People at Mass

The Master of Catechesis, a professional degree concentrating on catechesis and the Catholic tradition, is designed for adults who intend to or who currently serve the Church. Applicants in roles of parish pastoral leadership or teaching positions in catechesis and the new evangelization on the parish or diocesan level, or in parochial schools, and volunteer lay ministers can profit by an in depth examination of the catechetical, liturgical, and theological teachings of the Church. This degree provides a broad background fostering a professional approach to catechesis with an interdisciplinary approach that draws upon theology, Scripture, liturgy, spirituality, history of catechetics, and psychology within the context of contemporary culture.

This degree may be earned through distance learning. The online program requires a one-week on-campus residency during the summer.


  • A bachelor's degree. The academic area retains the right to require additional prerequisite courses that are deemed necessary for the success of applicants in their program of study.
  • Because of the nature of the online degree program, graduate coursework from another institution is generally not transferred toward the online degree option. Distance learning students are expected to follow the course plan as designed for the online program.
  • Two letters of recommendation from persons able to evaluate an applicant's ability to successfully complete graduate studies. One letter of recommendation is to come from a person able to evaluate the applicant’s ability to be a successful pastoral minister.
  • Two-page double-spaced essay by the applicant articulating his or her call to ministerial leadership in the ministry of catechesis.
  • Students for whom English is a second language will be required to show proficiency in oral and written English, usually through the results of the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL).


  • Students must complete 30 credit hours of coursework.
  • Students must maintain a grade point average of 3.0 or above.
  • All M.Cat. students participate in an internship, which provides an opportunity for students to work with professionals in their present ministry. The internship earns 6 credit hours.
  • As part of the internship, students must design a ministry project after completing 18 credit hours of coursework. After the project design is approved, the student implements it and writes a 20 to 25 page thesis describing the project, its implementation, and articulating an evaluation of the experience.
  • Students will prepare a professional portfolio.


  • 30 credit hours of coursework is completed online.
  • A full-time online student takes one course each semester throughout the academic year and two courses during the summer term.
  • One-week residency takes place on campus each summer.
  • Online courses take place through CUA Blackboard.
  • An internship (6 credit hours) takes place over two semesters, ordinarily at the student's place of ministry.