The Baccalaureate in Sacred Theology degree provides the opportunity to attain a basic theological education and competency.

This is a prerequisite for the further specialization of the licentiate (S.T.L.), which in this degree sequence presupposes familiarity with the wide variety of subject matter and disciplines that constitute the Christian theological tradition as reflected in the S.T.B. curriculum.


  • A bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university.
  • Superior achievement and the ability to pursue graduate work as indicated by official transcripts from previous institutions of study.
  • The results of the Graduate Record Examination, GRE, or Miller Analogies Test, MAT. GRE scores (vs. MAT or TOEFL) are necessary for applicants to be considered for most university scholarships.
  • Non-native English-speakers should demonstrate evidence of English proficiency through submission of Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) scores or through some other means.
  • At least three academic letters of recommendation.
  • An undergraduate foundation in philosophy, which includes a demonstrated background in the following areas: history of philosophy, logic, metaphysics, ethics, philosophy of God, and philosophical anthropology.
  • An undergraduate background in religious studies that has provided an introduction to Old Testament literature and an introduction to New Testament literature.
  • A reading knowledge of Latin.


Students must maintain at least a 2.75 GPA. No student may carry a course load beyond 15 credit hours per semester. To ensure the academic integrity of the degree, one course per term and one per area may be taken outside the school.

Students are expected to have a reading knowledge of Latin. Since Latin is considered a prerequisite, it must be satisfied by the end of the first fall semester in the program. A minimum of 69 semester hours of credit is required according to the following distribution:

  • The Pro-seminar for master's students ordinarily should be taken in the first semester.
  • Foundational — 21 credits
  • Systematic theology — 15 credits
  • Liturgical studies and sacramental theology — six credits
  • Moral theology — nine credits
  • Scripture — 15 credits
  • Church history--three credits
  • Students who are candidates for priesthood in the Roman Catholic Church must take one course in a non-Roman Catholic ecclesial tradition during the course of studies.

Six Year Ph.B./S.T.B. Program

In conjunction with the School of Philosophy, the School of Theology and Religious Studies offers a six-year joint Bachelor of Philosophy (Ph.B.) and Bachelor of Sacred Theology (S.T.B.) degree program for qualified students. This six-year joint program is an integrated program of 64 three-credit courses leading to the two degrees. To complete the program in six years requires a total of four courses distributed in the first two summers of the program. For more information please contact the office of the Associate Dean for Seminary and Ministerial Programs.

S.T.B. and M.Div. in Hispanic Ministry Degree

The joint S.T.B. and M.Div. degrees have one possible concentration in Hispanic Ministry. This concentration focuses the standard S.T.B. and M.Div. degree through the selection of graduate courses in these three areas: 1. Language proficiency. 2. Hispanic theology and culture. 3. Pastoral theology (three credits in Hispanic Ministry plus field placement and competency in sacramental ministry).

Comprehensive Exam

To qualify for the comprehensive examination, the student must have satisfied the Latin requirement and have a grade point average of 2.75 or above. Usually the student takes the comprehensive examination during the sixth semester of study. The subject matter of the examination is material covered in the courses in systematic and sacramental theology, moral theology, and Scripture. Past exam questions and a list of themes and readings for review are available from the office of the associate dean for seminary and ministerial studies. Students may choose either three hours of written examination or one hour of oral examination before three members of the faculty. In order to pass the comprehensive exam, a student must receive an average grade of 2.5 (on a scale of 0 to 4.0) on the exam. A candidate for the S.T.B. degree may not continue candidacy after two failures in the comprehensive examination.