Frequently asked questions

We've compiled a list of Frequently Asked Questions about the Master of Theological Studies (MTS) program. These answers reflect our regular practices, but we always encourage you to contact us to discuss your particular situation or if you have any further questions.

Can I begin in the winter or spring terms?

We accept applications for fall or winter enrolment. Students cannot begin studying in the spring term. We do recommend that students begin their studies in the fall term as this will allow for the best sequencing of courses. Note that if students begin their studies in the winter term, funding options may be limited for the first two terms.

Can I transfer courses into this program?

Yes. It may be possible to transfer as many as 50% of the courses required for the MTS from another program.  Such courses must be at the master’s level, from an accredited institution, with a grade of B+ (75) or higher, and not have been applied to a previous degree or certificate. Contact us for more details.

I’ve taken a lot of New Testament (NT) courses in a previous program. Do I need to take the core course in NT?

Students with extensive formal academic background in theological or religious studies may petition to take an alternate course in lieu of one or more core courses.  If this petition is granted, the alternate course must be taken in the TS program in the same disciplinary area (e.g. Theology, Old Testament, New Testament, or History of Christianity). There is no reduction in the overall number of course required for the degree.  The petition must be approved by the student’s advisor, the Director of Theological Studies and by the instructor of the core course in question.

I don’t have a 4-year degree, but I have work experience. Can I be admitted?

We recognize the value of life and work experience. While we cannot guarantee admission, we encourage you to contact the Theological Studies department to discuss your situation. In some cases, students without a 4-year degree can be admitted as qualifying students.

Are all or most of the students Mennonite? Will I feel welcome if I am not Mennonite?

While Conrad Grebel University College is rooted in the Anabaptist/Mennonite tradition, we value an ecumenical perspective. Our students come from a wide range of denominational and church backgrounds. We believe this provides a great opportunity for us to learn from one another. Your perspective is very welcome!

Where does the money for the full tuition scholarships come from?

Publicly-funded educational institutions receive government grants for each Canadian and permanent resident student. We have chosen to use some of this money to fund full-time tuition scholarships for Canadian and permanent resident students.

How much reading and writing is required in courses?

While the reading and writing requirements will vary from course to course, students should expect to do 60-100 pages of reading per week per course and write 25 pages per course throughout the term. Instructors will provide students with syllabi which will outline all of the course requirements. Students will spend 3 hours a week in class, and should count on an average of 9 hours per week of additional reading or writing per week.

Who should my application references be?

What is the difference between Theological Studies and Religious Studies?

This is not an easy question to answer, especially since there will be exceptions to any definition given.  The differences are partly determined by the subject of study as well as the methods of study.  In general, Theological Studies focuses on the critical study of Christianity from a perspective that it is broadly informed by the Christian tradition.  Many enroll in Theological Studies programs a preparation for Christian ministry, though not everyone in such a program will pursue ministry.  Religious Studies typically studies a wide range of religions from more an external perspective.  For example, if you are looking to delve deeply into the texts of early Buddhism, the contemporary practices of Muslims, or the effect of Christian evangelicalism on voting patterns in Canada, you will find that a Religious Studies program will be a better fit.

What is the difference between a MTS degree and a M.Div degree?

A Master of Divinity (M.Div) is typically a three year degree and includes more specific training in the skills required for pastoral ministry. The MTS degree is two years and provides students with a solid theological foundation for many vocations, including ministry.