The Faculty of Theology offers three successive Cycles of studies, each one terminating with the conferment of an academic degree: the Baccalaureate, the Licentiate and the Doctorate.


1. The First Cycle (three years), ordered to the attainment of the Baccalaureate in Theology, offers a synthetic presentation of fundamental theological questions, together with an introduction to the scientific method of the various theological disciplines.


2. The Second Cycle, ordered to the acquisition of the Diploma in Pastoral Theology (one year) or the Licentiate in Theology (two years), provides the possibility of specializing in a particular sector of the theological sciences.


3. The Third Cycle (two years), ordered to the attainment of the Doctorate in Theology, enables the student to reach a certain theological maturity by means especially of the preparation of a doctoral dissertation which will contribute to the progress of theological science.


The Faculty of Theology, moreover, offers Diploma Programs in Spirituality and Interreligious Dialogue.


The Faculty proposes a personalized plan of study for the ongoing theological-spiritual formation of priests, religious men and women, as well as for the laity.



The requirements for admission to the First Cycle Baccalaureate are as follows:

  1. A secondary-school (“high school”) diploma which would qualify the applicant for admission to a college or university in his or her own country;
  2. Successful completion of two years of university-level study in philosophy, including Introduction to Philosophy and courses in Logic, Epistemology, Philosophical Psychology (Philosophy of the Human Person, Philosophical Anthropology), Philosophy of Nature, Ethics (Moral Philosophy), Metaphysics, and the History of Philosophy;
  3. A knowledge of the elements of form and syntax of Latin.
  4. A sufficient knowledge of English or Italian; students whose mother tongue is neither English nor Italian will have to undergo a language proficiency test.

The principal subjects of the courses are as follows:


A. Scripture: a general Introduction course, and eight additional courses concentrating on different parts of the Old Testament (historical books, prophets, wisdom literature) and the New Testament (Synoptic Gospels, Pauline letters, Johannine writings, Acts of the Apostles, and Catholic Epistles).


B. Dogmatic Theology: two initial courses in fundamental theology (Introduction to Theology and Theological Method, and Theology of Revelation) followed by specialized courses offering a systematic exploration of the mystery of salvation in phases, according to the theological vision of St. Thomas’ Summa Theologiae:

  1. its origin: the mystery of God, the beginning and end of the whole order of salvation;
  2. its historic center: the mystery of Christ and of the Church (Christology, Mariology, Ecclesiology);
  3. its eschatological intentionality: the full revelation of Christ’s glory at the Parousia;
  4. and its anticipation in the sacramental life of the Church whereby Christ remains a vivifying presence to his members.


C. Moral Theology and Spirituality: initial courses in fundamental moral theology and spiritual theology, followed by specialized courses on grace, the theological and moral virtues, and contemporary issues, especially in the realm of social justice.


D. Positive Theology: this category includes subjects which constitute additional “sources” of theology (patrology, Christian archaeology, Church history) and applications of theology to the Christian life (liturgy, pastoral theology, canon law).


Auxiliary Subjects: New Testament Greek [biblical Hebrew – optional].


Seminars: In addition, students are required to take two seminars during their second year and one annual seminar during their third year. These acquaint them with a variety of special contemporary problems in theology and also serve as a practical initiation into scientific theological work.

Those who have received the S.T.B. degree with a grade point average sufficient for admission to the Second Cycle according to the standards of the Institute which granted the S.T.B., may be admitted into the Second Cycle (e.g., 8/10 if the S.T.B. was granted by the Angelicum).


Those who have not obtained the Pontifical S.T.B. degree but who have completed an equivalent of five or six year programme of philosophical and theological studies, may be admitted to the Licentiate Cycle if, in the judgement of the Dean’s Office, their programme of studies and their grade point average are sufficient. In cases of deficiency or doubt, the Dean may require that some First Cycle courses or an examination be sustained.


A sufficient knowledge of English or Italian is required; students whose mother tongue is neither English nor Italian will have to undergo a test of language proficiency. Those who fail the test will have to attend a language course.


The Licentiate is the academic degree which enables one to teach in a Major Seminary or equivalent school and which is therefore required for this purpose.


When first registering, the student must choose one of the areas of specialization.


During the two years of studies, the student must complete the following requirements:


  1. 14 courses in the area of specialization (42 ECTS);
  2. 3 courses from areas outside one’s specialization (9 ECTS);
  3. 3 courses from those common to all areas of specialization (9 ECTS).
  4. 4 seminars in the area of specialization (16 ECTS).
  5. Obligatory Seminar of Methodology;
  6. The composition of a thesis, at least 50 pages, written under the direction of one of the Professors in one’s area of specialization (25 ECTS). The theme of the thesis is to be registered at the Dean’s office once it is agreed on by the student and the Professor.
  7. The personal preparation of a set of themes proper to the area of specialization(List A). The list of themes is given to the student at the time of registration (19 ECTS).


Towards the end of the fourth semester, the student must formally request the final exam (lectio coram) in the Secretariat. At that time the student consigns the following to the Dean’s Office:

  1. Two bound copies of the thesis;
  2. A list of 20 themes (List B): drawn up by the student, at least one from each of the courses and seminars of specialization, taken during the biennium. The aim of each theme is to provide a precise topic that can be treated adequately in a 40 minute teaching exercise (lectio coram). Students of the Dogma and Moral Sections are moreover required to submit a brief outline and bibliography of the themes set by the Sections (List A). Three days before the scheduled date of the lectio coram, the student goes to the Dean’s Office to choose one of three themes taken from List B as the title of the exposition for the lectio coram. Students will be admitted to the final exam (lectio coram) on condition that [1] they have passed all their course and seminar examinations during the licentiate cycle, [2] successfully completed the thesis, and [3] paid all pertinent fees.

The Third Cycle (Doctorate) has a minimum two years duration; it presupposes a Licentiate in Theology obtained from a Pontifical University or Faculty. It enables the student to reach a certain theological maturity by means especially of the preparation of a doctoral dissertation which will contribute to the progress of theological science.

The Second Cycle includes a one-year optional Diploma in Pastoral Theology. In order to ensure that students are acquainted with a broad range of theological investigation, but to allow them to concentrate in a field of interest, the programme includes the following work to be done during a two-semester period:


  1. 5 courses taken from one of the areas of specialization.
  2. 2 courses from the other areas of specialization.
  3. 2 courses from those common to all areas of specialization.
  4. One seminar in the area of specialization.
  5. The completion of a thirty to fifty page dissertation, composed under the direction of a member of the Faculty of Theology.


Students who at a future date may wish to obtain the S.T.L., will be able to count the Diploma work towards the fulfilment of the Licentiate requirements. Normally, a student returning to finish the Licentiate would complete the requirements in two semesters and would be responsible for writing a new tesina and taking the lectio coram.