The Association of Theological Schools

More than 270 graduate schools of theology in the United States and Canada form The Association of Theological Schools (ATS). Member schools conduct post-baccalaureate professional and academic degree programs to educate persons for the practice of ministry and for teaching and research in the theological disciplines. These schools differ from one another in deep and significant ways, but through their membership in ATS, they demonstrate a commitment to shared values about what constitutes good theological education. Collectively, ATS member schools enroll approximately 74,500 students and employ more than 7,200 faculty and administrators.

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Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education

COAMFTE’s mission is to promote best practices for Marriage and Family Therapy educational programs through the establishment, review, and revision of accreditation standards and policies, and the accreditation of graduate and post-graduate educational programs.

The Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education (“COAMFTE” or “the Commission”) is the accrediting agency for marriage and family therapy education and training. In 1974, The initial Committee on Accreditation was established. In 1975, The first Manual on Accreditation containing standards for accreditation of graduate degree and post-degree programs was published. In 1978, the Committee was restructured and renamed the Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education (COAMFTE). COAMFTE began its accreditation activity in 1978.


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Association of Jesuit Colleges & Universities

The distinctiveness of a Jesuit education stems from its deep-rooted history and a mission grounded in faith and intellectual rigor. Since its beginnings in 1548, when the first Jesuit institution opened its doors in Messina, Sicily, Jesuit higher education remains committed to academic excellence, service, leadership and caring for the whole person.

Our institutions are committed to the pursuit of social justice and teaching students how to become men and women for and with others.


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National Association for Lay Ministry

NALM is dedicated to providing vision, voice, leadership, and advocacy for lay ministers and for the development of lay ministry in the Catholic Church. We do this through fostering and supporting the spiritual and theological formation, training, and ongoing development of career and volunteer lay ministers.

NALM traces its roots to 1976 when a group of lay people, vowed religious, and clergy began meeting annually to share their expertise and to support each other in the common goal of establishing and improving programs of lay ministry formation throughout the United States. Today, the original vision has expanded to include lay ministers serving parishes, diocesan offices, higher education, healthcare, and prisons throughout the U.S. and world.


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Association for Clinical Pastoral Education, Inc.

The Association for Clinical Pastoral Education (ACPE) provides the highest quality CPE programs for spiritual care professionals of any faith and in any setting. We do this through a rigorous accreditation and certification process for centers and educators that provide CPE. The depth of our training enables students to realize their full potential to strengthen the spiritual health of people in their care as well as themselves. ACPE is nationally recognized as an accrediting agency in the field of clinical pastoral education by the U.S. Secretary of Education through the U.S. Department of Education.

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Academy of Religious Leadership

The Academy of Religious Leadership (ARL) exists to enhance religious leadership education; convene a scholarly roundtable of leadership educators and professional practitioners for the purpose of faculty development and community, and foster and disseminate leadership education and research.

Academy of Religious Leadership

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Association for Theological Field Education

The Association for Theological Field Education (ATFE), 501 (c) (3), was founded in 1946 to provide a forum to identify, study, research and act upon issues of significance to theological field education. ATFE connects and bridges theory and practice, academy and church, local and global contexts, and the wisdom of the past and the dreams of the future.

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Association for Doctor of Ministry Education

The Association for Doctor of Ministry Education (ADME) was established to cultivate discussion, research, and the interchange of information regarding DMin programs with the intent of strengthening them and advancing DMin concerns in theological education by:

  1. Encouraging students to think deeply in order to minister effectively;
  2. Facilitating collaboration among DMin programs regarding best practices;
  3. Creating venues for thoughtful and scholarly discussion of contemporary ministry issues and concerns;
  4. Developing consensus in excellence for DMin education;
  5. Providing venues for mutual support among DMin directors; and
  6. Promoting the DMin degree as an essential contribution to theological education.

All these purposes are pursued in regular dialogue with The Association of Theological Schools. ADME holds affiliate status with The Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada.

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International Leadership Association

The International Leadership Association is the global network for those who study, teach, and practice leadership. ILA brings together thousands of leadership professionals from multiple sectors, disciplines, professions, cultures, and generations – to advance leadership knowledge and practice for a better world.

Through conferences, webinars, publications, and other resources, ILA convenes and connects its members, provides professional development opportunities, advances the field of leadership, and fosters new insights into effective and ethical leadership.

International Leadership Association

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Association of Professional Chaplains

With a commitment to interfaith ministry and the professional practice of chaplaincy care, the Association of Professional Chaplains® serves chaplains in all types of health and human service settings. Our more than 5,000 member chaplains and affiliates are involved in chaplaincy care of all persons, respecting their diverse cultures, identities, abilities, and beliefs. As a national, not-for-profit 501(c)(3) professional association, APC® advocates for quality chaplaincy care of all persons in health care facilities, correctional institutions, long-term care units, rehabilitation centers, hospice, the military, and other specialized settings.

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National Center for Faculty Development & Diversity

The National Center for Faculty Development & Diversity is an independent professional development, training, and mentoring community for faculty members, postdocs, and graduate students. We are 100% dedicated to supporting academics in making successful transitions throughout their careers.

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Catholic Association for Theological Field Education

The mission of the Catholic Association of Theological Field Education is to promote theological field education and pastoral formation as an authentic theological discipline for ordained and lay ecclesial ministers.

To this end we support, challenge, and network those engaged in this discipline. We promote the experiential context for ministerial learning and foster the development of an integrated pastoral person as a disciple of Jesus Christ dedicated to the mission of the Church.

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Association of Graduate Programs in Ministry

We are an organization of educators, theologians, and administrators representing Roman Catholic institutions that offer graduate programs in ministry. Through regular meetings and networking, we draw our strength from open dialogue and a shared vision. Graduate programs in ministry and pastoral theology prepare students for various areas of service to the Church including parish and family life, pastoral care, and religious education.

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Statement on Educational Effectiveness: Quality Theological and Ministerial Education

Seattle University’s School of Theology and Ministry is dedicated to offering quality theological education and ongoing formation for those preparing to enter the field of church-sponsored ministry or social entrepreneurism directed at working for social justice from a faith-based perspective. The School of Theology and Ministry has several institutional structures overseeing quality assurance and academic integrity. These include standing committees on curriculum and development and formation, as well as an elaborate advisory structure with denominational leaders.

The curriculum and formation committees generate academic policies and procedures and build assessment tools and processes. In addition, each degree and certificate program identifies learning outcomes, which measure academic and pastoral competencies. The school also employs course evaluations, student surveys and interviews, and program candidacy reviews to provide additional information and measures of the quality of student learning.

Seattle University’s School of Theology and Ministry is committed to assisting students with their financial and vocational needs. Various forms of financial assistance are available – government loans, scholarship money, paid internships and student worker stipends. The school also has a very committed development program which is continually seeking to build scholarship resources for students.

Approximately 70% of students receive financial aid, much of which comes from special scholarship programs and general scholarship funds, with some partner denominations and ecumenical organizations offering their own scholarship resources.

Seattle University’s School of Theology and Ministry considers part of the measurement of the school’s educational effectiveness the ability of students to gain employment in respective career fields. Today, on average, 89% of our graduates find employment within 1 year of graduation. Founded in 1997, the school now has 2,065 alumni, serving Churches, faith-based organizations, non-profit organizations, businesses and governmental organizations across the United States and in 10-15 countries worldwide.

School of Theology and Ministry alumni are working in congregational and denominational leadership at the local, regional and national levels; ministries serving the poor and homeless; hospital chaplaincy and administration; international non-governmental organizations trying to lift up the poor of developing nations; private and public schools, colleges and universities; gang ministry, hospices, social service organizations, and a wide assortment of other professions.

Seattle University’s School of Theology and Ministry is deeply committed to preparing women and men for ministry in the church and world, and particularly in providing an education that meets the rapidly changing needs of a fast-paced world. To live out this reality, faculty take seriously the need to continuously monitor and evaluate, update and enhance our programs when and where necessary. The school is committed to offering only programs that meet demanding standards necessary to achieve academic and pastoral excellence.

For questions and inquiries about the School of Theology and Ministry’s educational mission, assessment and effectiveness efforts, please contact us at 206.296.5330.