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Sacrae Theologiae Doctoratus (STD)

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By virtue of the federation of Saint Paul University with the University of Ottawa, the Faculty of Theology of Saint Paul University offers graduate programs leading to the degrees conferred jointly by the senates of both universities.

Other graduate theology programs within the sole jurisdiction of the Senate of Saint Paul University are also offered; their description and requirements can be found in the calendar of the Faculty of Theology.

The Faculty of Theology offers the following programs whose degrees are conferred jointly by the senates of the University of Ottawa and Saint Paul University:

  • Master of Arts in Theology;
  • PhD in Theology;
  • Master of Pastoral Theology;
  • Doctor of Ministry;
  • Master in Religious Education. 

Master of Arts in Theology

Objectives

The MA program is intended for candidates who already have a good basic formation in Theology, with courses in various areas of Theology such as systematic theology, history, biblical studies, ethics and spirituality. It is designed to allow these students to gain greater familiarity with the various research methods in Theology, and to begin a specialization in a particular area, while promoting an integration of the theological formation already acquired. The program prepares students to teach at undergraduate level, to undertake doctoral studies in Theology, and to assume diverse leadership responsibilities in institutions or organizations requiring a formation in religious studies or theology.

Concentrations

Students register in one of the following concentrations:

  • Biblical Studies
  • Ethics
  • Systematic and historical theology
  • Spirituality
  • Eastern Christian Studies

Admission Requirements

  • To be admitted to the MA program the candidate must hold an honours bachelor's degree (60 credits in theology) or its equivalent, with a minimum 70 per cent (B) average; a candidate who holds an honours bachelor's degree, with a minimum 70 per cent (B) average but who has completed less than 60 credits in theology (or their equivalent) will be required to do a Qualifying Year prior to enrolment in graduate courses.
  • Each candidate registers in a concentration.
  • An active knowledge of either English or French is required.
  • A candidate who registers in the biblical studies concentration must have a basic knowledge (Level 1 - Introduction) of Hebrew and of Greek.

Master of Pastoral Theology

Objectives

The Master of Pastoral Theology (MPTh) offers theological knowledge and professional pastoral education to students planning to engage in ministry after an undergraduate degree in theology. Its scope is to prepare the "general practitioner" for ministry.

The MPTh is a professional program. It consists of 30 credits of university-level courses.

Admission requirements

  • The candidate must hold an honour's bachelor's degree in theology (BTh) or an honours bachelor's degree in another area with 60 credits of theology, with a minimum 70 per cent average (B).
  • The candidate must provide three letters of reference, using forms supplied by the University. One of the letters must be written by a person from an academic milieu. An interview is normally required. 

Some additional documents, and in some cases specific forms, are required. For more information, please see the page Step 4: Gather the documents needed for the assessment of your application.

Master of Arts with Major Research Paper 

A) All concentrations with the exception of Eastern Christian Studies

The MA(Th) degree consists of 27 credits (7 courses and a research paper 6cr.).

Seven courses as follows:

Four Foundation courses:

1 course from the following:

  • THO6310 THEOLOGICAL HERMENEUTICS (3cr.)
  • THO6354 RELIGIOUS EXPERIENCE (3cr.)
  • THO6355 THEOLOGY AND CULTURE (3cr.)

1 course from the following:

  • THO6317 THE FORMATION OF THE BIBLICAL TEXT (3cr.)
  • THO6318 THE INTERPRETATION OF BIBLICAL TEXTS (3cr.)

1 course from the following:

  • THO6333 METHODS AND APPROACHES IN CONTEMPORARY ETHICS (3cr.)
  • THO6334 ISSUES AND DEBATES IN CONTEMPORARY ETHICS (3cr.)

1 course from the following:

  • THO6354 RELIGIOUS EXPERIENCE (3cr.)
  • THO6358 SPIRITUALITY: METHODS; RELATIONSHIPS WITH THE HUMAN SCIENCES (3cr.)
  • THO6359 COMPARATIVE STUDY OF SPIRITUAL TRADITIONS (3cr.)

One methodology course (THO6399 Methodologies in Theology, 3cr.) 
 
Two courses to be chosen in consultation with the student’s research director (who will be from the student’s chosen concentration) and with the director of Graduate Studies from:

  1. the other THO courses above
  2. graduate courses offered by the Faculties of Canon Law, Human Sciences, Philosophy (Saint Paul University)
  3. courses offered in the context of the MPTh programme (Faculty of Theology)
  4. graduate courses offered in the University of Ottawa.

THO6998 Mémoire / Research Paper (6cr.)

Students are required by the end of the program to demonstrate competency in at least one modern or ancient language as required for research in their field. In the case of modern languages, students will be evaluated for reading and oral comprehension; in the case of ancient languages, students will be evaluated for reading comprehension only. (Anglophone students intending to apply for admission to the PhD program of the Faculty are encouraged to ensure that they have passive competency in French by the end of their MA program.)

B) Eastern Christian Studies

Consists of: 27 credits – 6 courses, synthesis exam (3cr.), research paper (6cr.)

Two foundation courses (6 credits) from:

  • THO6375 FOUNDATIONAL TEXTS IN EASTERN CHRISTIAN CHURCH HISTORY (3cr.)
  • THO6376 FOUNDATIONAL TEXTS IN EASTERN CHRISTIAN SPIRITUALITY (3cr.)
  • THO6377 FOUNDATIONAL TEXTS IN EASTERN CHRISTIAN LITURGICAL HISTORY (3cr.)
  • THO6382 FOUNDATIONAL TEXTS IN EASTERN CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY (3cr.)
  • THO6388 FOUNDATIONAL TEXTS IN EASTERN CHRISTIAN LITURGICAL THEOLOGY (3cr.)
  • THO6397 FOUNDATIONAL TEXTS IN EAST-WEST ECUMENISM (3cr.)

One methodology course (THO6378 Resources and Methods for the Study of Eastern Christianity, 3cr.)
 
Two other courses (6 credits) from the following: 

  • THO6352 STUDIES IN EASTERN CHRISTIANITY (3cr.)
  • THO6379 ISSUES IN EASTERN CHRISTIAN HERMENEUTICS & EXEGESIS (3cr.)
  • THO6380 PATRISTIC THEOLOGY (3cr.)
  • THO6381 CONTEMPORARY EASTERN THEOLOGY (3cr.)
  • THO6382 FOUNDATIONAL TEXTS IN EASTERN CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY (3cr.)
  • THO6387 ISSUES IN EASTERN CHRISTIAN LITURGICAL HISTORY (3cr.)
  • THO6392 THE HISTORY OF EASTERN CHRISTIAN INSTITUTIONS, MOVEMENTS, PERSONS (3cr.)
  • THO6393 METHODOLOGICAL ISSUES IN EASTERN CHURCH HISTORY (3cr.)
  • THO6398 INTER-RELIGIOUS ISSUES AND THE CHRISTIAN EAST (3cr.)

Or, from the following Foundational courses that have not been taken under (1) above: 

  • THO6375 FOUNDATIONAL TEXTS IN EASTERN CHRISTIAN CHURCH HISTORY (3cr.)
  • THO6376 FOUNDATIONAL TEXTS IN EASTERN CHRISTIAN SPIRITUALITY (3cr.)
  • THO6377 FOUNDATIONAL TEXTS IN EASTERN CHRISTIAN LITURGICAL HISTORY (3cr.)
  • THO6382 FOUNDATIONAL TEXTS IN EASTERN CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY (3cr.)
  • THO6388 FOUNDATIONAL TEXTS IN EASTERN CHRISTIAN LITURGICAL THEOLOGY (3cr.)
  • THO6397 FOUNDATIONAL TEXTS IN EAST-WEST ECUMENISM (3cr.)

 
One course from outside the concentration (3cr.)
 
THO6998 Mémoire / Research Paper (6cr.)

THO6997 Examen de synthèse de M.A. en christianisme oriental / MA Synthesis Examination in Eastern Christian Studies (3cr.)

 

Master of Arts with Thesis

The MA(Th) degree consists of 5 courses (15 credits) and a thesis.

A) All concentrations with the exception of Eastern Christian Studies

Five courses as follows:

Four Foundation courses: 

1 course from the following:

  • THO6310 THEOLOGICAL HERMENEUTICS (3cr.)
  • THO6354 RELIGIOUS EXPERIENCE (3cr.)
  • THO6355 THEOLOGY AND CULTURE (3cr.)

1 course from the following:

  • THO6317 THE FORMATION OF THE BIBLICAL TEXT (3cr.)
  • THO6318 THE INTERPRETATION OF BIBLICAL TEXTS (3cr.)

1 course from the following:

  • THO6333 METHODS AND APPROACHES IN CONTEMPORARY ETHICS (3cr.)
  • THO6334 ISSUES AND DEBATES IN CONTEMPORARY ETHICS (3cr.)

1 course from the following:

  • THO6354 RELIGIOUS EXPERIENCE (3cr.)
  • THO6358 SPIRITUALITY: METHODS; RELATIONSHIPS WITH THE HUMAN SCIENCES (3cr.)
  • THO6359 COMPARATIVE STUDY OF SPIRITUAL TRADITIONS (3cr.)

One methodology course (THO6399 Methodologies in Theology, 3cr.)

THO7999 MA Thesis (cr.)

Students are required by the end of the program to demonstrate competency in at least one modern or ancient language as required for research in their field. In the case of modern languages, students will be evaluated for reading and oral comprehension; in the case of ancient languages, students will be evaluated for reading comprehension only. (Anglophone students intending to apply for admission to the PhD program of the Faculty are encouraged to ensure that they have passive competency in French by the end of their MA program of study.)

B) Eastern Christian Studies

The thesis option is not offered in this concentration.
 
Master of Pastoral Theology
 
The MPTh is a 30-credit program composed of the following elements: 
 
Six academic courses (18 credits):

three foundational courses (9 credits): 

  • THO5301 PASTORAL THEOLOGY (3cr.)
  • IPA5321 PASTORAL MINISTRY AND PSYCHOLOGY (3cr.)
  • IPA5322 PASTORAL MINISTRY AND SOCIOLOGY (3cr.)

two courses (6 credits) to be chosen from:

  • THO5302 CATECHETICAL PASTORAL THEOLOGY (3cr.)
  • THO5303 LITURGICAL PASTORAL THEOLOGY (3cr.)
  • DCA5310 CHURCH LAW AND PASTORAL MINISTRY (3cr.)
  • THO5304 CHRISTIAN COMMUNITY IN ITS SOCIAL DIMENSION (3cr.)
  • THO5305 CHRISTIAN COMMUNITY AND ITS DEVELOPMENT (3cr.)

one elective (3 credits) to be chosen from:

  1. the previous list
  2. THO5307 STUDIES IN PASTORAL PRACTICE I (3cr.) or THO5308 STUDIES IN PASTORAL PRACTICE II (3cr.)
  3. any other course which, in the judgment of the Faculty, fulfils the objectives of the program. 

Students may propose any course which they consider relevant to their particular future ministry. Given the present context of the Church, the following areas are particularly suggested: spiritual direction, basic counselling skills, ecumenical ministry, mission and new evangelization. 

Two practicums (12 crédits):

  • IPA5481 PROFESSIONAL MINISTRY PRACTICUM I (6cr.)
  • IPA5482 PROFESSIONAL MINISTRY PRACTICUM II (6cr.)

Minimum Standards
The passing grade in all courses is C+. Students who fail two courses (equivalent to 6 credits) must withdraw from the program.
 
Duration of the Program
Students are expected to fulfill all requirements within two years. The maximum time permitted is four years from the date of initial registration in the program.
 
Fast-track from MA to PhD program
Students enrolled in the MA program may be allowed to transfer to the PhD program without being required to write a master’s thesis provided they meet the following conditions: 

  1. Achievement of an A- average in the last two years of undergraduate studies; 
  2. Completion of at least four graduate courses (12 credits) with a grade of A- or better in each;
  3. Satisfactory progress in the thesis program;
  4. Written recommendation by the supervisor;
  5. Approval by the graduate studies committee. 

The student must request permission to fast-track during the fourth session of registration or earlier and must register in the PhD in the fifth session at the latest. Following the transfer, all of the requirements of the doctoral program must be met.
 
Transfer from MA with thesis to MA with research paper
Students in either the MA (with thesis) or MA (with research paper) may transfer between the two options and qualify for the MA as long as all degree requirements are completed.

DCA 5310 - CHURCH LAW AND PASTORAL MINISTRY

Theological reflection on and practical application of Canon Law to some areas of pastoral ministry, specifically marriage and reconciliation.

IPA 5321 - PASTORAL MINISTRY AND PSYCHOLOGY

Interaction between theology and psychology with reference to pastoral ministry, the experience of the believer, the development of faith and of religious attitudes. The pastoral implications of psychological theories of the individual and his/her social relations: impact on cognitive processes, emotion, behaviour, competence, values. Psychological perspectives on the pastoral minister's practice, role and identity.

IPA 5322 - PASTORAL MINISTRY AND SOCIOLOGY

Interaction between theology and sociology with reference to pastoral ministry. A study of the pastoral implications of socio-historical structures, and of social and cultural change. Analysis of how the social milieu forms the way people think, feel and act, and the reflection on the importance of this formation for values and beliefs. Sociological perspectives on Christian communities' practice, role and identity.

IPA 5481 - PROFESSIONAL MINISTRY PRACTICUM I

Supervised ministry in a local church or other ministerial setting. Emphasis on the receptive skills and attitudes of the pastoral minister. Theological, sociological, and psychological theories are introduced which will enable the pastoral agent to observe, analyze, and integrate events within the religious community. Cognitive, behavioural, motivational, and emotional components are related to people's individual, social, and interpersonal life. Professional ethical issues are addressed. Codes of ethics in allied professions are used when appropriate. Supervision occurs in small groups under the guidance of a supervisor from the Saint Paul University.

IPA 5482 - PROFESSIONAL MINISTRY PRACTICUM II

In collaboration with a supervisor the student actively addresses a segment of his ministry drawn from Practicum I (e.g., relationships, or the community, or individuals). Action plans are formulated and carried out. Implications for religious structure, liturgy, homiletics, sacraments are developed and implemented. Emphasis is placed on critical, informed involvement, resource and time management in the exercise of collegial and co-responsible lay and ordained leadership in preaching, liturgical presiding, and community facilitation. Supervision occurs in small groups under the guidance of a supervisor from the Saint Paul University. Prerequisite: IPA 5481.

THO 5303 - LITURGICAL PASTORAL THEOLOGY

Theological reflection on the liturgical experience and expression of Christian communities. Principles, dynamics, and actualization of liturgical celebration, including sacraments, paraliturgies and prayer services. Roles and ministries in liturgical celebrations.

THO 5304 - CHRISTIAN COMMUNITY IN ITS SOCIAL DIMENSION

The Christian community as a social reality embodying beliefs and values. Its relationship to and responsibility toward contemporary society and church: local, national, international. Present social questions and the Christian social tradition.

THO 5305 - CHRISTIAN COMMUNITY AND ITS DEVELOPMENT

Types of Christian community. Maintaining the well-being and promoting the growth of Christian communities. Life cycles and life settings of Christian communities.

THO 5307 - STUDIES IN PASTORAL PRACTICE I

Study of a specific topic or issue in pastoral theology.

THO 5308 - STUDIES IN PASTORAL PRACTICE II

Study of a specific topic or issue in pastoral theology.

THO 6310 - THEOLOGICAL HERMENEUTICS

Principles and history of interpretation in theology. Recent developments and debates. The role of classic texts and the question of historical consciousness.

THO 6317 - THE FORMATION OF THE BIBLICAL TEXT

Transmission of the text. Inspiration. Canonicity. The authority of the text and the believing community.

THO 6318 - THE INTERPRETATION OF BIBLICAL TEXTS

Principles and methods of interpretation. History of interpretation: the Church Fathers, Middle Ages, the Reformation, 19th and 20th centuries.

THO 6333 - METHODS AND APPROACHES IN CONTEMPORARY ETHICS

Hermeneutical questions and methodological foundations of contemporary ethical reflection analysed from a theological perspective.

THO 6334 - ISSUES AND DEBATES IN CONTEMPORARY ETHICS

Analyses, from a theological perspective, of major issues and debates characterizing ethical research in its present context.

THO 6352 - STUDIES IN EASTERN CHRISTIANITY

Investigation of a particular issue, author, or trend related to any aspect of Eastern Christianity not foreseen by the other courses.

THO 6354 - RELIGIOUS EXPERIENCE

Faith and experience. The Mystery of God. Interpretations and expressions of the experience of God.

THO 6355 - THEOLOGY AND CULTURE

The relationship between faith and culture; contemporary issues, questions and challenges. The contextual nature of theology.

THO 6358 - SPIRITUALITY: METHODS; RELATIONSHIPS WITH THE HUMAN SCIENCES

Analysis of the methods used in the theological study of spirituality. Spirituality in relation to the human sciences.

THO 6359 - COMPARATIVE STUDY OF SPIRITUAL TRADITIONS

Comparative theological study of one or more Christian spiritual traditions and one or more spiritual traditions within other religions to highlight their views of the world, human reality and salvation.

THO 6375 - FOUNDATIONAL TEXTS IN EASTERN CHRISTIAN CHURCH HISTORY

In-depth reading, analysis and evaluation of key historical source material from the fourth century to the present.

THO 6376 - FOUNDATIONAL TEXTS IN EASTERN CHRISTIAN SPIRITUALITY

In-depth reading, analysis and evaluation of basic spiritual classics of Eastern Christianity from the fourth century to the present.

THO 6377 - FOUNDATIONAL TEXTS IN EASTERN CHRISTIAN LITURGICAL HISTORY

In-depth reading, analysis and evaluation of basic sources that illustrate the evolution of Eastern Christian worship from the fourth century to the present.

THO 6378 - RESOURCES AND METHODS FOR THE STUDY OF EASTERN CHRISTIANITY

An examination of various research tools related to Eastern Christianity and religion in general. An overview of key methods in Eastern Christian exegesis, theology, liturgy, spirituality and Church history and their interface with modern and classical Western approaches.

THO 6379 - ISSUES IN EASTERN CHRISTIAN HERMENEUTICS & EXEGESIS

Study of a particular issue, author, or trend in the hermeneutics and exegesis of the Eastern Churches, e.g. particularities of the Greek, Syriac, or Slavonic versions and their distinctive canons; worship as hermeneutical matrix; scripture and tradition in Eastern Christian reflection; extra-biblical texts; the development of modern Orthodox hermeneutics in dialogue with Western text criticism and methods.

THO 6380 - PATRISTIC THEOLOGY

Examination of a particular issue, author, or trend in Eastern Patristic theology, e.g. Greek, Byzantine, Syriac, Coptic or Armenian sources; or the twentieth-century neo-patristic synthesis.

THO 6381 - CONTEMPORARY EASTERN THEOLOGY

Study of a particular issue, author, or trend in contemporary Eastern Christian theology, e.g. modern philosophical theology (for example, sophiology), and systematics and/or moral theology of the Greek, Russian, Ukrainian, Melkite and Romanian schools in particular; or the systematics and/or moral reflection of non-Byzantine theologians.

THO 6382 - FOUNDATIONAL TEXTS IN EASTERN CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY

In-depth reading, analysis and evaluation of basic texts that have helped shape Eastern Christian theology from the third century to the present.

THO 6387 - ISSUES IN EASTERN CHRISTIAN LITURGICAL HISTORY

Study of a particular issue, author, or trend relating to the history of the Constantinopolitan, Armenian, Alexandrian, West Syrian or East Syrian worship traditions and their offshoots, e.g. historical and structural analyses of Eastern patristic sources, Church Orders, euchologies, typica and other worship books; chant traditions, execution, environment; cultural factors conditioning these traditions.

THO 6388 - FOUNDATIONAL TEXTS IN EASTERN CHRISTIAN LITURGICAL THEOLOGY

In-depth reading, analysis and evaluation of basic texts from the fourth century to the present.

THO 6392 - THE HISTORY OF EASTERN CHRISTIAN INSTITUTIONS, MOVEMENTS, PERSONS

Historical analysis of Eastern Christian institutions, movements or persons in the early, "medieval," or modern periods of one or several of the various Eastern Churches, e.g. pre- and post- Nicene developments; Byzantium; pre-Ephesian and pre-Chalcedonian Churches; the Slavic missions and Kyivan Rus'; the Turkocrateia and subsequent liberation; later Rus' Christianity; the Tsarist era; modern persecution; the Eastern Christian "diaspora."

THO 6393 - METHODOLOGICAL ISSUES IN EASTERN CHURCH HISTORY

Investigation of a particular issue, author, or trend related to the periodization, historiography or methodology in general of Eastern Christian history.

THO 6397 - FOUNDATIONAL TEXTS IN EAST-WEST ECUMENISM

In-depth reading, analysis and evaluation of key documents that have shaped East-West rapprochement from 1902 to the present.

THO 6398 - INTER-RELIGIOUS ISSUES AND THE CHRISTIAN EAST

Examination, from the perspective of the Eastern Churches, of a particular issue, author, or trend relating to dialogue between Christianity and other religions, e.g. Islamic-Christian encounters in the Middle-East, the Balkans and the former USSR; Slavic Christian-Jewish interaction; Buddhist-Eastern Christian monastic contacts.

THO 6399 - METHODOLOGIES IN THEOLOGY

A study of methodologies found in different theological fields. Introduction to the diverse resources available for theological research. Preparation of a master's research paper.

THO 6997 - EXAMEN DE SYNTHÈSE DE M.A. EN CHRISTIANISME ORIENTAL / MA SYNTHESIS EXAMINATION IN EASTERN CHRISTIAN STUDIES

Un examen oral et écrit pendant lequel l'étudiant devra démontrer son aptitude à faire une réflexion critique sur cinq thèmes (et textes correspondants), ayant une portée particulière pour le christianisme oriental. / A written and oral exercise during which the student is expected to demonstrate the ability to reflect critically on five themes (and concomitant texts) of particular significance to Eastern Christian Studies.

THO 6998 - MÉMOIRE / RESEARCH PAPER

Le mémoire, d'environ 40 pages, sera évalué par le directeur, qui doit appartenir à la concentration de l'étudiant, et par un autre professeur de la Faculté de théologie. Le mémoire ne peut être déposé qu'après avoir terminé avec succès le cours de méthodologie (THO 6799 ou THO 6778). / The research paper, approximately 40 pages in length, will be evaluated by both the supervisor, who must be from the student's concentration, and another professor from the Faculty of Theology. The submission of the research paper is dependent upon successful completion of the methodology course (THO 6399 or THO 6378).

THO 7999 - THÈSE DE MAÎTRISE / MASTER'S THESIS

THO 9295 - DOCTORAL SEMINAR IN THEOLOGY

Organization and composition of a thesis proposal acceptable to the Faculty of theology and the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies. (Graded: S or N/S)

THO 9998 - EXAMEN DE SYNTHÈSE DE DOCTORAT / PhD PRELIMINARY EXAMINATION

THO 9999 - THÈSE / THESIS

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