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Master of Arts in Christian Ministry

Christian Ministry (M.A. Degree)

Southwest Baptist University’s Master of Arts in Christian Ministry is an innovative degree that systematically integrates ministry and theology in a flexible program to help you achieve your goals. Choose from a variety of ministry courses with different emphases — including biblical studies, philosophy, and intercultural studies — to tailor the degree program to fit your personal interests and calling.

Building on a liberal arts education, this master's degree in ministry program provides broad, formative training that will equip you to approach ministry in new and creative ways and prepare you to be a more effective leader.  Your critical thinking skills will be sharpened and honed as you learn to engage the culture and address emerging problems and issues. This is a program designed to help you realize your full potential for ministry, to equip you to serve and to be used by God in new ways to build up the church and to advance His Kingdom.

Want to Learn more?

The Master of Arts in Christian Ministry is a practical theology degree.  In contrast to undergraduate programs, in which the curriculum is divided along the lines of theoretical and practical studies, the Master of Arts in Christian Ministry program in Redford College is thoroughly integrated, combining theological studies and ministerial studies in every course.  The intent and purpose of this integration of theory and practice is to train and equip students to apply theological knowledge to practical ministry initiatives in fruitful and innovative ways.

4+2 Track

The 4+2 track is for students who have already graduated with a bachelor’s degree.  On this track, the degree is designed to be completed in two years.  The following is a typical program of study for those on the 4+2 track:

First year:

  • Fall: 9 hours   
  • Winterfest: 3 hours    
  • Spring: 9 hours           
  • Summer: 3 hours

Second year:

  • Fall: 9 hours   
  • Winterfest: 3 hours    
  • Spring: 6 hours (including Ministry Project Capstone)

4+1 Track (Early Acceptance Program)

Prospective and current undergraduate students at SBU may apply to the Early Acceptance Program (4+1 track), an accelerated program of study that enables students to graduate with both a B.A. degree and the M.A. degree in Christian ministry in five years total.  Students on the 4+1 track take up to twelve hours of concurrent enrollment courses, which count toward both bachelor’s and master’s degree requirements.

The following is a typical program of study for those on the 4+1 track:

Second semester junior undergraduate (80+ hours completed):

  • Spring: 3 hours (concurrent enrollment)

Senior undergraduate:

  • Fall: 3 - 6 hours (concurrent enrollment)      
  • Spring: 3 - 6 hours (concurrent enrollment)

First year graduate:

  • Summer: 3 hours
  • Fall: 9 - 12 hours        
  • Winterfest: 3 hours    
  • Spring: 9 - 12 hours
  • Summer: 3 hours (Ministry Project Capstone)           

Program Requirements

Ready to Apply?

Separate applications are used for the 4+2 track and the 4+1 track of the Master of Arts in Christian Ministry program.  Applicants who have already completed a bachelor's degree or anticipate completing one at an institution other than SBU should apply to the 4+2 track.

APPLY TO THE 4+2 TRACK

Incoming and current SBU undergraduate students are eligible to apply to the Early Acceptance Program (4+1 track). The 4+1 track is for students who intend to take concurrent enrollment courses during their undergraduate studies at SBU in order to complete the bachelor's degree and the master of arts in Christian ministry degree in Christian ministry in five years total.

APPLY TO THE 4+1 TRACK

Questions?

Contact:

Dr. Zach Manis
Program Director
Master of Arts in Christian Ministry
(800) 526-5859
(417) 328-1766
zmanis@SBUniv.edu

SBU students

The SBU Advantage

  • Integration of theology and ministry in every course
  • Personalized programs of study that can be designed to support your specific ministry calling
  • Unique capstone projects to explore your interests and develop innovative approaches to ministry
  • Highly qualified faculty in SBU’s Redford College, all of whom have doctoral degrees and are experts in their fields

Faith Integration

The Christian faith is at the heart of everything we do at Southwest Baptist University and permeates our teaching and instruction. The Master of Arts in Christian Ministry program is designed to be a formative experience that will deepen and enrich your own faith, even as you receive training to become more effective in ministering to others. All faculty in the Redford College are professing Christians committed to the integration of faith and academics.

Master of Arts in Christian Ministry — Program of Study

The Master of Arts in Christian Ministry is a non-thesis, 42-hour degree. Students must complete four CORE courses (12 hours), nine electives (27 hours) and the Ministry Project Capstone (3 hours). The program of study will be designed by the student in consultation with the faculty advisor, informed by the student's ministry goals and the courses offered. A typical full-time student will enroll in nine to twelve credit hours per fall and spring semester, three credit hours per summer term, and three credit hours per Winterfest term.

Prerequisites

The Master of Arts in Christian Ministry program requires that students have prior knowledge in certain areas of study before fully pursuing the M.A.  Full admission to the program requires either (i) a major in biblical studies, theology, philosophy, ministry, intercultural studies, Christian studies, or religious studies, or (ii) 30+ hours of undergraduate coursework in these areas.  The coursework completed in the aforementioned areas must include the following courses or some transfer equivalency:

  • BIB 2093 Methods of Biblical Interpretation
  • CHR 3013 Introduction to Ministry
  • PHI 2013 Philosophical Foundations for a Christian Worldview
  • THE 3113 Christian Doctrine
  • THE 3463 History of Christianity I or THE 3673 History of Christianity II

In addition, a minimum undergraduate grade point average of 2.75, overall, and 3.00 within major (on a 4.00 scale) is required for full admission to the program.

Students who have not completed all of the academic program prerequisites and/or whose GPA is lower than that specified above may be conditionally admitted to the program.  See the SBU Graduate Catalog for further details.

CORE Courses

Students in the Master of Arts in Christian Ministry program are required to take four CORE courses, one from each of the following categories: Leadership, Theology, Community, and Service. For each category, students will choose between two courses that are eligible to fulfill the requirement.

Leadership: Leadership and the Old Testament or Preaching and Teaching the Bible

Theology: Christian Theological Traditions or Contemporary Christian Theologies

Community: Kingdom and Society or Church and Community

Service: Theology and Practice of the Local Church or Disciple-Making in Context

Electives

Students are required to take at least nine elective courses. The M.A. in Christian Ministry is designed to be a flexible program, allowing students to select courses that emphasize areas of study that are conducive to attaining the student's own vocational and ministry goals. Toward this end, each student will work closely with a faculty advisor in designing an appropriate schedule.

The following is a list of courses from which students will choose to fulfill the degree's elective course requirements:

  • The Problem of Evil (concurrent enrollment)
  • Indigenous Christian Community (concurrent enrollment)
  • Old Testament Hymnic and Wisdom Literature (concurrent enrollment)
  • Christ and Salvation (concurrent enrollment)
  • Early Pauline Epistles (concurrent enrollment)
  • Youth Discipleship and Evangelism (concurrent enrollment)
  • Leadership and the Old Testament
  • Preaching and Teaching the Bible
  • Kingdom and Society
  • Church and Community
  • The Teaching Ministry of Jesus
  • Equipping to Serve
  • A Practical Theology for Youth Ministry
  • Disciple-Making in Context
  • Issues in Global Christian Theologies
  • Theology and Practice of the Local Church
  • Knowledge and Mystery
  • Good and Evil
  • Heaven and Hell
  • Christian Theological Traditions
  • Contemporary Christian Theologies
  • Christian Theological Ethics
  • The Ministry of Leadership
  • The Ministry of Worship
  • Patristic Theology
  • Puritan Spirituality

Ministry Project Capstone

The ministry capstone course and project serves as both an application and substantive assessment of what the student has learned in the Master of Arts in Christian Ministry program. It is comprised of an in-class component and an off-site component. The former is a team-taught course involving regular meetings throughout the semester in a classroom setting. The latter is a student-designed project, developed in consultation with the student's advisor, the Graduate Program Director, and an on-site supervisor at a church or parachurch organization where the ministry will take place.

Program Summary

CORE Requirements (12 Hours)

Course Number Course Name Credit Hours
MIN 5103 or MIN 5113 Leadership and the Old Testament or Preaching and Teaching the Bible 3
MIN 5123 or MIN 5433 Christian Theological Traditions or Contemporary Christian Theologies 3
MIN 5143 or MIN 5153 Kingdom and Society or Church and Community 3
MIN 5163 or MIN 5173 Theology and Practice of the Local Church or Disciple-Making in Context 3
Total hours 12

Electives (27 Hours)

Ministry project capstone (3 hours)

Course Number Course Name Credit Hours
MIN 5983 Ministry Project Capstone 3