St. Augustine's Seminary of Toronto

Pontifical Baccalaureate of Sacred Theology & Master of Divinity

St. Augustine's Seminary offers degree programs which lead to the pontifical degree of Bachelor of Sacred Theology (S.T.B.) and the civil degree of Master of Divinity (M.Div.). The core curriculum of these programs is designed to give a sound theological education in preparation for ministry, incorporating pastoral formation which is achieved chiefly through Field Education and a series of supplementary courses offered in the final academic year.

Overall Goal : The Master of Divinity Programme at St. Augustine’s Seminary prepares candidates for ordained priesthood and lay women and men aspiring to ministry in the Catholic Church.
1. Religious Heritage: Students acquire a sound knowledge of Sacred Scripture and the Church’s rich theological tradition and its historical development to the present time.
2. Personal-Spiritual Growth: Students integrate this knowledge into a personal response of faithful love for Jesus Christ, which is expressed in their loving service to his Church and all people.
3. Cultural Context: Students reflect upon the needs of God’s people by discerning “the signs of the times,” including the Church's call to Christian unity, in order to deepen their lived faith response.
4. Ministry and Public Leadership: Students respond to the call to a living encounter with Christ, especially in the liturgy and prayer. Candidates serve and lead others to an encounter with Christ in his Word and in the sacraments of his Church. In so doing, their witness calls their brothers and sisters to respond to God's love for them.


Candidates for the S.T.B. degree and M.Div. degree must meet the following criteria:

  1. Bachelor's degree, preferably a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.), or its equivalent from an accredited institution.

    The Seminary requires this academic preparation in view of the demand of the Second Vatican Council that candidates be suitably grounded in the humanities. With respect to this, the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB) expressed the view that "we do not think that this requirement can be fully met by one who does not hold a university degree or its equivalent" (Program of Priestly Formation, Ottawa, CCCB, 1979, n.36). In accord with the Bishops, St. Augustine's makes this degree a pre-requisite to theological studies. Students with a non-humanities degree such as a Bachelor of Business Administration or Bachelor of Engineering may not have sufficient preparation in the humanities and may be required to take appropriate additional courses. Such cases will be judged on an individual basis.
  2. Philosophy requirement: A minimum of 24 credits (eight one-semester courses) are required in Philosophy.

    The Registrar is available to provide guidance for students who are attempting to meet the philosophy requirement while attending another institution. The institution’s name, course designator, faculty or department offering the course and complete course description may be forwarded to the Registrar for consultation.

    For admission to studies there is a requirement of a minimum of eight one-semester courses in Philosophy. The courses shall be, without exception:
    • Philosophy of Religion
    • Moral Philosophy
    • Philosophical Anthropology
    • Scholasticism
    • History of Western Philosophy
    • Philosophy of Knowledge
    • Metaphysics
    • Critical Thinking: Informal Logic [not Symbolic Logic]

    The minimal acceptable grade for philosophy courses that are to be counted towards the above philosophy requirement is a 60 equivalent.

  3. English language proficiency.

    All applicants are expected to have developed to a satisfactory degree the ability to understand spoken and written English and to be able to communicate effectively in this language. If there is any doubt concerning an applicant's competence in English, his facility will be tested in the areas of speaking, listening, reading, and writing prior to admission. Applicants may be required to pass a TOEFL [Test of English as a Foreign Language] examination or University of Toronto equivalent to demonstrate English language ability. The examination is now offered in two formats: the traditional paper based format and a year round computer-based format. You may find more information at Admission to a basic degree requires the following scores: paper based – overall 580, and computer based – overall 237. Students who are new to Canada are encouraged and helped to seek opportunities to become more familiar with the Canadian cultural context.

Academic admission applications are available from the Registrar ( For more information on admissions please see the St. Augustine's Admissions Page.

Policies and Proceedures:

Please see the St. Augustine's Policies & Procedures Page.



There are thirty required courses for both the S.T.B. and M.Div., including the Integration of Theological Areas. In addition to the thirty courses, pastoral formation incorporates a field education placement for one semester.

  1. Nine Systematic Theology Courses:
    • Foundations of Theology
    • The Christian God
    • Theological Anthropology I - Creation
    • Christology
    • Theological Anthropology II - Grace
    • Ecclesiology
    • Sacraments I
    • Sacraments II
    • Integration of Theological Area
  2. Five Moral Theology (Ethics) Courses:
    • Fundamental Christian Ethics I
    • Fundamental Christian Ethics II
    • Social Ethics
    • Medical Ethics
    • Ethics of Human Sexuality & Marriage
  3. Seven Scripture Courses:
    1. Old Testament
      • Historical Books of the Old Testament
      • Wisdom Literature
      • Prophetic Literature
    2. New Testament
      • Introduction to the New Testament
      • Pauline Literature
      • Johannine Literature
      • Synoptic Gospel
  4. Four History Courses:
    • Early Church
    • Mediaeval Church
    • Reformation
    • Modern Church
  5. Five Pastoral Courses:
    • Canon Law
    • Liturgy
    • Homiletics
    • Pastoral Counselling
    • Pastoral Psychology
    • Field Education Placement

Ordination Requirements:

Candidates for the priesthood will complete a one-year parish internship and an eighth semester of Pastoral Practicums in the spring term of their 4th year, as a preparation for priestly ministry:

  • Reconciliation
  • Marriage
  • Preaching
  • Liturgical Celebration
  • Spirituality

Suggested Sequence of Courses for the S.T.B. & M.Div.:

Year First Semester Second Semester
First - Early Church History
- Foundations of Theology
- Fundamental Christian Ethics I
- Introduction to NT
- Spirituality Practicum or Philosophy (if required)

- Medieval Church History
- Fundamental Christian Ethics II
- Historical Books of O.T./Pentateuch
- The Christian God
- Canon Law

Second - Field Education
- Sacramental Theology I
- Christology
- Theo. Anth. I (Creation)

- Ecclesiology
- Theo. Anth. II (Grace)
- Pastoral Counselling

The remainder of the courses may be chosen from the following options: Homiletics, Ethics, Liturgy, Scripture, and History.

Third Remaining Required Courses, see options below.

- Sacraments II
  The remainder of the courses may be chosen from the following options: Ethics Course Pastoral Psychology, Scripture Course Spirituality (Practicum), and History Course Elective.
Fourth - Integration of Theological Areas

Remaining Requirements (if any) or Electives

- Ministry of Penance
- Ministry of Marriage
- Liturgical Celebration
- Preaching Practicum
- Parish Administration Seminar (in-house)
Remaining Requirements (if any) or Elective

The Dean of Studies approves exemptions to the core curriculum requirements on a case-by-case basis. The Registrar’s office is able to provide the procedures for requesting exemptions.

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