The Master of Arts in Christian Studies (M.A.C.S.) degree offers students the opportunity to explore theological study in a general way or through theological reflection on a specific theme for the purpose of enriching their Christian service in both the church and the world. It has proven to be the right fit for recent undergraduates, Duke University students enrolled in other graduate programs, and local residents who find a one-year commitment to fit their both their schedule and interests.

The degree is fully residential and consists of eight courses taken over two semesters.  One course each semester is a required course that combines a survey of Scripture, history, and theology, while the remaining six courses are chosen from among the regularly offered electives. Within the course of one year, the M.A.C.S. gives students the chance to read and interpret Scripture and other Christian texts with greater clarity and understanding, to think theologically about the doctrines and practices of the church, and, through the practice of theological reflection, to discern how they might faithfully serve the church and the world.

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Admissions Requirements
  • Rolling deadline from September 1 with a final deadline of April 1: Apply now.
  • Minimum GPA of 3.0 in a bachelor’s degree from a regionally-accredited college or university prior to the intended date of enrollment
  • Transcripts from each college/university attended
  • Two one-page essays
  • An academic writing sample of 4-6 pages (1000 -1500 words) 
  • Five letters of reference (3 academic/professional, 1 church, 1 character)
  • Applicants should upload a resume or CV
  • $55 application fee (collected by credit card when the online application is submitted)
  • There is no January enrollment for degree-seeking students. You are encouraged to apply early in the cycle as classes fill quickly.
  • Online applications must be submitted by midnight E.S.T. on the stated deadline date. All hard copy applications and all supporting documents (e.g., transcripts and any reference letters not submitted online), for both hard copy and online applications must be received in the admissions office by 5:00 p.m. on the stated deadline date. If the application deadline date falls on a weekend, all hard copy applications and all supporting documents for online and hard copy applications must be received in the admissions office by 5:00 p.m. on the Friday preceding the deadline date.

With careful planning, budgeting, and counseling from our Financial Aid office staff, students often find Duke to be more affordable than they initially assume. By taking advantage of the tuition credit offered to each admitted student and any outside aid available, many students will incur little to no debt.


Each admitted student is awarded a 20% tuition credit scholarship for the one year M.A.C.S. program.  Completing a FAFSA (link www. allows the Financial Aid Office to determine loan eligibility for student s if needed.

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Cultivating Theological Reflection

“This one-year degree offers a distinctive opportunity for students to cultivate habits of Christian theological reflection while engaging cutting-edge interdisciplinary themes within Duke University’s vital intellectual landscape.”

— Laceye Warner, Executive Vice Dean and Associate Professor of the Practice of Evangelism