Concordia Theological Seminary – Fort Wayne, IN


Concordia Theological Seminary – Fort Wayne, IN

Prepare for the ELCEs

Prepare for the Exams

Incoming Alternate Route students are required to show entry-level competency in Old Testament, New Testament and Greek.

Christian DoctrinePass the ELCE with a 70% or higher

Area Exam Option Alternative Option
Old Testament Pass the ELCE with a 70% or higher Take online Old Testament course.
New Testament Pass the ELCE with a 70% or higher Take online New Testament course.
Christian Doctrine Pass the ELCE with a 70% or higher  
Greek Pass the ELCE with a 70% or higher Take Greek online or in residence during Summer or Fall Quarter

Students who have shown competency in Greek will substitute two exegetical elective courses for their required Greek course.

Requesting the Exams

Once you’ve been accepted, complete the Request Form for Competency Exams and return it to the Registrar’s Office.

How many times can the exams be taken and is there a deadline?

You may take each exam no more than three times. You must wait a minimum of three days after taking an exam before you can take it again. During this time, you are welcome to take other exams for other content areas.

You may begin taking the ELCE’s once you have been admitted or at least one year prior to the year in which you intend to enroll.

Deadline to take the competency exams for Winter and Spring incoming-accepted students is six weeks before each quarter begins; and Summer and Fall incoming-accepted students is August 1. All requests must arrive to the Registrar’s Office at least four weeks before the deadline to take the exams. If you do not pass one or more of these exams by the deadline, you will be automatically registered for the corresponding course(s). Exams can be taken at least one year prior to the year in which you intend to enroll.

ELCE Study Resources

The primary study resources for passing the Entry-Level Competency Exams are the Bible and Luther’s Small Catechism. To assist you in your study, the following series of books are ESSENTIAL reading. Each book contains the information you will need to know on the exam. Each chapter includes review material that will help you check your comprehension.

Click the book covers below to be taken to the publisher’s website where you may buy these books.


Called To Be God’s People: An Introduction to the Old Testament

This book is ideal for Christian adults who seek to expand their knowledge of the background, content and message of the Old Testament and its importance for Christian faith and life. It not only introduces important background information on each book of the Old Testament along with a general discussion of its contents and theology, but it also contains analyses of major passages within the Old Testament. Key terms, study questions, a glossary, a gazetteer of Old Testament people and places, maps, tables, charts and sidebars make this book a useful and handy reference as well as a textbook. This book is your guide to passing the Old Testament qualifier.


Called by the Gospel: An Introduction to the New Testament

Christians who seek to deepen their grasp of the New Testament will find within its pages helpful and challenging insights. This book builds upon material presented in the first volume of the series, Called to be God’s People, and supplements its contents with maps, photos, suggested readings, discussion questions and a glossary. This book is your guide to passing the New Testament qualifier.


Fundamental Greek Grammar – 3rd Revised Edition

Revised to include typographical corrections, this linguistically and educationally sound third edition is a first-year textbook that gives a solid overview of New Testament grammar and vocabulary. This book takes a fundamental approach, moving “from the known to the unknown,” from the easy to the difficult.

The format helps students with little background in classical languages grasp the essentials of translating and interpreting Greek.

Find these great resources at: Wipf and Stock Publishers