Admissions & Aid: General Questions

Can I transfer credits from another university?

Harvard Divinity School does not accept transfer credits. However, after satisfactory completion of at least one full semester of coursework at HDS, students in the MDiv program may be considered for advanced standing for work completed at another institution prior to enrollment at HDS. Guidelines and information about obtaining advanced standing are provided in the HDS Handbook for Students.

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Do you offer online courses or degrees?

Online courses are not offered at HDS. Those who are interested in online learning through Harvard might consider Harvard Extension School, which offers courses on religion taught by HDS professors. Please note, however, that coursework completed at the Extension School will not lead to a degree at HDS.

Note for fall 2020 and spring 2021: Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, all classes for the summer and fall 2020 semesters, and...

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Do you offer scholarships or financial aid?

HDS offers both merit- and need-based grants for students enrolling in the MDiv or MTS programs. Approximately 90 percent of students receive some form of institutional grant assistance, the vast majority of which is need-based grant aid. HDS has a small pool of merit aid that is awarded based on the overall strength of the application. Merit award decisions are made by the admissions committee at the point of admission and are final.

The majority of grant aid is awarded through our need-based grant program, which requires an application process. U.S. Citizens and...

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Do you offer any joint/concurrent degree programs?

MTS and MDiv students may pursue concurrent degree programs with the Harvard Kennedy School, Harvard Law School, and Tufts University Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, among others.

For those who do not wish to pursue a concurrent degree, HDS students may take up to half of their courses across Harvard University and the Boston Theological Interreligious Consortium.

More information can be found in the...

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I am not affiliated with a particular religious or spiritual tradition. Is there still a place for me at HDS?

Yes! Students come to HDS from a variety of spiritual and religious backgrounds, including non-religious backgrounds. While some of our students come with a faith tradition, we have a number of students that are not affiliated with a religious tradition. What all HDS students share in common is a willingness to explore the complexities of religious thought and life through academic curiosity and practical engagement.

What can I do with an MDiv or MTS degree?

 

Our graduates go on to a wide variety of professions and vocations, including ordained and lay ministry; chaplaincy; higher education teaching and research; public and private secondary education; community development, advocacy, and human services; management and consulting—especially nonprofit; public policy, law, conflict resolution, and mediation; arts, publishing, communications, and media. The training HDS students receive is meant to prepare graduates for important work across many different fields. Further information on the career pathways of our...

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What is the difference between Harvard Divinity School and a seminary?

Harvard Divinity School was established in 1816 as the country's first nonsectarian theological school. It is dedicated to educating future leaders in religious life and thought with the resources and support of the wider Harvard University. Seminaries are typically affiliated with a particular religious denomination and may or may not be affiliated with a larger university. We recommend that you contact the denominational seminaries that interest you for additional information about their programs, resources, and student life. We are happy to share detailed information about HDS.

Will the 2021-2022 academic year be on-campus or remote?

On October 20, HDS announced it will conduct spring 2021 courses online. In so doing, the School seeks to maximize community safety and to allow students to make informed plans for travel, living arrangements, and enrollment. If any further changes are made, they will be communicated via email, and this FAQ will be updated with current information.

If you have not already done so, please complete our...

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