Master of Arts in Theological Studies
The Master of Arts in Theological Studies (MATS) is designed to serve as an intermediate degree for further graduate programs in biblical and theological studies. It is also designed to provide advanced biblical and theological training for ministers who want to enhance their ministry in specialized areas such as teaching and church-related writing. The program is based on an important set of core courses, but allows the student the flexibility of up to 18 credits to provide the best preparation for the student’s future goals.
Degree Components and Requirements
The MATS is a two-year program of study requiring 48 credits. However, applicants with a strong undergraduate program in religion may petition for Advanced Standing in the program, which could allow them to complete the program with 39 credits or approximately three semesters of study. See MATS Advanced Standing.
Students in this program are not required to choose a concentration, except the one designated “Biblical and Theological Studies,” which gives the widest range of course options (BAR, BGR, BHE, BIB, BNT, BOT, BTH, HIS, THE or MHT). Should a student wish, they may focus more narrowly by taking 15 hours in NT Studies, OT Studies, Biblical Languages, Pentecostal and Charismatic Studies, or Intercultural Theology.
In addition to the general requirements for graduation, graduation requirements for the MATS program also include a supervised seminar-quality research paper (in BNT/BOT/MHT/PCS 646) and the submission of a portfolio containing copies of the student’s work demonstrating attainment of the learning outcomes in the program. A limited number of courses may be taken through directed research or online.
MATS Program Overview
- Mission of God and World Christianity (9 credits)
- Bible and Theology (15 credits)
- Theological Research (6 credits)
- Optional Concentration or Area of Focus (15 credits)
- General Elective (3 credits)
Online MATS Program
The MATS is also offered as an online program. The online MATS is a 48-credit program, allowing for students with a strong undergraduate program in religion to petition for Advanced Standing, which would reduce the program to 39 credits (See MATS Advanced Standing above.) The admission, contours and graduation expectations of the online MATS program are the same as that of the resident program—9 credits, Mission of God and World Christianity; 15 credits, Bible and Theology; 6 credits, Theological Research and Writing; 15 credits of courses with BAR, BGR, BHE, BIB, BNT, BOT, BTH, HIS, PCS, and THE prefixes; and 3 credits of General Electives.
The student should consult the Course Schedule each term to learn what is offered in the program (http://agts.edu/class_schedules/index.html). See the AGTS Catalog for specific information about the MATS online program.
The syllabi for each online course, available during the registration periods, will specify the technical and other requirements for the course. Sustaining two courses each term—fall, spring, and summer—will allow the student to complete the MATS program in approximately 3 years.