Q: How do I apply?

A: Simply fill out the Application for Admissions and hit the submit button.

Q: Is there an application fee?

A: For the Graduate Program, Continuing Education and Personal Enrichment programs there is a non-refundable application fee of $40 for laypersons and $15 for religious. This fee covers the administrative expenses to process the application. For the School of Spiritual Formation, you will be charged for the course upon submission of your application if you do not ask for a scholarship.

Q: Am I too old to pursue this program?

A: Are you ever too old to deepen your love of Christ and service to Him and His Church?

Q: Can I apply the coursework from other institutions for credit in the Avila Institute.

A: Because of the unique nature of spiritual theology and the approach we take in our formation, it is not probable though we are open to inquiries on a case by case basis.

Q: Must I have an undergraduate degree to participate?

A: No. Those with undergraduate degrees are often best equipped to complete graduate level work. However, the requirement for participation is that you have sufficient capability and commitment to complete the work. This is determined through the application process.

Q: Can you send me a paper application?

A: Since the Avila Institute is a completely online program, all processes are completed online. This also saves on costs so we can keep tuition to a minimum. As a bonus, we are saving a few trees by having the application process completely online.

Q: How long will it take until I hear if I am accepted or not?

A: The application process takes an average of 4 – 6 weeks.

Q: How will I hear if I am accepted or not?

A: You will receive an email at the email address provided in the application. If you do not hear back within 4 – 6 weeks, please be sure to check your Spam Folder or Trash.

Q: Can I audit a course?

A: At this time, we do not allow for the auditing of courses.



Q: Will my professional organization accept your Continuing Education credits?

A: Students seeking Continuing Education should seek advance approval from their own professional organizations or employers to ensure that the content of our coursework meets the requirements of their organizations. We would be more than willing to help explain our program to your organization as needed.

Q: Will other institutions accept our coursework with Avila as credits for their courses?

A: This decision will be based on the individual institution you are seeking to transfer credits to. The Avila Institute of Spiritual Formation is not an accredited  institution.

Q: Is the Avila Institute Accredited?

A: No. Though the academic rigor and quality of education will be equivalent to traditional programs, the Avila Institute is not accredited. For more detail on accreditation, click HERE.


Q: What is the difference between the different programs you have to offer?

A: Please click on the chart below to see the differences.

Avila Program Comparison

Q: Are the courses available online?

A: This question never fails to make us smile. Yes, online courses are the only kind we offer.

Q: Do you have a physical school?

A: At this time, no.

Q: Can I take just one course and then determine which program is best for me?

A: Absolutely! You can also work with our admissions office to gain perspective on the level of rigor required for each program and they can help you find the best fit for your needs and desires.

Q: What time will your courses be delivered? Can I take them at a different time?

A: Currently, courses will be live/online at 6:30 pm Mountain Time/U.S. If you are in the Graduate Program, you can make up a class at a different time due to illness or unforeseen circumstances with a recording of that class. If you are pursuing Continuing Education or Personal Enrichment credits, you can take these courses either live or recorded. Of course, we much prefer that all students have the richest experience possible and this will occur in the live/online environment.

Q: How much time should I expect on coursework in any given week?

A: For the Graduate Program and Continuing Education Program, you will spend approximately two hours in class each week for each class. For every one hour of class time, it would be wise to assume two hours of out of class time. For Personal Enrichment and School of Spiritual Formation, it is safe to assume that the workload will be reduced by approximately one third to one half.

Q: Can I take just one course at a time?

A: Absolutely! You can take one course at a time if you like. The Graduate Program is designed to be taken over 2-4 years. The two year program being two courses per quarter and the four year program being one course per quarter. The Personal Enrichment Program, Continuing Education Program, and School of Spiritual Formation can be taken at your own pace whether you would like to take one or two courses per quarter.

Q: What if I find the Graduate Program too difficult? Can I stay in the program but complete the courses at a lower level of rigor?

A: Yes. If you find the coursework too difficult either because of circumstances, time challenges, or other factors, you are welcome to switch to the Personal Enrichment or Continuing Education program. The Personal Enrichment and Continuing Education programs work on a pass/fail basis and requires less rigor to complete.

Q: Can I take Personal Enrichment or Continuing Education courses and then later apply those credits toward the full graduate program?

A: Yes as long as the following two requirements are met: 1) All work for the course(s) is completed including the mid-term and final; and 2) A minimum of a B- average is achieved for each course.





Q: Are scholarship funds available and, if so, how are they awarded?

A: Absolutely! We are joyfully committed to serving the Lord’s faithful poor and the financially strapped – we award based on severity of need and the applicant’s likelihood of success in the program.

Q: Is it possible to sponsor someone who would like to take classes?

A: Yes. You may make a general Donation to the Avila Institute. All donations will go directly towards scholarships for those in need.

Q: Is my donation tax deductible?

A: Yes. The Avila Institute, a subsidiary of the Avila Foundation, is a non-profit organization as defined by the IRS.

Q: Do scholarship funds cover books or other expenses?

A: No. Scholarship funds only cover the partial or full expense of the tuition for each course. Those who require scholarship funds for tuition may inquire as to additional support and we may be able to find a donor to assist, but funding beyond tuition is not the norm.

Q: I don’t need a scholarship but would prefer to pay for my classes in smaller monthly amounts to minimize the impact. Can I do this?

A: Absolutely. We will work with each student to ensure they are on a plan that suits their budget. Those with partial scholarships may also put the balance on a payment plan.

Q: Do I need to be in the Graduate Program to be eligible for a scholarship?

A: No. Scholarships are available for all of our programs.

School of Spiritual Formation

Q: Are courses taken through the School of Spiritual Formation  part of the Avila Institute Graduate Program?

A: No –  courses provided through the School of Spiritual Formation are designed to build on the basics for those who do not have the time to engage in the rigor required in the graduate level program.

Q: Will School of Spiritual Formation courses help me in my future participation in Avila Institute Graduate Studies in Spiritual Theology?

A: Absolutely. These courses will help you to gain familiarity with the teaching medium (technology), method (mystagogy), and the terminology used in spiritual theology studies.

Q: Can anyone take courses through the School of Spiritual Formation?

A: Yes, there are no prerequisites. If you are willing and able to do the work, you are welcome into the program.

Q: Will the School of Spiritual Formation reflect any specific spirituality or movement within the Church?

A: No. The material will be eclectic within the bounds of magisterium faithful Catholic spirituality.

Q: I am a Protestant/Evangelical (or other tradition) but am interested in Catholic spirituality, can I take the courses offered in the School of Spiritual Formation?

A: Absolutely. Our approach is non-apologetics based in that we don’t defend Catholic teaching but simply assume it is the teaching of Christ. So, if you are comfortable with learning the Catholic tradition rather than arguing the merits of comparable or disparate systems, you are more than welcome to join us. It might comfort you to know that we have a number of Protestant/Evangelical students in our program who are very happy with their experience.

Q: How will these courses be delivered? Where are the classes held?

A: The courses are Live/Online – You can take these courses from your home or wherever you have a computer, a headset, an internet connection, and the ability to focus on and interact with the lecture, dialogue, and materials.

Q: What kind of technology do I need to have to take the course?

A: You will need a computer, a reliable internet connection, and a headset.

Q: Is a headset optional? Why?

A: No – because in our experience the quality of built-in equipment is unpredictable and there are often significant challenges with microphones that pick up all surrounding noise rather than just the voice of the student.

Q: Is there a headset you recommend?

A: Yes – Plantronics Audio 478 Stereo USB Headset but any quality USB headset with a built in microphone should work.

Q: What if I am unable to attend one or more of the scheduled classes, can I still take courses?

A: Yes. Recordings of each class will be available within 48 hours of the class for all registered students.

Q: Can I just take the class by watching the recordings alone?

A: Yes, we understand that there are major time differences and issues with our international students. However, we discourage this for students who live within reasonable timezone variances because it limits our ability to serve you and it limits your participation in the mystagogical approach to experiencing God in and through the powerful dialogue and interchange with other students.

Q: Is there work outside of the classroom?

A: Yes. It should be assumed that each class will require about one hour per week of reading and preparation. There will also be short pass/fail quizzes that help students ensure their comprehension of the materials. There will be a final essay that will be a short reflection on the student’s participation in the course and how it has helped them better understand prayer and how to grow in relationship with God.

Q: Are there scholarships available?

A: Yes. Because of the generosity of our donors, the Avila Institute offers scholarships (as funds are available) to 1) those who have taken a vow of poverty, and 2) those who are financially challenged but faithful to the magisterium and mission of the Catholic Church. Partial and Full Scholarships are available. For more information send an email to