Santa Clara University

Jesuit School of Theology of Santa Clara University in Berkeley

Master of Theological Studies (M.T.S.)


The Master of Theological Studies program offers students a broad understanding of the Catholic theological vision in combination with areas of concentration including liturgy, history, spirituality and ethics. Students can complete the degree on a full-time basis, but the program also accommodates the schedules of part-time students with evening and weekend course offerings. The M.T.S. is an ideal program for persons engaged in ministry or seeking theological enrichment and a rewarding exploration of their faith. M.T.S. students become theologically literate in the scriptures, doctrinal history and the ethical consequences of that doctrine. Students also learn a theology of ministry for service in a changing Church and world.

Areas of Concentration

Admission Requirements and Prerequisites

The Jesuit School welcomes the application of all qualified persons who wish to pursue the Master of Theological Studies program. Prerequisites for the M.T.S. include:

  1. A bachelor's degree, in Arts or Sciences, or its academic equivalent, completed with at least a 3.0 (B) Grade Point Average.
  2. The applicant should have a background in theology or religious studies, either through formal coursework or its equivalent.
  3. The applicant should have been involved for at least one year in active ministry or its equivalent.

Advanced Standing

A student who has taken graduate courses in theology no longer than six years prior to registration may petition for advanced placement in the M.T.S. program. This petition may be included with the Application for Admission or it may be submitted during the first semester of study at the Jesuit School. No more than 12 semester units of advanced standing can be applied to the Jesuit School M.T.S. program. Petition forms are available from the Assistant Academic Dean or the Office of Admissions.

Degree Requirements

The Master of Theological Studies degree requires the completion of 48 semester hours (16 three-unit courses). A full-time student may expect to complete the M.T.S. degree in two academic years, but must complete the program within four calendar years from the date of first registration in the program. Twelve semester units is the normal full-time course load.

Credit Distribution for Course Work

Forty-eight semester hours of credit must be completed according to the following course distribution.  Students are strongly urged to do 12 units of their degree program in courses at other GTU schools.  Students in all degree programs must maintain a 3.0 Cumulative Grade Point Average (CGPA) to graduate.  A grade of B- or better is necessary in all courses used to satisfy a requirement for all Jesuit School of Theology degree programs.

General Theology (27 credits)

  1. 24 of these units should be taken in basic theology:
  2. 3 units for the MTS Proseminar.

Theological Concentration (9-15 credits)

  1. Students concentrating in one of the areas of study listed under general theology must take 9 additional units in their area of concentration in addition to the general theology requirement.  The total number of credits that constitute a concentration is 15.
  2. The only currently recognized area of concentration that is not a general theology requirement is Catholic Studies.  Students concentrating in Catholic studies must take 15 units of Catholic Studies in order to fulfill their concentration. (N.B. Any two courses in the general theology requirement that have a distinctly Catholic focus may be counted toward the total of 15)

N.B.  The units required for the two components (general theology and theological concentration) may be altered, with the permission of the Associate Academic Dean, if the student has already done extensive work in general theology or the area of concentration. 

Electives (6-12 credits)

All other courses taken in the MTS program are electives.  Students concentrating in general theology fields have 12 units of elective coursework.  Students concentrating in Catholic Studies have at least 6, and up to 12, units of electives, depending on whether their general theology courses reflect distinctively Catholic themes. 

Synthesis paper or project  

The paper (roughly 40 pages) or equivalent project will synthesize the theological concentration and the general theological component.  A proposal for the project or paper is subject to the approval of the Academic Dean who will approve the principal advisor and a second reader.


Program Brochures
Contact Information

Please refer all inquires, including requests for application forms, directly to:

Admissions Department

Maureen Beckman

Assistant Dean of Enrollment Management and Marketing
Phone: 510-549-5016

Grace Hogan
Associate Director of Enrollment Management
Phone: 510-549-5013


Mailing Address:
1735 LeRoy Avenue
Berkeley, CA 94709