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Undergraduate Degree Exemption Policy

A limited number of applicants who lack the prerequisite baccalaureate degree may apply for admission to certain programs other than academic programs offered at Western Seminary. This Undergraduate Exemption Policy (or “UDE”) is available for all master’s degree programs with the exception of the MA in Counseling (licensure).

Admission of students without bachelor’s degrees is highly selective. Qualifications considered include maturity, educational background, ministry experience, and vocational goals. Specifically, applicants should ideally be at least 35 years of age and must be able to demonstrate significant life experience as well as a readiness for graduate theological studies. Preference is given to applicants possessing the most qualifying of educational backgrounds. Applicants without the requisite baccalaureate degree will preferably have completed at least 60 hours of undergraduate coursework with an earned cumulative GPA of 3.0 (on a four-point scale).

The following items must be provided in addition to the application requirements for the associated program:

  1. A supplemental statement explaining the applicant’s professional and educational journey,
  2. A portfolio listing various achievements and experiences indicating the ability to be successful at graduate level,
  3. A current resume, and
  4. A current writing sample that demonstrates the applicant’s research and writing skills in form, style, and content (utilizing the Chicago style).