neuroscience, and the inner transformation of a peacemaker; building peace and becoming human; compassionate reasoning; and practical skills workshops.
IN-PERSON INDIGENOUS RECONCILIATION MODULE @ ST. STEPHEN'S UNIVERSITY
This short module is either online or takes place on-site at St. Stephen’s University in New Brunswick. NOTE: the content of this module is pending various consultations that are ongoing. For more info on the likely topics covered in this module and track, please contact the director of IRPJ, Dr. Andrew Klager: [email protected]
RESIDENCY IN BETHLEHEM, PALESTINE
This two-week intensive residential portion of the program in Bethlehem combines academic lectures, intentional reflection on personal spirituality, and site visits to important local Palestinian-led peace and justice organizations. The opportunity to study and serve in Bethlehem, listening and learning in the Palestinian community, is a profound, transformative experience.