Our course of studies in Scholastic Theology is organized into two levels. The first is known as the « Baccalaureatus Sententiarius » Cycle, the second, the most advanced of all studies, as the « Magister Sacrae Doctrinae ».
The « Baccalaureatus Sententiarius » Cycle
The cycle of studies known as the « Baccalaureatus Sententiarius » Cycle has a threefold purpose:
1) to give the student a complete and detailed understanding of the Master Peter Lombard’s Four Books of Sentences.
2) to profoundly train the student in the method and practice of Scholastic argumentation
3) to impart to the student a detailed and exact understanding of the theology and theological positions of Saints Thomas Aquinas and Bonaventure of Bagnoregio, as expressed in their Commentaria on the Sentences.
As such, the « Baccalaureatus Sententarius » Cycle, inspired by the cycle of studies of similar name at the University of Paris in the mid-13th century, comprises 2 kinds of obligatory courses, those on the Sentences and Quaestiones Disputatae, wherein the Students demonstrate their theological acumen in the classical Scholastic form.
In addition to the obligatory courses, the students may be required to take courses in the Biblicus or Philosophicus cycles, if they lack the proper preparation for the study of the Sentences. Students are also required to chose from the courses in the Biblicus and Philosophicus cycles to supplement and expand their comprehension of the Sentences and their Commentaries, such that in each semester they have at least 30 ECTS of course work.
Form of Instruction for the Study of the Sentences
The study of the Sentences of Master Peter Lombard at the Institute has its own special regimen and form, in which Instructors and students, both those in the Baccalaureatus and Sententiarii participate.
For each Book of Lombard, the instruction will be moderated by a panel of Academics known as the Magistri in iudicio, appointed by the Faculty of Theology. The arguments pro and contra will be presented by two groups of Baccalaureati, led each by a Sublector, and the Responsiones will be given by the Lectores, chosen from among the Sententiarii and the more prepared Baccalaureati.
The Magistri in iudicio shall determine and set the calendar of discussions for each Distinctio and assign the roles of Lector and Sublectores, as well as given general and specific instructions as to the progress of the studium, the requirements for participation for each student, and the grades for class participation & assignments which grades comprise the entire basis for the final grade given for the each of the courses on the Four Books.
For the Quaestiones Disputatae, each student in the Baccalaureatus Cycle must select 1 such course each semester, for a total of 4 during the Cycle of specialization. For which purpose, the student may freely chose 1 member of the Faculty of Theology to be his Magister, with the Dean assigning another 3 to judge the quality of his work.
The length, form and contents of the Quaestiones Disputatae are to be determined by the Dean of the Faculty in consultation with the Magistri in iudicio for that semester. For the Quaestiones, the entire grade will be based on the written work of the student.
S-100 The First Book of Sentences — 20 ECTS
S-140 Quaestiones Disputatae on the One and Triune God ad Intra — 2 ECTS
S-150 Quaestiones Disputatae on the One and Triune God ad Extra — 2 ECTS
S-200 The Second Book of Sentences — 20 ECTS
S-240 Quaestiones Disputatae on the Creation of All Things — 2 ECTS
S-250 Quaestiones Disputatae on the Fall of Angels and Men — 2 ECTS
S-300 The Third Book of Sentences — 20 ECTS
S-340 Quaestiones Disputatae on the Incarnation — 2 ECTS
S-350 Quaestiones Disputatae on the Redemption — 2 ECTS
S-400 The Fouth Book of Sentences — 20 ECTS
S-440 Quaestiones Disputatae on the Sacraments — 2 ECTS
S-450 Quaestiones Disputatae on the Last Things — 2 ECTS
Studies for the Magister Sacrae Doctrinae
The final level of studies at the Institute is known as the « Magister Sacrae Doctrinae », and it has a threefold purpose:
1) to provide the prospective student a practical experience in Lecturing on the Four Books of Sentences after the manner of Saints Thomas Aquinas and Saints Bonaventure.
2) to give occasion to the prospective doctorandus to write his own Commentaria on the Four Books of the Sentences.
3) to prepare the student to demonstrate his complete mastery of Scholastic Theology and Philosophy in 4 sessions of Quaestiones Quodlibetales.
As such, the studies of the « Magister Sacrae Doctrinae » , inspired by the studies required for the title of Magister Sacrae Doctrinae at the University of Paris in the mid-13th century, comprises 3 fundamental obligations, each which comprise in part the total grade received:
1) Substantial attendance in the Studium as a Sententiarius, fulfilling the role of Lector and sharing in the duties of the Magistri in iudicio: 30% of final grade.
2) Completion and submission of his own Commentaria on the Four Books of Sentences: 50% of final grade.
3) Demonstrating a mature and complete grasp of Scholastic Theology, Philosophy and Sacred Scripture during 4 Quodlibetal Sessions, in which the entire faculty and student body propose to him a number of Quaestiones, to which he must respond cum fide quae intelligentiam quaerat in Sapientia within the time period specified by the Dean of the Faculty: 20% of final grade.