Challenges and Opportunities of Teaching Religious Studies and Theology Through Open and Distance Learning: The Case of the Zimbabwe Open University

  • M Manyonganise


The teaching of religious studies in the higher education sector is a dynamic subject area marked by both expansion and diversification. Its vigor and sumptuousness reflects its significance in the context of a world coming to terms with its cultural and religious diversity. However, the teaching of religious and theological courses in academic institutions has sometimes been marred with controversy especially in cases where some religions are treated as normative and prejudices towards some religions are exhibited. In conventional institutions of higher learning, such problems may be dealt with on the spot as students are always on site and interaction with academic staff is readily available. This paper seeks to find out the challenges and opportunities that exist in teaching Religious Studies and Theology through the open and distance learning mode with a special focus on the Zimbabwe Open University. The focus of the paper is to bring out the complexities as well as the significance of the interface between academic study and practicing religious communities. Data relevant for this paper was collected through interviews and general observations.

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eISSN: 0856-6739