Standards for Admission
In general, applicants must have a baccalaureate degree or its equivalent from an institution that is accredited by a recognized regional or national accreditation body before they can be admitted to master's degree programs at Fuller Theological Seminary. Requirements for admission are described under each degree program in the various sections of this catalog. Admission is granted to a specific program and not to Fuller Seminary or to one of its schools at large.
Applicants who are not citizens of the United States or whose native language is not English must also meet admissions criteria as described below in sections regarding International Students and English Language Requirements.
It should be understood that admission to Fuller depends on factors beyond the applicant's academic record. These factors include theological development, Christian experience, spiritual growth, call to service and gifts for ministry. Men and women of God are qualified for Christian ministry by faith, moral character, experience and academic achievement. Such people are characterized by compassion for individual persons, by sensitivity to the needs of the total community, by a burden that the whole of God's will be obeyed on earth, by a readiness to accept correction, by a desire for moral growth, by personal integrity, and above all, by a mature trust in Jesus Christ as the foundation of life and ministry.
Fuller Seminary reserves the right to draw conclusions regarding the evangelical, Christian profession of faith of all applicants. This determination will be made on the basis of the statements of Christian faith given in the application. Such statements are a significant factor in the admission decision.
The seminary also reserves the right to admit or deny admission to any non-Christian or non-evangelical individual or any individual from an organization having a theological stance which is not in accord with the seminary's Statement of Faith. While desiring to maintain flexibility in admission to its programs, the institution will not compromise the integrity of its purpose and Statement of Faith by admitting students whose orientation may be disruptive or may confound the academic freedom of fellow students or faculty.
Fuller Theological Seminary admits students of any race, gender, color, nationality or ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs and activities generally accorded or made available to students of the seminary. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, gender, color, nationality or ethnic origin in the administration of its educational policies, loan programs, and other seminary-administered programs.
Admission on Academic Probation
Students who have a baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution, but whose cumulative grade point average is less than 2.7, may be admitted on probation to certain master's degree and certificate programs at the discretion of the admissions committee. Academic probation may be removed after the successful completion of 48 units with at least a 2.5 cumulative grade point average.
Admission Without an Accredited Bachelor's Degree
A limited number of applicants without an accredited bachelor's degree may be admitted to most master's degree programs and certificate programs at the discretion of the admissions committee if they can demonstrate that they possess the knowledge, academic skill, and ability generally associated with persons who hold such a degree. Applicants must also demonstrate at least 12 years of work experience subsequent to the completion of a high school diploma and at least 3 years of full-time vocational ministry or at least five years of significant part-time ministry.
Students without an accredited bachelor's degree are initially admitted on probation for 48 units. Certificate applicants without an accredited bachelor's or are admitted on academic probation for the entirety of the certificate program). In addition, the following restrictions apply to those admitted in this way:
- Students are required to take ST511 Orientation to Theological Studies in their first quarter of studies (Certificate in Youth Ministry applicants may be exempt from this requirement). The class is available every quarter on the Pasadena campus and online.
- Students are restricted to a limited number of units in their first quarter at Fuller
- Students are not allowed to take distance learning classes until the probationary period has been completed (with the exception of ST511).
- This admission option is not available for the MA in Theology or MS in Marital and Family Therapy degrees.