Doctoral Program Residency and Length of Study
- The doctoral program in Theology normally takes four years to complete. Students are expected to complete their required, fulltime coursework during their first two years of residency. Students are expected to take their comprehensive exams during the Fall of their third year of residency. Students are expected to submit their doctoral dissertation proposal to the Graduate Theology Faculty for approval during the Spring of their third year of residency. Students will serve as teaching assistants during their third year of residency. During their fourth year of residency, students are expected to complete their doctorgal dissertation and serve as teaching assistants. In the best interest of both the student and the program, doctoral students will be evaluated at the end of each semester. If the Director of the Doctoral Program in Theology, in consultation with the Graduate Theology Faculty, has serious doubts about a student’s ability successfully to complete the doctoral program, the student may be asked to leave the program.
Doctoral Program Admission Requirements
- Students admitted to the doctoral program in Theology should possess an M.A. in theology or the recognized equivalent of this degree.
- Students admitted to the doctoral program in Theology ordinarily should have taken at least 12 credit hours of either undergraduate or graduate philosophy coursework.
- Students admitted into the doctoral program in Theology who are judged to have lacunae in their theological education will be encouraged to enroll in courses that will complement their doctoral level courses.
- Completed application
- $50 non-refundable application fee
- Statement of intent, intellectual autobiography and 8-10 page writing sample
- Three letters of recommendation
- Official transcripts from all colleges/universities previously attended
- Official GRE score results
THE DEADLINE FOR ALL APPLICATIONS IS FEBRUARY 1ST
Doctoral Program Requirements
- Students must successfully complete 48 credit hours in Graduate Theology courses.
- Students must successfully complete 8 required Graduate Theology Seminars (2 Scripture, 2 Systematic, 2 Moral, Ancients, and Moderns).
- Students must successfully fulfill 16 credit hours in their major (Systematic or Moral) area of study.
- Students must successfully fulfill 12 credit hours in their minor (Systematic or Moral or Bible) area of study.
- Students must demonstrate documented reading proficiency in Greek and Latin and one modern language (normally French, Italian, or German) before taking their comprehensive examinations. Students who lack reading proficiency in Greek or Latin are strongly encouraged to take intensive language courses offered at Ave Maria University during the summer sessions of their first two years of residency. With the Director of the Doctoral Program in Theology’s approval, students can receive credit for up to 16 credit hours of coursework in beginning and/or intermediate level Greek and/or Latin courses.
- Students must successfully complete comprehensive examinations in Theology. Comprehensive examinations include both a written and an oral exam. Administered over two days, the 6 hour, written comprehensive examination includes: 1) an exam in the student’s major area of study, 2) an exam in the student’s minor area of study, and, 3), an exam in the student’s specialized area of study. Upon successful completion of the written comprehensive examination, students will be given a 90 minute oral examination.
- Students must submit a dissertation proposal that gains approval from the Graduate Theology Faculty.
- Students must complete and successfully defend an approved dissertation. It is expected that the defense copy of the student’s dissertation will be submitted no later than 2 years from the date on which the student passed their comprehensive examinations. Except in extremely rare cases, which require the approval of petitions for extension, dissertations submitted more than 5 years after the student has passed their comprehensive examinations will not be accepted.
Inquiry And Application Forms, And Course Offerings, Academic Calendar and Academic Catalogue
Recent Doctoral Students
Recent graduates of Ave Maria's PhD Theology Program are currently teaching at:
- Thomas Aquinas College
- John Brown University
- Benedictine College
- The Augustine Institute
- University of St. Thomas, Houston, TX
- Assumption College