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The Master of Science in Thanatology is designed to prepare individuals for employment in organizations that focus on the delivery of care for individuals and families confronting end-of-life healthcare and subsequent bereavement issues, and/or to prepare individuals for employment in organizations that specialize in suicide prevention, intervention and postvention. The program combines rigorous study across the spectrum of end-of-life studies with content in palliative & hospice care, ethics, spirituality & religion, suicide/suicide prevention, unnatural death, end-of-life decision-making, communication with service providers & families, program development & assessment, diversity, death education and a core curriculum grounded in thanatology theory and practice. The Thanatology curriculum consists of six core curriculum courses (18 credits) and six electives (18 credits) for a total of 36 credits. Courses in the core curriculum may be waived by the program director contingent on equivalent experience or course work. The program is delivered entirely online.

Degree requirements

To receive the Master of Science in Thanatology, students must meet the following criteria:

· Completion of coursework with a minimum GPA of 3.00 (on a 4.00 scale).

· Submission and approval of the final capstone project

36 credits as follows:

18 credits:

THA 605 Foundations of Thanatology, 3 cr.

THA 615 Bereavement Theory and Practice, 3 cr.

THA 625 Theological Perspectives in Thanatology, 3 cr.

THA 630 Thanatology Research Methods, 3 cr.

THA 640 Applied Ethics and the End of Life, 3 cr.

THA 795 Applied Thanatology Capstone, 3 cr.

18 credits from the following:

THA 705 Death in the Lives of Children and Teens, 3 cr.

THA 715 Bereavement after Unnatural Death, 3 cr.

THA 725 Bereavement Program Development, 3 cr.

THA 735 Palliative and Hospice Care, 3 cr.

THA 745 Spiritual Formation and Thanatology, 3 cr.

THA 710 Understanding Suicide, 3 cr.

THA 720 Children, Teens, and Suicide, 3 cr.

THA 730 Suicide Prevention and Postvention, 3 cr.

THA 755 Death and the Literary Imagination, 3 cr.

Tracy Qualmann
Director of Enrollment Partnerships
Adult and Graduate Admission
920-923-7159 OFFICE

Admission Requirements:

To be considered for admission into the Master of Science in Thanatology, the applicant must submit the following:

  • A completed Marian University application form
  • A $50 non-refundable application fee
  • An official transcript from each college or university attended
  • Cumulative GPA of 2.75 on a 4.0 scale. Students may be considered for admission on a probationary status with less than a 2.75 GPA
  • Two confidential letters of recommendation
  • Career goal statement

Transfer of Credit Policy
Students can transfer up to 9 credits into the graduate program; each possible transferrable course is reviewed individually. Each course must be less than 7 years old.

To apply for the Masters of Science in Thanatology, use the Admissions Checklist. This document will guide you through the process and ensure that you have sumitted all of the neccessary materials.

The Thanatology Recommendation form is for your use.


Fun Fact

The library has nearly 800 DVD titles and 700 CD titles for students to check out and use.

Campus Info

Marian University - Main Campus
45 S. National Ave.
Fond du Lac, WI 54935-4699

CALL: 1-800-2-MARIAN (1-800-262-7426)
EMAIL: admission@marianuniversity.edu  

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