Pittsburgh Theological Seminary


Degrees Offered by Pittsburgh Theological Seminary

Pittsburgh Theological Seminary appears in our ranking of the 30 Best Theological Seminaries in the United States.

Students who attend Pittsburgh Theological Seminary can enroll in various master’s degree programs, a doctoral program, and may pursue a graduate certificate. There are also options for auditing a class and enrolling as a non-degree student. There are nine options for graduate degrees at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary, with a handful of those degrees existing as joint degree programs.

Programs include a Master of Divinity, a Master of Arts in Pastoral Studies, and a Master of Theological Studies. Students can pair the Master of Divinity with a Juris Doctor, Master of Social Work, or Master of Science in Public Policy and Management. The seminary also offers a Masters with Graduate Certificate in Urban Ministry and two concentrations for the Master of Divinity, including church planting or Anglican/Episcopal studies.

The Doctor of Ministry is the sole doctoral program at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary, and students can focus on one of several areas during their time in the program. Focuses include an eastern Christian focus, parish focus, or Christian spirituality focus. Students can also enroll in a science & theology focus, reformed focus, or missional leadership focus. The seminary offers two focuses each year in a cohort-style program.

Some of the courses students may take include Fundamental Roots of Priestly Ministry, The Ministry of Spiritual Direction, Ecclesiology and Canon Law in Early Christianity, and Priesthood, Community, and Ethics. Other classes include Global, Ethical, and Social Issues Before the Church and Their Impact on the Ministry, and Reformed Approaches to the Bible.

For prospective students who want to enroll in a graduate certificate program, the seminary offers a Graduate Certificate in Ministry, a Graduate Certificate in Missional Leadership, a Graduate Certificate in Urban Ministry, and a Graduate Certificate in Theological Studies. Students must live in the United States to enroll in the seminary’s certificate programs, but international students may enroll in full degree programs.

The seminary has an interesting option for non-degree students that is part of the Presbyterian Ordination process. Students can take courses in biblical languages, worship, church polity, and theological competence without enrolling in a complete degree program. Classes can include Exploring Christian Worship, Presbyterian Polity, and Christian Theology.

About Pittsburgh Theological Seminary

Pittsburgh Theological Seminary is a graduate school for students in theological programs, which is run by the Presbyterian Church. The original seminary was established in 1794, but the modern version of the school was created in 1959 when the Western Theological Seminary was merged with the Pittsburgh-Xenia Theological Seminary. The seminary was originally created to train ministers in the United States, so the church wouldn’t need to bring them from Scotland.

The seminary has a large theological library called the Clifford E. Barbour Library, and the building has more than 300,000 volumes, as well as 800 subscriptions to magazines and a wealth of online databases. The seminary also runs a program called the World Mission Initiative, which is dedicated to helping future pastors become adept at traveling ministries and overseas missions.

Pittsburgh Theological Seminary Accreditation Details

Regional accreditation for the Pittsburgh Theological Seminary has been granted by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools. Accreditation allows students to participate in the Title IV financial aid program, which is federally guaranteed financial aid in the form of loans and grants. Students with questions about accreditation status can contact the seminary or the regional accrediting agency, which is located in Philadelphia.

The seminary is also accredited by the Commission on Accrediting of the Association of Theological Schools in the United States. Approved degrees by the commission include the Master of Divinity, the Master of Arts in Pastoral Studies, the Master of Theological Studies, and the Doctor of Ministry. The commission has also approved a few degrees offered at the extension sites that are operated by the seminary. The Doctor of Ministry is accredited at the Scottsdale campus and the St. Petersburg campus.

Pittsburgh Theological Seminary Application Requirements

Students will use the online application to begin the process of getting accepted to the Pittsburgh Theological Seminary. The seminary has several starting dates for the various degrees, so students should check with the seminary to make sure they apply by the correct deadline. After submitting the official application, students should make requests for their references, have their transcripts sent from schools, and begin the seminary’s required background check process.

Some programs also require admissions essays and a personal interview. After formal acceptance, the process continues with the submission of the enrollment form and a deposit fee. Students should also choose a housing option if they plan to live on campus and apply for financial aid. Students with questions about the application process can speak with one of the seminary’s admissions counselors.

Tuition and Financial Aid

Earning a graduate degree at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary in one of the one-year programs that require 27 credits is $12,690 for tuition, and students will pay a few additional fees when they attend. Books are estimated at $1,000 for the year, and students will pay a comprehensive student fee of $300 for the year. Students who receive loans will pay an average federal loan fee of $132.

Housing costs for the year are estimated at $5,924 for students that live on campus, and a meal plan is estimated at $2,582 for the year. Students may also need to budget miscellaneous costs and transportation when figuring out the total cost of attendance at the Pittsburgh Theological Seminary. For students who choose the Doctor of Ministry program, tuition is $4,296 a year and is based on four courses. Doctoral students should also budget for books, meals, and housing.

Pittsburgh Theological Seminary indicates that tuition rates are subsidized, which means students pay $456 per credit for graduate degree programs and $358 per credit for the Doctor of Ministry program. The average financial aid award given to a student at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary is $15,105 for graduate students in full-time study. Financial aid usually includes tuition grants, housing grants, and student work opportunities.

Students who qualify for merit scholarships will receive an award that ranges from $600 to $25,000, with merit awards being offered to full-time and part-time students. The seminary shares that more than half of the students who attend don’t need to borrow money. The average amount of indebtedness for graduates of Pittsburgh Theological Seminary is $19,331.

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