FAQs

1. Who may apply for admission to TNARS and what are the next steps?
2. I am a female and seeking a degree from TNARS to enable me to be ordained. Would I be able to apply for admission?
3. Is the TNARS program of study arranged by quarters or semesters?
4. Are there time limits for completion of courses?
5. Does TNARS have a specific enrollment period?
6. What is the cost for TNARS courses?
7. What are faculty mentors?
8. Will I need to meet with my faculty mentor often?
9. Do you accept applications for admission from students in Africa?
10. How much time should I expect to spend on each TNARS course?
11. What are the current enrollment statistics for TNARS?
12. How long does it take for my application to be approved?
13. I am not attending a church and do not have a local church officer that can provide a letter of recommendation for me. What can I do to meet this requirement?
14. I realize that TNARS is not regionally accredited, but are my credits at TNARS transferrable to any other schools?
15. Can I be ordained after completing a TNARS MDiv or DMin degree?
16. Do I have to hold to Reformed theology in order to be a student with TNARS?
17. If I am a Pastor do I need a letter of recommendation?

1. Who may apply for admission to TNARS and what are the next steps?

Answer: In general TNARS accepts applications from men and women desiring to increase their knowledge of theology as relates to the Reformed tradition described by the Westminster Standards of faith. Our Statement of Faith and links to the Westminster Standards can be reviewed here:

http://www.tnars.net/about/statement-of-faith/

To begin the enrollment process you will need to complete our online application form, have your pastor/church officer submit a letter of recommendation, and submit all applicable transcripts.

Those not yet a member of a church will need to postpone applying as TNARS believes that the Church is God’s instrument for educating His people. Our seminary comes along side to help the local church educate its people and not to subordinate the local church to our seminary. Therefore we will not be able to accept an application for consideration until an applicant’s home church situation is settled such that a letter of recommendation from a local church officer can be provided.

Documents can be mailed to The North American Reformed Seminary, P.O. Box 6310, Chandler, AZ 85246 or emailed to info@tnars.net.  You will be notified upon receipt of these documents.  The Admissions process can take some time as not only must all documentation be received and reviewed followed by an official approval, but also an opening with one of our mentors must be available. However, you may have a local mentor who could volunteer to serve in this capacity which of course would greatly reduce any potential wait time – the mentor must first be approved by the seminary administration – visit http://www.tnars.net/about/mentor-information/ for more info. If there is such a person who could serve as your local mentor please have him contact the seminary at the email address above to begin the mentor approval process.

2. I am a female and seeking a degree from TNARS to enable me to be ordained. Would I be able to apply for admission?

Answer: TNARS does not teach from a perspective that allows for women to be ordained, rather we understand that matter to be the place of the church and not our seminary. Therefore, even if a woman is pursuing her education for ordination we would accept her, but she should understand the perspective that we teach from ahead of time.

3. Is the TNARS program of study arranged by quarters or semesters?

Answer: The TNARS program of study is not arranged by semesters or by quarters. The program of study is based upon specific courses and the assignments for each course.

4. Are there time limits for completion of courses?

Answer: There are no strict time limits to finish a TNARS course or degree program. Students will be required to contact their mentor on the first of each month. If the student misses one month they will be put on probation. If they miss two consecutive months they will be dismissed from TNARS.

Along with the monthly check-in, students must submit work that they’ve done during that month. They don’t need to have finished assignments, but there needs to be evidence that every month work is being done by the student. These monthly papers will not be graded nor will they be saved by the mentor; rather, they will be read by the mentor so that they have an idea of how much progress the student is making in their program. You will still need to send your mentor a final paper for grading when you are finished with it.

If the mentor thinks that the student is not doing enough work he will first contact the student to ascertain if there are extenuating circumstances that may explain the lack of work during a particular month. After the mentor has contacted the student it is solely up to that mentor to either keep the student enrolled as his student or to terminate his enrollment with TNARS.

5. Does TNARS have a specific enrollment period?

Answer: Prospective students may apply for admission to TNARS at any time. Admissions and enrollment may begin at anytime. The admissions process is described here:

http://www.tnars.net/admissions/

Applications for enrollment can be downloaded here:

http://www.tnars.net/cgi-bin/application/TNARSApplication.pdf (PDF file)

If you are having problems downloading the application, select the link above, then right-click and select the “Save link as…” option in your web browser’s pop-up menu to save the file to your local computer.

6. What is the cost for TNARS courses?

Answer: There is no cost for any of our courses or the materials for the courses, nor are students required to pay fees for degree certificates or transcripts. In fact, TNARS neither accepts or solicits donations.

While TNARS is a completely free seminary (all books are available for free online, but some can be purchased separately in print form), it is a rigorous academic program. Please consider the personal costs of the work involved with such academic rigor before requesting to be accepted into a program (Luke 14:28). This is not a path to take lightly simply because it is free, as much will be required of the student.

7. What are faculty mentors?

Answer: Faculty mentors are men who will work with you throughout your program of study. You will submit all your assignments directly to your faculty mentor and he will grade them and interact with you about your work. TNARS works closely with the local church, believing that the local church is responsible for the student’s spiritual growth. Periodically your faculty mentor will also check in with your local pastor to determine how you are progressing spiritually. If you are interested in arranging for a local mentor, please have the person review the information here:

http://www.tnars.net/about/mentor-information/

8. Will I need to meet with my faculty mentor often?

Answer: Unless you have arranged for a local faculty mentor or your assigned mentor is located in your vicinity, your mentor will communicate with you via email, internet chat/communications or by telephone.

9. Do you accept applications for admission from students in Africa, China, India, etc?

Answer: There are no specific residency requirements for TNARS students. Any student located anywhere in the world with access to the internet may apply for admission to TNARS. Please note that all our instruction, and student submitted coursework requires the English language.

10. How much time should I expect to spend on each TNARS course?

Answer: The amount of time a TNARS student spends on coursework is related to the student’s personal situation. Some students have families, jobs, and responsibilities that will limit their time, while others are able to devote their full attention to their studies. TNARS places no limits on the amount of time required to complete a course. Nevertheless, it is recommended that a student set a goal for completion of their studies.  We find that students that set specific goals are most likely to actually complete their programs of study.

For example, a married and working student in an MDiv program might decide they would like to complete the program in three years (36 months). Let’s assume an MDiv program comprises 10 individual courses, so a student may decide that each course should be completed in 36/10 = 3.6 months, or 108 days. Each semester hour of credit for a course is approximately equal to spending 12.5 total contact hours in a traditional college or university classroom. So, for each of the six credit hour courses in the TNARS MDiv program, a student should expect 12.5 x 6 = 75 hours of direct contact with the course materials. Note that “contact time” does not include the amount of study and/or assignments required outside of a classroom. A good rule of thumb is to assume 2 hours of study outside the classroom for each hour inside the classroom. Under the assumptions made above, this means a minimum total of 75 + (75 x 2) = 225 hrs of personal effort may be required for a single, six semester hour course. For the 108-day budget established earlier, this means the married and working student in the MDiv degree program should set aside an average of 225/(108/7) = 15 hours (approximately) per week for each of their courses.

11. What are the current enrollment statistics for TNARS?

Answer: The TNARS enrollments statistics can be found at this location at our web site:

http://www.tnars.net/about/

12. How long does it take for my application to be approved?

Answer: Once an application is submitted, the student must request transcripts for any previous college studies and a letter of recommendation from a church officer be sent to the seminary. As soon as all materials have been received, an enrollment decision will be made within 3-6 weeks.

13. I am not attending a church and do not have a local church officer that can provide a letter of recommendation for me. What can I do to meet this requirement?

Answer: Those not yet a member of a church will need to postpone applying as TNARS believes that the Church is God’s instrument for educating His people. Our seminary comes along side to help the local church educate its people and not to subordinate the local church to our seminary. Therefore we will not be able to accept an application for consideration until an applicant’s home church situation is settled such that a letter of recommendation from a local church officer can be provided.

14. I realize that TNARS is not regionally accredited, but are my credits at TNARS transferrable to any other schools?

Answer: TNARS students who intend to continue their education at others schools should contact these schools and discuss the transferability of our credits before seeking enrollment with TNARS. Some schools have approved TNARS credits for transfer. Information about this can be found here:

http://www.tnars.net/about/recognition-and-affiliation/

15. Can I be ordained after completing a TNARS MDiv or DMin degree?

Answer: Ordination is a matter to be determined by local church authorities. TNARS students have been ordained by several denominations. More information can be found here:

http://www.tnars.net/about/recognition-and-affiliation/

http://www.tnars.net/resources/opportunities-for-graduates/

16. Do I have to hold to Reformed theology in order to be a student with TNARS?

Answer: No. Only our mentors are required to subscribe to the Westminster Standards. Our students are required to subscribe to a more basic statement of faith, which is found here listed under “Basic Christian Statement of Faith“:

http://www.tnars.net/admissions/

Please note that all our instructional materials are based upon a decidedly Reformed view of doctrine. Students must be willing to receive this instruction without taking strident opposition to the materials.

17. If I am a Pastor do I need a letter of recommendation?

Answer: Pastors should seek a recommendation from within their church’s leadership team, elders, deacons, area missionary, etc. Church planters should seek recommendations from within the team of the sending church’s officers. Those not yet a member of a church will need to postpone applying as TNARS believes that the Church is God’s instrument for educating His people. Our seminary comes along side to help the local church educate its people and not to subordinate the local church to our seminary. Therefore we will not be able to accept an application for consideration until an applicant’s home church situation is settled such that a letter of recommendation from a local church officer can be provided.

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