University of Divinity

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University of Divinity

The University of Divinity promotes the highest standards of scholarship in theology, philosophy and ministry. Through scholarship, the University aims to address the issues of the contemporary world. Founded in 1910 as the Melbourne College of Divinity, the University has a long history of pursuing and achieving these aims.


All students and staff join the University through one of its Colleges. Based in the Australian cities of Melbourne, Adelaide and Sydney, each College is a unique learning community. The Colleges are supported by a wide range of churches and religious orders that together resource the University as a whole.The University’s work is further resourced by the Office of the Vice-Chancellor, which provides support to the Colleges and the University’s Council and Academic Board.


  • Our Vision
    Together we empower our learning community to address the issues of the contemporary world through critical engagement with Christian theological traditions.
  • Our Mission
    We fulfil our vision through:
    excellence in learning, teaching, and research; growth of our resources and capacity; and engagement with the churches and community in Australia and internationally.
  • Strategic Plan 2016-2025
    On 25 November 2015, the University Council approved the Strategic Plan 2016-2025. This articulates the University’s aspirations for its identity and activities in 2025, and establishes a series of goals to be achieved from 2016-2018. New goals will be added progressively, with a major review every three years.
  • Governance
    The University of Divinity is a collegiate University. This model is familiar in Europe and North America but not found elsewhere in Australia. The system is explained in depth by Professor Peter Sherlock in the paper The Collegiate University.The University of Divinity is constituted by the University of Divinity Act 1910 of the Parliament of Victoria. The Act, most recently amended in 2016, establishes the University Council and empowers it to confer degrees and award diplomas and certificates in Divinity and its associated disciplines.The University of Divinity appears on the National Register of Higher Education Providers as an Australian University of Specialisation. It is a private University and receives Commonwealth Government funding through its inclusion on Table B of the Higher Education Support Act 2003.
  • Our Partners
    The University of Divinity has over 30 partners in the churches and religious orders. These provide material support to the University in two principal ways: appointing members of the University Council, and resourcing the scholarship of the University’s Colleges through provision of land, property, staff, and finances.
  • Badge and Regalia
    The University Badge represents its Vision, Mission, and collegiate identity. The Badge is a star, formed by a constellation of open books. The star is a biblical symbol that appears in the heavens to point wise ones on earth towards the Christ. It is also an Australian symbol, as shown by the federal star and the Southern Cross on the Australian flag.The books which make up the star represent wisdom, and are open to critical interpretation. The gathering of these many parts into a whole expresses the collegiate shape of the University.The gold represents excellence. The distinctive accent is red, representing passion and sacrifice which facilitate and flow from the study of divinity.The constellation of books creates two stars, one on the outside and one on the inside, illustrating the University’s commitment to tradition and innovation. Through critical study, the University brings ancient truths into dialogue with the issues of the contemporary world.
  • The University Mace
    The University Mace was commissioned in 2017 from F. J. Rocca Silversmiths in Carlton, Victoria. The Mace is based on the University Badge, which appears at the tip of the Mace on a head of brass. The Mace was first used at the ceremony to confer the Doctor of Divinity (honoris causa) on Dr John Behr DD in August 2017 at the Eporo Tower campus of St Athanasius College.
  • The University Robes
    The Chancellor’s Robe and Vice-Chancellor’s Robe were commissioned in 2014 from the Revd Kenneth Crawford, an alumnus of the Melbourne College of Divinity. The Robes are made from red ‘St Margaret’ damask and display the University Badge embroidered on the sleeves and over the shoulders. The Chancellor’s Robe is highlighted in red and gold, while the Vice-Chancellor’s Robe is primarily black and silver. The Robes were first used at the Adelaide Graduation Ceremony in December 2014 at Bethlehem Lutheran Church, Adelaide. A detailed description is available in the Academic Dress Policy.

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