The Boston Islamic Seminary is an academic institution that aims to train religious leaders who will serve the American Muslim community and to enhance the understanding of Islam in the contemporary context among people of all backgrounds.


The Boston Islamic Seminary began as an idea among several active volunteers in the Boston Muslim community and was established as a legal entity in 2015. This legal formation notwithstanding, the Seminary operated for the first several years under the auspices of Muslim American Society (MAS) Boston, relying on MAS Boston and the Islamic Society of Boston Cultural Center for significant operational support during our startup phase.

Our first academic program, Continuing Education, was launched in the fall of 2016. Serving adult learners of all academic, spiritual and religious backgrounds, Continuing Education offered courses on nights and weekends, striving to be a step beyond the options available at the time. Continuing Education classes were structured as college- or graduate-level courses. Students gained access to rigorous academic coursework in the Islamic sciences and topics important to the American-Muslim community. We expanded our offerings during our first two years of Continuing Education by holding classes in multiple venues, and by adding online courses to expand our reach.

In December 2020, BIS’s full-time Master of Islamic Religious Leadership (MIRL) program was unanimously approved by the Massachusetts Board of Higher Education. BIS is the first Islamic Seminary in the United States to receive the authority to award this degree. The admissions process for the first cohort will begin in Spring 2021.


The educational philosophy of the Boston Islamic Seminary rests on the integrated development of three primary facets:

1) Knowledge of Islamic texts and sciences; Assure that students have a strong grasp of normative Islamic teachings.

2) Knowledge of contemporary context; and Provide students with a solid knowledge of the contemporary context in which they will be active.

3) Practical application.