Earning a Degree at Fuller Theological Seminary
Fuller Theological Seminary appears in our ranking of the 30 Best Theological Seminaries in the United States.
Students who enroll in a degree program at Fuller Theological Seminary will choose from degrees housed within the School of Theology, School of Intercultural Studies, and the School of Psychology. The seminary only offers graduate and doctoral programs, as well as some certificate programs and the opportunity to enroll as a non-degree seeking student or in an audit-only capacity.
Applicants who want to study fully online have a handful of options that don’t require any time spent on campus. Fuller Theological Seminary offers its Master of Divinity, Master of Arts in Theology, Master of Arts in Theology and Ministry, and the Master of Arts in Intercultural Studies fully online. There are no residency requirements for enrolling in the programs, and students can also enroll in a Certificate in Christian Studies program online.
Additional degree paths available for students at the master’s degree level include a Master of Arts in Theology that’s delivered in Spanish and a Master of Divinity that’s also offered in Spanish. Students interested in advanced degrees can also choose a Doctor of Ministry in Korean or Spanish, as well as a Th.M. in Theology.
From the seminary’s School of Psychology, students can enroll in a Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy or in advanced degree programs that include a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology or a Doctor of Psychology in Clinical Psychology. The seminary offers further options for study within its School of Intercultural studies with master’s degrees, advanced degrees, and non-degree programs.
Students who want to enroll in programs but aren’t interested in entering a full degree program can choose the Certificate in Christian Studies, the Certificate in Church Planting, or the Certificate in Islamic Studies. Graduate degrees include a Master of Arts in Intercultural Studies, a Master of Arts in Global Leadership, or a Korean Language Master of Arts in Intercultural Studies.
Students may participate in many of the classes offered by the seminary as an audit-only student where the goal is personal enrichment rather than receipt of a degree or certificate. Students can attend class meetings and interact with their professors and peers with ease and without having to worry about grades. Students can also enroll as visiting students where credits taken at Fuller Theological Seminary may be transferrable to degree programs elsewhere.
About Fuller Theological Seminary
Fuller Theological Seminary was established in 1947 by a radio evangelist named Charles E. Fuller, who had a popular show known as the “Old Fashioned Revival Hour.” The seminary had a secondary founder named Harold Ockenga, who was a pastor of a church in Boston. The seminary underwent some conflict in its early decades as some faculty members believed in Biblical inerrancy, and other faculty members were more liberal in their approach to Biblical interpretation.
The seminary is located in Pasadena, California, and it has around 2,900 students enrolled who come from 90 different countries. The seminary is a multidenominational institution and has students attending from 110 different denominations of Christianity. In addition to its campus in Pasadena, students may also take classes at eight regional campuses around the country in cities like Seattle, Houston, Phoenix, and Colorado Springs.
Fuller Theological Seminary Accreditation Details
Fuller Theological Seminary is regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Senior College and University Commission. Regional accreditation means that applicants to the university are eligible for federal student aid and will receive a degree from the university that is transferrable to other institutions. The degrees in theology at the master’s and doctoral levels are additionally accredited by the Association of Theological Schools.
These accreditations are valid for the Pasadena campus in California, as well as the regional campuses around the country. The Ph.D. and Psy.D. in Clinical Psychology are both professionally accredited by the American Psychological Association, Commission on Accreditation. The overall seminary is also approved for comprehensive distance education by the Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada.
Fuller Theological Seminary Application Requirements
Applications to Fuller Theological Seminary require that students send materials requested by the program administrators of the degree or program they want to enter. There are separate application requirements for graduate degrees, advanced degree programs, and non-degree programs. All programs require the official application, and some programs will also require recommendations and personal essays.
As an example, the Doctor of Ministry program requires that students possess a Master of Divinity or its equivalent to qualify for admission. Students must already be employed in a ministerial leadership position and have at least three years of experience in leadership that was gained after the student received his or her graduate degree. The program also requires that students have a 3.0 GPA for their master’s degree, as well as experience in a biblical language like Greek or Hebrew.
Tuition and Financial Aid
According to the university, tuition is charged based on the department, school, and level of the program in which a student enrolls. Tuition per unit for degrees that include the MA, M.Div., and Th.M. is $425. Level 800 courses in the Th.M. and Ph.D. programs are $780 per unit. Students may also pay a student service fee of $25 per quarter and an eResource fee of $30 per quarter.
Other fees students may see include a new student fee of $50, a degree continuation fee of $250, a late registration fee of $30, and a hybrid course fee of $100. Students may also need to pay a Touchstone materials fee of $40, a graduation fee of $90, and a quarterly parking permit fee of $45 if they attend classes at the Pasadena campus.
Financial aid at Fuller Theological Seminary is handled by Student Financial Services, and the seminary offers $4 million in need-based and merit-based scholarships each year. In addition to earning scholarships, students may also qualify to participate in the federal student loan program, as well as receive federal work-study awards or grants. Some students may also qualify for military benefits.
A sample of scholarships available at the seminary includes the Trustees’ Scholarship, which covers 100 percent of tuition and the Presidents’ Scholarship, which covers 75 percent of the student’s tuition costs. Other scholarships at Fuller Theological Seminary include the Dean’s Scholarship, which covers 50 percent of tuition costs and the Leadership Scholarship, which covers 25 percent of tuition costs.