Theology, MA

The Master of Arts in Theology program is a well-balanced program of rigorous study in key theological areas, with the possibility of specialization. There is an emphasis on small-group discussion and the reading of primary texts with classes being scheduled to permit participation by working adults.

Program Specific Admission Requirements

All students must submit a writing sample. This should be an academic paper of at least 1,000 words in the humanities that explores some theologically related issue. Papers previously submitted in undergraduate classes are suitable. This requirement can be uploaded/submitted as part of the online application process.

A minimum undergraduate GPA requirement of 3.00 on a 4.00 scale with a solid background in the humanities is required. Students who lack the necessary undergraduate preparation may be provisionally accepted with the requirement that certain undergraduate courses be taken.  

For general application requirements, please click here.


The program requires completion of 30 graduate credits of which 15 credits are core requirements and 15 credits are electives. Students may tailor elective courses to their own interests.

There are four options for how these 15 elective credits are distributed. Students who take the theology thesis option, will take 9 elective credits in theology and devote 6 credits to the thesis. Students who take the standard non-thesis option, will take all 15 elective credits in theology courses and complete comprehensive exams. Students who take the education option will take 9 elective credits in theology and 6 in education (EFND 516 and EFND 521), will work with a teaching mentor in the theology department, and complete comprehensive exams. Students who take the counseling options will take 9 elective credits in theology, 6 credits in counseling (COUN 501, and 1 chosen from among COUN 502, COUN 503, COUN 506, COUN 508, COUN 584) and will complete comprehensive exams.

As a final requirement, all students must complete a capstone experience prior to graduation. To fulfill this capstone requirement, students taking all their courses in the Theology department may select a thesis or non-thesis option. Under the thesis option, after having completed 24 hours of coursework, the student devotes his or her final 6 hours to the thesis. Under the non-thesis option, the student completes all of the required 30 hours of coursework. In his or her last semester, or subsequently, the student takes a comprehensive examination, which serves as a capstone experience. 

For additional information on the curriculum, please visit the Graduate Course Catalog. 

    Why Choose Scranton?

    Nationally Ranked

    US News & World Report rated The University of Scranton among the 10 top master’s universities in the North in its “America’s Best Colleges” ranking.

    Jesuit Education

    As one of the 28 Jesuit colleges and universities in the United States, The University of Scranton is dedicated to developing the whole person.

    Dedicated Faculty

    Learn from an incomparable faculty with professional expertise that will challenge and inspire you.

    Mission Statement of the MA in Theology Program

    Our mission is to teach and inquire into the intellectual, spiritual and moral riches of the Christian tradition.

    We mean to acquaint students with Christianity's long and disciplined reflection on the deeply human questions about the quest for God, wisdom and human fulfillment. While accenting the Catholic tradition, our inquiry into these questions includes other Christians and religious traditions, including Judaism and Islam.

    Beyond the Classroom

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    Graduate Assistants, who assist faculty in the delivery of course content, receive a stipend as well as tuition scholarships.

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    Reduced Tuition

    The rate of tuition will be set at one-half of the regular graduate tuition.



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    Meet the Program Director

    Maria Poggi Johnson, Ph.D. photo

    Maria Poggi Johnson, Ph.D.

    Director of Graduate Program Professor


    B.A., Oxford University Ph.D., University of Virginia


    (570) 941-7957

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