Theology

The University of Dubuque Theology major is designed to expose students to various aspects of the Bible, Church history, theology and philosophy, and practical leadership experience. This major equips students to apply a Christian perspective to their lives, their work, and to the world, and prepares them for leadership and service in the world and in the church. Although the focus is on Christian theology and spirituality, students in this major are also exposed to at least one other religious tradition.

In addition to knowledge of religious content, this major gives students skills in critical thinking, research, and communication. The major, by itself or along with another major provides a foundation for both lay leadership in the Church and for advanced theological study in a seminary or divinity school. A major (or minor) in Christian studies is also a way for students majoring in another field to think through how their Christian faith and calling relates to work in their other field of study.

What You Will Learn

  • Develop a foundation of understanding basic Christian doctrines, recognize and interpret representative passages in the Bible, and be able to read, analyze, and critique difficult writings.
  • Communicate ideas and arguments in writing and orally.
  • Gain experience in service and leadership and be able to reflect the applications of Christian thought to this experience.

Program of Study

The University of Dubuque degree in Christian Studies offers students an opportunity to study the Bible, church history, theology, philosophy, and to get practical leadership experience to prepare for Christian leadership in the church and other fields.


What Our Students Do

The University of Dubuque Theology Program allows students to study the Bible together, support one another in Christian life, and learn to think Christianly through studying the riches of Christian theology and history. Every Christian studies major participates in at least one semester-long ministry internship or service experience. Many Christian studies majors are actively involved in ministry on campus and in local churches. - See more at: 

Where Our Graduates Go

University of Dubuque Theology graduates go on to attend graduate school in theology at the University of Dubuque Theological Seminary and elsewhere. Our graduates serve in leadership positions in Presbyterian, Methodist, Baptist, and non-denominational churches across the country. Students who pursue Christian studies as a second major, or as an academic minor, integrate their faith and careers and serve God in a variety of fields.

News from the Department

Environmental Perspectives, 2nd edition, by Dr. Roger Ebertz was recently published by Kendall/Hunt Publishing Company. Dr. Ebertz is currently working on a book on the Christian Story, an overview of the “big story” of the Bible. Dr. Paul Jensen’s book, Tools for Young Philosophers, was published in 2011 by WIPF and STOCK Publishers. Dr. Jensen is currently writing a book tentatively titled, Christianity for Skeptics. 

Theology- Program of Study

The courses below are a program sample of what students may encounter. Students will meet with their advisers to develop a personal educational program to plan their elective course choices, internships, undergraduate research, and other educational opportunities and experiences.

Year One

Fall Semester
WVS 101: World View Seminar I (3)
REL 115: Christian Beliefs (3)
ENG 101: Composition and Rhetoric (3)
CIS 101/103: Introduction to Computers (3)
COM 101: Speech Communication (3)

J-Term
Required

Spring Semester
WVS 201: World View Seminar II (3)
REL 116: History of Christianity (3)
ENG 112/260: Literature (3)
RES 104: Research Writing (3)
BIO 110: Human Biology Lab (4) or other Science Lab Course


Year Two

Fall Semester
REL 220: Introduction to the Old Testament (3)
REL 251: Religions of the World (3), or REL 253: Islam (3), or REL 255: Buddhism (3)
PSY/SOC 111:  Introduction to Psychology/Sociology (3)
HWS 110: Physical Activity (1)
PHL 114: Logical Reasoning (3)

J-Term
Recommended

Spring Semester
REL 118: Religion at the Movies (3)
REL 221: Introduction to the New Testament(3)
ART 111: Survey of Western Art (3) or other Aesthetics B Course
REL 214: Environmental Perspectives (3) or other Stewardship Course

Religion elective or course for a minor or second major


Year Three

Fall Semester
REL Elective
REL Elective
REL Elective
CCS 101/UDLS 111: Cross-Cultural Study (1)/Elementary Spanish I (3) or other Global Awareness B Course

J-Term
Recommended

Spring Semester
REL 321: Philosophy of Religion
Elective or courses for a minor or second major


Year Four

Fall Semester
Religion or Theology Elective
Electives, or courses for minor or second major 

J-Term
Recommended

Spring Semester
Religion or Theology Elective
REL 495: Senior Seminar
Electives, or courses for minor or second major

Careers in Theology

The Theology Program prepares students for Christian life and leadership in today’s world. The major gives students a foundational understanding of the Bible, Christian theology, the history of Christianity, non-Christian thought, and Christian leadership. Students must participate in an internship with a church or agency. If desired, individual students can work with their advisor to shape their program to focus on youth ministry, worship leadership, or another area of Christian service and leadership. Graduates of the program obtain the necessary skills and knowledge for leadership in their communities and congregations. Pursuing Christian studies as a minor or second major is an excellent way for Christian students to prepare for Christian leadership or build a strong foundation for a career in another field.

BA Opportunities

A degree in Christian studies prepares students for non-ordained leadership positions in youth ministry, Christian education, worship leadership, and other forms of Christian leadership. Many entry-level positions in businesses and non-profit agencies require a bachelor’s degree, but do not require a particular major. Christian students who major in Christian Studies can grow in their Christian understanding while preparing for a variety of career opportunities. Combined with a second major in another field, Christian studies prepares students for Christian leadership in business, arts, education, and a variety of fields.

Post-graduate Opportunities

Christian studies is an excellent preparation for graduate theological education in preparation for ordained ministry. Graduates pursuing ordination often go on to attend seminary at the University of Dubuque Theological Seminary or one of many other theological schools around the country. Students who major in Christian studies can also pursue graduate work in law, business, or communication. The University offers an accelerated degree program for students pursuing both a college and a seminary degree. Students can earn a bachelor’s degree and either a master of divinity degree or a master of arts in missional christianity degree. The University of Dubuque also offers a cooperative program through which a student can combine studies for a master’s degree in theology with a master of business administration. Some University of Dubuque Christian studies graduates have gone on to earn the doctor of philosophy degree in religious studies and teach at the college level.

Successful Outcomes

Bill Longmore BA, 2012 Christian Studies

I am a pastor at Crossroads Community Church in Galena, IL.  I take great pride in saying I graduated from the University of Dubuque with a major in religion, and am excited that my sister is getting ready to graduate from UD as well! At UD I was taught by amazing professors.  They showed me love and provided great academic preparation for my career.  Before going to UD, I had served in Iraq and was struggling with drug addiction and post-traumatic stress disorder. Thanks to the support I received at UD and from many others, my family is back on the path to what the Lord has in store for us!