Admissions

The San Francisco Theological Seminary recommends future applicants reach out by email, phone call, campus visit, or scheduling an appointment with an admissions counselor. Further information about the Office of Admissions, including deadlines, can be found here https://sfts.edu/admissions-aid/. Prospective applicants will receive information about program offerings, curriculum, admissions requirements, cost, and financial aid where applicable. Admissions counselors are available for assistance during the admissions process.

SFTS offers Master’s and Doctoral degrees, along with diplomas and certificates. Admissions requirements differ by program.

Master's Degrees 

Master of Divinity (M.Div.)
Admissions requirements for the M.Div. include submitting a completed application, payment of the non-refundable application fee: $50 domestic; $250 for international applicants. Five personal statements of approximately 300 to 500 words each. Two academic or professional references and one pastoral reference to whom the applicant is not related (pastor, elder, deacon). Official transcripts of all post-secondary schoolwork (an in-process transcript showing work to date is acceptable for students without undergraduate degrees), a criminal background check through castlebranch.com, and a Self-Disclosure Form.

Master of Arts in Theological Studies (M.A.T.S.)
Admissions requirements for the M.A.T.S. include submitting a completed application, payment of the non-refundable application fee: $50 domestic. Five personal statements of approximately 300 to 500 words each. Two academic references and one clergy/church official reference. Official transcripts of all post-secondary schoolwork (an in-process transcript showing work to date is acceptable for students without undergraduate degrees), a criminal background check through castlebranch.com, and a Self-Disclosure Form. For applicants whose first language is not English, a minimum TOEFL score of 550 on the paper test, or 80 on the internet-based tests

For the M.Div. and M.A.T.S., applications for Fall admission are due by May 1. Applications received after May 1 will be considered at the committee’s discretion on a space-available basis. Applications for Spring admission are due by December 1. For additional information regarding admissions and applications, please refer to the M.Div./M.A.T.S. Student Handbook.

Doctoral Degree

Doctor of Ministry (D.Min.)
Several prerequisites are required for admissions into the D.Min. program. These include holding a Master of Divinity degree or equivalent, being ordained or its equivalent, and three years’ experience in ministry. A complete application, payment of the non-refundable application fee: $50 domestic; $250 for international applicants, and scholarly writing sample are required. English as a Second Language applicants must have a TOEFL score of at least 550 (paper version) or 80 (internet version).

In addition to the basic D.Min. requirements, applicants to the Pastor as Spiritual Leader emphasis shall provide additional narrative materials. Contact Admission for more information.

Application deadlines vary between terms. For further admissions requirements including provisional admission, admission status, candidacy, and application information, please refer to the D.Min. Student Handbook.

International Students
San Francisco Theological Seminary is proud to welcome students from around the world into our various programs. If you are applying to SFTS from outside the United States, our admissions office and student services team are prepared to help you have a successful and enriching educational experience at SFTS.

TOEFL Exam
If you wish to apply to one of our master’s or doctoral programs and your undergraduate education was not in English, we require that you take the TOEFL and send your score to SFTS. Our institutional code number is 4685. To be considered for admission, you must earn a minimum score of 550 (213 on the computer-based, 80 internet-based) on the TOEFL.

If you graduated from an institution of collegiate standing outside the United States in which a bachelor’s degree is not granted, you may be admitted if you present satisfactory evidence of having completed work comparable to that required for a bachelor’s degree in American colleges and universities.

For additional information, please refer to the International Student Handbook.