Cost & Affordability

Affordability
Students invited into ACU's Graduate School of Theology are eligible for tuition assistance. Every applicant must submit the scholarship application. Scholarships normally cover around half of tuition or more, with potential for a full scholarship. The average scholarship award for full-time GST students in 2013 was 69% of tuition and fees. Scholarships are awarded based on prior academic achievement, financial need and potential for ministry, broadly defined. 

Graduate assistantships are also awarded to some resident students. Graduate assistants receive a stipend and are required to work seven and a half hours per week.

This combination of generous scholarships covering a majority of graduate educational costs, the potential to work as a graduate assistant, and the low cost of living in Abilene, Texas, allows students to finish their programs without the stress of unmanageable debt.

Understanding Cost
For the 2013-2014 school year, the cost of attendance is $950 per credit hour. This amount includes tuition and all required fees. To calculate your total tuition and fees for your semester, simply multiply $950 by your number of enrolled hours and the result will be your total due to the school, before your books. Quick. Simple. All fees included.

 Rate  Semester
 Tuition rate (per hour, fees included)    $950/hr
 Tuition Total (6 hr semester) $5,700
 Tuition Total (9 hr semester) $8,550
 Tuition Total (12 hr semester) $11,400


Ways to Pay for a GST Education
ACU’s Graduate School of Theology has a number of ways to help you pay for your education. Listed below are various forms of financial aid that can be awarded and applied for when attending the GST. As always, we are glad to help answer your questions. Feel free to contact us at gst@acu.edu with any questions or concerns.

Tuition Reduction
GST non-residential MACM students are eligible to receive 70% tuition reduction. A non-residential student is a student who is working towards degree completion, but does not currently live in Abilene.  In order to be eligible for this reduction, students must complete the GST Scholarship Application and two Scholarship Recommendations. These tuition reductions are based on prior academic record, student financial need, and student potential for ministry. For more information about tuition reductions for non-residential MACM students contact the GST recruiter.

GST Scholarship
The Graduate School of Theology offers scholarship assistance to residential students 
based 
on 
prior 
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record, 
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and
 
potential 
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ministry and further academic research. 
Scholarships
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 at 
the 
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year.  Scholarship awards are made as applications are completed, and the amounts are determined based on the strength of each application. A GST Scholarship Application and two Scholarship Recommendations must be submitted for consideration.

Federal Direct Loans
The Federal Direct Loan Program consists of unsubsidized loans and is awarded regardless of demonstrated need. Graduate students are generally allowed to borrow up to $20,500 each academic year. More information can be found at www.acu.edu/sfs/graduate.

Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan (GRAD PLUS)
This loan can be used to supplement other financial aid, such as the Federal Direct Loan. Repayment of this loan begins within 60 days after the entire loan has been disbursed. The GRAD PLUS Loan is subject to in-school deferment, but it is not automatic. Deferment can be granted by the lender after providing proof of at least half-time enrollment. Graduate students seeking a Grad PLUS Loan for the 2013-14 academic year may apply after June 15. Instructions on the application process will be provided at that time. More information can be found at www.acu.edu/sfs/graduate

Need-Based Aid
The GST Department recognizes that specific financial situations arise that may make graduate work difficult for students. Need-based aid is awarded in situations like these after reviewing the student’s GST Scholarship Application and two Scholarship Recommendations.

Graduate Assistantships
A number of Graduate Assistantships are offered at Abilene Christian University on a competitive basis. Graduate Assistants (GA's) fall into three categories according to major responsibilities. 

  • Academic support, including clerical work
  • Research
  • Teaching

Upon employment, GA's are given a letter clearly stating responsibilities, remuneration, and the expectations of the department and of the professor to whom they are assigned. In the Graduate School of Theology, GA's are required to work 7.5 hours a week and are paid an hourly wage.

ACU Employee Tuition Benefit Program
This benefit program applies to all full-time and half-time employees at ACU and is designed to help employees, and their immediate family, obtain additional education. ACU employees, their spouses, and children are eligible to receive a discount on their tuition. For more information, see www.acu.edu/hr

Church Match Scholarship
Church congregations may send up to a $500 scholarship per academic year for a full-time student (9 hours for graduate students) to ACU, and the funds will be matched. The congregation must send the scholarship check with the completed Church Match Scholarship form that is found at www.acu.edu/sfs. This scholarship is available for fall and spring semesters only, and forms should be sent with the scholarship check from the congregation between June 1 and Sept. 1 for fall semester, or Dec. 1 and Feb. 1 for spring semester.

The Fund for Theological Education
The Fund for Theological Education offers fellowships for first and second year seminary students, which you can find through the FTE Fund Finder. For more information, and links to the applications, visit The Fund for Theological Seminary website.

Loretta & V.W. Kelly Scholarship
Students who graduate from ACU with their undergraduate degree and stay at ACU to receive their graduate degree may be nominated by an ACU Faculty or Staff member for the ACU Alumni Association’s Loretta & V.W. Kelly Scholarship. 

The Crutcher and Vickie Scott Foundation Scholarship
Students who are currently a minister at an Abilene area church can apply for this scholarship. Applicants must submit an application and two recommendation forms in order to be considered for this scholarship. 

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