Non-Degree and Certificates

Do you wish to learn about this goodness of God, this beauty of the gift of his Son, this Spirit who dwells within us? Come, be immersed with your friends in the world of learning the Franciscan tradition. Come, pray, study and eat with brothers and sisters at the table of God’s food from above.


Non-Degree Programs

FST offers a number of options for students who wish to advance their education without enrolling in a full degree program. These include certificate programs, individualized programs, and a special program just for alums.

See Apply to FST for more information about applying for our special programs.


Requirements for the Certificate in Theology program are:

  • Enroll in FST as a non-degree student
  • Complete 24 semester units
  • Complete all course work within two consecutive semesters
  • Complete at least one major paper for a course in an area of special interest
  • Maintain an overall 3.0 grade point average

International students seeking to fulfill requirements for a year of study abroad may qualify for this program.

Those seeking ordination will be required to earn a Master of Divinity plus a 19.5-unit Certificate in Priestly Formation in the sciences and skills necessary for ordination. Note that completion of the MDiv and Certificate does not entitle the recipient to ordination. Admission to ordination is the decision of local diocesan ordinaries or superiors of religious orders who may have further requirements or expectations.

Special Requirements for Admission

Ordination candidates must present:

  • A letter of approval from their ordinary or religious superior
  • A certificate of completion issued by the applicant’s ordinary or religious superior stating that the applicant has taken a minimum of 30 semester credit hours of undergraduate philosophy or its equivalent as prescribed by the USCCB Program for Priestly Formation

Curriculum of the Certificate in Priestly Formation

Students who intend to pursue a degree but have not yet selected a program may enroll as non-degree students in order to begin taking basic courses. Up to 24 credits may be transferred to a degree program.

FST offers individualized programs consisting from just single courses to one or more semesters of course work taken outside of a degree or certificate program. Lay persons, Religious men and women, priests on sabbatical, and all who wish to pursue courses for personal growth or theological enrichment, or to update theological or pastoral expertise may participate in an individualized program. Courses may be taken for credit or on an audit basis.

The Franciscan School of Theology offers its graduates an opportunity to continue their Franciscan journey through the Clare of Assisi Scholar Program. As a Clare of Assisi Scholar, FST alumni may audit courses for a reduced fee. Some restrictions apply.

To request to register, complete the registration form, obtain faculty signature, and submit your form to the registrar, together with a check or money order for $450 made out to the Franciscan School of Theology. The registrar and CFO will confirm your degree and account status and clear you to attend.


  • Clare Scholars must have obtained a degree from the Franciscan School of Theology and have no outstanding balances due to the school. Degree and account status will be confirmed by the Registrar and CFO respectively before student is accepted as a Clare of Assisi Scholar.
  • Cost is $450 per course. Clare Scholars may take one course per semester.
  • Permission of professor is required. Professors are not obligated to accept Clare Scholars.
  • Clare Scholars may audit only and are not registered as students at FST. Grades are not given, and no transcripts are produced or available.
  • Student services are not provided, (e.g., orientation, mail box, career counseling, etc.)