The Catholic University of America

Master of Arts in Church History

The following requirements are in addition to those outlined for obtaining a civil degree


The goal of the M.A. in Church History is to prepare students for careers in religious education and for advanced study on the doctoral level.  Students in the M.A. program are expected to think critically about the ways in which the Church has been studied over the centuries.  In order to do this effectively, students are expected to acquire training in the original languages and to conduct their research in the primary texts.  The program allows for students to complete coursework in related fields and disciplines.


Students should have earned a Bachelor of Arts degree and completed coursework in religious studies, theology, and history.  Additional preparation in these areas may be undertaken during the course of study.

Course Requirements

You must complete a minimum of 30 credit hours which include the follwing:

Church History from the High Middle Ages to the Present (TRS 621C)
Ancient and Medieval Church History (TRS 622)
The Writing of Church History (TRS 724)
Two (2) seminar courses in which research papers are required and for which at least a grade of B is received. At least one of these seminars must be in the Church History academic area.

Language Requirements

Students must demonstrate reading knowledge of French or German by passing an examination administered by the Church History area, or by receiving a grade of B or better in Theological German (TRS 501).

Competency in one additional language may be required depending upon the student’s area of concentration (e.g. Greek or Latin for early and Medieval church history), to be determined either by passing an examination administered by the Department of Greek and Latin, or by receiving a grade of B or better in an approved language course in the Department of Greek and Latin.

Comprehensive Examinations


Church History students are required to pass two written comprehensive examinations. One (four-hour) examination will be in the major area of concentration, and one (four-hour) examination will test the student’s general knowledge of historiography from 100AD to the present, including Early, Medieval, Renaissance, Early Modern, and American Church History. The examinations will be prepared under the direction of the student’s adviser and the Church History academic area.