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Master of Divinity Degree (M.Div.)

The M.Div. is a graduate professional degree that equips women and men of various backgrounds and life situations for ordained leadership in churches and other forms of ministry. The M.Div. provides a broad and deep foundation in the essential knowledge and skills for leading faith communities in a pluralistic and rapidly changing world. Students learn to draw on the historic resources of the Christian faith and depths of their own and others’ experience of God to lead the people of God as they respond to the questions, needs, and struggles of our complex world.

The M.Div. prepares students superbly for the classic functions of ministerial leadership: leading worship, preaching, giving care, educating and forming people in the faith, and leading a congregation or religious organization. Today the pace of change in the church and the world is so great that the challenges faced as a leader of people of faith 20 years from now may be quite different from those faced at graduation. As such, this degree prepares students for ministry in a way that emphasizes the capacity to analyze the new situations to be faced, in light of all the resources of the faith, so people of the church can be led in new ways to which God will call them. See the Educational Goals established for this degree.

The great diversity of roles in which M.Div. graduates serve shows that the degree prepares students well for a wide variety of forms of religious leadership. The seminary also offers seven concentrations in the M.Div. degree, allowing interested students to develop special expertise in particular dimensions of ministry.

Concentrations of the Degree

Requirements of the Degree

The M.Div. requires 90 credit hours of study, normally taken as 30 3-credit courses. On a full-time basis, these courses are taken over three years at a rate of 10 courses per year. The degree can be completed on a part-time basis. All work must be completed within seven years. The specific requirements are as follows:

1. Satisfactory completion of 90 semester hours of credit. Of these, 66 hours are taken in the form of the required courses listed below, and 24 are taken in the form of free electives.

Required courses that must be taken within the first full-time equivalent year of study:

Required courses taken within the second and third full-time equivalent years of study:

2. Satisfactory completion of three personal and professional development consultations. These consultations are provided by North Central Ministry Development Center, adjacent to the seminary campus. Unit I is to be completed during the student’s first autumn term; Unit II during CS25I-252; and Unit III during IS351. The consultations are intended as occasions for reflection on vocational aptitudes and choices in ministry.

3. Attendance at a one-day antiracism workshop in the fall of the matriculation year. Attendance is a prerequisite to enrollment in IS152 Integration of Ministry and Local Theologies.

4 . Completion of an Integrative Notebook documenting the student’s individual work in integrating the different elements of the student’s course of study in a manner appropriate to his or her identity and context. This notebook or portfolio contains a variety of materials (e.g., course papers, sermon videotapes, reflections papers, art projects) and is the basis for conversations with the student’s advisor concerning his or her educational progress. The Masters Student Handbook outlines the review intervals and required contents of the Integrative Notebook for the M.Div. Program.

5 . Participation in the Spiritual Chronicle process, which supports a student’s integration of the spiritual, academic, and vocational dimensions of his or her seminary journey.

6 . Recommendation by the faculty, which takes into account academic, personal, and professional readiness for ministry.

Denominational judicatories may have additional requirements for ordination. Students should be in conversation with denominational representatives for candidacy procedures.


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Please call the admissions office at 651.255.6170 with any questions.








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