The program, conducted entirely in the English language and designed to be completed in four years (8 semesters), is filled with lectures, conversations (workshops) and seminars. The first (propaedeutic) year is dedicated mostly to study of the primary biblical languages, Hebrew and Greek. It also includes lectures on archaeology, geography, and Biblical history. In their second year, students continue honing an in-depth knowledge of Hebrew and Greek, along with additional courses in Aramaic, textual criticism, introductions to OT and NT, biblical hermeneutics, and the methodology of biblical studies. The third year is dominated by monographic courses in areas of exegesis and biblical theology; at the end of the year there is an exam required by the Congregation for Catholic Teaching, and successful students obtain the diploma of licentiate in theology (sacrae theologiae licentiatus). The final, fourth year of studies is dedicated to the writing and perfecting of the student’s doctoral dissertation. A graduate, after successfully defending the doctoral thesis, obtains the diploma of Doctor of Sacred Theology (Sacrae Theologiae Doctor) and is then fully equipped for independent research and scholarly work in the field of biblical studies. Beyond this, he/she will also possess the competencies needed to fulfill a range of ministry tasks within both the Church and society, always with the focus of transmitting the faith, regardless of the specific level or context.


The doctoral curriculum offered by the IBS/CUL is closely correlated with that of the Pontifical Biblical Institute (Biblicum) in Rome. The exams in biblical Greek and Hebrew at the end of the first propaedeutic year at IBS/CUL are administered with the participation of representatives from Rome; accordingly, these exams are recognized also by the Biblicum, should a student decide to pursue further studies there. In fact, the level of instruction offered in biblical languages – Hebrew, Greek and Aramaic (with the option of also studying Coptic) – is equal to that provided by the most esteemed centers of Biblical studies in the world.