The Catholic University of America
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Pursuing a Ph.D. in Biblical Studies

The goal of the Ph.D. is to expand and deepen the student's education in Biblical Studies. It prepares students to engage in independent research in various domains pertinent to the study of Scripture, such as Old Testament, New Testament, Septuagint Studies, ancient languages, and more. The degree promotes a thorough and rigorous foundation for research and studies in the area of biblical studies and ancient languages.



  • M.A. in biblical studies or a degree closely related to this field.
  • Students with an S.S.L. or S.T.L. in biblical theology may be eligible for advanced standing.
  • Nine credits in advanced Hebrew.
  • Nine credits in advanced Greek.


  • A minimum of 30 credit hours beyond the M.A.
  • Fifteen credits in exigetical seminars (OT and NT).
  • Six credit hours in a second ancient language.
  • Nine credits in exegesis or related areas such as theology, archaeology, Semitics, the Ancient Near East, ancient languages.
  • Reading and comprehension knowledge of German and French in accordance with school norms.
  • A comprehensive doctoral examination.
  • Doctoral guidance as needed.
  • Completion and successful defense of the dissertation.

Learning Modern and Ancient Languages


The Ph.D. in Biblical Studies requires a superior mastering of languages. Along with the nine credits in advanced Hebrew and Greek already completed in the M.A. program, six credits in a second ancient language are required. OT specialists are usually encouraged to take Aramaic, Syriac, Arabic, Ugaritic or Akkadian. NT specialists are advised to take Aramaic, Coptic or Syriac. 

With regard to modern languages, a reading and comprehension knowledge of German and French must be demonstrated in accordance with School norms. Click here to learn more about languages.

Teaching and Fellowships


Most of the jobs in the field involve significantly more teaching and less research than is the case at the universities that graduate doctorates. Therefore we have developed a teacher-training program with the collaboration of faculty.



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Contact Information

For more information about the Ph.D. in Biblical Studies, contact the area director, Dr. David Bosworth at