Historical Theology | Doctor of Philosophy Degree
The Department of Theological Studies' primary focus is the academic study of the Christian tradition in its historical and cultural contexts. In advancing the Catholic and Jesuit tradition of Saint Louis University, the department approaches revealed Christian truth with a special emphasis on its relation to human culture and the requirements of social justice.
[NEW:] The Personal Potential Index (PPI) will be required to complete your application for admission. Visit SLU's page about the PPI evaluations and requirements or go to The ETS page to learn more about the PPI.
|Ph.D. in Historical Theology home
||College of Arts & Sciences home|
|Application Deadline for Beginning Term||The Application Package||Apply Online|
|Fall: Jan. 1 (International: Jan. 1)||Transcript(s); Three (3) Letters of Recommendation; GRE G or MAT scores; Resume; Professional Goal Statement; Three (3) Personal Potential Index evaluations||
(Advantages of the web application)
|Spring: No admittance|
|Summer: No admittance|
Tel. No.: 314.977.2881
|Chair: James R. Ginther, Ph.D.
Admissions Coordinator: Charlotte Ruzicka
Assistantship Application Deadline: February 1
Required Additional Application Materials for International Students
- A completed Declaration of Financial Support packet with all accompanying documents
- TOEFL or IELTS score
Check our English Proficiency Policy page for specific TOEFL and IELTS score requirements. You may also visit our international prospects, applicants and students page for more information about international application requirements.
- A committee examines and reviews the applicant and application wholly.
- A review of GRE or MAT scores
- A review of TOEFL scores (for International applicants)
Theology Application Review Process
- Applications are reviewed by committee of Theology Dept. faculty members
- The Department is nationally recognized for its research and teaching in historical theology and supports doctoral study in patristic, medieval, modern and American Christianity.
Credit Hours/Coursework: The program comprises three main components, for a maximum of 63 hours: Prerequisite Courses (18 hours), Doctoral Courses (33 hours), Dissertation Research (12 hours). | Course of Study | Language Competencies
Program Description: Through critical methods, our Ph.D. program investigates the development of the Christian church, its beliefs and theologies, and religious practices in their social settings. | Admission & Application
Careers Possibilities: Community Development Director; Missionary; Youth Minister. | Career Services
Curriculum & Program Details: The Doctor of Philosophy in Historical Theology degree is based upon the Catholic tradition and approaches theology from an historical per¬spective. This comprehensive way of examining theological issues takes a double thrust, namely studying the issues within their own context of time and place while also relating them to the broad developments within the tradition of Christian theology from the early church to the present day. The program's goals are:
- To prepare our students to teach the gamut of the History of Christian Theology at the undergraduate level;
- To shape new teachers committed to excellence in higher education;
- To form new scholars with exceptional research and communication skills;
- To create a scholarly environment that encourages both faculty and students to publish innovative research in historical theology. | Ph.D. Historical Theology
About the Theological Studies Faculty: At Saint Louis University, faculty, staff and students all make a contribution to an active community life that is so necessary to the academic study of the Catholic theological tradition. Each group has an important role to play.
Faculty in Theological Studies are active researchers and many are leading scholars in their specialty areas. In the last ten years, faculty in the department have published 35 books and over 100 essays and articles. | Theological Studies faculty, staff, alumni/ae
Scholarships & Financial Aid: The Department of Theological Studies, in cooperation with other entities of the university, normally grants assistantships to select Ph.D. students and some MA students for at least three years. A forth year is normally funded via a combination of tuition remission and/or teaching appointments (see below). Thus, on a competitive basis, the DTS strives to provide its students a consistent level of funding for four years (presuming good academic standing and good performance reviews). For those students who do not have a research assistantship, various forms of tuition remission may be available. The Department appoints students as Research Assistants. The Assistantship is considered central to our formation of doctoral students into well-trained, research active scholars. Doctoral students who have completed their coursework and comprehensive examinations can be appointed as adjunct Professors in the Department. Students who begin teaching for the first time take advantage of the training in the Center for Teaching Excellence and the guidance of a Faculty mentor. | Financial Aid | Student Financial Services at SLU
Program Highlights: The Department is nationally recognized for its research and teaching in historical theology and supports doctoral study in patristic, medieval, modern and American Christianity. | Special Programs | Graduate Student Resources
- The Department supports the Center for Digital Theology, which creates products and tools to support teaching and research in historical theology. Faculty and Graduate Students also contribute to other interdisciplinary centers, such as the Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies and the Center for Women's Studies.
- Theology Digest, published at SLU, was an international journal that offers condensations of recent signifi¬cant articles selected from over 400 of the world's theological journals. The publication ceased in 2010.
- Additional resources are the 37,000 plus microfilms of the Vatican Film Library; the archives of the Jesuit Institute; and over 150,0000 volumes of the Divinity Library in the Pius XII Memorial Library (which overall has 1.4 million books, journals and other media). The Library also provides access to many key research resources, including the Patrologia Latina, Brepolis, Early English Books OnLine, ATLA, Catholic Periodical Index, J-STOR, Index of Christian Art, as well as electronic access to major journals and other indexing tools.