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The Catholic Certificate in Religious Studies (CCRS) is managed and awarded by the Board of Religious Studies on behalf of the Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales.

It is  a qualification which seeks to ensure that governors, teachers and the parish community have at least a basic understanding of the central beliefs of the Catholic Faith.

Governors, teachers and the parish community together contribute to the Catholic formation of our children and have a responsibility to help our children grow in their faith. To achieve this, we need to ensure our governors, teachers and the parish community have an adult understanding of their faith to enable them to share their vision.

The School, in collaboration with the home and the parish, has a privileged opportunity and responsibility to help our children grow in their faith.

About the CCRS Programme

Who is the CCRS programme for?

Parishioners and Catechists
School Governors
Individuals wishing to deepen their understanding of the Catholic Faith and Catholic Education

What are the aims of the programme?

To give an understanding of the central truths of our Faith, to develop an appreciation of the principles of Catholic Education and to highlight the role and function of RE within the whole school.

What is involved in the programme?

The full CCRS programme consists of 8 taught modules – 6 core and 2 specialist modules of your choice. The core modules explore such areas as the Scriptures, the Person of Jesus, the Church, Sacramental Life and Moral Understanding.  The specialist modules cover more specific areas such as Spirituality, Youth Ministry and Teaching in a Catholic School.

How long does the programme take to complete?

The full certificated programme generally takes 2 years to complete and you will study 4 core modules in your first year and 2 core and 2 specialist modules of your choice in your second year. The certificate will be awarded by the Board of Religious Studies after a minimum of 2 years study and up to a maximum of five years study from the date of your initial registration.

What are the study requirements for each module?

Each module requires 10 hours of course tutor time, with 100% attendance followed by the completion and submission of an assignment of 1,500 words or equivalent.

When will I study?

For each module you can choose how you would like to study. This will be either:-

– 4 x mid-week twilight sessions per module at 4:00pm – 6:30pm
– 2 x full-day sessions per module held on a Saturday at 9:30am – 3:30pm.

Where will I study?

We host the CCRS programme across 3 venues within the Diocese of Salford, the dates are to be confirmed but the venues will be in:-

– Sacred Heart RC Priamry School, Westhoughton, Bolton
– Our Lady’s RC High School, Blackley, North Manchester
– Cathedral Centre, Salford

What is the cost of the programme?

The full certificated programme for all 8 modules costs £615.00 which is broken down by an upfront payment of £125.00 (this covers your initial registration fee and your first module) then followed by 7 modular instalments of £70.00 payable before each module begins.

For self-funding students, this programme does not require full payment upfront.

The programme can also be sponsored by your school or parish and if they are subsidising this programme for you they will receive an invoice for the full amount.

Those who want to study individual modules to further their own knowledge can choose to attend individual modules, without receiving a certificate, at a reduced cost.

Do I have to complete the full programme?

You can choose to study the full programme and receive a nationally recognised certificate upon completion (which we recommend for those seeking career development) or you can study individual modules without receiving a certificate a reduced cost. As such you can choose to study the programme in one of 3 ways:-

  • Attend all 8 modules, complete all assignments and receive your certificate costing £615.00.
  • Attend an individual module and complete the assignment but do not receive a certificate at cost of £40.00 per module.
  • Attend an individual module, do not complete the assignment and do not receive a certificate at a cost of £20.00 per module.



If you would like to register onto our CCRS programme or you are a continuing student and wish to select your venues for your second year please complete the online form below:-

CCRS Registration Form – 2019-2020



If you have any questions or would like some further information about the programme or the application process please contact:- or 0161 817 2204.

CCRS: Twenty-Five Years On PUBLISHED

New Research Report published by co-authors Dr Ros Stuart-Buttle and Fr Des Seddon entitled “CCRS Twenty-Five Years On: One Size Fits All?” takes up this question and shows that one of the main vehicles over the last 25 years called the Catholic Certificate in Religious Studies (CCRS) has made a huge impact on peoples’ personal, spiritual and professional lives. More than 20,000 adults across England and Wales have taken the course since 2000 in order to further their knowledge and understanding of the Catholic faith, many of whom work in our Catholic schools and parishes. While the research affirms the role and contribution of the CCRS to adult formation and celebrates all that has been achieved, it also raises timely and important questions to be considered.

You can view the publication in full by clicking here.

Research findings come from course participants as well as from interviews with bishops, diocesan education directors, head teachers and those who provide CCRS in their local area. The report gives hard evidence of the continuing need for adult theological literacy and the vast majority of participants greatly value the course and would recommend it to others. The research also identifies concerns about the type of curriculum that is needed and how best to enable adult learning with clear theological purpose and practical relevance for today. The report makes a number of recommendations for church authorities to consider but looks ahead with confidence to the next 25 years.

Dr Ros Stuart-Buttle, Director of the Centre for Christian Education at Liverpool Hope University, who led the research project says, “It was a privilege to undertake this research. I was inspired by the many individual stories of how the CCRS has impacted on peoples’ spiritual and professional lives. I was also challenged by the needs, perceptions and expectations that people bring to their experience of faith and stimulated, as a result, to see how lay Catholics today can grow in theological thinking that is relevant to our times.”

Fr Des Seddon, Chairman of the Board of Religious Studies of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales, affirms the importance of the research report and says, “The recommendations will provide the Board of Studies with a way forward for the next Phase of developments for the CCRS.  I would like to express my thanks to all those who were involved in the research.”