How To Apply

Thank you for your interest in the CSTM. We typically receive approximately 650 applications annually from potential students all over the world. About 150 students join our vibrant community each year. We review each application holistically, looking for academic excellence, ministerial experience, and potential for leadership. 

The Application Process

Choose a Program

Search for a program that fits your needs and goals. Select from master's programs, doctorate programs, and more.

Prepare Your Materials

Check application requirements and deadlines for your specific program and prepare your documents.

Complete Your Application

For graduate program admission, fill out the BC application.

Studying Theology at BC: World-Class Breadth & Depth

Boston College is a world-class center of theological study, comprising both the Clough School of Theology and Ministry (CSTM) as well as a Theology Department in the Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences. Students in each have access to courses and faculty in both entities—enhancing the breadth and depth of theological study at BC. Combined, CSTM and the Theology Department represent the nation's largest theological faculty.

CSTM hosts master's and certificate programs in theology and ministry, as well as a sequence of ecclesiastical degrees (STB, STL, and STD) and an interdisciplinary Ph.D. in theology and education.

The Theology Department houses the University's undergraduate and doctoral programs in theology as well as a Joint M.A. in Philosophy and Theology. 

Application FAQ

question match your criteria

Can I defer once I am accepted?
<p>Applicants may defer their offer of admission for up to one year. Applicants who have been accepted into a program should notify the Admissions Office as soon as possible with any changes in their enrollment plans. Scholarships and other financial aid awards, however, cannot be deferred. Candidates will be re-evaluated for financial aid during the year of their enrollment.<br /> </p>
Can I just take a class or two?
<p>Yes, twenty percent of our students are part-time, non-degree seeking students. You can take up to four CSTM classes without having to enroll in a degree program. If you then decide to apply for a degree, these classes can be credited toward your degree. If you would like to sit in on a class without fulfilling the requirements for credit, you can apply as an auditor.</p> <p><a href="/content/bc-web/schools/stm/academics/degrees-certificates/certificates-and-non-degree.html"><span class="btn btn-default btn-gold">Non-Degree Options</span></a></p>
Can the English proficiency test requirement be waived?
<p>The English proficiency test requirement can be waived for international students who qualify under the following categories:</p> <ul> <li>You are a citizen of Australia, Canada (except Quebec), Great Britain, Ireland, New Zealand, Guyana, an Anglophone country of Africa, or an English-speaking country of the Caribbean.</li> <li>You earned your prior college or university degree in the U.S.A., in one of the countries listed above in section 1, or at a college or university where the official language of instruction is English.</li> <li>You are currently enrolled as a full-time student in a degree-granting program in the U.S.A. or at an English-speaking school in one of the countries listed above in section 1 and will have completed at least two academic years of college/university work before beginning your studies at Boston College.</li> </ul>
Do I need to have a theology major to apply?
<p>No formal background in theology, no problem! All undergraduate majors are considered. While a strong liberal arts background is helpful, our students come from a variety of backgrounds and disciplines. Although CSTM does provide a rigorous academic environment, it offers a wide array of classes, tailoring to all levels of theological understanding and interest.<br> </p>
Do I need to take the GRE?
<p>The GRE is optional. We recommend that applicants consider submitting scores if they do not have a strong background in the humanities or if they feel that their undergraduate transcripts are not indicative of their ability to succeed in graduate studies. <br /> </p>
If I am an international applicant, what additional application requirements do I have?
<p>International applicants are asked to submit the following additional requirements:</p> <ul> <li>Two brief supplemental essays: These essays cannot be written or edited by anyone but the applicant themself in English. This requirement is waived for applicants from select countries and who are applying to select degree programs. Please follow the prompts in your application.<br> </li> <li>Video Essay: Within the online application you will find a “Video Essay” section, in which you will be prompted to give a 90 second verbal response to a random question. Once you are given the prompt, you will have 60 seconds to prepare your response. You will have 2 attempts to answer the question; this portion of the application requires a web-camera to complete. If you experience any difficulties, please contact our office. This requirement is waived for applicants from select countries and who are applying to select degree programs.</li> <li><span id="docs-internal-guid-3f02ac95-7fff-8b7e-11f7-785ec3c7a09d">English Language Exam: All applicants for whom English is not their native language must also provide test score results from one of two tests:</span><ul> <li><span id="docs-internal-guid-6b06259d-7fff-bf53-e0af-229ef5f652dc">TOEFL: An acceptable TOEFL score is 85 or above on the internet-based test. When taking the exam, include CSTM’s institutional code—3971—so that your scores may be sent directly to the school.</span></li> <li>IELTS: An acceptable IELTS score is 7.5 (band score) or above on the paper- or internet-based test. Results can be sent to the Clough School of Theology and Ministry directly.<br> </li> <li>If you feel that you may be eligible for an English Language waiver, please see the FAQ &quot;Can the English proficiency test requirement be waived?&quot;</li> </ul> </li> </ul> <p><a href="/content/bc-web/schools/stm/sites/audience-pages/international-applicants.html"><span class="btn btn-default btn-gold">International Applicant Info</span></a></p>
If I am part of a religious order, what additional application requirements do I have?
<p>Religious applicants must include their bishop or major superior (for religious orders) as recommenders for their application. This means that religious applicants must have 4 total letters of recommendation: 3 general recommenders and 1 bishop/major superior. Please select the appropriate recommendation type (general or bishop/major superior) when adding recommenders to your application.&nbsp;</p> <p>For Jesuits: All of the CSTM’s admission procedures apply to Jesuit applicants. Before applying, international Jesuits must contact the Rector of the St. Peter Faber Jesuit Community, <a href="">Fr. Michael Boughton, S.J.</a><br> </p>
Is a minimum GRE or GPA required?
<p>Applications at CSTM are reviewed holistically, taking all elements of your file into consideration. While your previous coursework and standardized test scores will be part of the review, we do not use them as cut-offs or post minimum score requirements. If you are concerned with your scores, please contact the Admissions Office so that we can speak with you individually.</p>
Is there a minimum IELTS or TOEFL score to apply?
<p>An acceptable TOEFL score is 85 or above on the internet-based test. When taking the exam, please include CSTM’s institutional code (3971) so that your scores may be sent directly to the school. An acceptable IELTS score is 7.5 (band score) or above on the paper- or internet-based test. Results can be sent to the Boston College Clough School of Theology and Ministry directly.</p>
What financial aid is available?
<p>Each year, the CSTM awards scholarships to new students, supporting those candidates who have the strongest academic credentials, ministerial commitment, and greatest financial need. Most students fund their studies through a combination of tuition scholarship, on-campus work, and federal student loans. 100% of master's students receive scholarship support.</p> <p><span class="btn btn-default btn-maroon"><a href="/content/bc-web/schools/stm/admission/tuition-aid.html">Tuition &amp; Aid</a></span></p>
What is the application fee?
<p>The application fee is $75. We provide fee waivers for Jesuits, current CSTM students, veterans, individuals completing a year of service with a Catholic Volunteer Network program, and individuals who are Pell Grant-eligible. If any of these situations apply to you, please reach out to the Admissions Office at <a href=""></a>.</p>
When will I find out if I am admitted?
<p>Applicants looking to start in the fall semester who submit their application by the priority deadline in January can expect an admissions decision by mid-February. Scholarship awards are released at the same time as an admission decision. To ensure your application will be considered for the greatest number of financial aid opportunities available, and to allow for an efficient processing and consideration process, please confirm on your application status page that your application is complete with all application materials.</p> <p>For applications received after the priority deadline, and for spring and summer applications, it can take up to 3 weeks for your application to be reviewed and a decision to be released. When a decision is ready, you will receive an email that an update has been posted to your application portal. If you have any questions during the review process, please do not hesitate to contact the Admissions Office.   </p> <p> </p>

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