Apr 22, 2019  
2018-2019 
    
2018-2019 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Religion MA


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Program Description


Felix Cortez, Director

The Master of Arts (Religion) is an academic program usually involving two or three years of study beyond the baccalaureate degree.  The purpose of the program is to prepare students to act as teachers and church workers in the areas of biblical studies, theology, and religious tradition beyond the bachelor’s degree.  The program requires 38 credits of course work. Only 500- and 600-level courses are accepted and requires a thesis. 

Program Outcomes

Specialized Track 

(Offered on the Andrews main campus only)

  1. Conduct effective research that communicates competence in a specialized field of study.
  2. Practice a biblically grounded approach to scholarly inquiry.
  3. Articulate theology and research in terms of Seventh-day Adventist, history, beliefs and practice.
  4. Demonstrate understanding of the content and central issues of the specialized field of study.

Interdisciplinary Track

(offered at international extension sites and online)

  1. Conduct effective research for teaching and ministry.
  2. Practice a biblically grounded approach to scholarly inquiry.
  3. Articulate theology and research in terms of Seventh-day Adventist history, beliefs and practice.
  4. Demonstrate a broad understanding of biblical studies, theology, and religious history within the Seventh-day Adventist church. 

MA (Religion) Specialized Track

Admission Requirements

Admission to the MA (Religion) program is based on the general admission requirements  for all graduate students and the general Seminary admission requirements .  Applicants must hold a baccalaureate degree or its equivalent, preferably with a major in religion or theology with a minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.00 or above.

In addition to the General and Seminary Admission requirements specified above, applicants must meet the following:

Prerequisites. Applicants must provide a transcript showing that they have taken the following courses at the undergraduate level with a GPA of 3.00 or better (on a 4.00 system). Prerequisites do not count as part of the 38 credits required for the MA (Religion) degree. 

Prerequisites may be taken at any accredited educational institution.  Students needing to take prerequisite courses, after applying to the MA Religion program, may submit courses by providing an official transcript showing that the course(s) taken meet the Transfer Credit Policy (see below) and the MA Religion prerequisite requirements to fulfill the course or language prerequisites. 

  • Church History - 2 credits
  • New Testament Studies - 2 credits
  • Old Testament Studies - 2 credits
  • Theological Studies - 2 credits
  • E.G. White Writings - 2 credits
  • Adventist Studies - 2 credits

Total prerequisite credits - 12

Language Requirements:

The applicant must demonstrate proficiency, in languages other than English, or show a plan for acquiring language proficiency as determined by the selected area of concentration. Proficiency is defined as the reading knowledge of a language at the intermediate level. Examinations are generally required to demonstrate proficiency. Language proficiency courses do not apply toward the 38 credits of the MA degree requirements.

Applicant must demonstrate Biblical Greek and Hebrew proficiency at the intermediate level.  Students who have already taken Greek or Hebrew at the undergrad level must take the placement exam and show that they have an intermediate level of competency in both languages.  If the appropriate score(s) are not earned, the student will have to retake the language courses at Andrews.  Biblical language proficiency must be demonstrated before registration of exegesis courses.

Registering Greek and Hebrew Placement Exams:

If a student passes the Hebrew or Greek placement exam, they must register for the zero credit section of the course in order that their academic transcript to show a grade of “P” for passing, which is the designation for Challenge by Examination.  No entry shall be made on the transcript if the student fails the examination.  However, the student will be required to take the prerequisite course for credit, if they fail the examination.  Placement exams must be taken the first year of starting your program and can only be taken once. 

Students will register for placement exam(s) as follow:

NTST 551  - Beginner Greek Placement Exam, 0 credits, must receive a score of 45% or higher to pass.

NTST 552  - Intermediate Greek Placement Exam, 0 credits, must receive a score of 60% or higher to pass.

OTST 551  - Beginner Hebrew Placement Exam, 0 credits, must receive a score of 45% or higher to pass.

OTST 552  - Intermediate Hebrew Placement Exam, 0 credits, must receive a score of 65% or higher to pass.

Students who choose to demonstrate proficiency in Hebrew and/or Greek by taking the courses at Andrews, may use the credits to fulfill course Prerequisite Elective requirements.

A modern language of French or German must generally be completed by examination and/or course work (FREN 505 , GRMN 505 ). Exceptions to this rule are listed below under Areas of Concentration. This is in addition to the minimum 38 program credits. Other modern research languages may be considered by the program director if the language is relevant to the topic of the thesis/project. Modern language deficiencies must be completed before registering for the MA thesis/project.

Sixteen Personality Factor (16PF) Questionnaire must be completed and submitted as directed on the online application.

Transfer Credits. A maximum of 6 masters level semester hours of coursework, with a B (3.00) or above, may be transferred from an approved seminary or university if applicable to the student’s program. Transfer courses must have been completed within the six-year time limit.

Time Limits. A student must complete the requirements for the MA (Religion) degree and graduate within six years of first enrolling in the program regardless of admission classification.

Degree Requirements

In addition to the scholarship standards  in the Graduate Programs Academic Information section of this bulletin, students must fulfill the following requirements:

Concentrations. Students must select their area of concentration within the first semester of starting courses.  Concentration options for the MA Religion are listed below:

Required Concentration Courses: In the event that a required course in the area of concentration is not offered during any given term, another course in the same area can be substituted for the required course in consultation with the chair of the department. 

Research Requirements. An MA thesis with a total of 5 credits must be completed and defended. It cannot be started until all language requirements are completed. A student who has registered the required 5 thesis course credits but has not finished the thesis must register for GSEM 688-Master Degree Continuation, 0 credits, until the thesis has been approved/completed.

​Academic Advisement. The director of the MA in Religion program, in cooperation with department chairs, assigns academic advisers in the student’s area of specialization.

Certification for Teaching. Students who plan to teach religion in a Seventh-day Adventist academy or in a secondary school are urged to consult as early in the program as possible with the director of the MA program and the School of Education regarding qualifying for SDA teaching credentials.

Distance Courses. On-line courses must be approved by the MA Religion director before the course begins. These courses must cover appropriate content with sufficient rigor to meet the academic expectations of the MA Religion degree. 

MA Religion Interdisciplinary International Track

The MA (Religion) Interdisciplinary Track offered online and at that international sites listed below, provides a survey knowledge of various theological disciplines in order to prepare students to act as secondary teachers and church workers in a variety of areas. The program requires a thesis/project and may reflect context-sensitive needs in its curriculum.

Hong Kong Site: Language of instruction is English

Hong Kong Adventist College

111 Clear Water Bay Road, Sai Kung, New Territories, Hong Kong

 

Lebanon Site: Language of instruction is English

Middle East University

Ferdous St., Sabtieh, Bauchrieh, Lebanon

 

Poland Site: Language of instruction is Polish

Polish Senior College of Theology & Humanities

U1. Jana Pawla II39, 05-807 Podkowa Lesna, Poland

 

Romania Site: Language of instruction is English

Institutul Teologic Adventist

Şos. Decebal, nr. 11-13, Comuna Cernica, 077035, Judeţul Ilfov, România

 

Russian Site: Language of instruction - Russian

Zaoksky Adventist University

Tula , Russia

 

Taiwan Site: Language of instruction is Chinese

Taiwan Adventist College (TAC)

39 Chung Wen Lang Yu Chih, Nantou County, Taiwan  55542

Republic of China

 

Ukraine Site: Language of instruction is Russian

Ukrainian Adventist Center of Higher Education

14 Instytutska, 08292 Bucha, Kyiv Region, Ukraine

 

Online Delivery: Language of instruction is English. This program is also offered in an interactive online format (see School of Distance Education and International Partnerships  Definitions). The interactive online degree does not require any on-campus time.

Admission Requirements

Admission to the MA (Religion) International program is based on the general admission requirements  for all graduate students and the general Seminary admission requirements . Applicant must hold a baccalaureate degree or its equivalent, preferably with a major in religion or theology with a minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.00 or above.

Prerequisites. Applicants must provide a transcript showing that they have taken the following courses at the undergraduate level with a GPA of 3.00 or better (on a 4.00 system). Prerequisites do not count as part of the 38 credits required for the MA (Religion) degree.

Prerequisites may be taken at any accredited educational institution.  Students needing to take prerequisite courses, after applying to the MA Religion program, may submit courses by providing an official transcript showing that the course(s) taken meet the Transfer Credit Policy (see below) and the MA Religion prerequisite requirements to fulfill the course or language prerequisites.

  • Church History                   2 credits
  • New Testament Studies      2 credits
  • Old Testament Studies       2 credits
  • Theological Studies            2 credits
  • Ellen G. White Writings       2 credits
  • Adventist History                2 credits

Total prerequisite credits - 12

Language Requirements. The applicant must meet the English proficiency requirements  of the School of Graduate Studies and Research, if the program will be completed online or if the language of instruction is English.

Transfer Credits: A maximum of 6 semester hours of credit with a B (3.00) or above may be transferred from an approved seminary or university if applicable to the student’s program. Transfer courses must have been completed within the six-year time limit.

Time Limits. A student must complete the requirements for the MA (Religion) degree and graduate within six years of first enrolling in the program regardless of admission classification.

Preparation for the Andrews’ PhD Religion program. Students completing the MA Religion International Interdisciplinary Track will need to do additional coursework in an area of specialization before they can be accepted into Andrews’ PhD Religion program. They will also have to show proficiency at the intermediate level in Greek, Hebrew, and a modern research language. Additional languages may be required depending on the area of specialization chosen for the PhD dissertation.

Degree Requirements

In addition to the scholarship standards  in the Graduate Programs Academic Information section of this bulletin, students must fulfill the following requirements for both the research and the general academic orientation options:

Concentrations. Students must select their area of concentration within the first semester of starting courses.  Concentration options unique to the MA Religion Interdisciplinary Track are listed below:

Independent Study. Independent study credits are not accepted as part of the MA (Religion) degree offered at international sites.

Online courses may be taken by off-campus students with the Program Director’s approval.  Tuition and fees for online courses will be charged in accordance to the online program fees of the current bulletin. 

Research Requirements. An MA thesis/project with a total of 6 credits is to be completed and defended. A student who has registered the required course work (6 thesis credits) but has not finished the thesis/project, must register for GSEM 688 Master’s Degree Continuation  , 0 Credits until the thesis/project has been approved.

Interdisciplinary Track Online

Delivery: The MA (Religion) Interdisciplinary Track is also offered in an interactive online format (see School of Distance Education Definitions ). The interactive online degree does not require any on-campus time.  However, students are welcome to attend events, and are especially encouraged to attend graduation.

To allow for peer cohorts and good progression, students taking the MA (Religion) online will complete these requirements in the following order:38 semester credits with a cumulative GPA of 3.00 or above[GP1] . 

  • Core classes (24 credits): 
  • 8-14 credits in the area of Christian Ministry.
  • GSEM 697  Thesis for MA Degree (6 credits)/GSEM 695  Research Project (6 credits)/GSEM 680  Masters Comprehensive Exam (0 credits).
    • GSEM 520  Methods in Biblical & Theological Research (2 credits)
    • NTST 538  Studies in Hebrews (2 credits)
    • THST 616  Doctrine of God   (2 credits)
    • Concentration Elective (2 credits- CHMN, DSRE, or MSSN prefix)
  • GSEM 530  Doctrine of the Sanctuary (2 credits)
  • OTST 546  Studies in Daniel (English)  (2 credits)
  • THST 540  Doctrine of Salvation
  • GSEM 697  MA Thesis  (2 Credits) OR Concentration Elective (2 credits- CHMN, DSRE, or MSSN prefix)

 

  • CHIS 574  History of SDA Theology (2 credits)
  • CHIS 624  Issues in Ellen G. White Studies (2 credits)
  • NTST 539  Studies in Revelation (2 credits)
  • Concentration Elective (2 credits CHMN, DSRE, or MSSN prefix)

 

 

  • Concentration Elective (2 credits - CHMN, DSRE, or MSSN prefix)
  • GSEM 697  MA Thesis  (2 Credits OR Concentration Elective (2 credits- CHMN, DSRE, or MSSN prefix)

 

  • NTST 536  Studies in the Gospels (2 credits)
  • Concentration Elective (2 credits - CHMN, DSRE, or MSSN prefix)
  • GSEM 697  MA Thesis (2 credits) OR Concentration Elective (2 credits- CHMN, DSRE, or MSSN prefix)

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