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Graduate & Seminary

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Who Should Apply?

Our student body includes a blend of people fresh out of college, those with careers, single and married persons, and transfer students. The student body includes people of diverse ages, geographical and cultural backgrounds, personal and family backgrounds, and denominational affiliations. This diversity adds to the richness of the CIU educational experience.

The basic criteria for selection of graduate students include the following:

  1. Conversion and development in Christian character, potential for effectiveness in Christian ministry, submission to the will of God, ability to do serious study, and willingness to accept the administration’s authority and guidelines.
  2. Evidence of ability to successfully pursue an academic program.
    1. Requirements for the College of Counseling (COC) are found in the COC bulletin (pg.51) of the Academic Catalog.
    2. Requirements for the College of Intercultural Studies (CICS) are found in the CICS bulletin (pg. 89) of the Academic Catalog. 
    3. Requirements for individual degree programs for the College of Education (COE) are found in the COE bulletin (pg.57) of the Academic Catalog.
    4. Requirements for the Seminary and School of Ministry (SSM) are found in the SSM bulletin (pg. 106) of the Academic Catalog.
  3. A bachelor’s or master’s degree from an accredited institution.  Students holding a baccalaureate degree from a non-accredited institution may in some cases still be eligible for admission.
  4. Effective use of English. When English is not a student’s first language, a satisfactory score on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) may be required. See “International Applicants” section.
  5. Agreement with the Doctrinal Standard. An applicant will not be admitted who denies any teaching expressed in the Doctrinal Standard.  Exception: Students are not required to affirm the pre-millennial position expressed in Section 8 of the Doctrinal Standard.

In addition to the general requirements listed above, various degree programs may have specific prerequisite and entrance requirements related to their professional fields. 

How to Apply

  1. Complete the online application. Or request a paper copy from the Admissions Office by calling (800) 777-2227, ext. 5024, emailing or by writing the office at Columbia International University, P.O. Box 3122, Columbia, SC 29230-3122.

  2. Provide:

  • Completed application form, the application fee, and a written Application Essay.
  • Official transcripts from each post-secondary institution. Transcripts should show date of graduation, grade-point average, and all courses taken. Remember, all transcripts must be sent directly from the school to CIU. Personal copies are not official.
  • References from Church Leader. COE applicants please also supply a professional reference.  MA CN applicants need the professional reference only.
  • Documentation of any program-specific admissions requirements. Any test scores (i.e.: GRE, Praxis I:PPST, Praxis II 0014) or other documentation required should be submitted to the Admissions Office. Score reports must come directly from the testing agency.

For current tuition and fee information, click here.

Following acceptance:

  3. Confirm intention to enroll within 21 days from receipt of acceptance letter by sending the $100 enrollment deposit and, if planning to live on campus, the $100 housing deposit for students starting in the fall or spring semesters. Students in the summer only program should submit a tuition deposit of $100 and, if desiring to live on campus, a housing deposit of $50 with their summer registration form. These are not extra charges. The tuition deposit is a confirmation of intention to enroll and is applied toward the student’s tuition at the time of enrollment. The housing deposit reserves space in the dormitory and is applied toward room and board costs at the time of enrollment. For more details on refunds, see the financial information section of this catalog. The enrollment deposit is waived for the spouse of a full-time graduate or seminary student.

  4. A medical packet will be sent from the Health Services Office after acceptance. The completed immunization verification, medical history and insurance information must be received by health services before the student may register for classes. Not required for summer-only students.

Note: Columbia International University follows a rolling admissions policy. Applications are reviewed when the admissions office has received all of the application materials. Prospective students are notified of decisions on their applications within a reasonable time frame, usually two to four weeks after all application materials are received. Please see website for upcoming semester deadline.

Graduate & Seminary Transfer Students

To transfer courses into an MA/MDIV degree at CIU, the courses must be:

  • Earned at the Masters level.  You cannot transfer Bachelors to Masters.  Bachelors courses may serve to meet pre-requisites only.
  • Earned at an accredited institution.
  • Earned with a grade of C or above.
  • Courses that fit into your program choice at CIU.

Other transfer information:

  • Up to, but not exceeding, 49% of the degree may be transferred.
  • Due to accreditation standards, no credit for life experience may be given. 
  • Not all programs offer the same transfer options.