Admissions essays are required for some of the Seminary's certificate and degree programs. Details are included below. Need further assistance? Let us know at .

Applicants for all master’s degrees (MDiv, MAPS, MTS) and certificates (Ministry, Missional Leadership, Theology, Urban Ministry) must submit both of the following essays.

Be sure to include your full name in your essays. Please compose the documents in your own word processor, double-spaced with 12 point font. You may then either e-mail your essay to admissions@pts.edu or upload a document through the form submission tool available on the "Checking my Application" tab of my.pts.edu.

Master's Degrees and Certificate Programs

PERSONAL STATEMENT

As part of your application, you will need to submit a personal statement (of approximately 300 words) describing who you are and your gifts for ministry. Place particular emphasis on your vocational plans and reasons for applying to Pittsburgh Theological Seminary. Please note that neither a rrésumé, nor a résumé narrative, meets this requirement.

ANALYTICAL ESSAY

You will also need to submit an analytical essay of 750-1000 words. This essay will be evaluated on how well it follows the guidelines and addresses the topic, grammar and structure, and capacity for theological reading and writing.

Topic: Identify one author or text that has been influential in your understanding of your calling/vocation. Identify passages and theological or religious themes that have been particularly formative, and explain how they have influenced your own sense of call.

Please note: Proper citation (i.e. footnotes or endnotes) is required.  Essay should be in 12 point font, double-spaced, and include the applicant's name.

Applicants for all master’s degrees (MDiv, MAPS, MTS) and certificates (Ministry, Missional Leadership, Theology, Urban Ministry) must submit both of these essays. If applying to the Graduate Certificate in Adaptive and Innovative Ministry, see below.

MTS Addendum 

For MTS applicants only: Students applying to the MTS program must add an addendum of 100 words. Students should:

  1. Identify a potential research interest
  2. Articulate how the curriculum at PTS could support this
  3. Name one or two faculty who might be well-suited to supervise research in the student’s area.

Alternate Credentials

PERSONAL STATEMENT

Approximately 1,000 words describing who you are, vocational plans, and reasons for applying to Pittsburgh Theological Seminary. Be sure to address the following question: How has your professional life and experience prepared you for study at PTS? 

ANALYTICAL ESSAY

You will also need to submit an analytical essay of 750-1000 words. This essay will be evaluated on how well it follows the guidelines and addresses the topic, grammar and structure, and capacity for theological reading and writing.

Topic: Identify one author or text that has been influential in your understanding of your calling/vocation. Identify passages and theological or religious themes that have been particularly formative, and explain how they have influenced your own sense of call.

Please note: Proper citation (i.e. footnotes or endnotes) is required.

Applicants for all master’s degrees (MDiv, MAPS, MTS) and certificates (Ministry, Missional Leadership, Theology, Urban Ministry) must submit both of these essays. If applying to the Graduate Certificate in Adaptive and Innovative Ministry, see below.

Graduate Certificate in Adaptive and Innovative Ministry

PERSONAL STATEMENT

A 300 word essay articulating the applicant’s current ministry context and sense of call to adaptive and innovative ministry work. The applicant must describe both the setting in which one is serving (or will serve) and what one hopes to learn during the certificate program. (This takes the place of the personal statement in the typical Admissions process. Note that neither a résumé, nor does a résumé narrative meet this requirement.)

ANALYTICAL ESSAY

You will also need to submit an analytical essay of 750-1000 words. This essay will be evaluated on how well it follows the guidelines and addresses the topic, grammar and structure, and capacity for theological reading and writing.

Topic: Identify one author or text that has been influential in your understanding of your calling/vocation. Identify passages and theological or religious themes that have been particularly formative, and explain how they have influenced your own sense of call.

Please note: Proper citation (i.e. footnotes or endnotes) is indispensable for this exercise.