Admission Requirements
The Master of Divinity (M.Div.) and Master of Arts in Theological Studies (MATS) programs are open to qualified students of all Christian traditions. Every student must have earned the degree of Bachelor of Arts or its equivalent, based upon four years of work beyond secondary education in a college or university approved by one of the regional accrediting bodies. Exemption from this requirement must be fully justified and documented. Applicants who have achieved an average grade of B or better (3.0 on a 4-point scale) in appropriate baccalaureate or pre-M.Div. subjects receive priority in admission.

Students from institutions of collegiate standing outside the United States in which a bachelor's degree is not granted may be admitted if they present satisfactory evidence of having completed work comparable to that required for a B.A. degree in American institutions, and of having adequate financial support.

Preparation for undertaking M.Div. work should include experience with critical thinking, writing, and the study of the humanities and social sciences. Applications that show gaps or weaknesses in these areas may be placed on hold by the Admissions committee until the applicant takes courses that demonstrate or improve the ability to do graduate work in theology. An applicant may be also be admitted with the proviso that certain approved introductory courses in the history of world civilizations, philosophy, or English composition are to be taken before embarking on the first year of the seminary program. When such a stipulation is made, the courses must be completed at an accredited college or university with a grade of no less than B (3.0).

For applicants to the M.Div. program whose undergraduate or graduate education was not in English, a minimum TOEFL test score of 550 (213 computer-based, or 80 Internet-based) must be earned as part of the application for any SFTS degree program.

SFTS reserves the right to exercise its discretion in distributing or not distributing, accepting or rejecting, and processing or not processing applications for admission on any grounds consistent with the Seminary's educational and religious purposes and with the standards under which the Seminary is accredited.

When to Apply
Prospective students are invited to submit applications as soon as their plans for attending seminary become sufficiently clear. The Admissions Committee evaluates applications dossiers at the next meeting after the dossiers are completed, and the applicants are notified promptly thereafter. Because housing and financial aid are allocated to new applicants in the order of confirmation of admission, early completion of the admissions process is recommended.

For admission in the fall semester applications should be received in the Admissions Office by May 1, with the committee decision forthcoming by May 31. Applications made after that date may be considered at the committee's discretion. Applications for admission for the spring semester are not accepted to the San Anselmo/Berkeley program due to the sequential nature of courses in several areas of the curriculum.

Provisional Admission
Applicants with grade point averages below 3.0 from their most recent degree program may be admitted provisionally to the M.Div. program. Students on provisional admission must take all courses for letter grades except those offered for Pass/Fail only. Upon successful completion (GPA of 2.0 or better) of the first full semester (12 units), provisional students enter regular standing.

As an alternative to entering with provisional status, applicants may choose to raise their GPA by enrolling as unclassified students or enrolling in appropriate pre-M.Div. or M.Div. related courses at another accredited institution. Normally no more than eight courses taken in unclassified status may be applied toward meeting M.Div. requirements. Applicants also may take the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) to demonstrate their readiness for graduate study.

Admission Confirmation
Those admitted to the M.Div. or MATS program must confirm their acceptance of admission within two weeks of written notification with a $200 non-refundable tuition deposit. This deposit is credited toward the tuition fee when the applicant matriculates and may be waived if the applicant is already paying tuition to SFTS as an unclassified student.


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Educational Programs

Master of Divinity
Master of Arts in Theological Studies
Doctor of Ministry
Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE)
Program in Christian Spirituality

Contact Information

San Francisco Theological Seminary
105 Seminary Rd
San Anselmo CA, 94960
Phone: 415.451.2800