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  Sep 24, 2017
 
Xavier University Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog 2017-2018 
  
Xavier University Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog 2017-2018

Theology, M.A.


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The mission of Xavier’s theology program is to provide a transformative theological education from a Catholic and ecumenical perspective inspired by the documents of the Second Vatican Council and the 35th General Congregation of the Society of Jesus. Accordingly, our mission empowers graduate students to: think theologically, analyze issues from a Catholic and interreligious perspective, and act responsibly in the world for the promotion of peace and justice.

Our graduate program in theology provides students with a firm foundation in Christian theology through the study of scripture, tradition and ethics. The program however, is flexible enough to accommodate a wide variety of interests while equipping students with the historical awareness and professional resources necessary to enter or advance in careers such as teaching, ministry or writing; to pursue doctoral work; or to promote their spiritual development.

Because no definite amount of previous study of theology is prerequisite for admission to the program, students may vary considerably in their preparation. Ordinarily, applicants should have a background in the humanities, but each applicant will be considered individually. Students without sufficient undergraduate background in theology or religious studies will normally be required to take THEO 501 , Intro to the Study of Theology, as a prerequisite for admission to the M.A. program.

All applicants must have a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution with an undergraduate GPA of 2.700 or better. In addition, all applicants must complete the Miller Analogies Test (MAT) prior to acceptance and obtain a score of 406 or higher. The MA in Theology will require satisfactory completion of 30 semester hours of graduate work (i.e. ordinarily ten courses), all of which must be at the graduate (500-800) level.

Undergraduates who attend Xavier University have a unique opportunity to begin work towards their master’s degree during their undergraduate programming. The 5-year path provides a focused, cost-effective way for our most qualified undergraduate students to prepare for a broad variety of professional careers in the service of faith and the promotion of justice in a diverse and pluralistic world.

One course in systematics, including:


Five graduate-level theology electives selected from:


Note(s):


  • A 2.800 cumulative average must be attained in all the graduate credit courses.
  • Some students may substitute a 6-hours thesis (THEO 699 ) for two of their elective courses. This must be discussed and agreed to with an advisor prior to completion of the first 12 hours of graduate work.  The thesis will be read by its director and two additional readers, and it must be defended in a final oral examination. Students who do not write a thesis will be required to 1) submit a research paper demonstrating their mastery of research skills and their ability to synthesize key themes from their coursework into a coherent theological position, or 2) successfully pass a comprehensive examination covering the central subject matter of the graduate program. In both cases, a faculty committee will assess the quality of this final paper or exam.

Two optional concentrations are available, which can be added and incorporated into the program.


Concentration in Social and Pastoral Ministry:


Students engaged in or preparing for professional ministry in church and society may choose to complete this concentration.

Beyond the 30 hours required for the M.A. degree, the concentration requires six additional credit hours in ministry skills courses and a three credit ministerial internship (THEO 690). Two required courses, Theology of Ministry (THEO 630 ) and Ethics in Ministry  (THEO 632), take the place of two M.A. electives.

Concentration in Religious Education:


This is designed to prepare theology students to meet the Archdiocese of Cincinnati’s professional requirements for Catholic High School Religion Teacher Certification at the secondary level.

Beyond the 30 hours required for the M.A. degree, the concentration requires at least 15 additional credit hours. This includes Student Teaching for 9 hours from EDMS 470 , along with THEO 538 and EDMS 550  as required courses. Also, a choice of either EDFD 503  or EDFD 510  is required. Note that THEO 538 can double count as an elective in the 30 hours required for the MA Theology degree.

Foundational Courses


Concentration Courses


4 Elective Courses in Graduate-Level Theology (12 Hours)


Final Research Paper


Note(s):


The MA program in Theology invites applications from students with a bachelor’s degree and a solid academic record. Admission decisions are based on factors such as past academic performance, standardized test score, interview, and other information submitted.

Further information and application materials may be obtained from the Office of Graduate Services, 513 745-3360.

Institute for Spirituality and Social Justice


The ISSJ of Xavier’s Theology Department empowers constructive theological reflection and responsible social action through three tracks, including (1) Professional Practice (Ethics, Spirituality, and Professional Practice, or ESSP),  (2) Solidarity and Sustainability in a Global Context (SSGC), and (3) Pastoral Care (Applied Spirituality and Pastoral Care, of ASPC).  Each track includes offerings in three areas, (1) Programs, Workshops, and Retreats, (2) Certificates, and (3) Graduate Degrees.  Each of the three tracks in all three areas is designed to cultivate depth of thought, imagination, and critical skills in a world challenged by violence, social inequity, and environmental instability.  Distinctive features of the Institute include experiential learning through spiritual formation, practicums/internships, and the program capstone.   The Institute is rooted in a rich tradition of spiritual practices coupled with rigorous intellectual inquiry and social analysis which manifest the Jesuit commitment to work in the service of faith and the promotion of justice in a diverse and pluralistic world.

For more information, call the Director of the M.A. in Theology, at 513 745-2894 or email issj@xavier.edu.

MA in Theology ISSJ Tracks:


Ethics, Spirituality and Professional Practice (36 credit hours)


The Professional Practice track is designed for professionals in business and non-profit communities interested in developing deeper spiritual understanding as well as practical skills for competent, ethical and theologically informed professional practices. This track is also appropriate for students interested in careers in the management and administration of churches and church-related organizations and corporations such as dioceses and social ministries.

The Professional Practice track combines theory and practice, building on the traditions of spiritual discernment (Ignatian and others), theological reflection and purposeful action. It develops adult learners as knowledgeable, thoughtful and responsible professionals who improve their work environments and society as a whole. Students learn to respond to challenging situations presented in their professional environments in ethically and spiritually responsible ways.

The program presumes a pluralistic religious environment in the workplace, emphasizing ways to understand, recognize, negotiate and celebrate interfaith relationships. It also reflects Xavier’s mission to educate students to serve with excellence and ethical integrity in professional fields and to work for social and economic justice.

The goals of the program are:

• To improve understanding of the Christian spiritual, theological and ethical tradition in dialogue with contemporary challenges of religious traditions.

• To prepare professionals with a sound knowledge of ethical traditions and a commitment to bringing social-ethical perspectives to business and service environments.

• To facilitate the spiritual and theological formation necessary for professionals to integrate professional expertise with competent, ethical, and spiritually informed management practices.

Foundational Courses

  • THEO 503 - Liberating Bible
  • THEO 520 - Journey Through Christianity I: Community, Authority and Expansion
  • THEO 524 - Journey Through Christianity II: Reformations, Modernities and the Global Context
  • THEO 624 - Theological Imagination: Approaches to the Sacred
  • THEO 547 - Ethics in a Time of Planetary Crisis
  • THEO 690 - Discernment and Integration: Capstone Course
ESPP Track Courses

  • Ignatian Tradition Course
    • The Ignatian Tradition course can be satisfied by any one of several different courses, such as THEO 513 Jesuit Theology & Spirituality or THEO 514 - Spiritual Exercises in the 21st Century.                                              
  • Scripture and Justice Course
    • The Scripture and Justice Course requirement could be fulfilled by one of several possible courses, such as THEO 579 - The Bible and Economic Justice or THEO 580 - Power, Politics and Empire in the New Testament.                                       
  • World Spiritual Traditions Course
    • The World Spiritual Traditions Course can be satisfied by one of several possible courses, such as Introduction to Buddhist Spirituality, or Sufism
  • THEO 644 - Human Person: Spiritual and Psychological Development
Elective Courses or Research-Based Thesis Option

Solidarity and Sustainability in a Global Context (36 credit hours)


The Solidarity and Sustainability track revolves around the typical definition of sustainability as “development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.”

This track integrates questions of economic, social and environmental sustainability with the spiritual traditions that engage human potential.  Ethical issues are regularly examined, including social justice questions related to distribution of resources, and the need for communal and environmental stewardship in a variety of ways, including the kinds of personal and social transformation that stem from a “change of heart.”

Goals of the program include:

• To form an awareness of the current issues of economic and environmental sustainability.

• To develop an appreciation of the complexity and interrelatedness of the global issues that impact economic and environmental sustainability.

• To develop an appreciation of the cultural and historical underpinnings of religious traditions and to learn from other religious traditions in order to deepen one’s life and contribution to the world.

• To acquire an ability to discriminate between the peaceful practices and the violent habits within religious traditions and to strengthen the recognition of the diversity of the human drives, seeking meaning within and beyond established religion.

• To engender habits of responsible collaborative action grounded in critical theological reflection and ethical discernment, and to invite others to engage in similar reflection and action.

Foundational Courses

  • THEO 503 - Liberating Bible
  • THEO 520 - Journey Through Christianity I: Community, Authority and Expansion
  • THEO 524 - Journey Through Christianity II: Reformations, Modernities and the Global Context
  • THEO 624 - Theological Imagination: Approaches to the Sacred
  • THEO 547 - Ethics in a Time of Planetary Crisis
  • THEO 690 - Discernment and Integration: Capstone Course
SSGC Track Courses

  • Ignatian Tradition Course      
    • The Ignatian Tradition course can be satisfied by any one of several different courses, such as THEO 513 Jesuit Theology & Spirituality or THEO 514 - Spiritual Exercises in the 21st Century.                                         
  • Scripture and Justice Course 
    •  The Scripture and Justice Course requirement could be fulfilled by one of several possible courses, such as THEO 579 - The Bible and Economic Justice or THEO 580 - Power, Politics and Empire in the New Testament.                                   
  • World Spiritual Traditions Course
    • The World Spiritual Traditions Course can be satisfied by one of several possible courses, such as Introduction to Buddhist Spirituality or Sufism
  • Global Justice or Ethics Course
    • The Global Justice or Ethics course can be satisfied by one of several different courses, such as THEO 607 - Theology of Immigration or THEO 610 - Christian Ethics and Globalization.
Elective Courses or Research-Based Thesis Option

Applied Spirituality and Pastoral Care (39 credit hours)


The Applied Spirituality and Pastoral Care track is oriented to human growth and is thus appropriate for all seekers, but it is also specifically helpful to those preparing for professional practice in varieties of pastoral care including chaplaincy, education, campus ministry, youth ministry and varieties of social ministries.

The track explores the richness of Christian spirituality as a way of life oriented to the intellectual, affective, humane and relational qualities of human existence that make life meaningful and worthwhile. It prepares students to engage pastoral work in pluralistic contexts, since their social and pastoral ministries require cultural sensitivities, practical skills and a capacity to connect across religious traditions, with openness and respect.

Through the track, students:

• Gain knowledge about the tradition of Christian spirituality as a resource for theological imagination, personal and communal identity, and personal development.

• Gain an understanding of spiritual practices that promote personal growth, health and well-being, and share those spiritual practices with others in ways that are sensitive to and respect our pluralistic cultural context.

• Gain the skills necessary to engage pastoral practice with clarity about how spiritual growth and spiritual practice enhances their effectiveness and their longevity as pastoral caregivers.

Foundational Courses

  • THEO 503 - Liberating Bible
  • THEO 520 - Journey Through Christianity I: Community, Authority and Expansion
  • THEO 524 - Journey Through Christianity II: Reformations, Modernities and the Global Context
  • THEO 624 - Theological Imagination: Approaches to the Sacred
  • THEO 547 - Ethics in a Time of Planetary Crisis
  • THEO 690 - Discernment and Integration: Capstone Course
ASPC Track Courses

  • Global Justice or Ethics Course 
    • The Global Justice or Ethics course can be satisfied by one of several  different courses, such as THEO 607 - Theology of Immigration or THEO 610 - Christian Ethics and Globalization.                                 
  • THEO 630 - Theology of Ministry                                            
  • THEO 632 - Ethics in Ministry
  • THEO 644 - Human Person: Spiritual and Psychological Development
  • THEO 645 - Pastoral Care & Counseling
  • THEO 635 - Ministerial Internship or THEO 738 - Youth & Campus Ministry or THEO 715 - Supervised Field Education
ASPC Practicum

  • CPE (Clinical Pastoral Education) with Theological Reflection

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