Sooner or later, most people encounter and consider life’s big questions.

Why are we here? Is anything in life really certain? What is a good life? Does God really exist? Are our lives driven by fate, or are we free? Are there higher laws than those we compose? How can we recognize good and evil? What is the meaning of the human religious experience?

If those and other important questions intrigue you, you may be drawn toward the study of theology. Theological study has for centuries attempted to address these profound types of issues, and the discussion continues today. Alvernia’s theology program focuses on the Judeo-Christian tradition with emphasis on the Catholic expression of that tradition, but also exposes students to other faith traditions.

Majoring in theology does not necessarily mean that you’ll go to work for a church organization, although many students enter the program with that as their goal. Other theology majors find their place within a community organization or a healthcare setting, or may seek a career as a lawyer, teacher, public employee or journalist.

When you study theology, you build knowledge and skills that can be applied in nearly every endeavor. You will become adept at problem solving, and acquire the ability to express your thoughts and communicate clearly. You will learn the art of effective argumentation and improve your research and writing skills. In short, you’ll acquire abilities that will serve you well your entire life.

The abilities you’ll develop as you study in this major set you apart and make you valuable to employers. In addition, you’ll discover that exploring and wrestling with questions that have occupied mankind since its beginning are some of the most rewarding endeavors you will ever encounter.


Theology is a versatile major that can prepare you for a variety of exciting careers. While you may be aspiring toward a career based in church work, it also could be that you’re interested in writing, law, education, community work, lobbying, consulting or counseling. Perhaps you’re thinking about a career in public service, or would like to work for a religious publishing house or help staff or direct a Diocese office.

You might put your skills to work as a campus minister; hospital, prison or military chaplain; director of a church camp; pastor; priest; missionary; or religious education professional.

The skills and qualities you develop as a theology major can qualify you for a number of positions, as employers value strong critical thinking skills and the ability to communicate effectively. Alvernia theology graduates have gone on to serve in many types of careers, bolstered by the knowledge and experience gained during their time at the University.

Earning a theology degree at Alvernia can also prepare you for seminary or graduate school Graduates have pursued advanced degrees at institutions such as Villanova University and the University of Pennsylvania.

For more information about Alvernia’s theology program contact the Admissions Office at 1-888-ALVERNIA or 610-796-8269 or


At Alvernia, you can study theology as a major or a minor, as theology can be an excellent complement to another major. Theology majors must complete 30 credits in the major, while minors must complete 18 credits.

Two of Alvernia’s theology courses, Franciscan Pilgrimage to Assisi and Rome and Santo Domingo, include travel and involve extra expenses for students.

All Alvernia students must successfully complete a minimum of 123 semester credits to receive a Bachelor of Arts or a Bachelor of Science degree.

Required courses for theology majors are:
THE 105 – Foundations of Theology
THE 380 – Christ and the Church

Choose one of the following:
THE 200 – Christian Approach to Morality
THE 210 – Medical Moral Theology
THE 225 – Global Issues: The Gospel Perspective

Choose two of the following:
THE 306 – Biblical Studies: Gospel Portrait of Jesus
THE 308 – Biblical Studies: Old Testament Studies
THE 309 – Biblical Studies: New Testament Studies

You also must take an additional 15 elective credits in theology. Electives include:
THE 245 – Introduction to Eastern Philosophy and Religion
THE 255 – Santo Domingo (includes a week-long immersion experience in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic)
THE 300 – Marriage and Sexuality
THE 345 – Issues in Historical Theology
THE 350 – Franciscan Studies
THE 355 – Franciscan Pilgrimage to Assisi and Rome (travel course)
THE 364 – Mysticism
THE 405 – Medieval and Reformation Theological Evolution
THE 420 – Worship and Sacraments
THE 425 – Judaic Studies

Students who minor in theology are required to complete any 18 credits in the major.

You can learn more about all courses offered by Alvernia University by viewing the 2015-2016 Academic Course Catalogue at

Contact Information

Kevin Godfrey, Ph.D.
Chair of Humanities
Francis Hall, 216


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