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Catholic Studies at the University of St. Thomas (MN) Now Offers Graduate Credit to ICLE Credential Holders


The Institute for Catholic Liberal Education is thrilled to announce that graduates of its unique alternative teacher licensing program, the Catholic Educator Formation and Credential (CEFC), are now eligible to receive nine graduate credits toward a Master of Arts in Catholic Studies from the University of St. Thomas in Saint Paul, MN. These nine graduate credits are the equivalent of three academic courses in the 11-course, 33-credit-hour program.

Established in 1993, the Department of Catholic Studies at the University of St. Thomas (MN) is the oldest and largest program of its kind. Students enter into a timeless pursuit of truth, an authentic Catholic life, a deep integration of faith and reason, and a joyful community of peers seeking meaningful lives and careers. Its mission is to explore the impact of the Incarnation on human thought and culture.

The Master of Arts in Catholic Studies is an interdisciplinary humanities program that offers a robust exploration of the Catholic intellectual tradition. The degree incorporates multiple academic disciplines — theology, philosophy, history, literature, science, and the arts — into its program of study. Students will deepen their ability to see the unity of knowledge and develop a truly catholic vision of the whole of their lives and work. Scholarships are available for this degree program, which can be completed part-time or full-time and is offered in various formats: in-person, online, or a combination of both. Applicants are admitted on a rolling basis for fall, spring, and summer terms.

“Both Catholic Studies and ICLE were born in a spirit of renewal,” said Dr. Michael Naughton, Director of the Center for Catholic Studies. “This partnership serves as an important contribution to the ongoing renewal of Catholic education to evangelize the culture.”

“We are honored and excited to partner with this renowned Catholic Studies program to extend the formation of the teachers we serve,” said Elisabeth Sullivan, ICLE’s Executive Director. “Our shared vision of an integrated, Catholic understanding of the world is fundamental to preparing educators to teach in the light of Christ.”

The University of St. Thomas is now the fifth Catholic institution of higher education to offer graduate-level credit to students who successfully complete ICLE’s CEFC program. Upon graduation, students are now eligible to receive up to nine hours of graduate credit from the following institutions:

About ICLE’s Credential Program

(Apply here to be part of the 2024-2025 cohort. Only a few spots remain!)

The Catholic Educator Formation and Credential is a robust 18-month hybrid program that prepares educators to infuse a deeply Catholic philosophy and practice of education into their teaching and serves as an alternative to state teacher licensure. It serves entire dioceses across the country, including the Archdiocese of Denver, the Diocese of Colorado Springs, the Archdiocese of Oklahoma City, and the Diocese of Tulsa. It is also available to interested Catholic educators nationwide through a national cohort model. Applications are currently being accepted for the 2024-2025 national cohort, which kicks off in July. Learn more and apply here.


2023 CEFC National Cohort at their Cornerstone Retreat, held at Aquinas College in Nashville, TN.