Every graduate of Wisconsin Lutheran is required to complete 12 credits in theology. Freshmen generally take on semester introductory courses in the Old Testament (THE 101), New Testament (102) or general theology (THE 111). Students also take a course in the area of applied theology (THE 211, THE 212, PHI 201, PHI 202). Ten courses in more intensive biblical studies are numbered THE 301-310. Courses in systematic theology are THE 401, 402, 411, 421 and 431, and courses in historical theology are THE 411 and HIS 321. A special topics course (THE 351) has included The Eastern Tradition: Eastern Orthodoxy; The Church in the Middle Ages; Martin Luther: History and Theology; Lutheranism in America; and a study tour, The Church in England.
Internships and independent studies are also numbered in the 400s. Students are required to complete one of the following: THE 211, THE 212, PHI 201, or PHI 202; at least two courses in biblical studies (one of which must be 300 or above); and at least one systematic or historical course for graduation.
THE 101 and 102 are offered every fall and spring, 200-level courses are offered every semester, all THE 301-310 courses are offered on a rotating basis, THE 401 and 412 are offered each fall, THE 402 and 413 each spring, and THE 411 is offered every second or third semester, based on student demand.
A theology minor consists of at least 21 credits in theology, 15 of which must be from 300 and 400 level courses. A theology major consists of 36 credits in theology, and may have either a biblical studies emphasis, a systematic theology emphasis, or a broad field emphasis.
One thing more: don't load up on theology courses at either the beginning or the ending of your time in college. You need to take 3 credits in theology for every 30 credits on campus, or one during the equivalent of each full academic year.
Be sure to talk to a theology professor about any advising questions.
A student can complete a theology minor by taking only three additional courses beyond the twelve theology credits necessary for graduation. For that reason, many students choose to take a theology minor or even add theology as a second minor. This is an especially good choice for those who hope to enter a career in a congregational or parachurch setting, for example, in Christian counseling, music, church administration, or education. A theology minor, combined with the appropriate major, provides a student with important qualifications to be considered for such a career.
By making wise choices in theology course offerings, a student may also fulfill most of the obligations of synodical certification in the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod (WELS). The requirements for certification are determined by the Conference of Presidents of the WELS, in collaboration with the WELS administrators for parish schools and faculty members of Martin Luther College in New Ulm, Minnesota. Because these synodical certification requirements undergo periodic revision, it is best to consult the Wisconsin Lutheran registrar and vice-president for academic affairs concerning the present status of the requirements. At present, all but one of the courses required for certification are taught at Wisconsin Lutheran.
Those who intend to enter the full-time teaching and pastoral ministries of the Wisconsin Synod are advised to complete their education at Martin Luther College. For that reason, not many Wisconsin Lutheran students choose a theology major. Nevertheless, biblical literature has had a significant impact on the development of Western civilization, art, drama, and literature. The Judeo-Christian ethic has biblical roots. All course offerings in theology lead a student to a better understanding of the world, history, and human nature. The primary purpose of all theology course offerings in theology, however, is to create and engender faith in Jesus Christ as the God-man who lived and died to forgive the sins of all people, and to encourage a lifetime of service to God and to others as an outgrowth of that faith.