Master of Arts (Theology)

Purpose

The Master of Arts (Theology) is a graduate level degree offering advanced work in the classical theological disciplines. The degree prepares students to pursue an academic ministry in one of these disciplines. Since the degree does not include courses outside of the classical theological disciplines, those called to local church ministry should pursue the Master of Divinity.

Entrance Requirements

The student must have an undergraduate degree from an accredited college or university with a minimum GPA of 3.0. The student’s undergraduate degree must include courses in the following subject areas:

Course Title Hours
Biblical Hermeneutics 3
Survey of the Old Testament* 3 or more
Survey of the New Testament* 3 or more
Greek or Hebrew (two years of one language) 12
Survey of Systematic Theology* 3 or more
Survey of Church History* 3 or more
Philosophy of Religion 3 or more
Total 30 or more

* Undergraduate survey courses must cover the entire subject (for example, all of the Old Testament) in at least three hours.  Prerequisites courses must be completed with a B- or better.

Admitted students who have not satisfied the prerequisites must do so at the beginning of the program. The prerequisites may be fulfilled by taking bachelors-level courses in the Southwestern College program or master's-level courses in the Seminary program. Typically master's-level surveys require two courses each (for a total of six hours per survey).

New applicants to the seminary should indicate the desire to pursue the M.A.Th. on application materials. Current Southwestern students should fill out a Degree Change Form available in the Registrar’s Office and include an explanation of the reasons for pursuing the M.A.Th.

Degree Requirements

The 50-hour degree includes courses in Spiritual Formation, Biblical Languages, Biblical Studies, Theological Studies, and Ethics and Philosophical Studies. Students may use elective hours to pursue a concentration and/or to complete an optional thesis. For concentration requirements please see the Registrar's Office advising staff.

In addition to the two hours of required Spiritual Formation, only courses from Biblical Studies, Theological Studies, and Ethics and Philosophical Studies apply toward the degree. Practicum courses and internet courses do not apply toward the degree.

Requirements Hours
Spiritual Formation 2
Biblical Languages 9
9 hours in the language not studied for the prerequisite
Biblical Studies 12
3 hours in the language studied for the prerequisite, 3 hours in Hermeneutics or Biblical Theology, and 6 hours of Biblical Studies electives
Theological Studies 12
3 hours in Baptist Heritage, 3 hours in Systematic Theology electives, and 6 hours of Theological Studies electives
Ethics and Philosophical Studies 3
3 hours of Ethics and Philosophical Studies electives
Electives or Concentration* 12
Total
50

*Concentrations in Biblical Archaeology, Biblical Theology, Christian Apologetics, Christian Ethics, Church History and Historical Theology, New Testament Exegesis and Exposition, Old Testament Exegesis and Exposition, Philosophy of Religion, Theology, and Women's Studies are available on the Fort Worth campus. Six hours of electives may also be used for modern language study. For information on the M.A.Th. in Bonn, Germany, see below.

Non-Thesis Track

Students in the non-thesis track must select a concentration from the list above and pass a comprehensive exam in the area of the concentration.

Thesis

Students may complete a thesis as part of the elective requirements for the degree. Students who plan to pursue Ph.D. work should complete a thesis. The thesis track includes the Graduate Research Seminar (2 hours), Thesis Research (1 hour), and Thesis Writing (3 hours). The remaining 6 hours of electives must be taken from one of the concentration areas.

Transfers

A master's degree student from an accredited institution may transfer up to 25 hours into the M.A.Th. Southwestern students desiring to change from another degree to the M.A.Th. may apply eligible courses to the degree.

Bonn Extension Center

In 2005 Southwestern Seminary established an extension center in Bonn, Germany. This extension site is housed on the beautiful campus of The Bibelseminar, Bonn. Students in Bonn complete the thesis track of the Master of Arts (Theology) and a concentration in Pastoral Ministry. Southwestern faculty travel to Bonn to teach courses on a five week rotating schedule from October to June. In addition to traveling faculty, Southwestern also employs two full-time faculty on site in Bonn, Dr. Friedhelm Jung and Dr. Helmuth Pehlke. Courses at the Bonn extension center are taught in German or in English with German translation. Application for admission to the Bonn extension center is initiated through the Southwestern Office in Bonn.

For information on the M.A.Th. offered in Germany contact Dr. Friedhelm Jung:

by mail at: Bibelseminar Bonn, Haus Wittgenstein
Ehrental 2-4, 53332 Bornheim-Roisdorf
by email at fjung@bsb-online.de
or by phone at +49 (0) 2222.701200

Additional Information

For additional information about the Master of Arts (Theology), contact Dr. Mark Taylor, Associate Dean for Master's Programs:

by mail at: Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary
P.O. Box 22696, Fort Worth, Texas, 76122
by email at math@swbts.edu,
or by phone at (817) 923-1921 ext. 6960.

Established 1908 Fort Worth, Texas