Accredited Online Bible Studies Schools and Degree Programs

A bachelor’s degree in Bible studies most often comes in the form of a Bachelor’s in Biblical Studies, or BBS. Programs that grant degrees in biblical study are nearly always offered by private Christian universities, and it pays to research any online bible studies degree programs under consideration before you commit four years to a degree. Check out our brief guide to online and campus-based BBS programs below.

  • Accreditation Agencies
  • Career Options
  • Notable Schools

Accreditation Agencies

One entity currently accredits BBS degree programs. The Association for Biblical Higher Education (ABHE) is comprised of 200 colleges and universities that aim to teach aspiring clergy and people working in a professional ministry. While an institutional accreditation doesn’t guarantee an excellent school, in the absence of other criteria, it’s a good place to start your search.

Career Options

Employment in church ministry can take many forms, and a BBS degree qualifies graduates for numerous positions within a busy church. Below, some examples of jobs that BBS holders can realistically expect:

Job Title National Employment Mean Hourly Wage Mean Annual Wage
Pastor or Clergy 44,000 $23.02 $47,880
Director of Ministry 18,310 $20.50 $42,640
Youth Ministry Coordinator 6,300 $14.06 $29,240
Sunday School Curriculum Coordinator 179, 650 $19.40 $40,360
Worship Music 24,940 $25.68 $53,420

Figures from U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2012

Notable Schools

Picking a school can be a daunting task, especially when considering the sheer number of accredited colleges there are across the nation. Our database below can help with narrowing down your options for your specific program. In addition, we’ve compiled a list of some of the most notable online and campus-based schools offering degrees in this subject to help you begin your school search.


Because there are a limited number of accredited Bible colleges to choose from, it may be easy to assume that all programs are similar in intent and quality. However, consider that any degree program in which you invest your time and money, including newer online degree programs, is worth your research prior to attending. Here are a few examples of reputable online programs in biblical study.

Grand Canyon University

Phoenix, Arizona / Online

Grand Canyon University, ranked among Best Online Bachelor’s Programs by U.S. News and World Report, offers a Bachelor of Arts in Christian Studies with an emphasis in biblical study. Aspiring theologians and ministers examine Christianity along with other major world religions. A special focus on significant portions of the Old and New Testaments also helps train future spiritual leaders.

Liberty University

Lynchburg, Virginia / Online

Liberty University, which has long been considered a conservative mainstay of Southern Baptist culture, offers an online Bachelor of Science in Religion with an emphasis in biblical and theological studies. Students conduct in-depth examination of the Bible and Christian theology; graduates of this program are highly qualified to work in church ministry or to continue on to master’s degree study.

Grace School of Theology

Houston, Texas / Online

This relatively young theological institution, which opened in 2002, offers a BBS program that can be taken entirely online. This program is designed to both prepare its students for a life in ministry and to deeply explore biblical history, doctrine and theology. The bulk of this program is spent on Bible exposition, with theology and ministry skills given heavy emphasis.

Campus Only

Typically, campus-based degree programs are institutionally ranked by entities such as Forbes, U.S. News and World Report, and Princeton Review, among others. However, faith-based schools are not typically ranked against one another, so it can be difficult to compare potential Bible study degree programs. Consider that these rankings are generally unbiased, though, and check any potential degree programs against them for information that may be helpful to you.

Moody Bible Institute

Chicago, Illinois

Moody Bible Institute is one of the oldest seminaries in the U.S. Founded in 1871 as a byproduct of the Great Chicago Fire, Moody Bible Institute is based on evangelical training. Moody’s BBS program delivers its students a fundamental understanding of the English Bible and prepares its graduates for work in church ministry.

Wheaton College

Wheaton, Illinois

Wheaton College, located in quiet suburbia west of Chicago city proper, is ranked by Princeton Review and U.S. News and World Report as a distinguished educational institution. Wheaton, which is strictly a residential school, offers a bachelor’s degree program in biblical and theological studies. This four-year degree prepares its students for graduate work in theology and work in church ministry.

Biola University

Los Angeles, California

This private Christian university has been offering biblically centered educational options for over a century. Ranked among National Universities by U.S. News and World Report, Biola offers a bachelor’s degree in biblical and theological studies. Prospective ministers delve deeply into the Old and New Testaments and explore methodologies for further biblical study.