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Bachelor of Sacred Theology (S.T.B.)


The Bachelor of Sacred Theology (S.T.B.) is a Roman Catholic ecclesiastical degree that ensures a solid knowledge of theology and a strong foundation in Catholic doctrine. The program prepares students for various forms of ministry and further academic study. The Jesuit School of Theology offers the S.T.B. as an enhancement of the Master of Divinity degree program. S.T.B. students participate in the M.Div. program and complete additional requirements. It offers suitable courses and seminars at an advanced level. The progress of each student is guided and supervised by an academic advisor.

Degree Objectives

The Jesuit School's Bachelor of Sacred Theology degree program is designed to enable graduates to develop...

  • a solid knowledge of theology.
  • a method of doing theological research.
  • a personal synthesis of theology.
  • a committed insight into the Mystery of Christ and the guiding presence of His Spirit in the history of Salvation.

Admission Requirements

Navigate to the Bachelor of Sacred Theology (S.T.B.) admissions page to learn more about applying to this program.


  1. The degree of Bachelor of Arts or its equivalent with at least 24 semester hours or 32 quarter hours of philosophy. At the discretion of the faculty, applicants with fewer than the required number of philosophy units may still be considered for admission, particularly if they have completed other relevant courses and have significant ministerial experience. However, these applicants may be required to complete additional philosophy coursework either prior to or upon enrollment in the S.T.B. program.
  2. A "suitable knowledge of the Latin language" is required. This is understood to be a working reading knowledge sufficient to use ecclesiastical documents in Latin. This requirement can be met either by course work, generally two semesters, or by an examination.
  3. The applicant should possess the personal maturity and faith commitment commensurate with preparation for full-time ministry. To this end, preference is given to applicants who have at least one year of post-college work experience, and at least part-time, direct ministerial experience.

Degree Requirements

As an enhancement of the Master of Divinity degree program, the S.T.B. degree program has additional requirements.

  1. Completion of M.Div. Program Requirements Successful completion of all requirements for the M. Div. program. The requirements for the M.Div. program are available on this section of our website.
  2. Philosophy Requirement Completion of the 24 semester hours or 32 quarter hours of philosophy. The normal fulfillment of the philosophy requirement will be done prior to residency. In some cases the student may be able to complete the requirement after admission to the program.
  3. Research Synthesis Paper Composition of a research synthesis paper in some area of theology. This requirement is normally met by an extended research paper (20-30 pages) done during a course taken during residency under the supervision of the professor of the course.
  4. Latin Language Proficiency Demonstration of a working reading knowledge of the Latin language sufficient to use ecclesiastical documents in Latin. This is a prerequisite for the program, but at the discretion of the faculty, students may be allowed to complete the Latin prerequisite while in S.T.B. studies at the Jesuit School of Theology.
  5. A grade point average of at least 3.0 (B) must be maintained for course work. Students will normally take courses on a letter-grade basis except those designated in the course schedule as pass/fail.  

Advanced Standing

A student who has taken graduate courses in theology no longer than six years prior to registration may petition for advanced standing in the Jesuit School's S.T.B. program. This petition may be included with the Application for Admission, or it may be submitted at the beginning of the first semester of study. Ordinarily the maximum amount of advanced standing that is granted is twenty- four semester hours (two semesters of full time study). These units must be from courses which cohere with the courses taken at the Jesuit School for the M. Div. Petitions for advanced standing are available from the Assistant Academic Dean or from the Office of Admissions.

Modern Language Study

Academic credit for basic modern language study is not applicable to the Jesuit School degree programs. However, students are encouraged to take advanced, ministerial language courses while they are in the Bachelor of Sacred Theology Program. 

Master of Divinity Students at JST 

Fulfillment of the requirements for the S.T.B. may be done simultaneously with fulfillment of requirements for the Master of Divinity degree program.