Master of Arts (Theological Studies)

Earn Your Master of Arts (Theological Studies) at Central Seminary

If you have an undergraduate degree and want to find new ways to channel your love of God into your professional and personal life, consider the benefits of the MA(TS) program at Central Seminary. Not only will you join a supportive seminary community, but you can choose between campus-based and online learning to complete this program. With our interactive, experiential approach to curriculum, you will have opportunities to apply learning outcomes through collaborative activities, even while learning remotely.

To speak with us about the Master of Arts (Theological Studies) at Central Seminary, simply take a moment to fill out the quick contact form on this page. From there, we will answer your questions about the application process, student experience, and program details that are important to your decision.



Participate in classes only two nights a week to be a full-time student.



Take a few classes each term to complete your degree in two years.



Excellent tuition rates, scholarships, and payments plans make your education affordable.

Earn Your MA(TS) Entirely Online

Our embrace of online education technology attracts students with busy lifestyles who benefit from the convenience and flexibility of distance learning. If you choose to take the MA(TS) program entirely online, you can enjoy interactive sessions and coursework with your peers, while having access to your instructors when you need additional guidance. Plus, we offer student support that spans the enrollment and financial aid process, technical support, mentorship, and other areas where students encounter challenges to their education.

Let Theology Be the Root of Your Mission

There are many benefits to earning your MA(TS) at Central Seminary. Primarily, you have an opportunity to develop a strong foundation in theological knowledge, philosophy, and Biblical interpretation that can enrich your ministry practice. Study and interpretation of the Bible will be the primary focus of your coursework. However, the program includes additional coursework and activities designed to help you strengthen your leadership skills.

Master of Arts (Theological Studies) Program Overview

Choose an Emphasis That Reflects Your Journey

During the first year of the Master of Arts (Theological Studies) program, students are required to choose one of the following emphases:

Biblical Studies Emphasis

The Biblical Studies emphasis examines the teachings of the Bible from an ecumenical and evangelical perspective. You will study the life and teachings of Christ while developing interpretive competencies that can strengthen your ministry practice.

Peacemaking/Reconciliation Emphasis

This area of focus helps students lead peacemaking and reconciliation processes among families, ministries, businesses, and other populations. Students start by learning the methods to properly assess individuals and situations from a Christian perspective. From there, your education will focus on best-practices for diagnosis and treatment methods that result in healing and conflict resolution.

Chaplaincy Emphasis

The focus on Chaplaincy studies integrates biblical/theological study with learning about spiritual caregiving. Graduates can complete their program with the MA(TS) degree and the Graduate Certificate in Chaplaincy.

Purpose & Outcomes

The purpose of the Master of Arts (Theological Studies) (MATS) is to provide an individual, who has an undergraduate bachelor’s degree, knowledge in general theological studies and to provide skills for professional research and communication.

Learning Outcomes

The Learning Outcomes of the MA(TS) are grouped under three components of competency: (1) Theological Development/Knowledge, (2) Research Skills, and (3) Specialization (Peacemaking or Biblical Studies).

Theological Development/Knowledge

  • Demonstrates an understanding of key theological concepts
  • Applies interpretative models
  • Integrates utilization of methods and application

Research Skills

  • Demonstrates an ability to locate and evaluate resources
  • Demonstrates an ability to integrate resources with assignments and projects
  • Demonstrates a competency to communicate research results
  • Specialization (Biblical Studies)

Specialization (Biblical Studies)

  • Demonstrates awareness of personal hermeneutic situationed-ness
  • Demonstrates consciousness of an interpretive community’s influence on hermeneutical outcome
  • Practices healthy integration of multiple interpretative horizons
  • Effectively employs interpretative communication with communities
  • Specialization (Peacemaking)

Specialization (Peacemaking)

  • Demonstrates an ability to know foundational elements and models of peacemaking
  • Demonstrates an ability to recognize and analyze conflict contexts
  • Demonstrates an ability to apply peace and reconciliation methods

Specialization (Chaplaincy)

  • Provides professional ministry presence to individuals in a diverse multicultural society and in varied settings
  • Practices professional ethical boundaries in chaplaincy settings
  • Exercises the  skills and sensibilities for human spirituality needed to establish and maintain rapport with clients
  • Is grounded in a healthy integration of multiple interpretative horizons in biblical and theological reflection

Courses & Schedule

Languages Offered In: English

Program Length: 36 credits - 2 years (full-time status = 6 or more credits per term)

Calendar: Three 12-week terms per academic year

New students can begin in Ordinary (fall) or Lent (spring) terms. Terms begin in August or January.

Required Courses

Foundations for Seminary Studies
Dynamics of Theological Thinking
Biblical Interpretation
Hebrew Bible I
Christian Heritage I
New Testament I
Theological Foundations I
Christian Ethics
Research Skills (Biblical or Peacemaking) or Caring Ministries (Chaplaincy)
Elective One (Biblical or Peacemaking) or Introduction to Chaplaincy (Chaplaincy)
Elective Two (Biblical or Peacemaking) or Chaplaincy in Hospice or Elder Care (Chaplaincy)
Elective Three (Biblical or Peacemaking) or The Helping Relationship (Chaplaincy)
Capstone Project or Thesis or Practicum/CPE (Chaplaincy)

Tuition & Fees

Tuition - $365 per credit

Registration Fee - $250 per term

Graduation Fee - $200

(Amounts shown are for academic year 2020-2021 and only represent basic costs. Consult the current academic catalog for complete financial information.)

MA(TS) Capstone Project or Thesis

The teachings of the Master of Arts (Theological Studies) program culminate in a capstone project or thesis during the final term of the program. The concept for the capstone project or thesis will be tailored towards your goals or vision for ministry practice. This experience should also be designed to apply the knowledge, research, and performance skills developed throughout the program in active ministry situations and exercises.

Once You Complete the MA(TS) Program…

After you complete the Master of Arts (Theological Studies) you can pursue a variety of paths in ministry and church leadership positions. Whether you want to help lead a congregation, work in academia, or provide social services, the MA(TS) can help you meet the requirements to accomplish your goal.

Why Choose Central Seminary?

Central Seminary offers students a welcoming, inclusive atmosphere that celebrates diversity. No matter where you are from, you are invited to step through the doors of our seminary and seek God with us. We also promote an environment that supports lifelong learning, creativity, and leadership development. Throughout the year, we offer continuing education opportunities that are open to all students, as well as other free events that enhance spiritual and professional growth.

Ready to Learn More About the MA(TS) Program?

It only takes a few moments to connect with us to learn more about this accredited Master of Arts (Theological Studies) program. We are ready to answer your questions, simplify the enrollment process, and design the right plan for your seminary education. Use the contact form on this page to start the conversation.

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