At the Theological University of Apeldoorn, a six-year theology course is offered. The study programme focuses on academic quality, linked to solid professional equipping. Much attention is paid to the teaching of the biblical source languages, Hebrew and Greek. The TUA is a smaller institution and is known for the its good atmosphere and personalized guidance of students.
The TUA has a rich and lengthy history. The Theological University was founded in 1894 and since 1919 has been located in Apeldoorn at Wilhelminapark, close to the centre. The spacious mansion in which the school began has since been expanded into a modern building complex. Also, the curriculum has undergone steady development and expansion. TUA's students, lecturers and educational support staff form a close-knit community that is committed to the development and renewal of a biblically oriented, reformed theology on the basis of a cordial bond with the Reformed religious tradition.
Grateful for God's blessing of our university as a center of theological education of the Christian Reformed Churches in the Netherlands, we want to dedicate ourselves to the development of the practice of Reformed theology. Our heartfelt desire is to be useful for the progress of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and to be of significance for society. We educate people for the ministry of the pastorate or to another form of service in God's Church and Kingdom and we carry out this goal through scientific theological research. In addition, we provide services and training for churches and Christian organizations.
In all this we hope to promote the development of the Christian Reformed Churches and the unity of the Church of Christ.
In addition to training ministers and theologians, TUA also strives to make a contribution to thinking through socio-cultural issues that play a role in today’s society and issues inside and outside the church, and to contributing to the promotion of theological science in general. When it comes to the social relevance of theology, it is especially important that theology adheres to its own task. Today theology only has a message if it can understandably and penetratingly speak of God and His Word in this day and age! Based on this basic attitude, TUA strives to participate in the debates that are held in science and society.
Network Reformed theology
TUA is aware that practicing reformed theology in a complex society such as ours is a matter that requires open collaboration between theologians and other scientists. Together with other institutions of the Reformed tradition, we want to work for a vital reformed theology that is still relevant and valuable today.
Study of the source texts
An important characteristic of our study is the focus on the source text. The TUA teaches students to study the sources independently, to interpret them and to test them for relevance. The Bible functions as the most important, authoritative source. Dealing with the Bible has produced a history of understanding and appropriation - in church and theology - that has its own voice and meaning. In view of its own tradition and expertise, the TUA devotes a great deal of attention to the Reformation and the Further Reformation in education and research.
The qualification 'scientific' refers to the attitude and working method of a researcher who, through a critical approach to the subject matter, taking into account all available data (including source languages/texts) and in discussion with earlier or different types of research results, tries to develop a balanced and innovative vision concerning a clearly defined issue in an independent manner. In taking texts and other data seriously and approaching them as openly and honestly as possible, we are aware that our starting point is faith in the God of the Bible, the Father of Jesus Christ, who enlightens us by His Spirit. That it is precisely this point of departure that forces us to examine reality critically and scientifically is a conviction whose strength and validity must be demonstrated in practice and which must always be objectively substantiated.
Service to church and society
In education and research, TUA not only asks what the text once meant, but also what the text now means. The translation into the present takes place in a broad-based reflection on the biblical message for the themes and problems of our time. It also takes into account current societal questions such as the responsible use of the environment and the fair distribution of the resources of this earth.