Guidelines and requirements

Admissions

Join with students from all walks of life and corners of the globe who flourish in the richness of the Roman Catholic tradition, teaching, and practice that is at the core of our mission. Academic programs at CTU are open to all qualified students who wish to prepare for ministry or desire to study theology for personal or professional growth.

Application Process

 

  1. Review the general admissions guidelines and application requirements
  2. Complete and submit the online application*
  3. Send any supporting documents (transcripts, letters of recommendation, and personal statement) to admissions@ctu.edu or by mail: Enrollment Management, Catholic Theological Union, 5416 S. Cornell Ave., Chicago, IL 60615 

*The online application is for masters, certificate, and continuing education programs. Doctor of Ministry applicants should contact edmin@ctu.edu.

General Admission Guidelines

 

  • Fall Semester Scholarship Priority Deadline: February 1st  
  • Spring Semester: December 1st
  • May Term: April 1st
  • Summer Term: June 1st

*Applications may still be received beyond the priority deadline.

Disclaimer

CTU prepares people for service in the Church and society. The good of the Church is the chief criterion for decisions concerning whether or not to accept, advance, and graduate any student in programs preparing people for professional ministry. Thus, CTU reserves the right to accept or reject any applicant, advance or dismiss any student, and recommend or refuse any student for graduation. All such decisions made by CTU are final.

Application Requirements

Continuing Education Applicants – For Audit
Application Requirements Personal Statement Questions (1 page, double spaced)
  • Application for Admission
  • $55 Non-Refundable Application Fee
  • Personal Statement
  • One (1) Reference Letter (reference letter form)
 

Provide an essay (brief autobiography) in which you describe:

 

  1. Your background and experience which leads you to theological and ministerial study. Please include details of your educational preparation as well as any applicable ministerial experiences.
  2. Why do you wish to pursue a degree at CTU?
  3. Is there any additional information you would like to share regarding your application?

 

Continuing Education Applicants – For Credit
Application Requirements Personal Statement Questions (1-2 pages, double spaced)
  • Application for Admission
  • $55 Non-Refundable Application Fee
  • Personal Statement
  • Transcript(s) which confer a bachelor’s-level degree (or submission of BA equivalency documentation)
  • English proficiency
  • One (1) Reference Letter
    • References will be requested on the application form and contacted by CTU
 

I. Your background

In a few paragraphs describe your background and experience which leads you to theological and ministerial study. Please include details of your educational preparation as well as any applicable ministerial experiences.

 

II. Your hopes for education at Catholic Theological Union

Briefly respond to each of the following:

  1. Why do you wish to pursue a degree at CTU?
  2. How do you see yourself using this education to be of service to others?
  3. Is there any additional information you would like to share regarding your application?

 

Certificate Applicants
Application Requirements Personal Statement Questions (approximately 3 pages, double spaced)
  • Application for Admission
  • $55 Non-Refundable Application Fee
  • Personal Statement
  • Transcript(s) which confer a bachelor’s-level degree (or submission of BA equivalency documentation)
  • Transcripts from all college and/or universities attended where academic credit was earned
  • English proficiency
  • Two (2) Reference Letter (references will be requested on the application form and contacted by CTU)
Please address the following:

I. How your background and experiences have led you to pursue a graduate degree in theology and ministry

II. Within the context of CTU’s mission and vision to prepare effective leaders for the church, witness to Christ’s good news of justice, love and peace and be a transformative force in the Church and world for affirming human dignity and the sacredness of God’s creation alongside its intercultural, ecumenical, and interfaith partners: 

  • How do you understand your identity as a developing theologian/pastoral minister?
  • In what ways do you hope to grow and reimagine your ministerial identity during your time at CTU? III. How do you intend to use your studies at CTU to contribute to dialogue in and address the challenges of the Church and the world?
   
Master’s Degree Applicants
Application Requirements Personal Statement Questions (approximately 3 pages, double spaced)
  • Application for Admission
  • $55 Non-Refundable Application Fee
  • Personal Statement
  • Transcript(s) which confer a bachelor’s-level degree (or submission of BA equivalency documentation)
  • Transcripts from all college and/or universities attended where academic credit was earned
  • English proficiency
  • Three (3) Reference Letter
    • MA in Theology applicants must have at least one academic reference 
    • References will be requested on the application form and contacted by CTU
Please address the following:

I. How your background and experiences have led you to pursue a graduate degree in theology and ministry

 

II. Within the context of CTU’s mission and vision to prepare effective leaders for the church, witness to Christ’s good news of justice, love and peace and be a transformative force in the Church and world for affirming human dignity and the sacredness of God’s creation alongside its intercultural, ecumenical, and interfaith partners: 

    1. How do you understand your identity as a developing theologian/pastoral minister?
    2. In what ways do you hope to grow and reimagine your ministerial identity during your time at CTU? 

 

III. How do you intend to use your studies at CTU to contribute to dialogue in and address the challenges of the Church and the world?

The application and application guidelines for the Doctor of Ministry Program are detailed on the program webpage. 

An applicant seeking admission to CTU who does not have a bachelor’s degree, but who has extensive pastoral leadership experience and has taken several training programs and/or courses at the college level over a period of several years, may apply for an evaluation of BA equivalency.

 

Accreditation standards limit the percentage of students without an undergraduate degree allowed both in admissions to the degree programs and in registrations in courses. A student successfully assessed for the equivalency would be free of those constraints.

 

An evaluation of BA equivalency happens concurrently with CTU’s standard admissions process. Prospective students should complete and submit all paperwork needed as a part of CTU’s standard admissions requirements.

 

In addition to CTU’s standard admissions process, those without a BA who wish to be granted BA equivalency must also provide:

Procedures Outcomes / Skills Demonstrated
1. Copies of educational certificates and/or evaluations received (Archdiocesan/Diocesan programs, Lay Ministry Institutes, Community Organizing Training, Deaconate Formation, etc.) along with official transcripts from colleges and universities attended. The applicant’s ability to engage and dialogue with complex topics, issues, and ideas is demonstrated by grades and cumulative grade point average in transcripts, and successful completion of ongoing/continuing education opportunities.
2. Written description of ministerial roles, such as RCIA Coordinator, Social Justice Advocate, Catechetical Leader, Pastoral Associate and/or other leadership roles. A breadth and depth of professional-level experiences inclusive of leadership, is demonstrated along with communication, problem-solving, interpersonal, and basic computation skills.
3. A letter of recommendation from a Pastor or professional supervisor with whom the applicant has worked. The candidate’s professionalism and his/her professional competencies (e.g., decision-making skills, etc.) are confirmed.
4. A letter of recommendation from a facilitator of the prior educational training which addresses the applicant’s ability to engage in graduate level study for academic pursuits. The candidate’s aptitude for and propensity toward graduate-level study are verified. Competency in bachelors-level work is attested.
5. A five page typed essay addressing the following question: “How has my professional life and experience prepared me for graduate study at CTU?” Ability to express him/herself clearly in writing is demonstrated, including evidence of reflective, critical thinking and analytical skills, development and organization of coherent written thoughts, and adherence to standard grammar, spelling, and syntax.
6. A timeframe when the applicant is available for an interview with the appropriate program director. Ability to express him/herself clearly, process ideas, thoughts, and to analyze well when communicating orally through a verbal expression that is clear, logical, and organized.

If you have questions about demonstrating bachelor’s equivalency, or need more information, please contact:

Office of Enrollment and Management

Phone: 773.371.5451

Email: admissions@ctu.edu

International Students at CTU

CTU welcomes the international student into our diverse community. We look forward to the rich experiences that you bring and contribute to the entire student body, faculty, and staff.

Considering the total cost of studying at CTU is a critical component in the decision to study here. We ask that the applicant allocate enough time between applying to CTU and when he/she wishes to start taking classes at CTU due to the visa application process.The amount of time needed to secure a visa can vary depending upon the applicant’s home country. We recommend applying at least 6 months before an applicant hopes to start classes at CTU. Since communication is also an important part of the admissions process, we ask that you contact the Admissions Office through email (admissions@ctu.edu).

This information is subject to change. For the most current information on student visas visit www.travel.state.gov.

The procedure for obtaining a valid Student Visa (F-1 visa) begins after a student has been admitted and may be a lengthy process. International students wanting to study at CTU must have a valid F-1 Non-Immigrant Student Visa. The student must apply for the visa at his/her U.S. embassy or consulate in their country. In order to apply for the student visa, the student must receive a valid I-20 form from CTU. In order for CTU to give the student an I-20 form, one must be admitted to CTU as a student and must submit to CTU:

 

  • Original Official Affidavit of Financial Support (I-134)
  • Copy of his or her passport ID picture page
  • Copy of visa page, if holding a current visa
  • Official copy of a current bank statement showing funds available,and
  • $2,000 monetary deposit towards his/her enrollment.

A Collaborative for Theological Education, Formation, and Community, cosponsored by Catholic Theological Union (CTU) and the Religious Formation Conference (RFC) will be offered as a pilot program beginning with the Fall semester, 2018. Roman Catholic Sisters and Brothers who are currently in formation and have completed their canonical novitiate year are invited to participate. Participants will enroll in a graduate theology program at CTU, share community in a designated space in the residence hall, and participate in ongoing formation together as an intercongregational, intercultural, and intergenerational cohort. 

https://www.together-formation.com