Residential - January 31
Hybrid Residential - August 31
The doctoral program seeks to admit applicants whose background clearly demonstrate scholarly aptitude, a commitment to the historic Christian faith, personal character and integrity, a service-oriented motivation toward endeavors of educational ministry and a deepening relationship with God. Biola University does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, ethnic group identification, gender, age or physical disability.
As in many graduate programs, enrollment is limited. In order to be admitted to full graduate standing, the applicant must comply with the following:
Have completed at least three years of full-time vocational experience in educational ministry with evidence of leadership gifts and abilities.
Have earned a Masters degree in Christian or Religious Education (MACE or MRE) or its equivalent from an accredited educational institution. Equivalence is defined as an earned master's degree of 36 semester units of graduate study in areas related to the Christian education ministry, including 18 units of graduate Bible and theology.
At least one course in each of the following areas should have been completed: Philosophy or History of Christian Education, Human Development or Educational Psychology, Educational Administration or Leadership, Interpersonal Communication/Group Dynamics or Counseling, Curriculum Design and/or Methods of Teaching. A minimum GPA of 3.25 on a 4.0 scale in all previous graduate work is required. Students whose formal educational preparation does not include all of the required prerequisite coursework must complete them prior to enrollment.
Applicants may be asked to be interviewed by the program director or the Doctoral Program committee as a requirement for admission. Note: Official documents presented for admission or evaluation become part of the student's academic file and normally cannot be returned or copied for distribution.
Since enrollment for both degree programs is limited and admission is on a selective basis, applications should be made as early as possible. Applications submitted after the deadline will usually be considered for the following year (residential program) or the next cohort (hybrid residential program).
Financial scholarship and dissertation fellowship applications are available in the Doctoral Program office (application deadline: March 1). Full-time, residential doctoral students are given priority for awards.
Admissions Process Instructions
- Apply Online or Download the Ph.D/Ed.D in Educational Studies Application
- Submit an applicaiton fee of $55 (non-refundable). Pay online at the time you submit your online application or submit a check payable to Biola University.
- Request official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended. If enrolled at the time application is filed, be sure to request transcripts of work finished to date and final transcripts upon completion of your course of study. Transcripts must be official, that is, mailed directly from your college or university in a sealed envelope to the Office of Graduate Admissions. Electronic transcripts are not considered official.
- Submit scores on the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) (expected verbal score of 500 and analytic score of 4.5). Information regarding registration for the GRE or call 1-800-473-2255 to register.
- Present evidence of potential for original academic research at the doctoral level by submitting a sample of scholarly writing (with citations and bibliography), preferably related to education, of at least 10 pages.
- You must furnish six references. One from a pastor, one from a present or former employer, three from professors and one from a person who can assess your character. (Online Reference Forms or Download the Reference Forms.)
- Ph.D. applicants only. Students applying for the hybrid residential "Current Faculty Track" Ph.D. program also need to fill out and send in the CFT supplemental form along with a Doctoral Mentor Letter filled out by a prospective student's faculty mentor.
Prerequisite Course Options
It is important to have all prerequisites addressed prior to enrollment in the doctoral programs. There are a variety of ways to address these prerequisite courses: Prerequisites in Biblical and Theological Studies
Students are expected to have taken 18 units of graduate level biblical and/or theological studies before entering the doctoral programs. If you need to take some coursework in this area, there are three options available:
- ITS Courses through Talbot School of Theology
A student can take up to 9 units of biblical/theological coursework through the Independent Theological Studies course offerings at Talbot. These independent studies utilize tapes, readings, exams, and research projects to cover the content of a graduate level course. Students need to secure approval from the doctoral program director for coursework from this program before registering for it.
- Regular biblical/theological coursework from Talbot or another accredited graduate program approved by the doctoral program office
If the student has access to an approved graduate school or seminary where they can take Bible and theology coursework, they can carry out these studies concurrent with their enrollment in the doctoral program. Note: Coursework at Talbot will need to be billed at the doctoral tuition rate due to the student's doctoral status, making this an expensive option.
- Correspondence/Distance Education Options
Several accredited graduate schools and seminaries are now offering selected biblical and theological courses through distance education. With prior approval, these courses can count toward the student's prerequisite work.
- Prerequisites in Christian Education Coursework
Often, a student will lack coursework in one or more of the five specified areas of graduate studies in the field of Christian education. There are two options for addressing prerequisites in these areas:
- Regular masters-level coursework at Talbot or another accredited graduate program approved by the doctoral program office
If the student has access to an approved graduate school or seminary where they can take Christian education coursework, they can carry out these studies concurrent with their enrollment in the doctoral program. Note: Coursework at Talbot will need to be billed at the doctoral tuition rate due to the student's doctoral status, making this an expensive option. Option #1 would be better for studies at Talbot.
- Correspondence/Distance Education Options
If the student is able to locate an accredited graduate program that has the needed Christian education courses available in a distance education format, this may be a good option for addressing the needed coursework. These kinds of courses are not as prevalent as the biblical studies courses, but it is worth investigation. These courses will need prior approval from the doctoral program director.
Special Instructions are required of Divorced/Separated/Remarried applicants and those with a criminal convication other than traffic violations. These issues may not disqualify you, however, they have a significant effect on your life and ministry.
English Proficiency Requirements
You are required to display English proficiency before being admitted into the graduate programs at Biola University. You are required to submit standardized test scores (TOEFL) for application to Biola. TOEFL Scores of 88 IBT and above will go into regular Master’s level programs. A score of 100 IBT is required for all ThM, Doctoral, MA Philosophy and the Messianic Jewish Studies MDiv and Certificate programs. Students who do not have a score of 88 IBT will not be considered for a graduate program.
Required Scores: TOEFL 88 IBT
After You Apply
You will be assigned to an admissions counselor who will be available to answer any questions you have concerning admissions, financial aid, or housing. Upon completion of your file and review by committee, you will be notified by mail of an admission decision.