Catholic Education

Boston College’s roots are in the life and teachings of Jesus Christ, the 2,000-year Catholic intellectual tradition, and the faith experience of St. Ignatius Loyola, who founded the Society of Jesus in 1540.

At the Carolyn A. and Peter S. Lynch School of Education and Human Development, the Catholic concept of formation is foundational to our educational and religious heritage. We are dedicated to integrating intellectual excellence, a commitment to research, and service to society.

We strive to bring core strengths of Catholic education, like the centrality of moral and spiritual development, into education more broadly.
Stanton Wortham, Charles F. Donovan, S.J., Dean

Our Devotion

The Lynch School is the top-ranked Catholic school in U.S. News & World Report’s ranking of graduate schools of education. We prepare Catholic school teachers and leaders and conduct extensive research and professional development in Catholic school settings, from pre-K through higher education. We are dedicated to:

Our Jesuit, Catholic Identity

Our initiatives, research, and programs are animated by the core Jesuit, Catholic beliefs that inspire our mission, and by Ignatian pedagogical cycles of experiencing, reflecting, and acting.

Interdisciplinary Learning

Our approach to Catholic education is galvanized by collaboration across disciplines and perspectives. Lynch School students can pursue interdisciplinary dual-degree programs with Boston College’s School of Theology and Ministry, Law School, Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences, and School of Social Work.

Formative Education

In the Jesuit tradition of formation, the intellectual, social, and spiritual dimensions that make a person whole are interconnected. A commitment to educating the whole person is at the heart of our holistic vision for Catholic education.

Building a More Just World

Our efforts and initiatives in Catholic education are guided by a steadfast commitment to working for a more equitable world and caring for the poor and vulnerable. We empower teachers, scholars, educational leaders, and students to discern and promote equity and social justice through their work.

What unites our diverse work is the underlying aspiration to enhance the human condition, to expand the human imagination, and to make the world more just.
Mission statement, Carolyn A. and Peter S. Lynch School of Education and Human Development

Values-Driven Research

Our faculty conduct groundbreaking research on formative education, faith formation, leadership, and Catholic-school curriculum and instruction from a range of disciplinary and interdisciplinary perspectives, including theology, sociology, applied linguistics, psychology, measurement, and educational studies. This research sheds light on Catholic educators’ most promising insights and practices to enrich the lives of young people and facilitate their holistic development.

As a Catholic research university, Boston College prioritizes rigorous research that deepens our collective knowledge and understanding of the unique contributions of Catholic education, and in any given academic year, the University supports 10 to 20 research studies focused on Catholic schools and colleges. 

Through robust interdisciplinary scholarship, our faculty members strengthen the field of Catholic education locally, nationally, and globally, employing empirical and conceptual approaches to explore the full spectrum of the human condition. We are commited to forming scholar-practitioners who can engage critically with both theory and empirical evidence and apply them to their own contexts to advance the greater good.

Catholic educational research at the Lynch School is supported through the Warmenhoven Family Endowed Fund for Collaborative Teaching and Research in Catholic Education (a gift of Daniel and Charmaine Warmenhoven P ’05). This endowed fund provides resources for Lynch School faculty to address issues facing Catholic schools and supports faculty and graduate students in research priorities identified by the Lynch School Catholic Education Committee.

Catholic Partner Schools

St. Columbkille Partnership School students on their playground

The Lynch School has partnered with nearly 20 schools in the Boston Archdiocese, including St. Columbkille Partnership School—the designated laboratory school of the Lynch School of Education and Human Development. We are dedicated to enhancing opportunities for teacher training, educational research, and professional development.

More on the lab school designation

Living the Mission

Boston College helps its students connect their talents and strengths with the needs and opportunities of wider society through classes, curricula, and student formation efforts at every stage of their intellectual, social, and spiritual journeys.

Teacher Education Programs

Serving Exceptional Learners in Catholic Schools Certificate

Lynch School of Education and Human Development

This graduate-level certificate program—which can be completed on its own or as part of a doctoral or master’s program at the Lynch School—prepares Catholic school educators to serve the wide-ranging learning and behavioral needs of their students. Teachers sharpen their skills in managing classrooms of diverse learners, connect their practice with new research findings, and learn practical strategies to enhance student learning. 

Certificate in Religious Education

School of Theology and Ministry (STM)

Intended for educators in Catholic high schools and catechists in parishes who want to concentrate their knowledge, this 18-credit certificate program draws on STM’s tradition of expertise in religious education. Interested students can expand their knowledge and skills by exploring specific areas of ministry, or a range of theological and pastoral topics.

Master’s Degrees at STM

School of Theology and Ministry

STM offers an M.A. in Theology and Ministry for lay students seeking intensive study of theology, pastoral development, spiritual formation, and practical experience through a supervised ministry placement; a Master of Theological Studies (M.T.S.) for students who plan to go on to doctoral studies in theology; and the comprehensive professional Master of Divinity (M.Div.) degree program.

Educational Leadership Programs

Professional School Administrators Program (PSAP) 

Lynch School of Education and Human Development

PSAP provides an opportunity for educational leaders to earn a Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) in Educational Leadership through a three-year, cohort-based program at the Lynch School. Although the program is designed for all educational leaders interested in pursuing doctoral study and superintendent licensure, leaders of Catholic schools and diocesan school offices have had particular success in the program.  

Catholic Leadership Cohort (CLC)

Roche Center for Catholic Education

Each year, a select group of educators is accepted into the Roche Center’s Catholic Leadership Cohort, part of the Lynch School’s Master of Education (M.Ed.) in Educational Leadership and Policy program. Over 20 months, CLC members take courses online, participate in formation experiences, and develop as leaders.

Retreat for Women in Catholic Educational Leadership

Women in Catholic Educational Leadership

Roche Center for Catholic Education

This four-day retreat convenes women at all levels of Catholic educational leadership—principals, deans, superintendents, and board chairs—to grow in appreciation of their unique talents and develop a shared language for talking about their individual and collective contributions to Catholic education.

Lynch Leadership Academy Fellowship

Lynch Leadership Academy

The yearlong LLA Fellowship equips school leaders—including Catholic school principals and aspiring principals—to dramatically improve outcomes for students in under-resourced communities, and to build equity in their school communities. The fellowship combines rigorous professional development with individualized coaching and an intensive summer institute.

Diocese of Fall River Micro-Academy

Lynch Leadership Academy

The Lynch Leadership Academy is the first professional development program in the country to bring together principals and aspiring principals from public, charter, and Catholic schools. In 2018, it launched an off-campus Micro Academy to support leaders from schools along Massachusetts’s southern coast, including some in the Diocese of Fall River. Participants gather for workshops and coaching throughout the year. 

Archdiocese of Boston Micro-Academy

Lynch Leadership Academy

Open to principals, assistant principals, deans, and other leaders within Archdiocese of Boston schools, the yearlong Micro-Academy offers participants a chance to develop their skills as instructional leaders in Catholic schools, build community, and earn professional development points toward licensure renewal at no cost. 

Higher Education Programs

Catholic Higher Education Certificate

Explores the historical, sociological, and cultural dynamics at the intersection of religion and higher education. Students examine the contemporary role of religion in the academy, the rise of secularism, and challenges to the integration of faith and intellectual life.

M.A. in Higher Education

The only master’s degree in higher education with a concentration that prepares students to shape the policies and intellectual life of Catholic colleges and universities while supporting students in their own journeys of faith and spiritual development.

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Executive Ed.D. in Higher Education

The country’s only program of its kind to offer a concentration in Catholic higher education administration. Through formative activities, coursework, and professional development, students prepare for leadership roles at vibrant 21st-century Catholic colleges and universities.

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Professional Development Programs

Institute for Administrators in Catholic Higher Education (IACHE)

Lynch School of Education and Human Development

A four-day seminar held each July, IACHE provides a singular opportunity for administrators and leaders of Catholic colleges and universities around the globe to interact with outstanding scholars and practitioners as they address the most pressing issues facing contemporary Catholic higher education today. 

Emmaus Leadership Academies

Roche Center for Catholic Education

The 10-month Emmaus Leadership Academies are built around four critical domains of Catholic school leadership: Catholic and mission identity, governance and leadership, academic excellence, and operational vitality. Participating Catholic school leaders delve deeply into their domains of choice. Meanwhile, they receive executive coaching, participate in faith formation experiences, and develop as a community of leaders.

Superintendent Professional Learning Community

Roche Center for Catholic Education

This yearlong professional learning community—a collaboration between the Roche Center and Reverend Ronald Nuzzi of Catapult Learning—convenes leaders at the diocesan level for two in-person retreats and monthly virtual conversations on critical issues facing Catholic school superintendents.

Two-Way Immersion Network for Catholic Schools (TWIN-CS)

Roche Center for Catholic Education

A national network of 21 dual-language Catholic schools, TWIN-CS implements a two-way, immersive model of instruction. Founded in 2012, the network supports member schools with a summer academy, monthly webinars, and professional learning gatherings led by national dual-language experts. 

Critical Conversations in Catholic Education

Critical Conversations in Catholic Education

Roche Center for Catholic Education

In partnership with graduate students from Boston College’s School of Theology and Ministry, the Roche Center sponsors an annual course in which Catholic educators can gather to explore a critical topic that significantly affects contemporary Catholic schools. (Last year’s course focused on Immigration and the Response of Catholic Educators.)

Institute for Advanced Jesuit Studies

The Institute for Advanced Jesuit Studies seeks to deepen understanding and appreciation of the history, spirituality, educational heritage, and pedagogical approach of the Society of Jesus. It offers courses, workshops, publications, and scholarly symposia as well as collaborative opportunities for scholars from around the world to develop a network that promotes the expanding field of Jesuit Studies. 

Continuing Education at the School of Theology and Ministry (STM)

School of Theology and Ministry

STM’s Continuing Education program offers top-tier, noncredit theological and pastoral resources for Catholic educators in both English and Spanish. Resources include online courses, on-campus presentations, certificate programs, and digital learning tools such as podcasts and videos.

Undergraduate, Ph.D. & Ecclesiastical Programs

Experience, Reflection, and Action

Based on the three core Ignatian pedagogical practices, this Lynch School program introduces first-year students to formative education and helps them discern who they are and their role in the world.

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Ph.D. in Theology and Education

This School of Theology and Ministry interdisciplinary Ph.D. program prepares future leaders and scholars, focusing on religious education that branches out into practical and pastoral theology. Students also take courses at the Lynch School and Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences.

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Ecclesiastical Degree Programs

The School of Theology and Ministry offers three programs in the Catholic ecclesiastical degree progression: the Bachelor of Sacred Theology, Licentiate in Sacred Theology, and Doctorate in Sacred Theology. Those wishing to teach in Catholic education frequently pursue the latter two degrees.

Learn more

Catholic Education Committee

Martin Scanlan

Chair, Catholic Education Committee

Associate Professor, Educational Leadership and Higher Education

Lynch School of Education and Human Development

Casey Beaumier, S.J.

Director

Institute for Advanced Jesuit Studies

Cristiano Casalini

Associate Professor and Endowed Chair in Jesuit Pedagogy and Educational History, Lynch School of Education and Human Development

Research Scholar, Institute for Advanced Jesuit Studies 

Charles Cownie

Director, Urban Catholic Teacher Corps

Director, Catholic Teacher Formation

Lynch School of Education and Human Development


 

Cristina Hunter

Assistant Director, Urban Catholic Teacher Corps

Lynch School of Education and Human Development

Michael James

Lecturer, Higher Education

Director, Institute for Administrators in Catholic Higher Education

Lynch School of Education and Human Development

Deoksoon Kim

Associate Professor, Teaching, Curriculum, and Society

Lynch School of Education and Human Development

Meghan Lovett

Director, Continuing Education

School of Theology and Ministry

Eileen McLaughlin

Leadership Coach, Lynch Leadership Academy

Carroll School of Management


 

Andrew Miller

Assistant Professor, Educational Leadership

Lynch School of Education and Human Development

Hosffman Ospino

Associate Professor of Hispanic Ministry and Religious Education

School of Theology and Ministry

Amy Ryan

Assistant Dean, Field Placement and Outreach

Lynch School of Education and Human Development

Melodie Wyttenbach

Executive Director, Roche Center for Catholic Education

Lynch School of Education and Human Development