Post-Master's Certificates in Theology

Flexible gateways to diverse professional and personal opportunities. Catholic Christian theological studies for students with a Master's degree and with traditional or non-traditional academic and professional expertise.

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Requirements

Please check the Program Requirements Checklist page for a first glance at specific requirements and options.

Specifically, choose 5 courses (3 credit hours each) on the basis of your interests and professional objectives, but no more than 3 courses in one departmental area.

The multi-disciplinary nature of theological inquiry at the University allows us to offer the Certificate in several concentrations, targeting the diverse interests of prospective students.

Study Full-time or Part-time

You may enroll as a full-time student and complete the program in one year. If you plan to study part-time you may enroll in as little as 1 course per semester and take up to 3 years to complete all requirements. To permit part-time students to work during the day, most courses meet in the evening.

Concentrations

The Certificate is available in these concentrations:

  • Historical Theology & Augustinian Studies
  • Biblical Studies
  • History of Church
  • Christian Ethics
  • Systematic & Fundamental Theology
  • Spirituality

The concentration in Historical Theology and Augustinian Studies consists of 2 courses (3 credit hours each) in biblical and historical studies, and 1 course (3 credit hours) in Augustinian studies.

Students in the other concentrations complete 5 courses (3 credit hours each) pertaining to the concentration.

Other Requirements

You are also required to attend a Research Proseminar in the fall semester of your first year of studies.

Requirements

Please check the Program Requirements Checklist page for a first glance at specific requirements and options.

Specifically, choose 5 courses (3 credit hours each) on the basis of your interests and professional objectives, but no more than 3 courses in one departmental area.

Study Full-time or Part-time

You may enroll as a full-time student and complete the program in one year. If you plan to study part-time you may enroll in as little as 1 course per semester and take up to 3 years to complete all requirements. To permit part-time students to work during the day, most courses meet in the evening.

Other Requirements

You are also required to attend a Research Proseminar in the fall semester of your first year of studies.

Requirements

  • 3 courses (3 credit hours each) in Theology (offered by the Department of Theology and Religious Studies); and
  • 2 courses (3 credit hours each) in one or two other fields of inquiry (offered by VU graduate programs, for example, in the Humanities or Social Sciences and approved by our Director of Graduate Programming).

With approval of our Director of Graduate Programming, students enrolled in a graduate program at Villanova (other than the M.A. in Theology program) may count 2 courses taken in their primary graduate program toward the Certificate.

In principle, the Director of Graduate Programming only approves courses that facilitate interdisciplinary theological inquiry.

1  Review Program Information

Please look around our web-site to find out as much as possible about us and our students, our programs, and Villanova's and our department's services for all her students. It is important to us that you consider Villanova a good fit for your academic journey. Feel free to contact us and request additional information about our master's program.

Of course, we heartily invite you to contact our program director for program specific information or members of our Graduate Theology Student Committee. And you are most welcome to visit us in person if you live nearby or plan on stopping by in Philadelphia. If you cannot visit in person, you can find detailed information on Villanova's campus and community, as well as the surrounding Philadelphia-area by taking a virtual tour.

2  Review your Academic Qualification

All applicants must hold a bachelor’s degree from an institution accredited by one of the regional accrediting agencies.

For admission to our post-master's Certificates we require that you already have completed a graduate degree in Theology at Villanova University or any other accredited college or university, with a graduate GPA of 3.0 or higher. Thus qualified, you satisfy all other admission requirements.

3  Contact the Director of Graduate Admissions

In our department, the Director of Graduate Admissions guides all applicants through the program admission process. We recommend that you contact the director in person, by email or telephone to discuss your unique situation, qualifications, and goals.

4  Apply for Admission

Please complete the online application before you submit additional application materials. We need a completed application to accurately record and match your supplemental material. Thus, without completed online application we will not be able to keep you informed about the status of your application material.

5  Submit Your Application Material

What's Needed
Online Application yes
Application Fee (non-refundable) $50
Resume optional
Writing Sample optional
Letters of Recommendation 2
Interview no
Transcripts yes
GRE (or equivalent) no
Statement of Objectives (500-700 words)* yes
Evidence of 5 years working experience in the fields of Theology or Religion (e.g., ministry, teaching, administration, education). if applicable
*Note: Please upload this document in the online application.

We do not require that you submit all application materials together. However, we consider applications only when all materials have been received. The items listed above are all we need to review your application. Please do not send unnecessary supporting documents. If you would like us to know about relevant experience or activities, feel free to include that information in your personal statement.

We review and approve applications on a rolling basis and admit applicants to the fall, spring, or summer semester. To insure a timely review, consider submitting your application well ahead of the posted deadlines.

6  What Happens Next?

Upon receiving all your application material, our Graduate Program Committee submits a recommendation concerning acceptance and matriculation status to the Office of Graduate Studies.

We aim to notify you of our acceptance decision by email and regular mail within one week of receiving your complete application.

7  Enroll in Your Classes

As soon as the Office of Graduate Studies admits you to the program you are free to enroll in your classes.

8 Transfer Between Programs

  • Students in a Certificate program may apply for acceptance to the MA degree program. Acceptance is dependent upon good academic standing in the Certificate program.
  • Students who have completed the requirements for a Certificate program and maintained a 3.0 GPA will, upon request, be accepted into the MA program. You may transfer all courses taken in fulfillment of the requirements for the Certificate to our master’s degree program.
  • Students enrolled in the MA program who do not wish to complete the degree program but have completed the requirements for a Certificate, will receive that Certificate.
  • Students who fulfill the requirements for two Certificates whose courses equal the required distribution of courses in the MA degree program, and pass the comprehensive examinations, will be awarded the MA in Theology degree.
  • Students with Special Student status wishing to continue in a Certificate program must petition the Director of Graduate Programming for a reevaluation of their status.

About Our Certificates

hands wide open

Do you not have a master's degree in theology or religion? Enroll in one of these programs:

Did you  already earn a master's degree in Theology or Religion? Enroll in of the these programs:

  • Pastoral Ministry
  • Advanced Theological Studies
  • Advanced Interdisciplinary Theological Inquiry