See the Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) page for degree requirements and other program details.
1. Prerequisites and Application Deadline
- You must have a previous graduate-level theological degree from an accredited theological school. This could be a Master of Arts (in theological studies), Master of Divinity, or Bachelor of Divinity degree (or its equivalent).
- Cumulative GPA of 3.0+ on a 4.0 scale for the first degree(s) in theology
- International Students — please see International Student Applications
Please note the application deadline of January 1, 2022. The application for Fall 2022 is now closed.
The online application and all supporting documents must be submitted to complete your application. Your application will not be considered by the Advanced Theological Education Advisory Committee until it is complete.
2. Submit Online Application
Submit the online application to begin the process. You will be asked to provide detailed information and will respond to a series of questions related to the degree program for which you apply. You can save your progress and return to submit your online application at any time. Please be prepared to provide the contact information for your recommendations (described in more detail below).
Once your initial application is received, you will be sent an email that walks you through the next steps in the application process and notifies you of your missing materials. You can check your online admissions portal at anytime to track your application progress.
3. Submit Supporting Documents
Admissions will be based on the feasibility of the research interest or area of study proposed and the willingness and availability of one or more Luther Seminary faculty to oversee the student’s work on a continuing basis through graduation. You will be asked to provide a 3,000-4,000 word academic sample (preferred to be within the area of intended study). Please note you will also be asked to provide a 1,500 word description of your intended area of research. You will submit these through your online application portal.
Please request official transcripts from every college or university from which you have received credit. Transcripts should be sent directly to the Admissions Office by the issuing institution (we cannot accept opened transcripts received from applicants themselves). The most efficient and preferred method is to request electronic parchment be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also have the institution mail transcript to 2481 Como Ave., Saint Paul, MN 55108 (please send via USPS to ensure proper delivery during mailroom hours, M-F, 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.). Once received, your online application portal will be updated.
Applicants who graduated from Luther Seminary within 20 years from the time of application may submit a transcript release authorization form (Word doc) to the Office of the Registrar for release of your undergraduate transcript(s).
Please submit a resume with relevant vocational, ministry, leadership and service experience (no more than 2 pages) – you will submit this through your online application portal.
At the time of submitting your online application, you will be asked to provide contact information for three academic recommenders. International applicants must submit a fourth recommendation (church/institutional endorsement). The online application portal will contact your recommenders at the provided email addresses with the appropriate recommendation form.
4. Once your application is complete
Once we have received your online application and all supporting documents and your application is complete, your file will be reviewed by the Advanced Theological Education Advisory Committee. Luther Seminary has a collaborative review process that requires sufficient lead time before the committee meets. If your application and all of your supporting documents are not received within the lead time accounted for in the above application deadlines and needed to ensure a thoughtful review, it may not be reviewed until the following committee meeting. Advanced Theological Education Advisory Committee meeting dates are not public.
You will be notified of the Advanced Theological Education Advisory Committee’s decision through your online application portal. If you are accepted, you will be asked to send an affirmation of intent to the Admissions Office through the online application portal.