Why This Program?

The Master of Theology (Th.M.) degree is designed for graduates of accredited theological schools who desire to continue or resume their theological education to enhance their professional competence in specific areas of study.

Through this degree program, students can pursue advanced training—with opportunities to take doctoral seminars and engage closely with professors on a written thesis—to enhance their ministry or prepare for a doctoral program.

Distinguished Faculty

Scholarship and Mentorship

At Duke Divinity School, you'll be immersed in theological inquiry with world-renowned faculty members. Drawn from all over the globe and a broad spectrum of Christian traditions, these men and women share a commitment to teaching and to the church and ministry.

A Community of Scholarship and Faithfulness

Fady Mekhael, Th.M. '18, talks about how the combination of rigorous scholarship and Christian faithfulness that he found at Duke is essential to the mission of the church. Mekhael, a student from Egypt, studied at Duke to further his work on a contemporary Arabic translation of the Bible and to prepare for ministry in Egypt.

Training for Military Chaplaincy

A Year of Specialized Training

Chaplains serving all branches of the U.S. military who are approved for a year of specialized training can meet that requirement through Duke Divinity School’s Th.M. program. As a Th.M. student, you have access to all the resources of Duke University, including support through the Divinity Veterans Partnership.

Program Overview


The curriculum for the Th.M. consists of eight elective courses taken over two semesters (four must be at 800-900 level). During the final semester, students often work directly with a faculty advisor towards completion of a substantial written thesis.

At least four of the eight courses must be taken in one of the basic theological disciplines and will be designated as the student's major. These disciplines are: Biblical Studies, Historical Studies, Theological Studies, and Ministerial Studies.

    Graduation Requirements

    The Master of Theology program is normally completed in two semesters. Requirements for graduation are:

    • Eight advanced course units
    • An average grade of B or higher
    • Comprehensive exam or thesis: Each student is required to demonstrate superior performance on a comprehensive examination covering the major area of study. In lieu of the exam, a student may choose to write a thesis in one major area. This thesis research project is counted as one of the eight course credits required.

    The Center for Academic Support and Theological Writing

    Strengthen Your Writing

    The Divinity School is committed to developing you as a writer. The Center for Writing and Academic Support provides services for writers of all abilities. In addition, we offer the RISE pre-orientation workshop to introduce the fundamentals of theological thought and writing; ongoing academic support workshops throughout the year; and tutors who are available to work with students one-on-one.


    Duke Divinity School currently offers four certificates that can be earned alongside the Th.M. degree:

    Certificate in Anglican Studies
    The Certificate in Anglican Studies is designed to serve the academic and formational requirements of those preparing for ministry—lay and especially ordained—in the Episcopal Church and other member churches of the Anglican Communion.

    Certificate in Black Church Studies
    The Certificate in Black Church Studies offers the opportunity for critical reflection, dialogue, and practice for students who are interested in the intersection of race, faith, and Christian witness, particularly in the tradition of Black churches.

    Certificate in Gender, Sexuality, Theology, and Ministry
    The Certificate in Gender, Sexuality, Theology, and Ministry (GSTM) is designed to offer opportunities to women and men to study gender and sexuality in the life of the church, in the Christian tradition, and in contemporary culture.

    Certificate in Theology and the Arts
    The Certificate in Theology and the Arts provides firm grounding in the key theological loci and practices relevant to a lifetime’s engagement with the arts and the church, the university, and beyond.

    Certificate in Theology, Medicine, and Culture
    The Certificate in Theology, Medicine, and Culture will prepare Duke Divinity students for robust theological and practical engagement with contemporary practices in medicine and healthcare.

    Affording Duke

    An education from Duke Divinity School is worth your investment, and you do not have to figure out the finances alone.

    Some internal and external scholarships, as well as federal financial aid in the form of work study and loans, make it possible for students to afford Duke Divinity. FAFSA should be completed for external aid. More information can be found in our Financial Aid section. We offer a 100% scholarship for one international Th.M. student each year.

    Lifelong Dividends

    In addition to earning a degree from Duke Divinity School, you also receive benefits that continue to impact your life long after you leave. You will have access to the best academic resources in theological education and will use those tools throughout your career. Theses that are crafted with Duke Divinity faculty members become seeds that may grow into future doctoral projects. By being able to fully participate in a top tier research university, your scholarship can create room for surprising and creative interdisciplinary connections. The overwhelming majority of our students say their investment is worth it.


    We’re available to answer any questions you might have. Please contact us at admissions@div.duke.edu or (919) 660-3436. The resources below will also help you learn more about our programs.