Master’s Application Procedure

Step 1: Apply

When should I begin my application?

Applications are accepted no earlier than one year in advance of the date when you expect to begin classes – unless you plan to begin with distance education – and must be completed at least one month prior to the beginning of the term for which admission is sought. Please note that there are priority-processing deadlines for both financial aid and housing, and some of our scholarships are first-come, first-serve, so the sooner you get started on the application the better! To learn more, visit our Important Dates and Deadlines page.

How do I apply?

Apply online ($50 application fee) or email our office at [email protected] to request a hard copy application (a $100 processing fee will apply for all hard-copy applications). Applications will be submitted to the Admissions Committee once the following items have been received.

  1. A complete online application
  2. Two application essays: a) A 1-2 page personal statement addressing questions about vocational goal, church involvement, encouragement from others, reasons for applying to Gordon-Conwell and an assessment of strengths and weaknesses and b) a 1-2 page autobiographical statement.
  3. Official transcripts sent directly from all colleges and institutions of higher education attended (post-high school). The seminary typically requires a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution by a recognized accrediting agency.
  4. Three written recommendations attesting to applicant’s commitment to Christ, church involvement, leadership ability, social sensitivity, emotional maturity, reasoning and decision-making ability, level of responsibility, skills in communication and facility in interpersonal relationships. Recommendations should be written and submitted by: (1) a pastor, (2) a friend and (3) a professor or professional colleague.  Your recommendations should not be written by anyone related to you.  You can download a PDF version of the recommendation form here.
  5. Church endorsement form completed and signed by a church official at the church you currently attend.  You can download a PDF version of the Church endorsement form here.
  6. Application fee of $50 (U.S.) for the online application or $100 for the paper application.
  7. A TOEFL score of 90 or higher (international students only).

Semlink and Non-Degree Seeking applicants should still complete the full application.

My application is complete, now what?

Your application will be submitted to the Admissions Committee for review, and a decision regarding your admission will be made within two weeks.


I’m Accepted … Now What?

Step 2: Reserve

Reserve your spot on campus by sending in your notification of intent form along with your $100 matriculation (reservation) fee and estimated date of arrival on campus. Please note that students admitted to the fall semester may begin studies in the summer, if desired. Students admitted for the spring may begin in the January term, if desired. Forms and instructions will be included in your acceptance packet. (Use this link to pay your $100 matriculation fee: gordonconwell.afford.com).

I’ve Reserved … Now What?

Step 3: Preparations

  1. Apply for On-Campus Housing

    To download the housing application and/or find information about the rates for dorms or apartments, visit the Housing page.

  2. Apply for a Scholarship

    To view our scholarship opportunities, please visit our Scholarships and Grants page. Domestic students must apply for Merit-based Scholarships by February 15.

    International students must apply by December 5 to be considered for an international scholarship. Please visit the International Applicants page for more information.

  3. Apply for Federal Aid

    Visit the Financial Aid page for instructions on how to apply for federal loans (U.S. citizens and permanent residents only).

  4. Complete Immunizations

    This form will be included in your acceptance packet, or can be downloaded here.

  5. Student Health Insurance

    Massachusetts law requires that all students taking six or more credit hours have suitable health insurance coverage. During new student orientation, you will choose to enroll or waive inclusion in the seminary’s student health insurance plan. Learn more about student health insurance.

  6. Final Transcript

    If your acceptance letter indicates that you are accepted per receipt of your final transcript, you must mail an official, final transcript to Gordon-Conwell, confirming an undergraduate degree was awarded to you.

  7. International Students

    Please correspond with Student Life Services regarding your visa application and I-20 form. For more information on the visa application process, please visit the International Applicants page.

Step 4: Plan Your Classes & Register!

Information regarding registration procedures will be sent to you by the Registration Office in the months prior to orientation. Please keep the Admissions Office informed of any change of address or email, so that all information will reach you promptly.

In the meantime, plan your classes using the Registration Office’s helpful “Essential Information for New Students” page and the Registration page, where you’ll find course schedules, information on competency exams and more!

Step 5: New Student Orientation

The new student orientation schedule is posted on the Student Life Services page approximately one month before orientation begins. View the schedule and other important materials for mandatory new student orientation.


Special Instructions

International Students

The international student community at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary is diverse, thriving, and valued by the entire Gordon-Conwell community. Our current international students on all our campuses represent 50 countries, including Australia, the UK, South Korea, Brazil, Nigeria, Madagascar, Haiti, the Philippines, Ethiopia, and many more. The current international students at the main campus represent 40 countries.

International Student Application Instructions.

Gordon College Partnership

Gordon College undergraduate juniors and seniors may take up to two courses at Gordon-Conwell for graduate credit while enrolled at Gordon College. Gordon College graduate students may also take up to two courses at Gordon-Conwell for credit. There will be no cost to the student for these courses. To take these courses, you must first complete an abbreviated application process:

Abbreviated Application Form

Auditing Courses

All auditors are restricted to non-participating member status in classes. In other words, auditors may not participate in class discussion (except as authorized by the instructor according to the terms included in the course syllabus), nor submit written work, nor sit for exams for the purpose of receiving an evaluation. Limited courses are not available to auditors except by written permission from the professor and the Registration Office. Some courses may not be audited. Please contact the Registration Office at [email protected] for more details.

Current students may officially audit courses by paying the current audit fee and student services fee, and by receiving approval from the Registration Office. Individuals not enrolled in a degree program and wishing to enroll as official auditors must complete a formal application with the Admissions Office.

For auditor applications, transcripts are not required, and only one pastoral recommendation is needed. In a separate document, please indicate which courses you desire to audit, why, and how you will benefit from them.

Official audits will be recorded on transcripts. Students must attend at least 75% of the class meetings in order to receive a grade of `AU’ on their transcripts indicating that they satisfactorily audited the course. Auditors will be responsible for verifying their attendance by submitting a written statement to the professor stating that they did attend at least 75% of the class meetings. Official auditors have access to online material in CAMS and Sakai as well as library privileges.

In summary, an auditor should complete the following:

  • Full Application
  • Transcripts are not required.
  • One pastoral recommendation is required.
  • In a separate document, please indicate which courses you desire to audit, why, and how you will benefit from them.
  • The standard $50 Application Fee for Auditors is waived

Apply online today!

The cost of auditing a course includes the official audit fee of $150 per course and the student service fee for that semester ($175 for fall & spring semesters and $100 per summer session).

Current or Returning Students

Current Gordon-Conwell students who wish to add a second degree program or change their current program should complete one of the following abbreviated applications. Should you wish to add a Master of Arts in Counseling (MACO) degree, please see the necessary requirements here. Completed applications should be submitted to the Admissions Office.

Change of Status/Second Degree Application
Change of Status/Second Degree Recommendation Form

You can also request that an online recommendation form be sent to the professor who will recommend you.

Current Gordon-Conwell students who desire to transfer to the Hamilton campus should complete the following abbreviated application. Completed application forms should be submitted to the Hamilton Admissions Office. If you are a current Hamilton student and desire to transfer to another Gordon-Conwell campus, contact the Admissions Office of the campus to which you would like to transfer.

Campus Transfer Application

For Gordon-Conwell graduates or former students who would like to resume coursework, the following paperwork is required. Please email the Admissions Office at [email protected] if you are not sure how long it has been since your last class.

Application to Reactivate Status

IVCF & CCO Program Participants

Through a cooperative program with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship (IVCF) and Coalition for Christian Outreach (CCO), staff with IVCF and CCO may take a limited number of courses for M.Div. or MAR credit at the seminary through IVCF’s National Institute for Staff Education and Training or through CCO’s Summer Institute.

(Note: If you will be a participant in the New England InterVarsity Staff Diploma, please contact us directly for further instructions.)

In order to receive credit for these courses, you must submit a Gordon-Conwell application prior to the start of the course. The full application is required. However, in place of the three recommendation letters, you only need to send a letter from your supervisor confirming your eligibility as a staff member. On the online application, please make sure to follow the instructions on the Special Instructions PDF on the left-hand side.

In summary, InterVarsity and CCO partcipants should complete the following:

  • Application form (preferably online), including application essays
  • Transcripts are required.
  • A letter from your ministry organization which confirms you as a staff member.
  • The Church Endorsement form is required.

Apply online today!

Master of Arts — Biblical Languages

Students admitted to the Master of Arts (Biblical Languages) degree are strongly encouraged to complete at least one full year of either Greek (biblical or classical) or Hebrew (biblical) prior to beginning classes at Gordon-Conwell. Admitted students in this program will have the opportunity to take a competency exam in either or both languages.

If you will not have completed a full year of Greek or Hebrew before beginning study at Gordon-Conwell, please include a statement in your application essay saying that you understand this deficit may lengthen or intensify your program.  Please also be in touch if you have questions about how this might specifically affect your time at Gordon-Conwell.

Apply online today!

Master of Theology — Biblical Studies

There are three concentration options within the Master of Theology (ThM) – Biblical Studies program: Old Testament, New Testament and Biblical Theology. In addition to Gordon-Conwell’s general application requirements, applicants to the ThM – Biblical Studies must demonstrate competency in Hebrew and/or Greek. Incoming ThM applicants must pass one or both competency exams in order to be considered for admission to the program:

  • Old Testament concentration: Hebrew competency required
  • New Testament concentration: Greek competency required
  • Biblical Theology concentration: Hebrew and Greek competency required

These exams will be taken online after a preliminary review of the applicant’s file.

Apply online today!

Master of Arts in Counseling

The Master of Arts in Counseling is a degree program for individuals who wish to prepare themselves for professional counseling positions as mental health counselors or marriage and family therapists or who wish to pursue further studies in psychology. Upon completion of the program, graduates are qualified to sit for the mental health counselor or marriage and family therapist licensure examination(s) in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

The Master of Arts in Counseling program seeks to provide Christian training in biblical, theological and psychological disciplines. A major feature of this program is its commitment to supervised clinical practicum and internship experience. The integrative seminars provide an opportunity for the integration of biblical and theological studies with counseling theory and practice. The students admitted to this program will be placed in a variety of professional practicum and internship sites. Regular individual supervision of students will take place in the clinical setting. Students will often have the opportunity to participate in seminars, workshops, staff meetings, group supervision and other professional development activities. Those who complete this training program in counseling may expect significant growth in their professional development in preparation for Christian and/or secular employment opportunities. Apply online today!

Admission Requirements

Applicants admitted to this program:

  1. Must have a vocational goal requiring the specialized preparation available in the Master of Arts in Counseling program
  2. Will have met the general admission requirements of the seminary
  3. Must have followed an undergraduate or prior graduate degree program
  4. It is recommended the applicant have at least 20 semester hours in psychology and/or related disciplines. Life experience will be evaluated on an individual basis and considered as modification of this academic background requirement.
  5. Must have an undergraduate cumulative grade point average of 3.0
  6. After meeting general admissions requirements, candidates will interview with two of the Counseling faculty as an assessment of their academic and personal readiness to participate in the program.

Admission Procedure

  1. Applicants for the Master of Arts in Counseling program are accepted for admission for the fall semester. Admission may be granted for the spring semester based on the availability of space. It should be noted that courses are sequenced assuming fall entry.
  2. Decisions regarding admission to the program will be made on a “rolling” basis for the fall semester. Due to the nature of the MACO application process, interested students must submit their applications for fall semester by July 1 or for spring semester by December 1.
  3. A maximum of 22 students may be admitted to the MACO program each year.
  4. Students who are denied admission to the MACO program must wait one calendar year before reapplying.

Online Students

Semlink is a web-based distance education program offered by Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary. Both residential and non-residential students are encouraged to take advantage of this program. Semlink allows you to study when and where it is most convenient for you.

Semlink courses may be taken in the fall, spring and full-summer semesters, and each semester’s offering will be listed here. Students can complete up to 50% of an MDiv, up to 66% of an MA (excluding ThM) and up to 100% of an MACS degree program through Semlink. In order to begin courses, you must first be accepted to Gordon-Conwell. Please see the Admissions Procedure for more details.

Semlink courses offer rich interactivity with professors and peers.  Video and/or audio lectures, along with any other content compiled by the professor, are accessible any time online.  The classes are structured with weekly or bi-weekly assignments throughout the semester, such that you will work in tandem with your fellow students.

Semlink tuition costs parallel those at our four campuses.  To learn more about the Semlink program, tuition fees and course offerings, please visit the Semlink page.

Transfer Students

A student applying for transfer from another seminary or graduate school is requested to submit a full application (which includes: three letters of recommendations, one church endorsement, official transcripts, an autobiography statement, a personal statement, and an application fee), including a “Statement of Explanation and Purpose” for the proposed transfer. You can include this explanation in your Personal Statement. In addition, the student must include a letter from the current seminary/graduate school indicating that he/she is a “student in good standing.” This letter should come from the Registrar or Academic Dean. Transfer credit will only be evaluated for applicants who have submitted a full application. Apply online today!

In summary, a transfer student should complete the following:

  • Full Application (and all required documents such as recommendations, transcripts, etc.)
  • Statement of Explanation and Purpose
  • Letter of Good Standing
  • Application Fee $50

Transfer credit is normally granted for coursework taken at other Association of Theological Schools (ATS)-accredited, graduate-level seminaries. Up to 50 percent of a student’s program can be met by transfer credit. Only a limited amount of elective credit can be given for coursework taken at seminaries which are not accredited by ATS.

Students transferring from recognized seminaries or graduate schools are given an evaluation of transfer credit upon request. As a general rule, such transfer credit will be approved only if comparable courses are included in Gordon-Conwell’s curriculum. Maximum transfer credit is forty-five credit hours (or fifteen courses) for the M.Div. program, thirty credit hours (or ten courses) for the Master of Arts programs. Transfer credit is not granted for work completed more than ten years prior to matriculation at Gordon-Conwell.

Any person desiring a transcript evaluation for transfer credit prior to matriculation should request such in writing to the registrar, accompanied by a transcript, a list of proposed courses projected for transfer, and a copy of the course descriptions from the academic catalog where the courses were taken.

Transfer Credit Evaluation Form

Visiting Students

If you are currently a student in good standing at another accredited seminary, you are welcome to take classes at Gordon-Conwell.

There is an abbreviated application process for Visiting Students. On the application, make sure you select “Visiting Student” as your degree. Mark “Semlink” if you are planning to take classes through our distance education program. Follow the directions for visiting students on the Special Instructions PDF on the left-hand side of the application. We require that you submit a letter from your Academic Dean or Registrar indicating that you are currently a student in good standing at your seminary and that coursework from Gordon-Conwell will be applied to your degree requirements there. You do not need to send recommendations, personal statements or transcripts.

In summary, a visiting student should complete the following:

  • Application form (preferably online), including application essays
  • Transcripts are not required.
  • Please submit a letter from your Academic Dean or Registrar indicating that you are currently a student in good standing at your seminary and that coursework from Gordon-Conwell will be applied to your studies there.
  • $50 Application Fee

Apply online today!

Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary does not discriminate on the basis of race, gender, national or ethnic origin, age, handicap or veteran status. A complete statement of compliance with federal laws and regulations can be found in the Gordon-Conwell Student Handbook.

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