The goal of the Ph.D. in Liturgical Studies/Sacramental Theology is to equip students for careers in research, writing, and teaching on the college, university, and seminary levels. Coursework and dissertations for this degree often reflect an interdisciplinary approach to liturgical studies.

In addition and specific to the general requirements for obtaining a civil degree, the Liturgical Studies area requires the following:


  • Students entering with a licentiate will be considered for advanced standing in the program. Relevant bodies within the school may review the quality of an individual M.A. degree. After such evaluation, further work may be required for individual students, including work in related disciplines.
  • It is expected that applicants to the program in Liturgical Studies/Sacramental Theology would have taken courses in a critical introduction to the Old Testament and New Testament, christology, ecclesiology, and sacramental theology, and would have familiarity with church history.
  • Applicants would normally be expected to have taken master's-level courses equivalent to the School of Theology and Religious Studies courses in History and Theology of Liturgy, Liturgical Sources, and a Liturgical Theology of the Eucharist.

Course Requirements

  • Ph.D. students are required to complete a minimum of 36 credit hours.
  • Eighteen of these will be in Liturgical Studies/Sacramental Theology from courses taken on the 700 and 800 levels, nine credits of which must be from courses taken on the 800 level.
  • Twelve credit hours will be in electives taken from courses within the School of Theology and Religious Studies on the 700 and 800 levels, e.g., biblical studies, systematics, church history, etc.
  • The final six credits will be taken from another field within the School of Theology and Religious Studies or from another school within the University, e.g. Architecture, Anthropology, Music, etc. These courses are normally taken on the 800 and 700 levels.
  • During their course work, students will be required to have produced four research papers that will become a part of the student's file to be reviewed by the Liturgical Studies/Sacramental Theology faculty prior to the student being granted doctoral candidacy. At least three of these papers should be written in conjunction with 800-level courses and should evidence the student's proficiency in doing research using foreign languages. These papers will be evaluated by the course professor and given a letter grade. After the students have seen the graded text, the Assistant to the Dean for Graduate Studies will place the paper in the student's file.

Language Requirements

Students are to demonstrate reading proficiency in Latin and Greek and in two modern languages, usually German and French. The language requirements will be met by passing a reading proficiency examination administered within the School of Theology and Religious Studies. However, depending on a student's research agenda, another modern language may substitute for one of these. Approval for such a substitution will be granted by the director of the academic area upon consultation with the Liturgical Studies/Sacramental Theology faculty.