Ph.D. Admissions Process

General Information

The Office of Ph.D. Studies invites all eligible persons to complete the application as specified in the directions on the Online Application page. Admission to the Ph.D. program is selective and is offered only to students who have demonstrated the intellectual ability, preparation and motivation to perform academically at the highest level. Enrollment in the program is limited to applicants who, in the judgment of the faculty, appear best qualified and most capable of using the resources that the seminary provides.

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Prerequisites for Admission

Admission to the program is competitive. The following prerequisites for admission are for self-screening purposes and only establish the opportunity to apply to the Ph.D. program.

Preference will be given to applicants who have completed the following core courses or their equivalents:

- New Testament I, II (6hrs.)

- Old Testament I, II (6hrs.)

- Greek I, II (6-9hrs.)*

- Hebrew I, II (6-9hrs.)*

- Doctrine Survey I, II (6hrs.)

- Church History I, II (3-6hrs.)**

- Hermeneutics (3hrs.)

- Baptist History (3hrs.)***

* Biblical language expectations depend on applicant’s given Area of Study

**Applicants must have studied the Patristic, Medieval, Reformation and Modern eras.

***Baptist History is required for applicants pursuing Historical Theology


Competitive applications demonstrate a further specialization in their desired area of study.

It is the student’s responsibility to distinguish himself or herself in the following areas:

Approved Master of Divinity degree or research Master of Arts degree in the same field in which one wishes to pursue doctoral studies as long as that degree and its prerequisites meet MDiv equivalence. Typically, SEBTS research masters degrees meet this requirement.

-Competitive applications demonstrate a further specialization in their desired area of study.

G.P.A. (3.5 and above)

Acceptable GRE score


Writing sample (4-6k words including footnotes)

Personal Statement

Major Professor Evaluation

Entrance Exam

Additional Information for International Students

International students must complete two different application processes, one academic and one legal. Academically, acceptance is based on the admissions portfolio (i.e. application, references, entrance exam, TOEFL exam, etc.). Legally, acceptance is based on the result of the international paperwork (i.e. visa, I-20, etc.). An international student must be accepted academically AND legally before he/she will receive a student visa and a formal letter officially accepting him/her into the Ph.D. program as an international student. In addition, international students are required to pay a deposit before being issued an I-20. The deposit is currently $2,500 for a single student and $3,500 for a married student.