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University of Pennsylvania Course/Program Name
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Certificate Religion in Public Life

 Course Level
Certificate / Diploma
Full Time

1 Year
 Start month

 Tuition fee


Application fee

International 0 USD
National 0 USD
College of Liberal and Professional Studies
Scores accepted
IELTS (min)7
TOEFL-IBT (min)100
TOEFL-PBT (min)600
ACT (avg)30

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About this course

The certificate curricula at Penn are designed by faculty members to guide students in a thorough exploration of a particular topic. Students have the opportunity to earn certificates in a variety of subjects. Each certificate program has been created to direct and recognize students’ learning and discovery in the interdisciplinary subject areas listed below.

You may choose to participate in a certificate program for several reasons. First, the program offers a roadmap for study, indicating which courses to take to gain more expertise on the topic in which you are interested. Second, the certificate appears on your transcript, and clearly announces your academic interest and expertise in this topic for potential employers or educational institutions. Finally, when pursuing a certificate, you are allowed to take up to five courses in a single department. If you do not participate in a certificate program, you are only allowed four courses within any one department while completing your MLA.

Students who pursue a certificate in Religion in Public Life design a program around an area of primary interest, selecting graduate seminars offered in the School of Arts and Sciences by the departments of Religious Studies, Folklore and Folklife, History, English, Anthropology, and Asian and Middle Eastern Studies.

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Eligibility Criteria

Eng lang – On the TOEFL-iBT exam (Internet-Based Test), competitive applicants tend to have a composite score of 100 and above (the exam is scaled from 0-120, with 120 being a perfect score) with demonstrated consistency on each section of the exam (reading, listening, speaking, and writing). On the Paper- Based TOEFL, Penn tends to admit students with a score of 600 and above (the exam is scaled from 310 to 677, with 677 being a perfect score).

IELTS - 7.0


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Course Modules

Program requirements

  • The MLA Proseminar Religion in Public Life
  • At least one seminar dealing directly with church/state issues
  • Three additional courses dealing with Religion in Public Life issues
  • Three elective courses from the MLA curriculum
  • One course in which a capstone project related to the Religion in Public Life certificate is successfully completed

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How to Apply

Application materials checklist
 Since all required supporting documents are submitted through the online application system, hardcopy material other than official transcripts or letters of recommendation will not be accepted.* Please urge your recommenders to submit their letters through the online system.

Applications must contain all of the following in order to be considered complete:

  •  Completed online application
  • Current résumé
  • Nonrefundable application fee
  • Application essays, listed below
  • Unofficial transcripts from each post-secondary school attended uploaded through the online application system 
  • Standardized test scores
  • Two letters of recommendation

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