Master of Arts in Theology (MA)
The Master of Arts (MA) in Theology program is a foundational degree in theological studies that prepares you for various forms of ministry or further study.
You may choose a general track (Christian Studies) or several more specialized tracks in Christian Scripture, Student Ministry and Culture, Business and Applied Theology, and Reconciliation and Intercultural Studies.
The Master of Arts in Theology degree at Seattle Pacific University supports SPU's vision to engage the culture and change the world with the transforming gospel of Jesus Christ.
The MA degree is built on the classical theological disciplines of Scripture, church history, theology, and ethics. The learning obtained from these fields of study is applied to the pressing needs of the contemporary church and the postmodern world.
This degree also integrates recent insights and methods from the humanities, social sciences, fine arts, education, psychology, and business and economics into the study of theology and the practice of Christian ministry.
The result is a core curriculum of 13 general theology courses (39 quarter credits) followed by specialized tracks. This core curriculum consists of two, pre-autumn intensive introductory courses in discipleship and mission, and three courses each in Bible, church history, and theology/ethics. The MA in Theology degree consists of 78 quarter credits overall (which is equivalent to 52 semester credits).
University and program requirements for admission into the MA in Theology program include:
- A minimum of a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution. Applicants must have had a minimum grade-point average of 3.0 in the last 45 quarter credits (30 semester credits) of course work completed before applying for admission or in all undergraduate work, whichever is higher.
- Successful submission of all other materials and documents required for admission, as detailed below.
To enroll in Seattle Pacific University's Master of Arts in Theology program, you must submit:
- A graduate online application for admission.
- A $50 processing fee.
- Official transcripts from all undergraduate institutions.
- Two letters of recommendation: (1) one from a clergyperson, church staff person, or parachurch professional who will attest to the your emotional, spiritual, and academic readiness for graduate theological study; and (2) one academic reference from a former professor who knows your academic work well.
- A typed personal statement. Statements should be three to four pages in length. The statement should address your career objectives, a narrative of your personal Christian experience, rationale for seeking the degree and choosing to attend SPU, and other insights you deem appropriate.
- Applicants who are not citizens or permanent
U.S. residents must provide an official confidential affidavit of
financial support covering the first year of intended enrollment. Without this
document, SPU cannot issue an I-20 immigration form.
- Students holding undergraduate or graduate degrees from
colleges, universities and/or seminaries located outside the U.S. are expected
to have their transcripts evaluated by a professional credential agency. Such an
evaluation is required before an application for admission to SPS can be granted
and before any graduate credits taken elsewhere can be applied to an SPS degree.
Seattle Pacific Seminary accepts
professional transcript evaluations from agencies recognized by the American Association of Collegiate
Registrars and Admissions Officers (AACRAO), the Foundation for International Services (located in nearby Edmonds, Washington), or any of the agencies belonging to the National Association of Credential Evaluation
- English language
proficiency: If you do not speak English as your first language, you
must also submit scores on the Test
of English as a Foreign Language(TOEFL). A minimum score of 600 on
the TOFEL paper or 250 on the TOFEL-CBT, or 100 on the TOFEL-IBT is required.
ACE scores will not be accepted.
Acceptance Into the Program
The Seattle Pacific Seminary Admissions Committee will evaluate applicants on the basis of their application materials. The combination of your previous coursework, academic achievement, professional experience, emotional and spiritual preparedness, and personal goals will be used in the evaluation.
Admission to the program will be made by the Seattle Pacific Seminary Admissions Committee and communicated to the applicant in conjunction with The Graduate Center.
If you wish to apply graduate-level coursework completed at a regionally accredited university or an ATS-accredited divinity school or seminary toward your MA in Theology, you must provide official transcripts and, in some cases, course syllabi. You may transfer up to 27 quarter credits from other graduate programs.
To receive transfer credit:
- Each course must be at least 3 graduate-quarter credits and be equivalent to courses taught in the School of Theology at SPU.
- Each course will be considered on a case-by-case basis as to the fulfillment of specific curricular requirements.
- A minimum grade of B will be needed for transferred work.
- All courses applied toward the graduate degree must be taken within seven years of admission.
- In all cases, the final 27 MA in Theology credits must be taken at SPU.
Credit for prior coursework
If you (1) have been granted a master's degree from another regionally accredited university or (2) have taken graduate level coursework in theology or a field related to the cross-disciplinary courses offered in the Student Ministry and Culture or Business and Applied Theology tracks, you will have your transcripts evaluated during the admissions process.
Applications are due May 15, although it is recommended that you complete application materials before April 1 to be eligible for financial aid.
Apply online, and for
more information about this program, contact The Graduate Center at firstname.lastname@example.org, or at
206-281-2888 or 800-601-0603 (toll free).
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