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FAQ - Divinity School

FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions by Prospective Students

How do I apply?
Our application is now fully online and will be available on September 1, 2013 for fall 2014 admissions. You may access and begin your application here and click on the appropriate degree link on the top of the page.

What degrees are offered by the Divinity School?
The Divinity School offers two primary degrees. The Master of Divinity (M.Div.) is a three-year professional degree consisting of 84 credit hours that prepares graduates for ordained ministry and a variety of nontraditional ministries.  The Master of Theological Studies (M.T.S.) is a two-year program of religious studies that provides a broadly based theological education as the foundation for later doctoral work, teaching in the church and a variety of non-profit positions or non-ordained ministries.  Divinity graduates serve as parish ministers, social justice advocates, chaplains, and educators across the globe.

The Master of Arts (M.A.) and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) are offered through the Graduate Department of Religion. For more information on both degrees, click here.

Does the Divinity School offer Dual Degrees?
Yes.  The Divinity school offers Dual Degrees with Vanderbilt's Schools of Business, Law, Nursing and Medicine. Applicants interested in Dual Degree programs need to apply and get admitted to both schools in order to be able to enroll into the Dual Degree program.  For more information go to this page in the catalog .

What are the application deadlines?
Priority application deadline is January 15.  Applicants must apply by this date in order to be considered for named, full-tuition scholarships.  Regular application deadline is April 1.

Does my college major affect admissions into the Divinity School?
No, all undergraduate degrees are considered. Our students have a variety of degrees and majors, although a strong liberal arts background is preferred.

Can I apply for spring admission?
No. The Divinity School has a single application for fall semester.

Does the Divinity School offer online or evening courses?
Online courses are not offered by the Divinity School.  While some seminars are offered in the afternoon and early evening, core classes are only available in the mornings.

What is the cost of tuition?
Vanderbilt Divinity School's tuition is currently $816 per credit hour ($2448 per 3 hour class) and will not go up through 2013.

What kind of financial aid is available?
The Divinity School offers a generous financial aid program based on both merit and need. Virtually every student (over 95%) receives financial aid with the average award being around 60% of tuition.  Designated scholars receive 100% tuition and a stipend.

In order to receive federal need-based aid, students must fill out the FAFSA form and the Vanderbilt Graduate/Professional Financial Aid Application.

Do you have a course catalog you can send to me?
In an effort to be good stewards of the environment, our Divinity School Catalog is now only on-line.  You may access it via this link.

What do transfer students need to do to apply to the Divinity School?
The prospective transfer student (a student who began his or her graduate theological education at a school other than Vanderbilt Divinity School) shall apply for admission in the normal manner and shall, additionally, write a letter stating the reasons for transferring and provide a letter of honorable dismissal from the president or dean of the theological school from which transfer is being made.

What credits can be transferred?
Transfer credit will only be given for courses in which the student earned a grade of C or higher. Transfer credit will not be awarded until a student has demonstrated for at least one semester the ability to do satisfactory work in the Divinity School. Transfer credit is not normally given for courses taken more than five years before entrance into the Divinity School or for courses taken atinstitutions not accredited by the Association of Theological Schools.
Transfer of credit policies for specific degree programs are as follows:

M.T.S.  A maximum of 12 semester hours from other approved theological schools or 6 hours of other graduate study that is coherent with the student's program may be transferred to the M.T.S. program. Students may transfer work from both approved theological schools and from appropriate graduate study to the M.T.S. program, but the total number of hours applied toward the M.T.S. degree may not exceed 12 semester hours.

M.Div. A maximum of 27 semester hours from other approved theological schools or 12 hours of other graduate study that is coherent with the student's program may be transferred to the M.Div. program. Students may transfer work from both approved theological schools and from appropriate graduate study to the M.Div. program, but the total number of hours applied toward the M.Div. degree may not exceed 27 semester hours.

What is the procedure for obtaining a transcript?
All transcripts documenting a student's academic history at Vanderbilt University are issued from the Office of the Registrar; the individual schools comprising the University do not issue official transcripts. To order a transcript, please visit this page and click on "Transcripts".

Currently-enrolled students may place an order also by using their VUnet ID and e-password and logging on to the Access 2 Academic Information application.