4.0 Admission Policies

Responsibility for determining a candidate’s compliance with the requirements for admission and for administering the admissions policy is vested in the faculty, and carried out by the Admissions Committee of the faculty.  A determination of whether candidates for degrees have met the applicable requirements is vested in the faculty.  The faculty shall make such a determination with respect to each candidate and recommend to the Board of Trustees whether or not a degree should be granted.

Subject to the established requirements for admissions and graduation, the Board of Trustees shall have the authority to grant or withhold the granting of degrees.

LTS understands itself to be a partner with the church in helping our students work toward ministerial leadership.  However, Lexington Theological Seminary is not the credentialing body of any denomination; we do not make the decision about whether or not a student should be ordained.

4.2 Committee Procedures

4.2.1 An Admissions Committee selected by the academic Dean and composed of the Dean and faculty members and the Director of Admissions will review applications.  Each member of the Admissions Committee will have one vote with the exception of the Director of Admissions who is a non-voting member.  Applicants are admitted by consensus.

4.2.2 The Admissions Committee will determine meeting times as need based on individual schedules and dates of applications received.  Generally the Admissions Committee will meet on the 15th of each month to review applications.

4.2.3 Admission to Lexington Theological Seminary is ongoing throughout the calendar year.  The Admissions Committee will review applications on the 15th of each month, year round.  All applications must be submitted through the online application process.  No applications will be considered if sent by email or through means other than the online application process.

4.2.4 Reasons for denial are not shared with the applicant or anyone outside of the Admissions Committee.  When an applicant is denied admission, that person must wait at least one calendar year before reapplying for admission.  This policy does not imply any promise for admission in the future.

4.3 Criminal Background Checks

4.3.1 A criminal background check is required for all applicants for the M.Div. degree and those MA degree-seeking students who wish to complete their coursework while working in a ministry setting.  The applicant submits their own information for that check through the online service Intellicorp,net, listed on the LTS website.  Criminal history in and of itself does not necessarily mean the applicant will be denied admissions.  However, failure to disclose a criminal history on the application itself, which later turns up in the background check, may be grounds for denial.

4.3.2 All other elements of the application being acceptable, if the background check does not produce any criminal history notification of acceptance will be sent to the applicant.

4.3.3 All other elements of the application being acceptable, if the background check does produce a criminal history the admissions committee may ask for more information from the candidate before a final determination can be made.

4.4 Degree Admission Requirements

4.4.1 Master of Divinity, Master of Arts, Master of Arts in Pastoral Studies

For students applying to the Master of Divinity, Master of Arts, or Master of Arts in Pastoral Studies a completed application includes:

  • Completed online application form
    • Including essay and
    • Completed list of recommenders
  • Receipt of reference letters in the Admissions office
    • Two recommendation letters submitted electronically for the general application
      • Educator (if out of school less than three years); if out of school three years or more a recent employer who can speak to the applicant’s  leadership skills
      • A minister who can speak to the applicant’s potential for Seminary study and potential for ministry
    • If applying for an LTS scholarship an additional letter of recommendation must be submitted by a minister (not named above) who can speak to the applicant’s potential for excellence in ministry.
  • Receipt of official transcripts, in the Admissions office, from all secondary schools attended
    • Applicants for degree programs must have earned a Bachelor’s Degree from and institution accredited by an organization recognized by the Department of Education (or international equivalent).
    • All applicants must have a minimum grade point average of 2.5.
  • Non-refundable application fee of $65
  • English language; All students are expected to have a good command of the English language.  For non-native English speakers, a TOEFLE paper test score of at least 600 or an online test score of 250 is required.

Students requesting admission to the Master of Divinity, Master of Arts, or Master of Arts in Pastoral Studies who do not hold a bachelor’s degree (or who hold a bachelor’s degree from a non-accredited institution) will be admitted to the Certificate in Pastoral Ministry for credit.  On completion of the Certificate (for credit), if a student’s performance warrants it, that student can be considered for admission to the applicable Masters degree program with special approval of the faculty.

4.4.2 Doctor of Ministry

Applicants must be currently engaged in the practice of ministry, have at least three years of ministerial experience beyond seminary graduation, and have the support of the congregation or organization being served.  Doctor of Ministry candidates are not eligible for financial aid.

For Doctor of Ministry applicants, a completed application will include:

  • Completion of selected sections of the online application
  • Receipt of Reference letters in the Admissions office
    • Two recommendation letters submitted electronically
    • Educator (if out of school less than three years); if out of school three years or more a recent employer who can speak to your leadership skills
    • A minister who can speak to your potential for advanced Seminary work and leadership skills
    • For Doctor of Ministry Military Chaplaincy Applicants, a statement from the Chaplaincy Office that the applicant is in good standing with the military, including any disciplinary actions/complaints, in lieu of all other references.
  • Receipt of official transcripts from all secondary schools attended
    • Applicants for the Doctor of Ministry degree must have a Master of Divinity degree or equivalent from and institution accredited by an organization recognized by the Department of Education (or international equivalent)
    • Applicants must have a minimum grade point average of 3.0
      • Applicants for the Doctor of Ministry degree who are military chaplains must submit only the transcript which indicates successful completion of the MDiv degree.
  • Non-refundable application fee of $65
  • English language; All students are expected to have a good command of the English language.  For non-native English speakers, a TOEFLE paper test score of at least 600 or an online test score of 250 is required.

4.4.3 Non-Degree Requirements

4.4.3.1 Special Student

A Special Student at Lexington Seminary can take up to twelve credit hours of coursework.  These twelve credits are restricted to coursework at the module level.  The Special Student can only take elective modules if given written permission by the Dean and the faculty member teaching the elective module.  After taking up to twelve credit hours, the Special Student may choose to transfer into an LTS degree program, transfer into an LTS certificate program, transfer to another institution, or leave the institution with twelve hours on her/his transcript.

For Special Student applicants, a completed application will include:

  •  Completion of selected sections of the application form
    • This may include part of the essay section
    • Receipt of one recommendation submitted electronically
      • This letter must come from a minister, educator of employer who knows the applicant well and can speak to the applicant’s preparation for seminary work.
      • Receipt of official transcript in the Admissions office
        • Applicants for degree programs must have earned a Bachelor’s Degree from and institution accredited by an organization recognized by the Department of Education (or international equivalent).
        • All applicants must have a minimum grade point average of 2.5.

4.4.3.2 Certificate Student

Certificate students may take coursework for credit or non-credit.  Applicants seeking to take courses for credit must have earned a Bachelor’s Degree from and institution accredited by an organization recognized by the Department of Education (or international equivalent).  Applicants pursuing the non-credit option must have a high school diploma.

For certificate applicants seeking to take courses for credit, a completed application will include:

  • Completed sections of the online application form
    • This may include part of the essay section
    • Receipt of official transcript in the Admissions office
      • Applicants for the certificate program (for credit) must have earned a Bachelor’s Degree from an institution accredited by an organization recognized by the Department of Education (or international equivalent).
      • All applicants for credit must have a minimum grade point average of 2.5.
      • Receipt of one recommendation submitted electronically
        • This letter must come from a minister, educator of employer who knows the applicant well and can speak to her/his preparation for seminary work.

For certificate applicants choosing the non-credit option, a completed application will include:

  • Completed sections of the online application form
    • This may include part of the essay section
    • Information regarding high school matriculation
      • Non-credit seeking applicants are required to send in the name and address of the high school from which they graduated as well as the year of graduation.

4.4.3.3 Auditor

Anyone can audit modules at LTS.  Auditors can take as many modules as they choose, although class size may limit their options.

  • To be registered as an auditor, the student must complete selected sections of the online application.