Bachelor in Sacred Theology (S.T.B.)

Bachelor of Sacred Theology (S.T.B.)

The Bachelor in Sacred Theology (S.T.B.) is a first level, three-year ecclesiastical degree granted in the name of the Holy See through the Ecclesiastical Faculty of the School of Theology and Ministry (STM), by virtue of its status as an ecclesiastical faculty accredited by the Vatican Congregation of Catholic Education. In January of 2021, pending approval by the Board of Members governing the Ecclesiastical Faculty of Boston College, the STM will offer a newly revised curriculum for the Bachelor of Sacred Theology. A copy of the new S.T.B. curriculum, designed in accord with the most recent requirements set forth by Pope Francis in the 2018 Apostolic Constitution Veritatis Gaudium, is available upon request.

The S.T.B. prepares one to pursue the second-level Licentiate of Sacred Theology (S.T.L.) and the third-level Doctorate in Sacred Theology (S.T.D.), both of which are research-oriented ecclesiastical degree also offered by the STM. The S.T.B. can be particularly useful for those who intend to apply for admission to S.T.L. programs abroad, where the S.T.B. and not an equivalent course of studies, is often required for application and admission.

Degree Requirements

  • New curriculum pending approval by the governing board of the Ecclesiastical Faculty of Boston College; available upon request.
  • Proficiency in Latin, demonstrated either through recent successful coursework or by passing a translation examination
  • S.T.B. comprehensive examination, given in the final semester of the program

Prerequisites for Admission

  • 30 credit hours of philosophy
  • Students interested in applying to the S.T.B. program should reach out to Anthony Russo, assistant dean for enrollment management, before starting an application:

Our Faculty

Common Career Paths

Ecclesial ministry in a parish, high school, university, or diocese

Social justice agencies

Religious and other nonprofit organizations

Doctoral work

Hospital chaplaincy

High school teaching

Prison Ministry


Application Information



Fall 2019
February 1, 2019
Spring 2019
December 1, 2018

Application Form

The application to STM must be completed online.

Application Form


Admission Prerequisites for the S.T.B.:  30 credit hours in philosophy.


Additional requirements for international applicants

Additional requirements for religious applicants

Application Fee

A non-refundable fee of $75 is required for every degree and non-degree application submitted.

Payment Options

  • Pay by credit or debit card via the web; You can pay the application fee at the same time your submit your application form.  However, if you do not pay the fee at the same time you submit your application, you can pay online at a later date through the Agora Portal. You must use your BC Username and password to log in.

  • Pay by check or money order made payable to Boston College, via regular mail.  Please include your check with a copy of your application form submission confirmation page and include your name and intended degree program.

Please note: The application fee cannot be refunded for any reason. If you qualify for a fee waiver, you should not pay the fee when you submit the application form. Fee waivers are automatically granted to the following applicants: Jesuits, applicants currently completing a year of service, and current STM students. We do not waive the application fee for other reasons.

Standardized Tests

GRE scores
GRE scores are required for S.T.B. applicants. They should be sent directly from ETS.  Our GRE code is 2508.

The GRE is waived for applicants who have completed a previous graduate degree.

TOEFL scores
All applicants for whom English is not their native language must also provide TOEFL test score results. An acceptable TOEFL score is 85 or above on the internet-based test. When taking the exam, include STM’s institutional code – 3971 – so that your scores may be sent directly to the school. Learn more about the TOEFL and about qualifications for a TOEFL waiver.


One copy of each transcript is required from all colleges, universities, seminaries, or theological schools that you have attended. Each transcript should contain a list of all coursework taken, grades/marks received, and, if applicable, degree granted and date of degree confirmation. If your college or university will send official transcripts electronically, they can be emailed to  Otherwise, transcripts must be mailed and be contained in a sealed, signed envelope. If the official transcript is not English, a translation should be provided with the official document. Please alert us if your transcript will be arriving with a different name than the one you are using on your application (e.g. your maiden name).

Mailing Addresses
For applicants using the U.S. Postal Service:
Boston College School of Theology and Ministry
Simboli Hall
140 Commonwealth Avenue
Chestnut Hill, MA 02467

For applicants using FedEx or UPS, please use this address:
Boston College School of Theology and Ministry
Simboli Hall
9 Lake Street
Brighton, MA 02135-3841


S.T.B. applicants are required to submit three recommendations using the online application system. 

Each recommender should be familiar with the applicant’s academic competence. For applicants who have been out of school for a significant amount of time, recommenders should be familiar with the applicant's professional competence. One recommender should be familiar with the applicant's ministerial potential and experience. Please be sure that your recommenders are aware of the application deadlines and online process, and choose them carefully to ensure that they can write on your behalf in a timely manner.


The admissions office may contact applicants to set up an interview by Skype.


The resume must be uploaded as part of the application.  It is helpful if you highlight relevant ministry, service, and leadership positions you have held.

Personal Statement

The personal statement must be uploaded as part of the application.  The personal statement should be three pages in length, double-spaced.

Your statement should address the following:

  • The academic, professional, and personal development that has motivated you to apply to STM. Include a sketch of your educational background and interests, any experience you have in ministry and/or religious education, and any other relevant professional and volunteer experience
  • Your understanding of theological education and/or ministry in the context of the Church’s mission
  • How you plan to apply your theological education
  • Given your experience, how you assess your principal strengths for theological education and/or ministry as well as your areas of needed development