Purpose: The Master of Arts is designed to provide a foundational understanding of one of four designated areas - Old Testament, New Testament, Historical Theology, and Systematic Theology - as a basis for further graduate study or general educational purposes.
Emphasis: The focus is on scholarly research, with special attention to writing a thesis or guided research.
Intended Educational Outcomes: Master of Arts graduates are expected to:
- Demonstrate the ability to research and to write a major scholarly work in a selected area of specialization.
- Demonstrate reasonable exegetical skills in the interpretation of Scripture. This will equip students to understand God and God’s will at the highest level for both personal spiritual formation and the teaching of others.
Time Frame: The M.A. is a 36-hour degree that normally takes two years or less for a full-time student.
Residency: At least six hours must be taken on the Harding School of Theology campus. One of the on-campus courses must be BMIN 5990 Advanced Theological Research , which is taken within the first nine hours. It will include a retreat at the end of each intensive course. In semesters where the course is available only on a weekly basis the retreat will be near the end of the term.
Undergraduate GPA: A student whose undergraduate grade point average is between 2.30 and 2.70 may be admitted on probation to the M.A. program. Probation will be removed upon successfully completing 18 semester hours of graduate courses with a grade point average of 3.00.
Advanced Standing: HST does not allow advanced standing in the 36-hour M.A.
Transfer Credit: Students must take at least 24 semester hours from Harding School of Theology toward the M.A. HST may accept as many as 12 hours of graduate credit from another acceptable institution, subject to approval of the Admissions Committee.
Language Requirement: One year of Greek or Hebrew at the undergraduate level with a grade of C or better is required, or the student may take Hebrew BOLD 5090 and BOLD 5091 or Greek BNEW 5310 and BNEW 5311 for graduate credit. (Students who concentrate in Old Testament must take additional course work in Hebrew; for the New Testament area, additional work is required in Greek.)
Testing: Psychological, career and other types of testing may be used for guidance purposes.