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Best Resources On Theological Education

Working with afffiliate organizations, Insights Into Religion provides research and resources for people discerning a call, students choosing a school or seminary, and educators and mentors, new teachers or others looking for inspiration, perspectives and trends in religious education to enhance their own teaching and learning experiences. 

Discerning a Call

Forum for Theological Exploration is a valuable resource for engaging in, or supporting, vocational discernment. FTE material helps future pastors and scholars in their vocational reflection, helps congregations and institutions develop programs that help students explore ministry and helps finance lay pastor training programs.

The Lilly Fellows Program in Humanities and the Arts provides financial, peer and mentor support programs for scholars exploring vocations in church-related academia.

Resources for American Christianity archives important resources that support the well-being of congregations. Included are a selection of articles and interviews related to supporting the exploration of vocation and the development of potential clergy in faith communities. Search the term “calling congregations” on the website to easily identify relevant articles.

Visit the Insights Into Religion Vocational Discernment section for more.

Choosing a School

Forum for Theological Exploration, mentioned above, offers an online “Guide to Theological Education” to help prospective students explore the nuts and bolts of seminary education and to develop a strategy for identifying schools that may be good candidates based on the applicant’s life situation and interests.

Center for the Study of Theological Education at Auburn Theological Seminary conducts cycles of surveys on key aspects of seminary education and life. Study results offer prospective students helpful insights into seminaries and schools of religion; they are available on the website as periodic bulletins and occasional background reports.

The Association of Theological Schools is a membership organization of more than 260 seminaries and schools of religion in North America. Its Resources page contains extensive data on member institutions’ student body, faculty, facilities and finances, organized in data tables and statistical reports that rank individual schools against benchmarks used for accrediting purposes. ATS also maintains a database on students’ perceptions of their educational experience and their school’s contribution toward their development as faith community leaders.

Insights Into Religion also offers additional resources, articles and information about choosing a seminary and provides profiles of theology schools.

Teaching Religion

Wabash Center for Teaching and Learning in Theology and Religion supports teachers in religion and theology through meetings, workshops, grants, scholarships and other resources that help disseminate helpful information derived from good scholarship about teaching and learning. Also, the center’s Resources page links to a range of resources for teaching theology and religion. An Internet guide to religion offers links to syllabi, electronic texts and journals, websites and online bibliographies, and points to offline teaching resources and faculty development material.

Center for the Study of Theological Education, referenced earlier, has developed resources to assist schools and faculty interested in providing a multifaith education for future clergy.

ATLAS for Alum is the quasi-public face of the American Theological Library Association Serials initiative. ATLAS archives full-text collections of more than 140 major religion and theology journals online. Alumni of member schools can secure access to the website’s collection by applying to their alma mater; check the list of member schools for your school’s ATLA representative.

Insights Into Religion also provides an extensive list of additional resources for religious educators, theology students and spiritual seekers.

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