M.A. in Applied Pastoral Theology

Earn your M.A. in Applied Pastoral Theology from Marylhurst

What inspires you as you consider following your call to pastoral ministry?

Do you feel called to work in a church or synagogue, to teach religious education classes, to advocate for the underserved? Do you feel drawn to share your gifts in service of others as a spiritual mentor, a writer, or as a consultant?

Marylhurst’s M.A. in Applied Pastoral Theology

We are a small program, firmly rooted in the Judeo-Christian tradition, with an emphasis on learning about other faiths and a deep commitment to social justice and pastoral care. Our program will help you develop skills to be a compassionate and pastoral presence.

Whether you seek a position in a formal setting, wish to add a pastoral or spiritual focus to your current work, or feel called to create a new path using your unique talents, at Marylhurst you will find the support you need to follow your call.


  • Fall term 2018. Classes begin Sept. 24.
  • Priority application deadline is April 30, 2018

Accessible, Low-Residency Program

Online courses combined with face-to-face sessions on campus just twice each year

Our program allows you to live your life while you follow your passion! The Master of Arts in Applied Pastoral Theology is a low-residency program meaning you will be able to complete the program while remaining in your local community, as well as continue to work.

Low-residency format

  • Six-day residency: each fall term
  • Four-day residency: each spring term
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Why Choose the Applied Pastoral Theology Program at Marylhurst?

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Marylhurst is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU), and our religious studies program is an Associate member of the Association of Theological Schools (ATS) and is actively working to ensure full membership in the association.


Courses are offered online with two on-campus sessions per year in Portland. Each session lasts four-to-six days.


More than 90% of our graduates find relevant career placements in the field working in parishes or synagogues, advocating for others in social and community agencies, leading retreats and spiritual leaderships ministries or teaching religious education in churches and schools.


Clear pathway to graduation means no guessing on which courses to take. Complete the program in two years.


Small classes with expert faculty who have served, or currently serve as ministers and pastoral leaders. Plus, supportive alumni services to help you seek placement after graduation.


Marylhurst is committed to the financial-well being of our students. The university has little-to-no fees and offers extensive financial aid support.

Marylhurst University - Pastoral Theology Program

Pastoral Theology Courses

Marylhurst’s applied pastoral theology curriculum develops a strong and balanced theological ministerial foundation within an educational, professional and spiritual context. You will grow in wholeness through a greater understanding of self, connection with others, the universe and the Divine. Request information to learn more about the coursework preparing you to make a difference as a pastoral care provider.

Marylhurst University - Pastoral Theology Program

Careers in Pastoral Ministry

Year after year, Marylhurst’s M.A. in Applied Pastoral Theology graduates are highly employable within ministerial leadership roles. Whether you want to serve as a pastor, educator or within another ministerial capacity, you’ll find yourself well prepared with an applied pastoral theology degree. Connect with our admissions team to discuss your professional goals.

Marylhurst University - Pastoral Theology Program

Admissions Requirements

  • You will need a conferred bachelor’s degree before starting the program.
  • A minimum GPA for graduate program admission at Marylhurst is 3.0. If you have a GPA lower than 3.0, you will need to take the Miller Analogies Test (MAT) or the GRE and earn a score in the 50th percentile.
  • Two recommendations

For detailed application instructions and what you will need to complete our online application, please connect with our Office of Admissions through our Request Information form.

Marylhurst University - Pastoral Theology Program

Cost of the Program

Current graduate tuition for the Applied Pastoral Theology program is $505 per credit. Most courses are four credits. The Applied Pastoral Theology program is 60 – 68 credits in length for an approximate total program cost (based on current tuition) of $30,300 – $34,340.

Little-to-no Fees

Marylhurst has little-to-no fees (for example, parking is free on campus) and offers extensive financial aid management services.

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