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Theological & Ministerial Studies

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Theological & Ministerial Studies Major

17,477 yearly degrees
#67 in popularity
$53,000 median salary

Theological and ministerial studies is a major that typically falls into the Theology & Religious Vocations category.

There are 86 programs available throughout the country that offer an associate’s degree in theology, 361 that offer a bachelor’s degree, and 575 that offer a master’s degree. There are also at least 190 schools in the nation where you can get your doctorate degree in the field.

Who Is Getting a Theology Degree?

This is a less frequently chosen major. Only 4,100 students graduated with a bachelor’s degree in theological and ministerial studies in 2017. This major attracts more men than women. About 82.3% of the graduates in this field are male.

Racial Distribution

At the countrywide level, the racial distribution of theology majors is as follows:

  • Asian: 1.8%
  • Black or African American: 3.7%
  • Hispanic or Latino: 4.8%
  • White: 83.2%
  • Non-Resident Alien: 2.7%
  • Other Races: 3.8%
Theological & Ministerial Studies Majors Ethnic Diversity Statistics

Americans aren’t the only ones with an interest in theology. About 2.7% of those graduating in 2017 were international students. The most popular countries sending theology majors to the U.S. are South Korea, Canada and China.

What Will You Learn as a Theological & Ministerial Studies Major?

An O*NET survey asked people with careers related to theology to rate how important certain subject areas were to their job. The following are some of the results of that survey. Importance was rated on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being most important.

Knowledge Areas for Theology Majors

This major prepares you for careers in which these knowledge areas are important:

Important Knowledge Areas for Theological & Ministerial Studies Majors

Skills for Theology Majors

A major in theology prepares you for careers in which the following skill-sets are crucial:

Important Skills for Theological & Ministerial Studies Majors

Abilities for Theology Majors

As a theology major, you will find yourself needing the following abilities:

Important Abilities for theology Majors

What Can You Do With a Theology Major?

Below is a list of occupations associated with theology:

Careers Related to Theological & Ministerial Studies
Job Title Job Growth Rate Median Salary

Religious Workers






Philosophy and Religion Professors



Theological & Ministerial Studies Major Salary

Theology majors often go into careers where salaries can range from $36,000 to $82,000. This range includes all degree levels, so you may expect those with a more advanced degree to make more while those with less advanced degrees will typically make less.

To put that into context, the typical high school graduate makes between $29,000 and $57,000 a year. The average person with a bachelor’s degree (any field) makes between $44,000 and $99,000. Advanced degree holders make the most with salaries between $55,000 and $120,000.

Average Salary for a Theology Major  ( 36000 to 82000 )
Average Salary for High School Graduate  ( 29000 to 57000 )
Average Salary with Bachelor's Degree  ( 44000 to 99000 )
Average Salary with Advanced Degree  ( 55000 to 120000 )

The area of the country you choose to work in will also affect your career and salary prospects. Getting a graduate degree may open up more options with higher salary potential.

Amount of Education Required for Theological & Ministerial Studies Major Jobs

Some careers associated with theology may require an advanced degree, while others may not even require a bachelor’s in the field. In general, the more advanced your degree the more career options will open up to you. However, there is significant time and money that needs to be invested into your education so weigh the pros and cons.

Find out what the typical degree level is for theology careers below.

Education Levels for Careers Associated With Theological & Ministerial Studies
Level of Education Percentage of Workers

Less Than a High School Diploma


High School Diploma or Equivalent


Post-Secondary Certificate


Some College Courses


Associate's Degree or Equivalent


Bachelor's Degree


Post-Baccalaureate Certificate


Master's Degree


Post-Master's Certificate


First Professional Degree


Doctoral Degree


Post-Doctoral Training


Online Theological & Ministerial Studies Programs

There are 361 colleges that offer a bachelor’s degree in theological and ministerial studies, with 63 of them offering at least some courses online.

Online learners must listen or watch video lectures, participate in group chats or forums, submit papers and assignments electronically, take tests, and meet deadlines.

Getting your degree online is not easy and includes watching and listening to hours of lectures, participating in group charts, submitting papers by the appropriate deadline and taking tests. Some online programs will also feature internships or in-person clinical hours.

Is a Theological & Ministerial Studies Major Worth It?

The median salary for a theology grad is $53,000 per year. This is based on the weighted average of the most common careers associated with the major.

This is 37% more than the average salary for an individual holding a high school degree. This adds up to a gain of about $287,800 after 20 years!

theological and ministerial studies salary compared to typical high school and college graduates over a 20 year period


Bureau of Labor Statistics
National Center for Education Statistics
O*NET Online
Image Credit: Jonund via License

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