The M.A. in Theology offers two tracks: Research and Religious Education. Students desiring to go on to doctoral work choose the Research track. Students seeking careers in schools, parishes, hospitals, non-profit organizations, or other religious institutions choose the Religious Education track. Students in either track may choose to concentrate in Constructive Theology, Historical Theology, or Theological Ethics.
The M.A. in Theology brings together two, complementary poles of theological reflection-retrieval and appropriation. On the one hand, the program equips students with the methodological and conceptual tools necessary for understanding classic theological texts within their historical, cultural, and ecclesial contexts. This emphasis on retrieval not only allows for a greater appreciation of the rich and varied traditions out of which contemporary theological reflection emerges; it also gives students a better grasp of the context-sensitive character of all human understanding. On the other hand, the program brings classic theological texts into critical conversation with our contemporary setting. This emphasis on appropriation provides students opportunities and skills to think creatively and practically about the ongoing impact of theological reflection, both in the search for human meaning and the task of personal and social transformation. While each area of specialization retains distinguishing characteristics and requirements, all three areas gain an internal coherence through integrating these two poles.
This integration process is the chief goal of the Theological Sources and Methods Seminar required of all MA students. This seminar introduces students to the major sources and methods for thinking theologically at the graduate level. With a triple emphasis on historical methods, theological hermeneutics, and practical theology, the seminar provides students the opportunity to understand and to begin practicing the interrelated tasks of theology.