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Graduate Academic Program for the Permanent Diaconate
Aspirants for the permanent diaconate who wish to study at the graduate level complete their intellectual formation by earning the Master of Arts in Pastoral Theology (M.A.P.S.) degree.
For the goals of the M.A.P.S., please refer to the M.A.P.S. section of our website. (https://www.shms.edu/content/master-arts-pastoral-studies-maps)
Undergraduate Prerequisites (required for students with no previous academic work in philosophy or theology)
Theological Foundations I
Theological Foundations II
Introduction to Sacred Scripture
Course of Study (49 credits)
Courses Taken During the Period of Aspirancy
Theological Research and Writing
Theology of Mission and Ministry
Human and Spiritual Adult Development
Method and Pentateuch
Human Person and Grace
Courses Taken During the Three Years of Diaconate Formation
Trinitarian and Christological Foundations of the Christian Faith
Nature and Mission of the Church
The Sacramental Life of the Church
Foundations of Christian Moral Life
Pastoral Care Across Cultures
Church Law for Parish Ministers
Diaconal Homiletics Practicum
M.A.P.S. Supervised Ministry
M.A.P.S. Formation Seminar I-IV (taken in first two years of study)
Introduction to Pastoral Counseling
Courses usually taken after Ordination
History of Spirituality
Sacraments of Initiation
Dynamics of Parish Leadership
*Undergraduate coursework is required for formation, but does not count toward the M.A.P.S. degree.
‡IS 891 is intended to be taken in the student’s fourth year of the degree program.
- A minimum of 48 credit hours must be earned through completion of the course of study.
- A maximum of 16 hours may be applied to the degree from other institutions or from other credit earning options
- A minimum grade point average (GPA) of 2.5 is required.
- This program must be completed in six years after matriculation. Under extenuating circumstances, a student may request an extension in writing to the dean of studies.
- Students must complete a one credit course in graduate theological research, IS 505 Theological Research and Writing. This course must be done in conjunction with ST 500 Theological Methodology, and should be done within the student’s first year of study. The course is graded pass/fail; credits earned do not count toward the 48 credits required in total for the degree.
- Students must participate in an assessment of the academic program, including completion of a Graduating Student Questionnaire during their final year of study.
Graduate course descriptions can be found here.
Our Academic Catalogs for this and past academic years can be found here.
Admissions information for the M.A.P.S can be found here.