Theological Studies (M.T.S.)

This program is currently accepting applications from potential students for enrollment in fall 2023.

The Master of Theological Studies (M.T.S.) degree offers students the opportunity to engage in critical and constructive theological research as part of the department's vibrant community of inquiry. Aimed primarily at students aspiring to deep theological competence and to doctoral education at the highest level, the program provides students both comprehensive grounding in the theological disciplines and rigorous preparation for advanced studies in a concentration of the student's choice.

All M.T.S. students are required to complete 16 courses (48 credit hours). Reflecting our location in a Jesuit, Catholic university, the curriculum includes a foundation in Christian theological studies, including systematics, ethics, history, and bible. To ensure a breadth of knowledge, the program requires that students complete a core of six courses, including the program's interdisciplinary signature course, Context, Theory, and Theology (THEO 5901). In and beyond the core, students have the opportunity to work with faculty in all of the department's areas of research: biblical studies, history of Christianity, Judaism in antiquity, medieval and modern Islam, systematic theology, and theological ethics. At least two of the student's sixteen courses must primarily engage Judaism, Islam, or another non-Christian tradition.

Students immerse themselves in one of two areas of concentration: Studies in Ancient and Medieval Theology/Religion, or Studies in Modern and Contemporary Theology/Religion. Working with a faculty mentor, students select courses that best suit their interests and prepare them for further studies or other careers. They experience the camaraderie of studying with their M.T.S. cohort peers, of taking seminars with the program's doctoral students, and interacting with the faculty of the internationally recognized department.

Acceptance into the M.T.S. program will come through a successful application that includes a statement of intent, writing sample, recommendations, and (optionally) GRE scores. The ideal student need not be a theology or religious studies undergraduate major, but may be those with a strong background in the humanities (from disciplines that include theology, religious studies, history, classics, philosophy, languages, or English), or even a background in the sciences (natural or social) who demonstrate the ability to conduct theological research at a high level.

Course Title Credits
Core Courses
Bible
THEO 5820Hebrew Bible/Old Testament Interpretation3
or THEO 5890 New Testament Interpretation
Systematic Theology
THEO 5620Introduction to Systematic Theology3
Theological Ethics
THEO 5640Introduction to Theological Ethics3
Religious History 1
Ancient/Medieval Religious History: Choose from courses in the early/ancient histories of Christianity, Judaism, Islam, or other traditions, as offered.3
Modern/Contemporary Religious History: Choose from courses in the modern/late histories of Christianity, Judaism, Islam, or other traditions, as offered.3
Interdisciplinary Course
THEO 5901Context, Theory, and Theology3
Concentration (choose one)18
Studies in Ancient and Medieval Theology/Religion
Six Ancient/Medieval or relevant language courses 2
Proficiency in French or German 3
Intermediate competency in Ancient Greek, Ancient Hebrew, Latin, or Arabic 3
Studies in Modern and Contemporary Theology/Religion
Six Modern/Contemporary courses 1
Proficiency in French, German, or Spanish 3
Electives
Four elective courses 412
Final Project
THEO 0938Master's Capstone-Theology0
Total Credits48
1

Consult the Course Listings section for Theology courses fulfilling this requirement. 

2

Consult the Course Listings section for Theology courses fulfilling this requirement. With departmental permission, graduate courses in Medieval Studies and Classics that are relevant to the study of ancient or medieval Christianity may also fulfill this requirement.

3

Proficiency is demonstrated through completion of a departmental exam. Depending on their preparation, students may need to take courses outside of the degree program (i.e. summer institutes) in order to reach this level of competency. Ancient language courses count toward the ancient/medieval concentration, or as electives, subject to Theology Department permission.

4

Electives may be taken from departmental offerings (graduate-level courses with the subject code THEO). Courses from other departments, programs, or schools may also count as electives, subject to Theology Department permission.

Students in the Ancient and Medieval concentration may count ancient language courses as electives, subject to Theology Department permission.

Religious Breadth Requirement

At least two of the student’s sixteen courses must primarily engage Judaism, Islam, or another non-Christian tradition. Consult the Course Listings section for details.


Final Project

The Theology Department requires that M.T.S. students complete a final project as a "closure exercise" in their final year in the degree program. Students will benefit from this opportunity to reflect in a deliberate way upon the arc of their learning through the M.T.S. program, and the Department's efforts at ongoing assessment of the success of this degree program will similarly benefit from this synthetic exercise. Students may choose between these two options which they must indicate by completing a Department-generated survey form to be filled out by the end of the first week of their penultimate semester of their degree work.

Consult the Final Project Options section for more details.