Graduate Theology: How To Get the Specialization | Franciscan University of Steubenville
  • Here's how to get the Catechetics Specialization

    In order to obtain the Catechetics Specialization with an M.A. in Theology and Christian Ministry degree, each student will take 14 Graduate Courses, or 42 Credits (this does not include pre-requisite courses). The specialization is sought in conjunction with the M.A., therefore, students have theology requirements to complete. More specifically, students will take the four Theological Foundations classes as well as four electives of their choosing. All of these courses can and should be taken alongside the catechetics curriculum.

    Theological Foundations Courses

    • THE 601 Biblical Foundations
    • THE 602 Theological Foundations
    • THE 603 Historical Foundations
    • THE 604 Teachings of Vatican II
    • THE 605 Foundations of Moral Theology


    • Two with a theological emphasis
    • Two with a pastoral emphasis

    In order to prepare students for their Graduate Catechetics program of study, they will take THE 517 Catechetics. Though it does not count towards their 42 credits, this background course provides a necessary study of recent magisterial documents that address catechesis.

    Pre-requisite Course

    • THE 517 Catechetics

    While taking the pre-requisite course, students can also begin their first Graduate course in the catechetics curriculum, THE 780 Scripture: The Heart of Catechesis. The catechetics courses are specifically sequenced to take advantage of material covered by a previous class. Some classes are only offered in either the Fall or Spring semester and not the other. Before enrolling in classes, please see your advisor!

    Catechetics students must complete the following five courses:

    Catechetics Curriculum

    1. THE 780 Scripture: the Heart of Catechesis
    2. THE 641 Catechesis: Content and Curriculum
    3. THE 691 Catechetical Methods I
    4. THE 692 Catechetical Methods II*
    5. THE 694 Catechetical Practice Today*

    *These courses are usually taken together in the last semester.

    The specialization is completed with one of the following seven Catechetics electives:

    Catechetics Electives (Only one)

    • THE 660 Pastoral Issues
      • Topic: Management/Administration in the Parish and Diocese
      • Topic: Catechetical Saints
      • Topic: Family Catechesis
    • THE 678 Sacramental Preparation
    • THE 681 Catechetical Practicum
    • THE 693 The Catechumenate in the RCIA
    • THE 804 Philosophical Foundations of Catechesis

    Sample Schedule

    So, how would a typical schedule actually look? See below for a sample schedule of Graduate courses. This is not the only way that the classes can be taken, but it does demonstrate the proper sequencing of Catechetics classes.

    First Year

    Fall Semester

    • THE 517 Catechetics
    • THE 780 Scripture, the Heart of Catechesis
    • THE 604 Teachings of Vatican II

    Spring Semester

    • THE 641 Catechesis: Content and Curriculum
    • THE 601 Biblical Foundations
    • Elective (theological emphasis)

    Summer Semester

    • Elective (theological emphasis)
    • Elective (pastoral emphasis)
    • Elective (pastoral emphasis)

    Second Year

    Fall Semester

    • THE 691 Catechetical Methods I
    • THE 603 Historical Foundations
    • Catechetics Elective

    Spring Semester

    • THE 692 Catechetical Methods II
    • THE 694 Catechetical Practice Today
    • THE 602 Theological Foundations

    How do I Graduate?

    • First of all, two semesters before you plan on graduating, you will fill out a Graduation Application with Enrollment Services at the Registrar's Office in Starvaggi Hall.
    • Once this is complete, you must fill out Request to Take the M.A. in Theology Comprehensive Final Exam form two months before the scheduled exam or sooner. You may pick up this form from the Theology Deparment secretary in Egan 254. This time to prepare yourself for your exam is required. You will not be eligible to take the comprehensive finals if you do not sign up on or before the "Register for Exam" dates. For more information, see M.A. Comp Test.
    • In order to graduate with your M.A. in Theology and Christian Ministry you must pass the Comprehensive exams. To obtain the Specialization in Catechetics, you must pass the comprehensive exams as well as complete a few additional requirements.

    Additional Graduation Requirements for the Catechetics Specialization

    These requirements have been put in place to give our students the professional training they will need in the field.

    • Catechism Exam: In addition to the course requirements for the M.A., students also will have to pass an examination on the Catechism of the Catholic Church. Sample Catechism exams can be located in the Catechetics office (Egan 252).
    • Exit Presentation: The candidate will do an Exit Presentation in the final semester of the program for the catechetics specialization. This is a ninety minute professional presentation on some aspect of the catechetical endeavor. The student chooses the topic. The presentation must reflect a mastery and syntheses of the catechetical and magisterial materials, as well as a sense of the reality of the catechetical situation. The grade for this presentation is pass/fail. Students can browse through past Exit Presentations and pick up some Exit Presentation Guidelines in the Catechetics office (Egan 252).
    • Seminars: Finally, throughout the year, the Office of Catechetics offers various seminars so that students can hear from professionals in the field and also listen to great leaders in catechetics. Many seminars are offered, and students are encouraged to be aware of them and attend as many as they can. The following seminars are ones that are regularly offered, and are required for those completing the Catechetics Specialization:
    • Fall
      • Paul VI Lecture Series: The Bishop is the principal catechist in the diocese. The Paul VI Lecture Series brings bishops from around the country to discuss catechetical issues with our students. This series is offered every fall, and all students in the Catechetics specialization are given the opportunity to attend them each year.
      • Catechesis for Persons with Disabilities: Our bishops have made it very clear that "there is no separate Church for persons with disabilities." This seminar brings together experts in the field of catechesis for persons with disabilities. Topics include a general introduction to various disabilities, physical and developmental; the theology of suffering; and practical assistance to help future catechists meet he needs of those persons they will catechize. This seminar will be taken by those Graduate students enrolled in the Methods courses.
    • Spring
      • Immersion Day: Some of the best catechists in the country are brought in to share their expertise. Students have a chance to hear first hand about contemporary issues in catechetics, ask questions, and discern what kind of catechetical ministry they might be called to. This day is offered every spring, and all students in the Catechetics specialization are to attend at least two of them.
      • Art and Music in Catechesis: This seminar helps our students to be come aware of the power that art and music have to lead people to Christ. God is Truth, beauty, and Goodness. Catechists that use art and music that are true, beautiful, and good will find indispensable means by which they bring their students into intimacy with Jesus Christ. This seminar will be taken by those Graduate students enrolled in their Methods courses.








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