The institution which later on became the Protestant Institute of Arts and Social Sciences was founded in 1970 by mainline protestant churches which were operating in Rwanda.The institution was then called “Ecole de Theologie de Butare: ETB” (Butare School of Theology). In 1990, it was upgraded into Faculty of Protestant Theology of Butare (FTPB) which got official accreditation in 1993 by the convention No 1552 of 09 December 1993. In the same year, the convention No 1554/09.2/01/02 acknowledged the degrees delivered by the FTPB.
In the aftermath of 1994 genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda, the founders of the institution, in the collaboration with the FTPB national and international partners deployed a lot of efforts to help FTPB resume its activities in such a way that specific needs of a recovering society could be met. In that perspective, a so-called Special Program was launched in 1995 and lasted till 2001: three successive intakes of students have been trained over two years and educated in contextual and practical theological training through those kinds of crash courses. The graduates of the Special program were awarded with Diploma in Protestant Theology. As of 1999, the FTPB returned to the ordinary four years program of Hon. Bachelor’s degree in Protestant Theology. .
In 2010, the FTPB grew up and was supplemented by two new Faculties: Faculty of Education (FED) and the Faculty of Development Studies (FDS) within the new framework of Protestant Institute of Arts and Social Sciences (PIASS). Those two new fields have been chosen based on the experiences and expertise acquired by Protestant Churches in Rwanda. The new Institution (PIASS) has been respectively accredited by the Ministerial Order no 09/11 of November 2009 licensing “Institut Protestant des Sciences Humaines de Butare (IPSHB)” and the ministerial order n°29 of 19/07/2010 recognizing the Institute under the new name of Protestant Institute of Arts and Social Sciences (PIASS).