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Yale M.Div or M.A.R.?


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Hello all,

I am trying to discern between Yale's M.Div. and M.A.R. Although I aim to continue on to doctoral studies, I am interested in the M.Div. as well. Should I not bother with the M.Div. is ministery is not my primary goal? Are there many M.Div. applicants whose goal is doctoral studies?


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The MDiv can be just as "academic" as an MAR if you want it to be. An advantage to the MDiv would be an additional year of study / preparation for the PhD. It really isn't a ministry degree anymore unless, of course, that's your focus. Some programs do have certain ministry-related requirements for the MDiv, but most of them can be waived. Something to consider also is that the MDiv is more employable than an MAR should PhD studies not work out. There's no shortage of PhD applicants with the MDiv and ThM or STM. So, MAR / MTS folk sometimes compete against applicants with twice as much preparation.

Edited by ghost6
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The only reason I can think of getting an MDiv would be the possibility of more funding. We all know that many doctoral students nowadays have an MDiv +ThM. But, I would think that an MTS + MA (or some other combo of 4 years) would be more beneficial given 1) no ministry requirements and 2) IMO it shows you have been exposed to multiple traditions/opinions of profs. Again, I totally understand why folks go the MDiv route since they generally receive much better aid.

Also, Ghost/anyone, does YDS really not require any ministry requirements for the MDiv? I find it hard to believe you can craft essentially an MTS +1 type of program. Anyone actually tried this in an MDiv program? Everyone I know/knew in an MDiv program doesn't seem to have much wiggle room in their schedule. The only place that comes to mind would be at HDS.


Edited by jdmhotness
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YDS doesn't waive all ministry requirements, but it's still possible to slant the degree toward an "academic" focus with the goal of a PhD rather than ministry. It would be helpful to know the OP's PhD interest before suggesting degrees though. HDS does have more wiggle room. Chicago and Emory do also. Emory has 12 "concentrations" specifically for the MDiv program. It seems that several schools have moved or are moving in this direction for the MDiv.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I only a knew a couple of "academic" MDivs at YDS. But that's not to say it can't be done. There are however, as far as I know, quite a few ministry related requirements, such as an internship (I think). The strength of the YDS MAR is that it is almost completely customizable: there are virtually no requirements. Also, if you are interested in having an extra year to prepare for doctoral work, they have an optional third year that many (but not all) students can pursue.

With regard to funding, I believe MAR and MDiv students at Yale receive the same.

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