|Resources for Choosing Courses||Centers & Affiliates|
|Books & Readers||PSR Centers & Affiliates|
|Libraries||GTU Centers & Affiliates|
|GTU Library||UC Berkeley|
|UC Berkeley Library||Faculty|
|Berkeley Public Library||Student Services Staff|
All degree and certificate students are assigned an advisor by the Assistant Dean for Academic Programs. The core faculty at PSR serve as student advisors in all degree and certificate programs. Advisors are key to each student's progress through their program and are a great source of support, direction, and academic counseling. For programs that have milestones, you will usually be advisor consult with you on your milestone before submitting it to the Assistant Dean for Academic Programs. For programs that have a thesis/project defense of some kind, your advisor will usually be the primary committee member for your defense.
Incoming student advisors or changes to advisor assignements are usually processed and emailed to students around the summer for incoming Fall students and in winter for incoming Spring students. If any urgent and necessary advising needs come up in the interim, the Assistant Dean for Academic Programs may assist students during these transitional periods.
Students find their advisor and advisors find their advisees by logging in to WebAdvisor. They may also find each others' contact information that way or through the PSR website. For stability reasons, we try to encourage maintaining the same advisor assignment throughout a students' program, but in the case that a student wishes to change advisors, after the first semester at PSR, they may apply to switch advisors by submitting a Change of Advisor form to the Assistant Dean for Academic Programs & Registrar. In cases of advisor retirement or sabbatical, students will be reassigned another advisor.
Sometime during your first semester, make an appointment with your advisor to acquaint yourselves with each other and review your plans for your program. Your advisor is there to support and mentor you through your program, so make sure that you meet with your advisor at least once a year to check in. For some students especially those in the MA and DMin programs, it may be in your best interest to have regular more frequent conversations with your advisor, including those about course selection, since those programs may be more flexible yet require more specialization. For all other programs, it may be sufficient to meet with the Assistant Dean for Academic Programs for course selection questions.
While your advisor oversees your program, you are responsible and expected to take the initiative in communicating with your advisor regularly and in understanding and fulfilling the requirements for your program.
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Worksheet: Your program worksheet will be one of the most vaulable resources for you as you plan your coursework and make course selections each semester. All course requirements are listed for you to follow on your worksheet. Using this document will ensure that you meet your program's requirements. If you have any questions regarding your course selections, review this document with the Assistant Dean for Academic Programs
Assistant Dean for Academic Programs: For some programs such as the MDiv, the recommended course selection each semester is fairly clear by consulting the MDiv worksheet and Suggested Sequencing for 3-Year Plan, Alternatives to Basics, as well as all other guides located on the MDiv page. For all other programs, consult your program page for planning guides then feel free to email the Assistant Dean for Academic Programs for any uncertainties you may have in your course selection or to make an appointment to discuss your course selection further.
Faculty: Read your PSR Viewbook or the PSR faculty web page and their areas of interest and expertise. Choose classes taught by people whose work and approach interest and challenge you. In most cases you can read about other GTU faculty on the web sites of their affiliate schools.
GTU Courses: Consult the GTU Course Catalog and read the course descriptions carefully to ensure they are not restricted to students from the host school or denomination.
Student recommendations: Ask students for their recommendations. Choose not only the content, but the style of class in which you learn best. Each faculty member has a particular style of combining lecture, discussion, student participation, etc.
Syllabi: Faculty prepare syllabi for each course which they distribute at the first class and upload on Moodle through the Office of Academic Affairs for your perusal. Referring to these syllabi will give you a good idea of the required readings, lecture or class discussion topics, and method of evaluation for each class. Looking at these syllabi and their reading lists is a helpful way to discover whether the reading material for a course is of interest or help to you in your program. The GTU library holds a reserve of all available syllabi from all consortial schools. Otherwise, a visit to the Academic Affairs Office of the school that is offering the course you are interested in may also be helpful or email the instructor directly for a copy of the syllabus.
Attend a class: The best way to determine whether or not a class suits your needs is to attend the first class. Most professors use this class to introduce the course, discuss the syllabus, course requirements, evaluation, and pedagogical method. Once classes start, you have the first two weeks of the semester to "shop around" for classes, which is a good time to attend all the courses your are considering before you make your final decision. Note that limited enrollment classes can be closed prior to the first week of classes.
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Students will be able to purchase books for courses anywhere of their choosing online or from bookstores. The GTU/PSR/CDSP online bookstore powered through Amazon is open with textbooks required for PSR courses listed.
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Readers for PSR courses can be purchased from Vick Copy just two blocks down the hill from PSR toward the UC Berkeley campus.
1879 Euclid Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94709
Tel: 510.549.2679 Fax: 510.549.2678
For some courses, readers may be available online via Moodle. Check with your course syllabus or instructor for more details.
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The GTU is fortunate to have one of the largest theological libraries in the world. The staff at the Reference Desk will acquaint you with the collection and introduce you to the online catalog. Individual sessions and workshops about the necessary techniques for successful library research are also available each semester. The Flora Lamson Hewlett Library also has access to UCB’s online catalog, the catalog for the entire UCB library system, and interlibrary book-loan services. The following information is provided by the GTU and is published in the MA handbook:
The Library Website
Information about our hours and other services may be found on the GTU Library web site. From the home page, you may link to GRACE, the GTU Library catalog, to electronic resources available via the Internet, to tutorials and handouts on a variety of research topics, or to other useful sites on the Internet. Notices regarding special closings or other news will also appear on the library’s home page.
How to get a Library Card
Students, faculty, and staff should bring their GTU ID card with the current semester’s registration sticker to the library. The ID card will be barcoded and laminated; you can then use it as your library card. You may wait until the first time that you wish to check out books to do all this. The GTU Library card may be used for borrowing materials from both the Hewlett Library in Berkeley (commonly called “the GTU Library”) and its branch library at the San Francisco Theological Seminary (“the SFTS Library”). Fines are charged on overdue, lost, or damaged materials. For more information about recalling materials, placing holds, or other borrowing procedures, see the web page above.
GRACE, the Library Catalog
You can see what materials the library owns by searching the library’s online catalog, GRACE. Books may be looked up by author, title, subject, keyword, or call number. Books in the GTU Library are arranged on the shelf according to the Library of Congress call number system, the system used by academic libraries in the U.S.
The GTU Library subscribes to databases that provide access to journal indexes, full-text journal articles, electronic encyclopedias, and images. These databases are available via the Internet. Anyone may access these databases while in the library, but remote access from home is restricted to GTU students, faculty, visiting scholars, and staff.
Books or articles placed on reserve for a class are shelved at the Circulation Desk. To request an item on reserve, you must know its call number. Look up the call number on GRACE, either by the course number or the professor’s name. See the special links on GRACE to course reserves.
The Reference Desk is located on Level 2 of the GTU Library. Reference Desk staff is ready and willing to help library users. For example, we can show you how to:
• use GRACE or electronic databases
• find a book or journal article
• decipher a journal citation
• get started on a research project
Library workshops, conducted in the Teaching Lab on Level 2 of the GTU Library, are offered in the fall and spring. Topics include: searching the library catalog, using indexes to find journal articles and book reviews, writing with proper academic citation, and getting started on Biblical research. See the current semester’s schedule and a full description of each workshop on our webpage.
Materials not found at the GTU Library or at the UC Berkeley Library can be obtained for you from another library. This service is called Interlibrary Loan (ILL). ILL requests may be made at the Reference Desk. This service is only available to GTU students, faculty, visiting scholars, and staff.
Audio-Visual Media and Microforms
The Library has a variety of non-book materials: videos, DVDs, CDs, audiocassettes, filmstrips, kits, and slides. To see if we have a specific title, look it up on GRACE. Most materials circulate, but they may also be viewed or listened to in the Audiovisual Room on Level 2 of the GTU Library. The microfilm and microfiche collection and reader/printer are located on Level 1. Copies made from the reader/printer are 15 cents per page and may be paid for at the Circulation Desk.
Computers in the Library
At the GTU Library, four GRACE stations are located around the circular atrium. There are ten stations on the east and west sides of Level 2 for general use such as Internet and word processing. Time limits are set on these stations (see http://www.gtu.edu/library/information/technology). Wireless is also available in the library (see http://www.gtu.edu/library/information/technology). The Teaching Lab on Level 2 is reserved for class and workshop use only. At the Branch Library at SFTS, computers in the public areas may be used for searching GRACE, databases, or the Internet. A computer lab adjacent to the library is available for additional use.
Photocopy machines are located on Levels 1 and 2. These machines accept copy cards, which may be purchased from a vending machine located on the book return desk on Level 2, or you may use cash.
On Level 1, two study rooms are available to GTU students and faculty for group or personal study. A sign-up sheet and keys for these rooms are kept at the Circulation Desk.
GTU students may check out a locker key from the Circulation Desk at the beginning of each
semester. Lockers are located on Level 1.
The University of California, Berkeley Library and Santa Clara University
Pick up a handout at the library or see the, GTU Interlibrary Loan web page for a description of the resources available to GTU students at these libraries.
The GTU has negotiated borrowing privileges for GTU member-school students with all
UCB branch libraries at no cost. The libraries of the GTU and UCB have a cooperative
agreement for purchasing materials: UCB depends on the GTU Library in some fields, and
the GTU Library depends on the UCB Library in others. Depending on your interests and
the courses you take, the collections of the UCB Library may be an important part of your
Take your GTU ID card that has a current validation sticker on it to UCB’s Main Library
Service Desk (not the Flora Lamson Hewlett Library) to obtain borrowing privileges
throughout the UC library system. Most of your library needs, if not met by the GTU
Library, will be met by using the Main Library or one of the many UCB branch libraries on
campus. If the UCB’s Main Library copy is checked out, you can recall it. Check with the
Information Desk at the UCB Main Library for more information.
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The Berkeley Public Library is located in downtown Berkeley, about a ten minute walk southwest from the PSR campus. With photo ID and proof of residence in Berkeley which you may obtain from the Housing department if you live on campus, you may be entitled to a Berkeley Public Library card.
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The GTU is a structurally unique organization that embodies a set of ecumenical and academic ideals. It consists of nine denominational, or inter-denominational member schools — all of which are theological institutions preparing people for ordination and church leadership. GTU has an informal but highly significant relationship with UCB (University of California at Berkeley). The GTU is further enriched by the presence of a number of affiliates and programs representing a range of religious traditions and theological perspectives. Each of the nine schools is an autonomous institution with its own faculty, Board of Trustees, and a distinctive mission based on its denominational affiliation(s). These autonomous institutions come together in a number of ways to create the GTU consortium. The nine GTU consortium schools share a library. There is also a GTU Common Registrar who establishes the Schedule of Classes and assigns classrooms for the consortium. For the most part, consortium schools that have classrooms share classroom space. The nine schools have open cross-registration agreements. The consortium awards the Ph.D. and Th.D. degrees, and governance of those programs is by the GTU Dean and the Core Doctoral Faculty, not by any one of the nine schools. The GTU has a small number of its own faculty in fields that do not readily fit into the member schools (e.g., Jewish Studies, Buddhist Studies, Eastern Orthodox Christianity). By and large, faculty of the doctoral programs are culled from the nine member schools, whose services are available to all students through consortial agreements and arrangements.
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Pacific School of Religion is home to several centers and programs that provide critical scholarship resources on some of today's most cutting-edge theological, social, cultural, and ethical issues. Many of these centers are key in contributing to the curriculum PSR offfers as well as support and resource to students whose areas of interest may intersect with those of the centers. For a list of centers and their websites, go to the PSR Centers and Affiliates page.
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Over the past 30 years, a variety of specialized centers, programs, and institutes have become a vital part of the life and identity of the GTU. Some of these organizations originated within, and have been sponsored by the GTU itself; others have entered into the informal association or contractual affiliation with the GTU from outside. As a group, the GTU Centers and Affiliates, & Programs provide important perspectives and resources to the GTU community. They have broadened the ecumenical and inter-religious representation in the GTU beyond the denominations represented in the member schools. They have expressed and advocated the identity and interests of women and ethnic minorities within the GTU — academically, culturally, and socially. In addition to providing academic resources and expertise relevant to the overall curriculum of the GTU, these affiliates have conceived, sponsored, and produced forums, public lectures, and conferences — bringing outside scholars and religious leaders into direct conversation with the GTU community. The PSR catalog (which is sent to prospective students) has brief descriptions of GTU affiliates and programs.
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The UCB roster of courses is stunning and extends, vastly, the academic opportunities for GTU students. Course availability may be limited. Instructions for cross-registration are available in the hallway outside the PSR Office of Academic Affairs. Note: The academic calendars of the GTU and UCB do not coincide, so if you cross-register, you will juggle two different academic schedules. The semester at UCB usually begins two weeks before the GTU semester, so students who cross-register must be sure that they are available for UCB’s first class meeting.
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The PSR faculty, one of your most important resources for succeeding in your program, is committed to working with students as advisors and instructors. Members of the faculty have a wide range of interests and experience in ministry and see their work with students as a priority.
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The resources of the GTU faculty are immense in their range and variety — giving both an interreligious/ecumenical dimension and a broader intellectual dimension to theological education. The GTU has a common course schedule and cross-registration agreements among its members. Thus the approximately 700 courses taught annually by 120 full-time faculty and over 50 adjuncts will almost all be possible resources for your studies. You will undoubtedly want to take some courses with faculty outside PSR. The GTU ecumenical structure enhances the education of our students. Whether or not your topic of interest is defined denominationally, we believe that perspectives from other denominations and religions assist in the formation of a critical perspective of one's studies.
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A list of GTU PhD students who have agreed to offer their services as academic tutors for masters or certificate students in various areas is available from the Assistant Deans. Rates range from $15-$50/hour, most of which are negotiable with the tutor. If academic assistance is needed at any time in your program, Masters and Certificate level students are welcome to enlist these tutors to assist with writing papers or with other academic areas. Note that in the case of requesting a tutor to help with a paper, that tutors have been instructed to give editorial feedback only, not on content. Please give ample time for turnaround (at least 2 weeks) and communicate clearly about services requested, deadlines, and payment arrangement with your tutor. PSR students for whom English is a Second Language may have limited tutoring services through International Students Services Department.
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Although the faculty does advising of students, the staff of PSR will be happy to help you answer any questions. Most of the forms mentioned in your academic program manual are located in front of and managed by the Office of Academic Affairs (Room #135, first floor of the Holbrook Building), and most academic questions should be directed to this department. However, a much wider team of student support is at your disposal, many of whom are listed below:
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Assistant to the Dean & Administrative Assistant to the Faculty:email@example.com
Assistant Dean for Academic Programs & Registrar: Delphine Hwang
Vice President of Academic Affairs & Dean of the Faculty: Tat-Siong Benny Liew
Community and Student Life
Assistant Dean of Students & Director of Community Life: Donnel Miller-Mutia
Housing Coordinator: Marge Boyd
Information Technology (IT)
Chief Information Officer: Jeffrey Di Gregorio
Holbrook front desk
Receptionist/Mail Processor/Room Scheduler: Nathan Mazur
Other Programs for Student Support
Holbrook 125 A & B
Director of Contextual Learning: Odette Lockwood-Stewart
Continuing and Community Education
Director of Community & Continuing Education: Laurie Isenberg
Certificate of Ministry Studies Program Coordinator: Ann Jefferson
Director of Field Education, Odette Lockwood-Stewart
International Student Support
Coordinator, International Student Support: Shan McSpadden
MA Program Director
GTU Library, top floor
Administrative Assistant to the Academic Dean of GTU: Angela Munoz
Jim Mitulski & Ann Jefferson