All around the world, at parishes, high schools, and college campuses, in healthcare and social service settings, our M.A. graduates serve as leaders in ecclesial ministry roles. Online and summer options allow you to tailor the program to your needs.
This two-year, 48-credit program is particularly well suited for lay students seeking intensive study of theology, pastoral development, active engagement in spiritual formation, and practical experience gained through a supervised ministry placement.
You can also pursue dual-degree programs, combining the M.A. with master’s degrees in social work (M.S.W.), business (M.B.A.), counseling (M.A.), or nursing (M.S.).
Connect with STM to learn more about the M.A. application process.
This 48-credit program is typically completed in two years of full-time study.
Veteran supervisors oversee your work, and weekly meetings provide a forum for
STM students to reflect on and synthesize ministry experiences within a classroom setting. | Supervised Ministry
Each students completes a thesis that explores a topic of interest and gives the student
an opportunity to demonstrate their learning across theological and pastoral coursework and applied contextual experiences. | Thesis Guidelines
Scholarships and on-campus assistantships are available. | Financial Aid
The M.A. program has been designed to be flexible. Students in this program will be guided by our faculty advisors to craft the best program of study and sequence of courses for you. You can take advantage of our on-campus course offerings throughout the academic year, take online courses, and take courses over the summer sessions. Through an intensive program of study, it is possible to complete the program in 3 years. However, you have up to 5 years to complete the program, if you would rather focus on taking one or two courses at a time.
*If you plan to take online STM courses during the academic year in order to complete the M.A. in 3 years, please do not take courses that will satisfy similar area requirements during the summers. For planning purposes, upcoming online courses are listed below:
Fundamental Moral: Call and Response, Mary Jo Iozzio
Christology, Barbara Anne Radtke
The program reflects the University’s mission to educate individuals who are committed to the pursuit of social justice. A specific goal is to develop the skills and credentials necessary to plan, administer and/or provide social services within a local church or church-related agency. Students admitted to the program may expect to receive both the Master of Arts in Theology and Ministry (M.A.) and the Master of Social Work (M.S.W.) degrees in approximately 3 years of full-time study (more if approved for part-time study by the School of Social Work). Students generally begin their studies at STM, and students are encouraged to stay in close contact with their advisors in both STM and SSW.
The dual M.A./M.A. in Counseling program was developed for individuals who wish to pursue graduate studies that combine theories and practice in counseling and psychology with studies in religion and exploration of the pastoral dimensions of caregiving. It combines the foundational studies and faculty resources of the M.A. in Theology and Ministry with the M.A. in Counseling. Students generally complete the dual degrees in approximately 3 years of full-time study
The dual M.A./M.A. program attracts students who wish to include an appreciation for the faith or spiritual dimensions of human life into their practice of mental health counseling. Dual-degree students couple their study of counseling psychology with the study of pastoral care and spirituality and can seek licensing as professional mental health counselors. Such licensed counselors are well equipped to seek positions in mental health agencies, shelters, pastoral placements in parishes, campus ministry programs, prison work and youth and young adult programs. Graduates will bring the strength of solid counseling skills and exposure to spiritual direction work to their positions.
This program is designed for students interested in careers in the management and administration of churches and Church-related organizations and corporations such as dioceses, hospital systems, and social service agencies. Understanding competent and ethical management as a ministry to the Church and related organizations, the program reflects the University’s mission to educate individuals to serve with excellence in their fields and to work for social and economic justice. Students generally begin their studies at STM, and students are encouraged to stay in close contact with advisors both in STM and the Carroll School.
This program is designed for nurses with experience in clinical practice who wish to pursue graduate studies that combine theories and practice in nursing with studies in theology and exploration of the pastoral dimensions of caring. It equips students for certification as an Advanced Practice Nurse, while also providing them with the theoretical foundations for integrating pastoral ministry and nursing. Nurses educated in the dual M.A./M.S. program will be well prepared to offer advanced practice nursing across the life span. For nurses committed to addressing the spiritual dimensions of nursing care in any setting, the degree will enhance both their nursing practice and their participation in a community of Christian faith. Students may complete the dual degrees in approximately 3 years of full-time study.
A non-refundable fee of $75 is required for every degree and non-degree application submitted.
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.
GRE scores are required for M.A. 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.
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 email@example.com. 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).
For applicants using the U.S. Postal Service:
Boston College School of Theology and Ministry
140 Commonwealth Avenue
Chestnut Hill, MA 02467
For applicants using FedEx or UPS, please use this address:
Boston College School of Theology and Ministry
9 Lake Street
Brighton, MA 02135-3841
M.A. 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 either in person or 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.
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: