Admissions Policy


Jackson Theological Seminary is committed to providing each student with the maximum opportunity to develop and learn. As such, we accept new students each semester for the Bachelors Completion program and the Master of Divinity program.


Diversity Statement


Applicants of all religious, ethnic, gender, race and cultural backgrounds are welcome at Jackson Theological Seminary. Applicants are expected to maintain a level of academic competence that makes their seminary experience profitable.


Minimum Requirements to Study


Students are required to have basic competence in computer skills, including familiarity with the Internet, email and word processing. In addition, students must be self-directed and able to organize their own structure for study and completion of assignments. 

Bachelors of Arts Admissions Procedures



Master of Divinity Admissions Procedures


Jackson Theological Seminary is committed to providing each student with the maximum opportunity to develop and learn. As such, we accept new students each semester.


Admission to the Seminary is offered to applicants who have an undergraduate degree. Students interested in applying to the Seminary are encouraged to submit applications as early as possible. All necessary materials may be obtained by contacting the Registrar at

All admission procedures apply to both full-time and part-time degree-seeking students.


Students wishing to be admitted to the Master of Divinity program should hold the Bachelor’s degree based upon the completion of work at a college or university approved by one of the regional accrediting agencies. Students from foreign institutions of collegiate standing may be admitted if they present satisfactory evidence of having completed studies equivalent to comparable institutions in the United States. A graduate of an unaccredited U.S. school may be admitted only as a Special Student.


In order to be admitted to the seminary, the student should complete the online application at or file a paper application with the Admissions Coordinator the following forms and information:


  • A completed Application for Admission, including a $50.00 application Fee.

  • An official transcript of all college, graduate, and seminary work undertaken.

  • Two letters of recommendation – one professional and one from the applicant’s pastor or denominational official. 

  • A 750-1,000 word writing sample on the subject, “What is the value of a theological education to me?” Included in the essay should be the motives for entering Christian ministry and those persons, influences and religious experiences that led to choosing a church-related vocation.


The applicant is responsible for having the above documents sent to the seminary. Final action upon the application for admission will not be made until all of these documents have been submitted.


Applicants will be notified of their acceptance by the Admissions Office typically within two weeks of completing the application process. 


Special Students

Ministers in active service, missionaries on leave, persons in training for mission service, persons preparing for ordination in the African Methodist Episcopal Church (AMEC) through the AMEC Course of Study program, and other qualified persons who desire to earn a M.Div., but do not meet minimum admission standards, may enroll in a non-degree program and be admitted as special students.


Students may be admitted to Jackson  as special students rather than as degree candidates for various reasons, including the opportunity to strengthen the academic background necessary for admission to a degree program. Normally, at the end of the academic year, a student will be moved from special student status to full degree seeking status.


Readmission Procedures

Students who have not been enrolled for over 12 months need to complete a readmission application, including providing requested documents and payment of a readmission fee. 


In order to be eligible for the readmission process, a student must resume the program of study within three years of the last term in which work was done. After this three-year period, a new admissions application is required, including a new application form, updated letters of recommendation, and a letter describing plans and a schedule for completing the program of study. If the withdrawal was for health reasons, the student must obtain clearance from a physician before registering and resuming the program of study. In readmission of students to Jackson, only course work done within five years that has earned a letter grade of C or better or a P grade will be considered for degree credit.


Students with unpaid balances or incomplete course work will not be considered for readmission until these issues are resolved. Readmission after withdrawal for medical reasons requires medical clearance by a physician. 


Transfer Credits to Jackson 

The transfer student must meet the admission requirements of Jackson Theological Seminary. A student transferring is admitted to advanced standing in accordance with work completed, provided the college/seminary from which he/she comes is accredited by TRACS or the Association of Theological Schools. The extent of credit allowed for prior work is determined in each case by the faculty person. Transfer students, like all others, are required to complete a minimum of 30 credit hours in residence.


Transfer credits will not substitute for the completion of the residency requirements. You may only be granted credit for courses with a grade of “C” or better. An official transcript needs to be submitted from each seminary or graduate school where credits were earned. Fifty-four (54) credit hours are the maximum number of transfer credits that are accepted.


A transfer student must take the following required courses at Jackson Theological Seminary, though a written appeal can be made for special consideration for courses taken at similar colleges and or theological institutions. These foundational courses define the distinctive character of the Seminary’s contextual approach to theological education anchored in the African American tradition and experience: TS 405 Introduction to Liberation Theologies (3 credit hours), BS 570 Cultural Hermeneutics (3 credit hours), and CM 603 Ministerial Sexual Ethics (3 credit hours).


International Student Admissions


Persons whose first language is not English must furnish, with the application, recent evidence of the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) with a score of at least 95 (Internet-based total) with a minimum of a 21 or higher in each of the four sub-areas, 250 (computer-based total), or 600 (paper-based total). The TOEFL results should be submitted directly from TOEFL to Jackson . Applicants whose first language is not English are strongly encouraged to complete an intensive English course, at an institution in your home country, for at least six months prior to enrollment.


In addition to supplying the above documents, international students (persons who are not U.S. citizens or permanent residents) who seek to be in residence must comply with the following:

Upon admission, and before the visa process can begin, international students must complete the Jackson  Theological Seminary Financial Certificate, which indicates adequate financial resources to cover tuition, fees, travel, and living expenses for the first year of study in the United States. (An I-20 will not be prepared until this certificate has been approved; it must be approved at least one month prior to the semester of admission.)