Theology & Religious Vocations

2022 Theology & Religious Vocations Degree Guide

Religion, beliefs, and traditions have played a major role in the development of cultures. Groups of people bond over a similar faiths and enjoy committing their life to living a certain way. If you are passionate about your religion and would like to help others learn about it, considering a major in the field of Theology and Religious Vocations.

Students in this field of study take classes in areas such as biblical studies, world religions, theology, philosophy, history, sociology, and literature along with specialized classes to learn how to become everything from missionaries to religious leaders to music directors.

Along with the option to major in General Theology and Religious Vocations, students are able to specialize in areas that interest them. Those interested in taking a deep dive into the Bible can major in Biblical Studies. Students more interested in evangelism and missionary work can major in Missionary Studies. Other options include Religious Education for those interested in teaching, and Sacred Music for those interested in leading worship or being a musical director. Theological and Ministerial Studies will prepare students to become ordained as a minister, while a major in Pastoral Counseling and Specialized Ministries teaches students how to provide spiritual guidance and counseling.

Theology & Religious Vocations Degrees Shrinking in Popularity

#25 Most Popular Major
24.9k Degrees Awarded
-17.4% Increase in Graduates

Theology & Religious Vocations was the 25th most popular major in the 2019-2020 school year. Colleges in the United States reported awarding 24,907 degrees in this year alone. This 4,338 less than the prior year, a decrease of 17.4%.

Approximately 624 colleges in the U.S. offer a theology and religious vocations degree of some kind. Our 2022 Best Theology & Religious Vocations Schools ranking analyzes 198 of these schools to determine the best overall colleges for theology and religious vocations students. Continue reading to check out one of our many unbiased rankings of theology and religious vocations programs later in this article.

Requirements for Getting a Degree in Theology & Religious Vocations

Often, students who receive a degree in Theology and Religious Vocations pursue a career in religious organizations. This places a strong emphasis on interpersonal and communication skills. You will be working closely with other religious leaders as well as members of your congregation. Students who decide to pursue careers as missionaries will communicate daily with the general public as they spread information about their religion. Students in this field have a strong faith and a background in religious studies.

Internships, summer jobs, or volunteer work within religious organizations will prepare students for a degree in this field. You will be able to work closely with religious leaders and decide if this is a career path you would like to follow.

Prior Education for a Theology & Religious Vocations Program

theology and religious vocations degree applicants generally need have finished high school or their GED. Many schools may also have GPA and SAT/ACT score minimums that must be met. Once you obtain your degree, additional theology and religious vocations certifications required to pursue a career in this field.

Types of Theology & Religious Vocations Degrees

Theology & Religious Vocations degree levels vary. You can get anything from a in theology and religious vocations to the highest theology and religious vocations degree, a . Depending on the theology and religious vocations degree you choose, obtaining your diploma can take anwhere from 1 to 4+ years.

Degree Credit Requirements Typical Program Length
Associate Degree 60-70 credits 2 years
Bachelor’s Degree 120 credits 4 years
Master’s Degree 50-70 credits 1-3 years
Doctorate Program required coursework including thesis or dissertation At least 4 years

A bachelor's degree is the most common level of education achieved by those in careers related to theology and religious vocations, with approximately 34.3% of workers getting one. See the the most common levels of education for theology and religious vocations workers below.

Level of Education Percentage of Workers
Bachelor’s Degree 35.0%
Master’s Degree 28.2%
Doctoral Degree 27.0%
Post-Doctoral Training 3.1%
Post-Baccalaureate Certificate 2.2%

59.6% of theology and religious vocations workers have at least a master's. See the chart below for the most common degree level workers in theology and religious vocations have received.


This of course varies depending on which theology and religious vocations career you choose.

Career Opportunities for A Degree In Theology & Religious Vocations Graduate

Average Number of Jobs
$34.2k Average Starting Salary
8% Growth Job Outlook 2016-26

A degree in the many specializations within Theology and Religious Vocations can lead to a variety of careers. While many students decide to pursue a career within a church or religious organization as a counselor, minister, church or music director, or religious educator, other students have decided to go in professions such as religious historians, professors, or as employees at non-profit organizations. This degree will equip you with a deep understanding and appreciation for different world religions, preparing you for a variety of careers.

Religion plays a large role in the lives of many people both in the United States and around the world. This is allowing the field to grow at an average rate. Graduates willing to relocate will have a better chance of finding work.

Growth Projected for Theology & Religious Vocations Careers

Want a job when you graduate with your theology and religious vocations degree? Theology & Religious Vocations careers are expected to grow 7.7% between 2016 and 2026.

The following options are some of the most in-demand careers related to theology and religious vocations.

Occupation Name Projected Jobs Expected Growth
Clergy 263,800 8.2%
Religious Activities and Education Directors 157,500 7.1%
Music Directors and Composers 79,100 5.7%
Religious Workers 57,300 7.7%
Philosophy and Religion Professors 35,700 12.3%

How Much Money Do Theology & Religious Vocations Grads Make?

Recently graduated theology and religious vocations students earned an average of $34,203 in 2017-2018. Earnings can range from as low as $8,100 to as high as $96,600. As you might expect, salaries for theology and religious vocations graduates vary depending on the level of education that was acquired.


High Paying Careers for Theology & Religious Vocations Majors

Salaries for theology and religious vocations graduates can vary widely by the occupation you choose as well. The following table shows the top highest paying careers theology and religious vocations grads often go into.

Occupation Name Median Average Salary
Philosophy and Religion Professors $82,420
Music Directors and Composers $59,790
Clergy $53,290
Religious Activities and Education Directors $46,980
Religious Workers $35,860

Getting Your Theology & Religious Vocations Degree

With over 2,888 different theology and religious vocations degree programs to choose from, finding the best fit for you can be a challenge. Fortunately you have come to the right place. We have analyzed all of these schools to come up with hundreds of unbiased theology and religious vocations school rankings to help you with this.

Study Areas in Theology & Religious Vocations

Theology & Religious Vocations Majors to Study

Major Annual Graduates
Theological & Ministerial Studies 14,312
Biblical Studies 3,896
Pastoral Counseling & Specialized Ministries 2,722
Religious Education 1,295
Theology & Religious Vocations (Other) 1,184

View All Theology & Religious Vocations Related Majors >

Related Major Annual Graduates
Liberal Arts / Sciences & Humanities 449,705
Visual & Performing Arts 136,055
English Language & Literature 54,171
Foreign Languages & Linguistics 30,847
Philosophy & Religious Studies 19,082

View All Theology & Religious Vocations Related Majors >


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