Details for Australian Church History

This unit provides a detailed analysis of the major global trends which led to the foundation and then settlement of Australia. The pattern of settlement and national development is traced, including issues of inculturation, colonialism, denominationalism and racism.  Australian Christianity in rural and urban regions is explored, as well as the challenges and opportunities of multiculturalism.  Understanding the Christian history of this nation helps to equip students for effective ministry in a wide variety of contexts and allows for a deeper understanding of Australian national identity.

Quick Info

  • Currently offered by Alphacrucis: Yes
  • Course code: HIS301
  • Credit points: 10
  • Subject coordinator: Mark Hutchinson


The following courses are prerequisites:

Awards offering Australian Church History

This unit is offered as a part of the following awards:

Unit Content

Curriculum Objective

This unit provides an overview of the major trends surrounding the foundation, settlement and development of European Australia in relation to Christian religion.


Students should be able to:

  1. Defend a detailed knowledge of the major themes in Australian religious history, including national identity formation and indigenous religions;
  2. Categorise and evaluate the key groups in early Australian Christian history, including Catholics, Dissenters, Wesleyans, Presbyterians and others;
  3. Evaluate the emergent relationship between Australian Christianity and society in general;
  4. Conduct advanced research into the historical record from primary and secondary sources and critically analyse the results;
  5. Critically evaluate church interaction with key social and political issues in Australia;
  6. Defend the contribution of the Australian past to the ministry situation of the Pentecostal movement in Australia.

Subject Content

  1. Themes in Australian religious history
  2. The Convict Chaplaincy
  3. Liberalism; Secularism
  4. Sectarianism; Education, Church and State
  5. Social Responses of the Churches: Revival; Social issues; Politics
  6. Depression and War: Liberalism and Fundamentalism
  7. Post War renewal movements and mission

This course may be offered in the following formats

Lectures, discussion, tutorials

Please consult your course prospectus or enquire about how and when this course will be offered next at Alphacrucis College.

Assessment Methods

  • Forum Postings 20% (2500 words)
  • Field Report 30% (1500 words)
  • Major Essay 50% (2500 words)

Prescribed Text

  • Primary readings provided