Master of Arts (Theological Studies)

Master of Arts (Theological Studies)

A two-year program for the degree of Master of Arts (Theological Studies) enables students to possess baseline knowledge and judgment appropriate to an initial graduate level degree in theological studies. The MA(TS) program includes basic studies in Bible, theology, church history, and practical theology with a specialization in one of the disciplines of theological scholarship.


The Master of Arts (Theological Studies) is a two-year program requiring the successful completion of 52 credits.

Specific requirements include:

OT2101 Orientation to Old Testament Studies

3 credits

NT2101 Introduction to the New Testament

3 credits

History and Ecumenics (two courses)

6 credits

TH2100 Introduction to Systematic Theology and one additional course

6 credits

Practical Theology (An introductory course in one of three areas: Preaching, Pastoral Care, or Education and Formation and one additional course)

6 credits


2 credits

Field Education (May be in a non-congregational setting, supervision provided through the Office of Field Education)

2 credits

Electives (not in area of specialization)

6 credits

Specialization (A proposed area of specialization shall be submitted to the Master's Studies Committee for approval by November 1 in the first year of residency)

18 credits

Total Credits


Area of Specialization

The area of specialization for the Master of Arts (Theological Studies) degree is chosen from one of the following areas, which are organized under five broad categories:

  1. Biblical Studies
    • Old Testament
    • New Testament
  2. History and Ecumenics
    • Church History
    • World Christianity and the History of Religions (WCHR)
  3. Theology
    • Philosophy and Theology
    • Christian Ethics
    • Systematic Theology
  4. Practical Theology
    • Education and Formation
    • Pastoral Care
    • Preaching, Worship, and Speech Communication in Ministry
  5. Religion and Society

Capstone Project (*REQUIRED for MA(TS) STUDENTS)

All students in the MA(TS) program are required to complete a Capstone Project during the senior or final year. Courses designated as capstone courses have “capstone course” listed in the course description, following the credits. A capstone course may be a one, two, or three credit course.

A capstone project is a constructive work in which students demonstrate integration, particularly with an eye toward implications for some form of ministry. A capstone project should be “integrating” in at least one of the following four ways:

  1. Cross-disciplinary (across theological disciplines)
  2. Interdisciplinary (between theology and other human sciences, natural sciences, literature, the fine arts, or any other field usually considered to be outside the central purview of theological study)
  3. Intellectual-personal (assimilating frameworks gained from theological study, the student’s personal beliefs, social location and practices, or self-perception)
  4. Theory-practice (e.g. preaching, teaching, pastoral care, congregational leadership, congregational formation, hospital and military chaplaincy, non-profit ministries)

A capstone project is subject to the instructor’s approval and may take a variety of forms including but not limited to the following: an essay; a sermon or series of sermons; a lesson plan or unit of curriculum; a plan of response and action for a congregation or institution; a website/social media; a drama; a work of art; a dance production; or a video series posted on the internet. The course catalogue will indicate courses that are eligible to meet this requirement.

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Lindsay Clark, Class of 2018

“Trenton Psych was a fantastic place to work and learn, a seminal part of my Seminary experience and the most important thing I did at Princeton.”