Earn your degree online at your own pace, with the option to continue working your full-time job and fulfilling your daily obligations. All of our classes are held in an online format. We meet in virtual classrooms via Microsoft Teams. ILT students and faculty are able to interact with one another, hold open discussions, ask questions and ultimately learn just as if they were in a normal classroom.

Master of Arts (Theology)

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Master of Arts with a Concentration in Theology | M.A.-T.

The Master of Arts program provides a broad-based, foundational course of study for college graduates who want to pursue graduate level studies in theology but are not preparing for ordained ministry. The M.A. program prepares students for more advanced study in a theological discipline, as well as providing a broad-based exposure to theological studies for persons in other fields. It requires a total of 33 credits and can be completed in about one and a half years of full-time study or else extended over a longer period.

Program Overview

Zero Student Debt

Our goal is for every student to graduate with no debt. Our donor-sponsored financial assistance makes that possible.

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Total: $0.00


$425 per Credit Hour
*Tuition cost is subject to change. Additional costs may apply.

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Total: $14,025


This program consists of 11 courses in areas of biblical theology, historical and systematic theology, and ethics, philosophy and religion.

Total: 33 Credits

Expected Timeline

Full-time students can finish this degree in 2 years and part-time students can take up to 5 years.

Total: 2-5 Years

*Additional costs may apply. (Application fee, books, costs associated with researching and producing the independent projects or the final project or thesis, etc.) are also the responsibility of the participant.

Course of Study
The Master of Arts with a Concentration in Theology focuses on the history of Christian thought, systematic theology and crucial philosophical questions related to theology. It provides a foundation for advanced study in any of these areas or simply an in-depth understanding of theology for anyone who is interested.
Course Requirements Credit Hours
A Total of 33 Credits from a Subset of the Following Subjects:
Core Courses 6 Credits
Historical and Systematic Theology 21 Credits
Philosophical Theology and Theological Ethics 6 Credits

*All work must be in the student’s field of study.

Core Courses (6 Credits):

  • BT 503: Lutheran Exegetical Method (requires BT 500)
  • PTE 501: Faith, Knowledge and Reason

Historical and Systematic Theology Courses (21 Credits):

  • HST 501: History of Christian Thought I: Origin-1500
  • HST 502: History of Christian Thought II: The Reformation (requires HST 301)
  • HST 613: History of Christian Thought III: 1700-1900 (requires HST 502)
  • HST 614: Twentieth Century Theology (requires HST 613)
  • HST 601: Creation and the Triune God (requires HST 613)
  • HST 602: Christology (requires HST 601)
  • HST 603: Church, Spirit and the Two Kingdoms (requires HST 602)

Philosophical Theology and Theological Ethics Courses (6 Credits):

  • PTE 602: Critical Reasoning for the Theologian (requires PTE 501)
  • PTE 603: Philosophy of Religion (requires PTE 602)

Total: 33 Credits

After completing this program, students will:

  • Learn, analyze, and assess the doctrine and history of the church and its, proclamation teaches in order to distinguish God’s law and gospel in teaching, and pastoral care.
  • Know how to analyze and assess the context of ministry in the world in order to aptly communicate the gospel in proclamation, teaching, and pastoral care.
  • Be able to analyze and appraise theological formulations in a spirit of openness and mutual respect.
Application requirements include:
  • Completion of a Bachelor’s degree from an accredited educational institution, or in special cases, an equivalent preparatory experience.
  • Completion of the online application for the Master of Arts in Religion degree.
  • Three letters of recommendation from individuals with knowledge of the applicant’s academic performance.
  • Official transcripts from all post-secondary institutions. Applicants are required to have their official transcripts sent directly to the Office of Admissions from all of the institutions attended. Transcripts must demonstrate a minimum GPA of 2.50 on a 4.00 point scale or equivalent (Applicants with a GPA of less than 2.50 may be admitted on Academic Probation.)
  • Applicants whose native language is not English are required to submit a score from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or from the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) that is not more than two years old. Normally, minimum acceptable scores for the TOEFL are 26 on the speaking section and 24 on the writing section. Minimum acceptable scores on the IELTS are 8 on the speaking section and 6.5 on the writing section. Please request that your score be sent to ILT. ILT’s DI Code for the TOEFL is 5745. More information concerning TOEFL can be accessed at the Education Testing Services website. Information regarding the IELTS can be found at their IELTS website.
  • Completion of the Theology Questionnaire.
  • Pass the Bible Proficiency Exam with a score of at least 60%.
  • Non-Refundable Application Fee
  • Copy of official photo ID.
  • An admissions interview with the Program Director.
Optional Thesis:
  • A 50-75-page (12,000-20,000 word) thesis paper is required for completion of the degree.
  • Thesis Research course (BT 598, HST 598 or PTE 598)

This is a readings course on the student’s proposed thesis topic. The student and his or her advisor agree on a reading program before the start of the semester. The student reads independently, meeting with his or her advisor regularly for consultation.

Thesis Proposal

In consultation with a thesis advisor, the student develops a thesis proposal (900 words). At least 60 days prior to the first day of classes in the semester when the student will enroll in the STM Thesis course, the student submits the proposal to a thesis committee. The thesis committee consists of 2-3 faculty members (including the advisor), at least one of whom should be a member of ILT’s permanent faculty.


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