Master of Divinity (MDiv)
The Master of Divinity (MDiv) program is the normative degree to prepare you for ordained ministry and for general pastoral leadership responsibilities in congregations and other settings. It is also the recommended first theological degree for admission to advanced doctoral programs oriented to theological research and teaching.
The MDiv degree at Seattle Pacific University supports SPU's mission and vision to engage the culture and change the world with the transforming gospel of Jesus Christ. The 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.
The MDiv degree incorporates knowledge of Christian heritage (Scripture, church history, and theology), understanding of cultural context, growth in spiritual depth and moral integrity, and capacity for ministerial and public leadership. In addition, the MDiv degree provides a breadth of exposure to the various theological fields of study, educating students for a comprehensive range of pastoral responsibilities and skills.
The degree consists of 120 quarter credits (which is equivalent to 80 semester credits). The first 39 quarter credits are taken in a core curriculum upon which all graduate programs in the Seattle Pacific Seminary are based.
- The curriculum consists of two pre-autumn intensive introductory courses in spiritual formation and mission, and three courses each in Bible, church history, and theology/ethics.
- The remaining credits are taken in a number of theological disciplines.
University and program requirements for admission into the Master of Divinity (MDiv) 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 divinity (MDiv) 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 Services (NACES).
- 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 Seminary Admissions Committee will evaluate you on the basis of your application materials. The combination of 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 Seminary Admissions Committee and communicated to you 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 MDiv, you must provide official transcripts and, in some cases, course syllabi. You may transfer up to 40 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 40 MDiv credits must be taken at SPU.
Credit for prior coursework
You will have your transcripts evaluated during the admissions process for the following:
- Have been granted a master's degree from another regionally accredited university.
- 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.
- Have taken coursework related to the MDiv degree.
Applications are due May 15, but 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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