Christian Colleges in California

If you’re calling to ministry, missions, or scholarly study of the Bible, these courses offer an excellent foundation for your way forward.

Whatever you believe, Christian colleges in California aren’t just academic havens. They’re places where people of all faiths and denominations can come together. You’ll make deep, meaningful friends, go to church, work on service projects, and get involved in a tight community.

Aside from that, California is special because of its unique culture. It’s a place where you can grow spiritually and personally.

List of Christian Colleges in California

There are lots of California colleges and universities that integrate faith and learning. We’re putting together a list of Christian colleges in California that are both academically and spiritually rich. The institutions featured in this guide are committed to building a strong foundation in Christian values, offering comprehensive religious studies programs, and encouraging students to engage in thoughtful and scholarly explorations of their faith.

Biola University (La Mirada, California)

Image of Biola University’s Campus
Image from Biola University’s official website
Tuition$27,161 –  $59,500
Graduation Rate73%
Acceptance Rate61%
AccreditationsWASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC)
Religious AffiliationEvangelical Christian
Church AffiliationsN/A
ACT Range22 – 29

Admission Requirements

You can find detailed information about admissions to Biola University at   

Courses Offered

Bachelor of Arts in Bible, Theology, and Ministry

As part of Biola University’s Bible, theology, and ministry major, students learn how to love God, love people, and live faithfully in Jesus Christ. Students will learn how to study Scripture and theology effectively through this program, as well as develop their spiritual gifts and ministry skills. 

It is possible for students to pursue a B.A. in Bible, Theology, and Ministry on campus or a B.S. in Bible, Theology, and Apologetics online to prepare them for leadership roles in church ministry, missions, parachurch ministries, teaching, or further graduate studies. Biola University is accredited by the Western Southern California Coordination Commission, and the program typically takes four years to complete with 120-123 credits. 

Moreover, Biola offers 10 accelerated master’s degree pathways for its B.A. program in Bible, Theology, and Ministry, enabling students to earn both degrees in five years or less. A B.S. in Bible, Theology, and Apologetics degree is an excellent choice for those seeking a fully online learning experience.

Point Loma Nazarene University (San Diego, California)

Image of Point Loma Nazarene University’s Campus
Image from Point Loma Nazarene University’s official website
Tuition$33,537 –  $54,906
Graduation Rate75%
Acceptance Rate84%
AccreditationsWASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC)
Religious AffiliationChristian
Church AffiliationsChurch of the Nazarene
ACT Range22 – 30

Admission Requirements

A detailed description of the admissions process at Point Loma Nazarene University can be found at  

Courses Offered

Bachelor of Arts in Christian Studies

You might consider earning a Bachelor of Arts in Christian Studies at Point Loma Nazarene University (PLNU) if you’re drawn to the ministry and missions of Christ and the church, as well as a deep interest in Scripture, God, and your faith. Taking part in this program allows you to combine your love for Jesus with your desire to serve and minister in impactful ways.

When you know your Bible history, philosophy, theology, and Hebrew or Greek, you’ll be prepared to choose a concentration that aligns with your unique calling. The Christian Studies degree from PLNU will prepare you to embody the hands and feet of Christ, whether you want to make a big impact on youth on fire for God or if you want to be a ministry leader.

With six concentrations to choose from, the Christian Studies major offers a comprehensive understanding of God and the Bible while allowing you to specialize in a particular area. The general concentration is also a good option, since it’s broad enough to cover everything from theology to philosophy to the Bible.

Westmont College (Santa Barbara, California)

Image of Westmont College’s Campus
Image from Westmont College’s official website
Tuition$31,438. –  $67,030
Graduation Rate79%
Acceptance Rate79%
AccreditationsWASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC)
Religious AffiliationChristian
Church AffiliationsN/A
ACT Range30 – 33

Admission Requirements

Please visit the Westmont College admissions and financial aid page,, to find out all you need to know.

Courses Offered

Bachelor of Arts in Religion

Getting a Bachelor’s degree in Religion at Westmont College offers you a comprehensive and engaging education. Students learn about diverse religious traditions, theological concepts, and critical thinking and analytical skills by studying religious studies. As part of the program, students explore the intersections of faith, culture, and society, getting a well-rounded view of religion.

It covers a wide range of topics, such as biblical studies, theology, ethics, comparative religions, and the history of religion. Courses cover a wide range of topics. Through elective courses and independent research projects, students can also deepen their knowledge of specific areas of interest.

Vanguard University (Costa Mesa, California)

Image of Vanguard University’s Campus
Image from Vanguard University’s official website
Tuition$20,181 –  $51,770
Graduation Rate61%
Acceptance Rate69%
AccreditationsWASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC)
Religious AffiliationChristian
Church AffiliationsAssemblies of God
ACT Range21 – 28

Admission Requirements

For more information about California Wesleyan College’s admissions process, please visit This page provides all the details you need to begin your journey as a future Panther.

Courses Offered

Bachelor of Arts in Theology

A major objective of the Division of Theology at Vanguard University is to educate students who demonstrate the character of Jesus by actively demonstrating justice, mercy, and humility. 

It’s all about Scripture, theology, and servant leadership, fostering spiritual formation within the Pentecostal tradition. Across undergraduate, graduate, and professional studies programs with a variety of learning modes, the division prepares students for flourishing in their callings and ministries through relational journeys with professors and fellow students.

Each concentration in the Bachelor of Arts in Theology program develops specific pastoral and ministry skills:

  • Pastoral Leadership Studies Concentration
  • Intercultural Studies Concentration
  • Christian Formation and Discipleship Studies Concentration
  • Biblical Studies Concentration
  • Youth Leadership Studies Concentration
  • General Christian Studies Concentration

Resources and Christian Organizations in California

Although knowledge plays a role, it’s not the only thing. College is a time of self-discovery and personal growth. Here are some resources and organizations to help you connect with people who want to seamlessly combine faith and education.

Chi Alpha: As a college student, you need a community that nurtures your faith. At Chi Alpha, discipleship is at the core of everything they do. In their “Life Groups” or “Core Groups,” students can study Bible, pray, and discuss in an effective way that transforms their lives.

One of the things that distinguishes Chi Alpha is its commitment to diversity. They accept students from all walks of life and embrace the diversity of cultures and beliefs within their community. Chi Alpha is committed to helping students build a solid Christian foundation during college, when they are shaping values and convictions.

You can grow spiritually, discover your faith, and make lifelong friends in a safe and supportive environment at Chi Alpha. Chi Alpha is the ideal place for you to learn more about Christianity, connect with like-minded people, or grow in your faith.

The Navigators: As well as being a dynamic and influential Christian organization, Navigators inspire people to live their faith. The Navigators has a reputation for helping believers grow spiritually and make a difference in the world.

With a wealth of resources, community, and support, The Navigators can help you navigate your spiritual journey, whether you’re a student, a professional, or just a person seeking to grow in your faith. As a ministry that focuses on authentic relationships and transforms lives, The Navigators continue making a difference.

InterVarsity Christian Fellowship:Besides just hanging out and having fun (although they do, too! ), InterVarsity Christian Fellowship is all about equipping students to take on leadership roles in the church.

With InterVarsity’s Catalyst program, students receive specialized training, mentorship programs, and practical ministry experiences.

There are a wide range of books, devotionals, and online platforms available from InterVarsity Christian Fellowship to fuel students’ spiritual growth. The team ensures students have valuable tools to help them deepen their understanding of the Christian faith and live out their faith.

Sigma Phi Lambda: Sigma Phi Lambda offers two distinct groups: Sisters for the Lord for women and Brothers for the Lord for men, both of whom are nondenominational.

As a sorority, “Sisters for the Lord” aims to provide a unique experience that is different from the traditional Panhellenic one. “Brothers for the Lord, on the other hand, emphasizes fellowship, deeper biblical understanding, heartfelt worship, and active service through Bible study sessions.

For an inclusive and supportive Christian fellowship experience, Sigma Phi Lambda offers “Sisters for the Lord” and “Brothers for the Lord” programs. Through the cultivation of meaningful relationships, acts of service, and spiritual growth, members are empowered to live out their faith and make a lasting difference.

Frequently Asked Questions About Studying in California

Do Christian colleges in California have outreach programs or ministries?

There are a lot of Christian colleges in California that offer students opportunities to get involved with Christian ministries and outreach programs. It’s a great way for students to put their faith into action and do good.

Do Christian colleges in California offer degrees in non-religious fields?

It’s true that Christian colleges in California offer degrees in a variety of fields, including non-religious ones. As Christian institutions, these schools believe in providing a well-rounded education and providing academic excellence in many different fields.

What kind of spiritual gatherings are there on campus?

Yes, of course! Christian colleges in California always have chapel services or spiritual gatherings where students worship, pray, and get inspired. Students get to nurture their faith and connect with their peers in these gatherings, which are supportive and uplifting.

What if I don’t major in religion? Will I have to take religion courses?

Most Christian colleges in California have a general education component that includes religion courses. Regardless of your major, these courses give you a broader understanding of Christian principles and values. They help you grow as a person and appreciate your faith better.

Christian colleges in California offer spiritual support services, right?

Typically, Christian colleges in California offer pastoral counseling, mentorship programs, Bible study groups, and campus ministries to help their students stay spiritually healthy. Through these resources, students will be guided and encouraged in their spiritual journey throughout college.

It’s always a good idea to check out the websites of Christian colleges in California, reach out to admissions counselors, and visit the campuses to get a better understanding of what they have to offer.