Mid-America Reformed Seminary Admissions

Frequently Asked Questions

What is distinctive about Mid-America?
Mid-America does not believe that just because something is new it is necessarily better. Mid-America is rooted in timeless truth that helps better understand today’s world while seeking to cultivate a fresh understanding of these timeless truths for the contemporary church. Mid-America’s faculty take a personal interest in not only the intellectual formation of students, but also in preparing student’s hearts for pastoral ministry. Mid-America’s faculty have served in the pastorate and understand the heart of pastoral ministry. Mid-America is affordable. Mid-America, being in Dyer, Indiana, a suburb of Chicago, benefits from having a major city nearby with museums, arts, culture, sports and the opportunities a big city brings, while retaining the charm of a smaller town.
What degree programs does Mid-America offer?
Mid-America offers a Master of Divinity (M.Div.) and a Master of Theological Studies (MTS).
What can I do with a Master of Divinity degree?
Students who have graduated from the M.Div program have gone on to pastor churches, plant churches, gone into the mission field, become chaplains, taught, and gone on for further study.
What can I do with a Master of of Theological Studies degree?
Students with a MTS degree typically go into mission work, teach, take a position on a church staff, or go on for further study.
Is Mid-America affiliated with a denomination?
Mid-America is closely associated with confessional Reformed and Presbyterian churches; however, it is not governed by the rules of any denomination. This enables it to serve more effectively several affiliations with sound training for a solid pulpit.
Where is Mid-America?
Mid-America’s Dyer, Indiana location in is Chicagoland, the crossroads of North America. The Seminary campus, just a few miles south of US Interstate 80-94, is easily accessible from anywhere in the Chicago area. It is only forty-five minutes from downtown Chicago and about an hour from O’Hare International Airport. Within a day’s drive of the Seminary are the major metropolitan centers of St. Louis, Detroit, Milwaukee, Minneapolis, Toronto, and Indianapolis.
What is Mid-America’s theological outlook?
All members of the faculty, the Association, and the Board are wholeheartedly committed to the Holy Scriptures as the infallible and inerrant Word of God and affirm that the Reformed confessions faithfully set forth the system of truth taught in Scripture. In conformity with the Word, they are committed to the ecumenical creeds of Christendom (the Apostles’, Athanasian, and Nicene Creeds) and to the following Reformed Confessions: the Belgic Confession, the Heidelberg Catechism, the Canons of Dort, and the Westminster Confession of Faith.
What is the denominational and national makeup of Mid-America’s students and faculty?
Mid-America’s faculty and board of trustees hale from confessionally Reformed and Presbyterian churches. Students come a wide variety of church backgrounds.
What is the main goal of Mid-America?
Mid-America’s primary purpose is to train students for the gospel ministry of Jesus Christ. Guided by this singular focus, Mid-America is also committed to providing solid theological and ministerial training to others among God’s people whose life calling may be enhanced by our education. The Mid-America student will enjoy the curricular concentration arising from the school’s single focus, while also being shaped by the personal diversity that comes with an education that meets a variety of service goals. At Mid-America Reformed Seminary, students will enjoy this unique integration of singular focus and diverse application.
What is the student to faculty ratio?
The overall ratio of students to faculty is 6:1. Each student has a faculty advisor, who functions as the student’s counselor. Every Thursday morning, faculty advisors meet with the students who have been assigned to their care for a time of mentoring and prayer. Students and alumni of Mid-America Reformed Seminary consistently rate their relationships with the professors as one of the Seminary’s greatest benefits.
How many of the M.Div. graduates are currently in the pastorate?
Approximately 95% of Mid-America graduates are in pastoral ministry.
How does Mid-America prepare people for missions?
Mid-America works along side the church in preparing persons for the mission field. All M.Div. students are required to take the core course in missions and evangelism, wherein students are taught what the field of missiology entails, the biblical and theological foundations for missions, the motives for missions, along with the goals and purpose of missions within a larger kingdom perspective. Students are also taught the methods and strategies of missions, including consideration of Christ and culture issues, the question of contextualization, and the gospel in an entirely non-Christian context. Besides the above, students also can benefit from taking various elective courses in the field of missions. Mid-America periodically hosts "Church Planting Workshops" pertaining to home missions, inviting ministers who are actively involved in this work to make presentations and relay their experiences and discoveries to the students and faculty alike.
Will Mid-America prepare me for a Ph.D. program?
Yes; since Mid-America’s academic program combines a focus on each of the major theological disciplines—biblical studies, historical studies, doctrinal studies, and ministerial studies—with a strong accent on the history of doctrine and the biblical languages, intellectually gifted students are well-prepared to engage in further theological study, whether the student chooses to pursue a Th.M. or a Ph.D. Our ATS accreditation assures that our academic program is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education, and, thus, any doctoral program you would want to get into.
Which is more important, academics or practical training?

At Mid-America, scholarship does not exist as an end in itself. Within the context of a rigorous academic program, the faculty desires to instill in each student a love for the Word of God. The truth of God’s Word and how to apply it to life’s various situations are incorporated into every aspect of academic study at Mid-America.

It is this combination of the academic and the practical, scholarship and experience, that promotes true intellectual and spiritual growth for the Mid-America student.

Knowledge and compassion are equally important in the ministry of a pastor. To foster intellectual and spiritual development, the Seminary offers courses in biblical, theological, ecclesiastical, and ministerial disciplines. But knowledge is not enough to effectively reach our neighbors and the nations with the gospel. A solid grounding in essential biblical doctrines must always be accompanied by humble submission to God’s Word. Both are indispensable elements of a servant ministry that glorifies God.

Mid-America’s program is concerned that students at the Seminary receive practical experience as well as an excellent academic education. Mid-America’s academic standards are high and its program rigorous, but academic excellence alone does not make an effective minister of the Word. Knowledge is of little value if the student is not able to apply what he has learned to the daily situations and regular preaching involved in the pastorate. In addition to having knowledge of the Word in his head, a minister of the gospel must have the Word in his heart. The indwelling Word and Spirit are crucial in shaping a minister who is not only a knowledgeable preacher, but also a compassionate pastor.

How much does Mid-America cost?
Tuition is $250 per credit hour. The annual estimated cost of educational and living expenses ranges from $15,000.00 for single students to $25,000.00 for married students.
What kind of scholarships and financial aid are available?
Funds and scholarships are available to assist needy students. In order to be eligible for financial assistance, the applicant must seek financial aid first from his local church, as well as his classis or presbytery. Verification of this effort must be in the form of a signed letter from the diaconate, or the signature of a member of the diaconate on the Financial Aid Application (which is provided to the applicant by the Seminary along with his other financial aid forms). These forms must be submitted to the Business Office by May 1 in order to ensure compliance with school guidelines. For more information, visit the scholarships page.
Do I need a bachelor’s degree to attend Mid-America?
A limited number of students who have not earned the B.A. degree, but whose life experience suggests that they would be suitable M.Div. students, may apply for the M.Div. program. See the seminary catalog for more information.
Do I need to take the GRE?
Who has to take the TOEFL? Do I have to take the TOEFL if I’m a US citizen?
All prospective students for whom English is not their first language are required to take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). Mid-America's institution code is 7418. For information on the administration of TOEFL, see www.toefl.org or write Education Testing Service, Box 2971, Princeton, New Jersey 08541, U.S.A.
What are the minimum TOEFL scores Mid-America will accept?
In keeping with general standards for graduate work in English, a total score of at least 550 on the PBT (Paper Based Test) or a total score of at least 79-80 on the IBT (Internet Based Test) is requred for admission.
How long will it take me to complete my degree at Mid-America?

The Master of Divinity (M.Div.) degree program is a three year program designed for students with a Bachelor of Arts or equivalent degree, who fulfill the recommended prerequisites, and who seek a Master of Divinity degree for ordination.

The Master of Theological Studies (MTS) degree program is a two or three year program for students with a Bachelor of Arts or equivalent degree who desire theological education but do not seek ordination.

It's been a while since I've been in school and don't know if I can find a professor to give me an academic reference. Can my employer fill it out instead?

In some circumstances this is allowed. Please contact the Admissions Office for approval.

If I have a low college GPA, can I still apply to Mid-America?
Applicants with a low college GPA may be admitted, but the Registrar will review their seminary academic work on an individual basis.
After I submit my application, how long until I know if I’m admitted?
Once all parts of the application are received, notification should happen within two weeks.
Does Mid-America offer advanced standing and transfer credit?

Credit transfers and program placement are always discussed with the student in an attempt to honor the work of other schools and be as flexible as possible. The registrar, in consultation with the relevant instructors, may grant credit for master’s level course work completed at other institutions. See the transfer students page for more details.

Students holding a Master of Arts degree in biblical or theological studies or a Master of Arts in Religion degree from an accredited theological seminary may be granted advanced standing toward the Master of Divinity degree.

What is the size of the student body?
There are currently approximately 30 students attending Mid-America Reformed Seminary.
How many faculty teach at Mid-America?
There are currently 5 full-time resident faculty members at Mid-America. In addition, Mid-America employs various adjunct professors, visiting professors, and guest lecturers.
How do I know if I’m called to the ministry?
For help with this, Mid-America faculty recommend reading Dr. John R. Sittema’s booklet, Called to Preach.
What housing options does Mid-America offer?
While Mid-America does not offer on-campus housing, the Chicagoland area provides numerous housing opportunities within ten to twenty minutes of the Seminary. Prospective students may contact the Seminary office, which maintains a listing of available housing, for assistance in securing housing. The Seminary enlists volunteers from the community to help locate housing for students who are unable to visit the area prior to arriving for study. Besides Dyer, Indiana, students typically live in nearby communities such as Griffith, Highland, Schererville, and St. John in Indiana and Lynwood, Lansing, Crete and South Holland in Illinois.
What facilities does Mid-America have available on campus for student use?
On the seminary campus, students have access to computers in the library, a student lounge, and kitchen facilities. The Seminary library is open 6 days a week. Mid-America has wireless internet throughout the building. The bookstore sells snacks and candy. Students often take advantage of the grounds to play hockey, Frisbee, softball, soccer, and football.
What is the library like?
The Library is the intellectual heart of our seminary community, serving as the chief academic resource for the students and faculty of Mid-America. Its core collection of circulating books, reference and special collections, subject-specific and general periodical indices, and journals (both print and online) is supplemented by digital materials (sermons in mp3 format, primary sources online and on CD, audio lectures, etc.) that provide a solid foundation for theological education. We continue to develop the collection in support of our primary goal: preparing students for gospel ministry in the Reformed and Presbyterian churches.
Where can I purchase textbooks?
Students can purchase textbooks from the Seminary’s bookstore. The Seminary’s bookstore is open to the public, but it is operated primarily as a service for students. Here the student will find textbooks and materials related to Seminary courses, various new and used books of interest to the seminarian, supplies and select promotional items. The bookstore occasionally offers publishers’ sales, providing students with an opportunity to increase their personal libraries.
How can I visit Mid-America?
Visits to Mid-America’s campus can be set up with Mid-America’s Director of Development, Keith LeMahieu, or you can register for "Seminary for a Day."
Does Mid-America accommodate special needs students? Is the campus wheelchair accessible?
Mid-America Reformed Seminary has full handicap access, and the Seminary office works with the Dean of Students to assist disabled students who request accommodations. The office provides orientation to campus resources and recommendation for accommodation of the student’s disability. When medical verification is on file and the request for accommodation has been approved, a per semester academic accommodation plan may be developed in consultation with the student’s academic advisor. The office can also assist in requesting accommodations in housing and facilities. Physically challenged students are encouraged to request accommodation as early as possible in their planning process.
What kind of accreditation does Mid-America have?

Mid-America Reformed Seminary has an accredited membership with The Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada. ATS, through its commission on accrediting, is recognized by the United States Department of Education and by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation for the accreditation of graduate professional theological schools in the United States.

Mid-America Reformed Seminary is a member of the Transnational Association of Christian Colleges and Schools (TRACS) having been awarded Accredited status as a Category III (Masters degree-granting) institution by the TRACS Accreditation Commission on April 6, 2005; this status is effective for a period of five years. TRACS is recognized by the United States Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation as a national accrediting body for Christian institutions, colleges, universities, and seminaries. TRACS is also a member of the International Network for Quality Assurance Agencies in Higher Education.

If you still have questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We'd be happy to answer any other questions you may have.