Union Theological Seminary Admissions


Degree Programs

Union offers several programs suited to many vocational interests. Please read more about each degree program and its requirements:

Master of Divinity (M.Div.)

The Master of Divinity (M.Div.) is a three year professional degree. It is primarily for those seeking to engage in the vocation of ministry, whether in churches, universities, hospitals and prison chaplaincies; in professional counseling; in secondary school or university teaching; or in business, government, journalism, social work and other professions. Read More>>

Master of Arts (M.A.)

The Master of Arts (M.A.) is a two-year academic degree undertaken in preparation for a variety of professional positions, although it is not intended to prepare a candidate for any professional certification.  Many M.A. students progress to or aspire towards Ph.D. study after graduation. Others choose the M.A. in order to focus their theological studies in a particular area. An M.A. candidate must specify an area of concentration, as approved by the faculty advisor to the program. This concentration should be specified at the time of application. Read More>>

Master of Divinity & Master of Science in Social Work (Joint Degree Program)

Union Theological Seminary has a collaborative relationship with the Columbia School of Social Work (CSSW) to offer a joint program: the Master of Divinity/Master of Science in Social Work (M.Div./M.S.S.W).

The M.Div./M.S.S.W. program is pursued by those with plans to seek vocations within traditional church ministries, or those considering careers in the helping professions outside church. Candidates can complete requirements for both degrees in one four-year program. Candidates are required to apply and gain admission to both the Seminary and the Columbia School of Social Work. Application to both, the Seminary and the CSSW, can be made concurrently or in the student’s first year in the M.Div. program.  In order to be considered a dual-degree student, the student must have been admitted to CSSW before the second year. Read More>>

Master of Arts in Religion (Joint Degree Program)

Those wanting to focus their studies more closely on the general field of religion may consider applying for the M.A. in Religion. Students must be admitted both at the Seminary and at the M.A. program and Columbia University. The degree is awarded upon recommendation to the Committee of Graduate Instruction of the Columbia University department of Religion. Read More>>

Master of Sacred Theology

The Master of Sacred Theology (S.T.M.) degree offers an opportunity for a relatively open structure of advanced theological study. It is for those who already have a Master of Divinity or Master of Arts, or its equivalent as determined at the time of application. International students should demonstrate that they have studied in a baccalaureate program of comparable rigor, and attained a high standing. The S.T.M. program does not accept any transfer credits.

There are two programs leading to the S.T.M., a General Program and a Research Program. Applicants must identify the program to which they seek admission, as well as the name of their intended faculty advisor (s), at the time of application. Read More>>

Doctor of Philosophy

The Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) primarily prepares persons for vocations of teaching and research in college or universities and seminaries, or holding positions of leadership in churches or social service and social justice agencies. The program also includes work for the intermediate degree of Master of Philosophy (M.Phil.), which also must be earned at the Seminary.

Union Theological Seminary’s Ph.D. has four programs some of which are divided to different disciplines. Applicants must select from the following disciplines and name their intended faculty advisor(s), at the time of application:

    • Bible Program
    • History Program
    • Theology Program
    • Practical Theology Interdisciplinary Program

Read More>>


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