USML | S.T.D. Program Requirements

Doctorate in Sacred Theology (S.T.D.)

S.T.D. Program Requirements

  • Length of Program and Residency Requirement 

The program is normally two years in duration with at least one year devoted full time to research. Candidates are required to spend at least one year in residence. According to article 37 of the statutes, "no ordinary student in this Faculty can be at the same time an ordinary student in some other Faculty." 

Residency also means a quality of presence, which is spelled out in part in article 39 of the statutes: "Students enrolled in the Faculty are expected to observe all the regulations of the Faculty (See Graduate Student Handbook). They should moreover, comport themselves in a professional, ethical, and Christian manner consonant with the goals and purposes of the Pontifically recognized Faculty of theology of which they are a part." While a student who is a cleric may offer sacramental assistance to local parishes on an occasional basis, his principal task must be participation in and completion of the degree program in which he is enrolled. 

  • Schedule of Courses  

Theological Research and Method Seminar (2 cr.)
[for those whose S.T.L. is from outside of USML]  

Two S.T.L. Electives (6 cr.)
[for those whose S.T.L. is from outside of USML]  

Doctoral Proposal Preparation (3 cr.)  

Dissertation Guidance (3 cr.)  

On-Going Dissertation Writing (1 cr. / semester)  

A minimum grade of a B is required in all courses. 

  • Colloquium  

The doctoral colloquium, held once each semester, is designed to assist the candidates in preparation of the dissertation and its defense. All doctoral candidates are required to attend these colloquia during their year in residence and to make one presentation. Candidates are encouraged to attend the colloquia and present their work while they continue to complete their dissertation.

  • Dissertation

The dissertation must focus on an important theological question that is selected by the candidate and approved by a professor who is expert in the field, with the consent of the Doctoral Board. 

Dissertation Standards and Schedule









To see this video you need to upgrade to the latest HTML5 compatible browser or download Adobe Flash Player.