Teaching, learning, and support

We all learn differently

We understand that everyone learns in a different way and aim to support you in your studies, whatever your learning style, experience or academic background. At Trinity, you will learn through a combination of:

  • Classroom lectures (through term time and block weeks)
  • Smaller seminars or discussion groups
  • School of Leadership lectures and discussions
  • Your own time spent reading, studying, and in the completion of required tasks
  • Experiential learning through church placements
  • Experiential learning through community placements
  • Interaction with tutors and fellow students through pastoral groups and in other settings
  • Outside speakers invited to college to preach, teach, and participate in special events and workshops

Extra support and help

Some of our students have been out of education for a number of years, or have not studied at degree level before. Many do not consider themselves to be particularly academic, and many have additional learning needs.

To enable all students to reach their potential, we provide learning support throughout your time at Trinity. All undergraduate students attend study skills sessions at the start of their programme, and further one-to-one support is also available. All students on undergraduate and taught postgraduate programmes are allocated a pastoral group tutor who is available to give support and advice if needed, in addition to weekly tutor group meetings. We also have several chaplains on staff, who are available to be a listening ear and to pray with you about any needs or concerns.

Our Tutor for Academic Inclusion, Howard Worsley (see below), runs study skills clinics and is there to support any students who have economic, cultural or class barriers to study. We also have academic mentors – fellow students who are available to support you in your academic studies.

Students who have been assessed as having specific learning or other needs may access further support if this is needed: see below.

Our Tutor in Missiology, Howard Worsley, is our Lead Tutor for Academic Inclusion – a recently-created position. As part of this role, Howard supports students on our Relay and Jubilee Scholarships and develops provision at Trinity for theological study and formation which especially meets the needs of students who are under-represented at Trinity due to educational, economic, cultural and other barriers, including those with English as an additional language.⁠

Howard, who has worked as a secondary school and university teacher, and been an Anglican vicar, diocesan director of education and a chaplain, is focusing on supporting those students who find economic, cultural or class barriers to their learning. In this role he works alongside the Study Skills tutor, Mel Lucas (see below),  under the oversight of our Academic Vice Principal, Helen Collins.

We are committed to supporting students with a range of additional needs. At Trinity, a specialist practitioner, Mel Lucas, can advise and support students throughout their time here. For more information about Mel’s role, see below.

Specific learning difficulties (SpLDs)

Through our Study Support Tutor, we can provide in-house screening for learning difficulties, such as dyslexia and dyspraxia, prior to formal assessment. We also offer one-to-one support for learning strategies. Funds are available through the Disabled Students’ Allowances (DSA) for equipment and learning support.

Sensory disabilities

We’re able to offer tailored support for deaf students with help from Bristol Diocese’s Chaplain to the Deaf Community. Our Disability Advisor will help students with visual difficulties or other additional needs to gain the appropriate assessment of their needs.

Unseen disabilities and medical conditions

Many people live with a non-visible condition or experience a combination of both visible and non-visible conditions. These disabilities can be temporary, situational or permanent. They can be neurological, cognitive and neurodevelopmental as well as physical, visual, auditory and include sensory and processing difficulties. They can also be respiratory as well as chronic health conditions such as arthritis and diabetes, chronic pain and sleep disorders.

Trinity College is a member of the group, Hidden Disabilities. Hidden Disabilities offers a scheme that is being widely adopted by workplaces and organisations to help those living with a disability that is not visible, to discreetly notify others that at times they may need assistance. It also helps others to be aware of a hidden disability, when otherwise they wouldn’t know, enabling people to offer help and support when it is needed. We provide pins and lanyards bearing the sunflower logo which signals that the wearer has a hidden disability. 

Our Disability Advisor can help students access help they may be entitled to through the DSA and, where necessary, plan for alternative exam arrangements.

Mobility needs and wheelchair access

We’re committed to making what reasonable adjustments we can to our infrastructure and processes to help students with mobility difficulties to engage as fully as possible with life and learning at Trinity. There is a disabled parking bay at the front of our main building, Stoke House, and we will work with you to enable you to access as much of the college as possible.

Disability Advisor and Specialist Study Support Tutor

Mel is a qualified specialist teacher offering a variety of support for students with specific learning difficulties. She provides screening for dyslexia, dyspraxia, dyscalculia, and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Mel is an Associate Member of the British Dyslexia Association (AMBDA), and supports students with learning difficulties through individually tailored study skills tutorials. She has had a long career in language teaching; she has been an examiner for the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) and a teacher of deaf children. As Disability Advisor, Mel assists all students at Trinity with additional needs to access suitable support and, if appropriate, to apply for funding through Disabled Student Allowance (DSA). To contact Mel, email mel.lucas@trinitycollegebristol.ac.uk or call 0117 968 0206.

 Information for Needs Assessors

Trinity College Bristol Icon Quote

"I fundamentally didn't believe I could study at university level - I'd always struggled at school. Thanks to Mel [Trinity's study support tutor] I was diagnosed with dyslexia. I have found it so freeing to discover that I am actually smart and that I can do things, just in a different way. Since then my grades have gone from in the 40s to one that hit 70. I'm engaging more with my lectures and I'm so much more involved - it just makes me happier because I'm enjoying studying."


Certificate in Theology, Ministry and Mission

Diploma in Theology, Ministry and Mission

Bachelor of Arts in Theology, Ministry and Mission

Graduate Diploma in Theology, Ministry and Mission

Postgraduate Diploma in Theology, Ministry and Mission

Master of Arts in Theology, Ministry and Mission

Modes of Study

Ordination Training

Theological Study (Independent)


Postgraduate research

Come and visit us

The best way to find out if we’re the right fit for you is to come and visit us. We have several Open Days and Open Afternoons during the course of a year. If those dates don’t work for you, don’t worry – we can arrange for you to visit another time. We look forward to meeting you!

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