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Online Eastern Orthodox Colleges

Individuals desiring an Eastern Orthodox education can enroll in several online programs. The degrees and certificates offered at four schools will be outlined in detail.

Prospective students have several choices when it comes to distance learning programs rooted in the Eastern Orthodox faith. An overview of the degrees offered, as well as the schools' missions, may help students select the appropriate institution.

School Comparison

This table will help prospective students compare the tuition costs for the four online Eastern Orthodox schools discussed here.

School Name Institution Type Location Tuition and Fees*
The Sts. Cyril & Athanasius Institute for Orthodox Studies Private San Francisco, CA $275.00 (Application and registration fees) / $350.00 (Online module fee) (2016-2017)
The Pastoral School of the Diocese of Chicago and Mid-America of the Russian Orthodox Church Private Saline, MI $100 (Application fee); $100/Certificate credit (2018-2019)
St. Vladmir's Orthodox Theological Seminary Private Yonkers, NY $500 (Enrollment deposit); $6,000 (Full-time tuition per semester); $1,500 (Part-time tuition per course) (2018-2019)
GreatMartyr Euphemia Orthodox Theological Seminary Private San Bernadino, CA $130 (Application and registration fees); $1,199 (Diploma tuition/semester) (2018-2019)

Sources: *School websites

Overview of Online Eastern Orthodox Colleges

Students can choose from several certificate and diploma programs in areas like Orthodox theology. They can also complete a Doctor of Ministry at St. Vladmir's Orthodox Theological Seminary.

The Sts. Cyril & Athanasius Institute for Orthodox Studies

The Sts. Cyril & Athanasius Institute for Orthodox Studies has three primary goals: educating church members, educating people outside of the faith, and increasing awareness of the Orthodox faith via conferences and educational materials. The Institute offers the Certificate Program in Orthodox Christian Studies. The eight-module program will take students through the origins of Orthodox Christianity to current practices. Students will complete each module then participate in an online live classroom that can include fifteen students and instructors. The program will take students three to four years to complete.

The Pastoral School of the Diocese of Chicago and Mid-America of the Russian Orthodox Church

The Pastoral School of the Diocese of Chicago and Mid-America of the Russian Orthodox Church has several educational goals, including preparing individuals to serve as clergy within the church and certify catechists to perform baptisms and weddings. The school offers three online programs for students to choose from:

  • Three-year Diploma in Pastoral Theology (63 credits): Individuals who desire to be ordained in the Diocese of Chicago and Mid-America must complete this program if they did not graduate from an Orthodox theological seminary.
  • Three-year Diploma in Orthodox Studies (51 credits)
  • One-year Catechist Certificate (18 credits)

Students will learn via online classrooms, with essays and written tests for all classes. They will need to successfully pass an oral examination in front of a faculty panel in order to graduate.

St. Vladmir's Orthodox Theological Seminary

The mission of St. Vladmir's Orthodox Theological Seminary is to educate individuals for service in positions such as priest, lay person, and scholar. The seminary's values include a commitment to fostering Orthodox unity in North America, as well as cooperation inside the Church. Students can pursue a Doctor of Ministry, which is a 3.5-year program that offers 50% distance learning. The seminary requires that students serve in full-time ministry during their time in the program.

GreatMartyr Euphemia Orthodox Theological Seminary

GreatMartyr Euphemia Orthodox Theological Seminary's mission is to educate individuals to serve the Church all over the globe. Students can pursue a Diploma of Orthodox Theological Studies, which is a two-year program available in both English and Arabic. The program consists of courses such as the Old and New Testaments, Moral Theology, and Orthodox Spirituality. The seminary also offers a one-year Certificate in Preaching.


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