Things you need to consider...

We are keen to support everyone who wants to join us on the FD Course and you will be made very welcome to our student body.

However, there are always things you need to consider before you make that initial step. Some of these are outlined below and we hope this will help you to think through the commitment needed before enrolling.

If you have any questions about these things, or anything else, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.

1.      Time and commitment

We all lead busy lives and have many commitments and calls on our time. Studying does take time and to successfully complete the course, you will need to be able to commit the time needed to it. You will need time to attend the residential weekends, do the reading and work in between, and complete and submit the assignments by the specified dates. Studying is a wonderful experience, but, as with so many things in life, the more you put in, the more you will get out. You need to be fully committed to engaging with the study to get as much as possible from the experience

2.      Family and church support

It’s important to have the support of those around you when you are studying, especially when it involves some distance learning, as our course does.
If you are a CF member you will need the support of your church and a completed ‘Church Endorsement’ form in order to receive a waive of the tuition fees (please note hospitality and other fees still apply). But more than that, the support of your church is essential to your studies through their continued prayers and care of you whilst on the course.

3.      The FD course involves 4 residential weekends per year.

These are a mandatory part of your course, so you need to make sure that you are able to attend for the whole of each weekend. The September weekend is the longest, lasting from Thursday to Sunday, and the other three weekends, in January, April and June, last from Friday to Sunday.

You need to be prepared to make appropriate arrangements for any caring responsibilities, childcare, pets etc. so that you can attend
Almost all of the costs that you will have to meet relate to these weekends. These are the costs for travel, accommodation and meals (see the Prospectus for details)

4.      Reasonable adjustments at residential weekends

Most of our teaching sessions take place face-to-face at the residential weekends and so you must be prepared to travel to the Congregational Centre in Nottingham to take part in these weekends. We may be able to make some reasonable adjustments for you here at the centre if you have a disability or temporary mobility difficulty to make life more comfortable for you. If so, please do talk to us about it.

The hotel we stay in is able to offer adapted / accessible rooms and the food served is catered to the group’s food and allergy requirements. If you have any concerns, then let us know.

If you need to bring a mobility aid with you (or need to hire one here in Nottingham) let us know and we will be happy to advise.

5.      Paying for your course fees and travel

There is a financial cost associated with the course. If you are a member of a CF Church, or a personal CF member, then the tuition fees are waived. However, there are still other amounts to pay including a registration fee, module fees, accommodation and meal costs alongside the costs associated with travelling to Nottingham for the residential weekends.

As you will see in the CIPT Terms & Conditions for payment, it is your responsibility to secure the funds that you will need to take the course and to ensure that payments are made to CIPT in a timely manner. These funds could be from your own finances, or you may be able to secure funding from your church, CF area or nation, or from grant awarding bodies. It is, however, up to you to approach such bodies and apply for funding – we are unable to do so on your behalf. (Please see the prospectus for further information)

You are able to pay in instalments, with each payment being due just before each weekend or in a lump sum at the beginning of each academic year.

6.      IT skills and equipment

The course does require some basic IT skills. Your assignments are written using a word processor and submitted electronically through MS Teams. We operate an in-house resource hub “Congle” which is accessed using the internet and every student is issued with a CF email address which is used to contact you with vital course information.

You will need regular access to a computer and the internet. To take part in occasional online seminars you may also need headphones and a webcam.

We are able to provide information and guidance on IT matters, please contact us for further information

7.      Specific learning difference needs

Please let us know if you have any specific learning difference needs, as we may be able to assist with technology or other ways to make your participation in the course much easier. You can make a note of these differences on your application form or just speak to us and we will be able to advise. We are committed to supporting you throughout the course.